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Ushabtiu figures were placed in tombs in large numbers; in the tomb of Seti I. nearly seven hundred were found. The figure was inscribed, in the later times, after the XXVIth dynasty, and laid in the model of a coffin or sarcophagus made of wood, terra-cotta, or stone. On the coffins were painted figures of the four genii of the underworld, Anubis and other principal sepulchral deities, with appropriate inscriptions, and these models bear a striking resemblance to the coffins made in Egypt from B.C. 500–300. The inscriptions on figures of this period are frequently written in a very cursive and almost illegible hieratic, and in demotic ; sometimes, however, they have the form and brevity of those inscribed on the ushabtiu figures of the XIIIth dynasty.


This name is given to a large class of wooden figures, standing on pedestals, made in the shape of the god Osiris as a mummy. The god wears on his head horns, the disk and

plumes !, his hands are crossed over his breast, and in

them he holds the flail s\ and crook 7. The figures are

Ushabtitt of the XXVIth and following dynasties.

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sometimes hollowed out, and contain papyri inscribed with ion o

prayers and chapters from a late recension of the Book of the Dead. Frequently the papyri are found in hollows in the pedestals, above which stand small models of funereal chests, surmounted by a hawk; in the hollows portions of the body, , mummified, were often placed. Many figures are quite black, having been covered by bitumen; others are painted in the most vivid colours, with blue head-dress with yellow stripes, green, red and yellow collar, face gilded, and body covered with wings of a blue and geen colour. -o

The god Ptah-Seker-Ausárošo, N § I 3. appears on stelae in company with Osiris, Anubis and other gods of the dead, and he is addressed on figures made in his honour, because he was supposed to be specially connected with the resurrection. He is sometimes represented in the form of Osiris (Lanzone, Digionario, pl. xcvii), and with all the attributes of this god ; the other forms in which he appears


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are:—I. As a little squat boy, with a beetle on his head; and

2. As a hawk wearing a crown and feathers 4). standing on
a throne before which is a table of offerings in a shrine. In
this form he is often painted on the outsides of coffins.
Behind him is a winged uraeus wearing a disk, and utats *ś.
The inscriptions upon Ptah-Seker-Ausár figures vary greatly
in length; at times they are written in perpendicular lines
down the front and back of the figure, and continue round
each of the four sides of the pedestal; at others they consist of
a very few words. Be the inscription long or short, the
deceased prays that Ptah-Seker and Ausár (Osiris) will give
sepulchral meals of oxen, ducks, wine, beer, oil, and wax, and
bandages, and every good, pure, and sweet thing to his £a.
The formulae of these figures greatly resemble those found on
stelae of a late period. The British Museum possesses a
remarkably fine collection of these figures, and as they come
from several distinct places, and have many varieties, they are
most instructive.


In addition to the chests placed in tombs to hold Canopic vases, the Egyptians made use of a smaller class of wooden boxes to hold ushabtiu figures, papyri, articles of dress and other things. They vary in size from six or eight inches to two feet square. Some are made perfectly square, with sides that slant slightly inwards like the pylon of a temple, being higher than they are wide: others are oblong in shape, and each end rises above the level of the cover. Some have two and others four divisions. The outsides are usually ornamented with scenes in which the deceased is represented adoring Rā, or Anubis, or one of the principal gods of the dead, and with figures of Mesthä, Håpi, Tuamäutef and Qebhsennuf, painted in bright colours upon a black or white ground. The boxes from Thebes are decorated in the same style as the coffins from that place. Frequently the orna

mentation consists of #. | | 3. <=. !!!, etc., etc., arranged

in symmetrical rows, above them being figures of Osiris, Isis,

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