Portrait of a woman

Artefact Details

Gallery number: 14 – Upper Floor

Period: Roman Period

Size: Height: 38 cm, Width: 21 cm

Place of discovery: Hawara – Fayum

Material: Cedar wood with encaustic painting

Image Gallery

In 1888 the British archeologist Sir William Flinders Petrie discovered in the site of Hawara, where king Amenemhat III (12th Dynasty) built his pyramid, a series of beautiful and vivid paintings on wooden boards, known as «Fayum portraits», attached to upper-class mummies and made during the Roman period. The portraits covered the faces of mummies and at present-day about 900 portraits have been discovered. This young woman wearing two strings of emeralds and a pair of gold earrings was called Demos and died at the age of 24 during the reign of the emperor Domitian (51-96 AD). The Fayum portraits usually have inscriptions with the name and the profession of the deceased.