Akhet Logo

The Amarna period is one of the most fascinating eras in Egyptian History. As well as sweeping religious changes the Heretic Pharaoh Akhenaten also introduced changes to the style of Egyptian art.
The N.M.S. is fortunate to have a selection of Amarna items unequaled in the UK. Many of these were excavated by Flinders Petrie in the city of Akhetaten, and also at the royal tomb there.

Master image of Akhenaten

Akhenaten had himself portrayed in a different style to the traditional images of the Pharaoh. As the style developed his features became more exaggerated and distorted. Several theories have been put forward concerning this. It may have been a way of setting the Pharaoh apart from his 'mortal' subjects.
This small sandstone relief was used as an artists master. It would have been carved as a template for official paintings and sculptures.

Shabti figure of Akhenaten

This red quartzite Shabti head was found in the Royal tomb at Akhetaten. It is one of many smashed Shabti figures found at the site, possibly destroyed in the later attempts to remove all traces of the Atenist 'heresy'.

Gold ear plug

One of the most exciting discoveries ever made at Akhetaten was when a small cache of Jewelry was found buried outside the royal tomb. This intricate ear plug was one of the objects found. Note how the edge is trimmed with fine gold granules, complimenting the detail in the middle.

Ring bearing the royal cartouche

This ring was also in the cache of Jewelry found. It is possible that the jewelry was dropped by tomb robbers, or when the tomb was officially opened (by Tutankhamun ?) to move the burial to Thebes after Akhetaten was abandoned.


Akhenaten : King of Egypt


Nefertiti : Egypts Sun Queen

All objects photographed here are from the collection of the National Museums of Scotland.
Thanks to the N.M.S. Department of History and Applied Art for information concerning the objects.