Page images

Statue and stele of Ani.

feet wide by seven feet high, and passing through this we see to the right and left a series of chambers upon the walls of which are painted in vivid colours the pictures of Ani and his wife Tutu making offerings to the gods, and inscriptions recording his prayers and their answers. The walls of some rooms are occupied entirely with scenes drawn from the daily events of his life. As he was a scribe, and therefore no mean artist, we are probably right in assuming that he superintended the painting of many of them himself. Some of the rooms have their walls unornamented, and it would seem that these were used for the living rooms of the priests who visited or lived in the tombs for the purpose of carrying out the various sepulchral rites at their appointed times. We pass through or by seventeen chambers, and then arrive at a flight of steps which leads down to the chamber in which the mummy and coffin are to be placed. Hewn in the wall just above the top of the flight of steps is a square niche, in which, seated on one seat, are two stone figures of Ani and his wife; he has an open roll of papyrus on his knees, and holds a palette in his hand, and she has lotus flowers in both hands, which rest on her knees. The plinth of the statues is inscribed with the names and titles of Ani and Tutu. Beneath, let into the wall, is a stone stele, the surface of which is divided into two parts; the upper part contains a representation of Ani adoring the sun-god Rā, and the lower contains about thirty lines of inscription in which Ani prays that Rā, Osiris and Anubis will cause all kinds of sepulchral goods to be supplied for his ka or genius; that they will grant his coming forth from and going into the netherworld whenever he pleases; that his soul may alight on the trees which he has planted; that he may drink cool water from the depths of the Nile when he pleases, etc.

The mummy in its coffin has been brought down the steps, and is now carried into a large chamber on the left, where its final resting place is to be. As we pass into this room we see that a part of it is already occupied with a coffin and the funereal furniture belonging to it. When we come nearer we find that it is the coffin of Tutu, Ani's wife. Close by her is a table of alabaster covered with shapely vessels of the same substance, filled with wine, oil, and other unguents;

Ani's wife.

[graphic][ocr errors][subsumed]

each of these fragile objects is inscribed with her name. On the table are spoons made of ivory of the most beautiful work. manship. They are shaped in the form of a woman. The body is stained a deep creamy colour, the colour of the skin of the Egyptian lady, who guarded herself from the rays of the sun; the hair is black, and we see that it is movable ; when we lift it off we see the name of “Tutu, the sistrum bearer," engraved beneath. On a second stand, made of wood, we find the articles for her toilet, mirror, kohl pot in obsidian, fan, etc., and close by is the sistrum which she carried in the temple of Amen-Rā upon earth, and which was buried with her, so that she might be able to praise that god with music in his mansions in the sky. Chairs and her couch are there too, and stands covered with dried flowers and various offerings. Removing the lid of the coffin we see her mummy lying as it was laid a few years before. On her breasts are strings of dried flowers with the bloom still on them, and by her side is a roll of papyrus containing a copy of the service which she used to sing in the temple of Amen in the Apts, when on earth. Her amethyst necklace and other ornaments are small, but very beautiful. Just over her feet is a blue glazed steatite ushabti figure. While we have been examining Tutu's general furniture, the servants of the cher-heb have brought down the coffin, which is placed on a bier along the east wall, and the chairs and couch and boxes and funereal offerings, and arranged them about the chamber. In a square niche in the wall, just over the head of the coffin, Ani's writing palette and reeds are placed, and by its side is laid a large roll of papyrus nearly 90 feet long, inscribed in Ani's hieroglyphics during his lifetime and under his direction, with Book of

the Dead. the oldest and most important chapters of the “Book of the Dead"; the vignettes, which refer to the chapters, are beautifully painted, and in some as many as thirteen colours are used in this chamber; and in every work connected with Ani's tomb there is a simple majesty which is characteristic of the ancient Egyptian gentleman. At each of the four corners or sides of the bier, is placed one of the so-called Canopic jars, and at the foot are laid a few stone ushabtiu figures, whose duty it was to perform for the deceased such

labours as filling the furrows with water, ploughing the fields, and carrying the sand, if he were called upon to do them. When everything has been brought into this chamber, and the tables of offerings have been arranged, a priest, wearing a panther skin, and accompanied by another who burns incense in a bronze censer, approaches the mummy, and performs the ceremony of "opening the mouth”

o un-re; while a priest in white robes reads from a roll of papyrus or leather. The act of embalming has taken away from the dead man all control over his limbs and the various portions of his body, and before these can be of any use to him in the nether-world, a mouth must be given to him, and it must be opened so that his ka may be able to speak. The twentyfirst and twenty-second chapters of the “Book of the Dead” refer to the giving a mouth to the deceased, and the vignette of the twenty-second chapter (Naville, bl. xxxiii) represents a

priest called the “guardian of the scale,” ?IM

[ocr errors]

The giving ari māxet, giving the deceased his mouth. In the vignette to the mouth to the the twenty-third chapter a priest is seen performing the operadeceased. tion of opening the mouth

arit åpt re, with

o 0 x the instrument, and the deceased says in the text, “ Ptah 1 has opened my mouth with that instrument of steel with which he opened the mouth of the gods.”When the mouth of the deceased had been opened, his ka gained control of his speech, intelligence and limbs, and was able to hold intercourse with the gods, and to go in and out of his tomb whenever he pleased. When the formulæ are finished and all rites performed, Ani's relatives and near friends withdraw from the mummy chamber and make their way up the stairs, through the long passage and into the first chamber, where

they find that animals have been slaughtered, and that many The of the assistants and those who accompanied the funeral are funeral


[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »