Mentuhotep Nebheptre, the king who unified Upper and Lower Egypt for the second time after King Narmer. He is depicted wearing the Red Crown and the tight fitting costume of the Sed festival, a jubilee celebrated after 30 years of a reign. His black skin and the position of his crossed arms associate him with the god Osiris, god of death, fertility, and resurrection. The statue was found by chance in 1900 by Howard Carter as he rode through the forecourt of Mentuhotep’s mortuary temple at Deir al-Bahari, when his horse tripped on something. Upon investigation, this turned out to be a stone slab covering a shaft. Carter excavated it, and discovered a small chamber containing the statue intricately wrapped in linen, along with other artifacts.
Middle Kingdom, 11th Dynasty, Nebheptre Mentuhotep (c.2055–2004 BC)
Medium: Painted sandstone
Provenance: Deir al-Bahari, Mortuary complex of Mentuhotep Nebheptre