An Analysis of Stela of Mentuwoser
The Stela of Mentuwoser is a piece of funerary art from the Middle Kingdom period that was given to Mentuwoser by King Senwosret for his loyal services. Mentuwoser had many accomplishments and was thought to be a man of the people. The Stela of Mentuwoser displays the respect people had for him and what he had done for the people of his nation. It also gives us a look into some of the traditions of his time.
The Stela clearly expresses the amount of accomplishments Mentuwoser had achieved. The majority of the Stela of Mentuwoser is taken up by hieroglyphics. These hieroglyphics have been interpreted to be about all of the deeds he did for the people of Egypt. Some of the included accomplishments include being a steward, granary official, and overseer of anything regarding domestic animals. The inscriptions describe Mentuwoser as a selfless man who took care of people less fortunate than him. The Stela is clearly a written and visual tribute to a man who did many things in selflessness.
The way in which the image the image is shown at the bottom of the Stela clearly expresses Mentuwoser as the main focus of this piece. Mentuwoser is sitting at his funeral banquet, while his father, son, and daughter offer food and beverage to him. Perhaps the most obvious feature of the carving is the scale of the figures. Mentuwoser is much larger than the other 3 figures’ combined size. Another way the artist expresses Mentuwoser’s importance is by including very subtle muscular carvings in his arms and legs, and delicate shaping in his jaw and cheeks. The other family members have no muscular features, nor do they have any shaping in their faces. The only other items in the piece to have any form are the chair Mentuwoser sits in and the head of the calf, two items that he is sitting directly adjacent to. The way the figures are posed also displays Mentuwoser’s significance. Mentuwoser is sitting down at a banquet table, in rigid,...
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