Features of style, like treatment of the eyes, uraeus form and the soft outline of the nemes permit attribution to Ptolemaic times. Based on similarities with the head of a sphinx of 150 BC, it is possible to assume that our head had once belonged to a sphinx set up at Saqqara, if the place of discovery is anything to go by.
The statue presented here was found in 1848 in the Zbruch River near the village of Liczkowce (today: Lychkivtsi) (Ternopil Oblast, Ukraine). The sculpture is a four-sided pillar topped with four faces under a tall hat. Below there are three figural representations in the three-tier arrangement, with the division marked with plastic slats. Three sides of the lowest tier depict a kneeling figure with raised arms. In one case, it is a man (the moustache is marked)...
Banquet scene inside an aedicula consisting of two flat columns supporting a semicircular pediment, now lost. A papyrus capital is still visible on the column to the right. The deceased is depicted as a partaker in a banquet, reclining on a couch with two pillows and mattress. Horizontal engraved lines below the representation were intended for an inscription.
The upper preserved part of the stela shows an aedicula constructed of a semicircular pediment supported on two plain columns with papyrus capitals. The deceased is shown frontally, but with the right leg in profile. She is reclining on a mattress, supported on her left elbow resting on two pillows. In her right hand, which is unnaturally long, she holds a bowl. Her dress consists of a chiton and himation arranged in semicircular folds. The long her falling to her breasts is pushed back behind the ears. Her face has been hammered away. Opposite her there is an engraved representation of a sitting jackal. The animal with a long snout and raised tail is shown facing her.
The composition appears in an engraved aedicula with a triangular pediment supported on straight columns (the column on the right is preserved). Two figures are depicted on the stela: a woman reclining on a couch and another woman standing before her in a prayerful attitude. The scene may be reconstructed despite considerable damage; presumably there was a third praying figure depicted on the right side.
The dove, a symbol of the Holy Spirit, is popular in Christian iconography. The motif is frequent in Coptic art, mainly on funerary stelae presenting the same kind of composition as above. A praying figure with two crosses or a stylized crux gemmata cross is usually shown between the columns. The motif of a dove is also known from wall painting; numerous representations of doves are known from murals in the hermitages at Esna in Upper Egypt and elsewhere.
The stela with deceased shown in prayer in the inly such example among the objects from Kom Abou Billou in Polish collections. The style of a stela, dated to 300 based on the archeological context, is similar, although not exactly the same. Modeling of the details of the figure and of the dress suggests an earlier dating for this object.
The deceased rests on a couch with mattress in a repetition of a composition that is already known from the Stela of the son of Chairemon and Isidora. The differences are insignificant: a wreath held in the extended right hand and a different arrangement of the feet, which are crossed in this case. Both the mattress and the pillows are decorated with rhomboids. The features of the face are not very clear, but a flat wide nose predominates.
On the preserved bottom half of the relief the deceased is shown reclining on a kline with mattress, supported on two pillows. He is dressed in a chiton and himation, with right leg in profile, left shown frontally. The funerary repast is suggested by two sheaves of corn and an amphora in between, next to which stands a three-legged table with horizontal bar.
The stele was purchased in Cairo at Eli Albert and Joseph Abermayor by soldiers of the Polish Independent Carpathian Rifle Brigade during WW II. The scene depicts a deceased man lying on a klinai and a female orant standing opposite. The man lying in the bed is dressed in a short-sleeved chiton and a himation rolled at the waist, wrapped around his left hand. In his right, outstretched hand he is holding a kantharos. The woman standing in front of him is depicted en face, she is dressed in the same way as the man and is raising her hands in a gesture of prayer. Under the scene an inscription is placed. The name of the deceased has been preserved only partially; perhaps it was Sosas. The name of his father was Chairemon; the name of Isidora is also there, popular in Egypt in the Roman period. The figures are bound together by family ties.
The specimen comes from the historic collection gathered in 1872 by Stanisław Zaręczny. It was marked in 1891 by Józef Siemiradzki as a new specimen (currently holotype) and then described in his publication Fauna kopalna warstw oksfordzkich i kimerydzkich w okręgu krakowskim i przyległych częściach Królestwa Polskiego, Część I: Głowonogi, (The fossil fauna of the Oxfordian and Kimmeridgian layers in the Kraków area and the neighbouring part of the Kingdom of Poland, Part I: Cephalopods) in: Pamiętnik Akademii Umiejętności w Krakowie, Wydział Matematyczno-Przyrodniczy, Vol. 18, issue I.
The sculpture comes from the excavations conducted by Hermann Junker in 1913 in the eastern sector of the Great Western Necropolis, west of the Pyramid of Cheops. The sculpture depicts the figures according to a specific canon: the man in a walking posture and the woman standing with feet held together.
The oldest sculpture in the round to be found in Wawel. The sculpture is regarded to be one element of a larger set (a detail enriching a door portal or a part of the interior furnishing of the building).