The Stela of King Djet – a Masterpiece of Egyptian Art
A lecture by Egyptologist and Author
The stela of King Djet, discovered well over a century ago at Abydos in Middle Egypt, is an iconic monument of the Early Dynastic Period in Egypt. It is not widely known today that the dating of the stela to the reign of the king whose name it bears was questioned at one time. And although illustrations of it continue to be featured nowadays in many books about ancient Egypt, contemporary commentary fails to notice significant aspects of the draftsman’s design and of the techniques utilized by the sculptor responsible for its creation that will be discussed in the lecture. Comparison of what has been said about the stela in the past shows how approaches to Egyptian “artifacts” have changed over time. Additional topics addressed are the acrimony surrounding the stela’s discovery and sale at auction as well as the iconography of the relief it bears, where it may have originally been erected, and its purpose.
Co-sponsored with the Department of Archaeology, Boston University