Statue of Djed-Hor Holding a Stela of Horus on Crocodiles

Artefact Details

Gallery Number: 19 corridor  – Upper Floor

Period: Ptolemaic, Macedonian, reign of Philip Arrhidaeus (c. 323-317 BC)

Place of Discovery: Tell Atrib (Athribis)

Size: Statue 78x43x25 cm, Base 93x53x38 cm

Material: Granodiorite

This Statue of Djed-Hor the Saviour, shows him squatting on a cushion and leaning against a pillar with his arms crossed on the knees in the typical block-statue form. He is wearing a garment that tightly envelops his entire body. The entire statue, apart from his face, hands and feet, is covered with hieroglyphic talismanic magical inscriptions arranged in columns against the stings and bites of crocodiles, snakes and scorpions.

Between his crossed arms and feet is a stele of Horus on the crocodiles. Horus the child (Harpokrates) stands naked upon two crocodiles, wearing the side-lock of youth with one finger held to his lips and the god Bes’s mask above his head. His hands grasp a number of dangerous animals; two snakes and a lion in his left hand, and a scorpion and an oryx in his right. He is flanked by the lotus of Nefertum on his left and a is and the papyrus crowned with a falcon on his right.

The statue is resting on a large plinth/socle that is entirely covered with inscriptions and contains two offering basins that are united by a channel. The smaller offering basin is located in front of the block statue, while a larger offering basin extends over the rest and surrounds the statue on four sides.

These types of statues could belong to a god or a person and were erected in public places as healing statues to gain divine protection, cure stings and bites, or even to prevent intimidating dangers. The general public would pour water, wine, or any other liquids onto the statue and drink it after it gathered inside the basin. These liquids were imbued with the protection of the powerful spells inscribed on the statue.