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Archaeology and

Art of

Ancient Egypt


Archaeology and
Art of

Ancient Egypt
Essays in Honor of David B. OConnor

Volume II

Edited by
Zahi A. Hawass
and Janet Richards


Graphic Designer
Lourie, Margaret A.
Director of Printing
Safwat, Amal
(CASAE 36) 2007
Conseil Suprme des Antiquits de lgypte, Le Caire, 2007
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form
or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the
Dar el Kutub No. 5576/2007
ISBN-10 977-437-241-7
ISBN-13 987-977-437-241-4
ISSN 5576/2007
Imprimerie du Conseil Suprme des Antiquits


Volume I
Zahi A. Hawass




List of Abbreviations


David B. OConnor: A Tribute

H. S. Smith


An Archaeological Biography
Janet Richards


Matthew Douglas Adams, Household Silos, Granary Models, and Domestic
Economy in Ancient Egypt


William Y. Adams, Anthropology and Nubiology


David Anderson, Zoomorphic Figurines from the Predynastic Settlement

at el-Mahsna, Egypt


Dieter Arnold, Buried in Two Tombs? Remarks on Cenotaphs in the

Middle Kingdom


John Baines and Liam McNamara, The Twin Stelae of Suty and Hor


Kathryn A. Bard and Rodolfo Fattovich, Mersa/Wadi Gawasis: New Evidence

of a Pharaonic Harbor


Ladislav Bare, Lesser Burial Chambers in the Large Late Period Shaft
Tombs and Their Owners


Laurel D. Bestock, Finding the First Dynasty Royal Family


Robert S. Bianchi, The Stones of Egypt and Nubia


Manfred Bietak, Irene Forstner-Mller, and Tomasz Herbich, Discovery of

a New Palatial Complex in Tell el-Daba in the Delta:
Geophysical Survey and Preliminary Archaeological Verification


Patricia Bochi, The Image as Visual Trope and Cognitive Structure

in the Ancient Egyptian Harpers Songs


Janine Bourriau, The Vienna System in Retrospect: How Useful Is It?


Edward Brovarski, King NTr-kA-Ra Ii-m-Htp zA PtH?


Betsy M. Bryan, A New Statue of Amenhotep III and the Meaning of

the Khepresh Crown


Laurent Chiotti, Harold L. Dibble, Deborah I. Olszewski, Shannon R. McPherron,

Utsav Schurmans, and Jennifer R. Smith, Paleolithic Abydos:
Reconstructing Individual Behaviors across the High
Desert Landscape




Sue DAuria, The American Branch of the Egypt Exploration Fund


Rosalie David, The International Ancient Egyptian Mummy Tissue Bank:

A 21st Century Contribution to Paleo-pathological and
Paleo-pharmacological Studies


Denise Doxey, A New Kingdom Pair Statue in the University of

Pennsylvania Museum


Gnter Dreyer, Wer war Menes?


Katherine Eaton, Memorial Temples in the Sacred Landscape of

Nineteenth Dynasty Abydos: An Overview of Processional
Routes and Equipment

Yahia el-Masry, The Ptolemaic Town (Ptolemais)


Ahmed El-Sawy, The Necropolis of Ancient Terenouthis (Kom Abou Bellou) 267
Richard A. Fazzini, Some Objects Found before the First Pylon of the
Mut Temple


Laurel Flentye, The Mastabas of Ankh-haf (G7510) and Akhethetep

and Meretites (G7650) in the Eastern Cemetery at Giza:
A Reassessment


Renee Friedman, New Observations on the Fort at Hierakonpolis,

Appendix by Dietrich Raue


Melinda Hartwig, A Head of a Ramesside Queen from Abydos


Stephen P. Harvey, King Heqatawy: Notes on a Forgotten Eighteenth

Dynasty Royal Name


Fekri A. Hassan, Droughts, Famine and the Collapse of the Old Kingdom:
Re-reading Ipuwer


Zahi A. Hawass, The Discovery of the Osiris Shaft at Giza




Colin A. Hope, Egypt and Libya to the End of the Old Kingdom:
A View from Dakhleh Oasis


Salima Ikram, Animals in the Ritual Landscape at Abydos: A Synopsis


Richard Jasnow, Through Demotic Eyes: On Style and Description

in Demotic Narratives


Janice Kamrin, Toward a New Database for the Egyptian Museum, Cairo


Volume II
Naguib Kanawati, The Watchers/Dependents of Min of Akhmim
in the Old Kingdom

Barry Kemp, The Orientation of Burials at Tell el-Amarna


Peter Lacovara, A Rishi Coffin from Giza and the Development of

This Type of Mummy Case


Anthony Leahy, Tomb Relief Carving at Abydos in the Seventh Century BC


Mark Lehner and Freya Sadarangani, Beds for Bowabs in a Pyramid City


Ronald J. Leprohon, Opening in the Pyramid Texts


Christine Lilyquist, Reflections on Mirrors


Michelle Marlar, Sex as a Votive Offering at the Osiris Temple

Geoffrey T. Martin, The Early Dynastic Necropolis at North Saqqara:
The Unpublished Excavations of W. B. Emery and C. M. Firth

Heather Lee McCarthy, The Beit el-Wali Temple of Ramesses II:
A Cosmological Interpretation






Robert S. Merrillees, Egyptological Ramblings Down Under


A. J. Mills, Where Are We Going?


Angela Milward-Jones, A Unique Design on a Faience Bowl from Abydos


Ellen F. Morris, On the Ownership of the Saqqara Mastabas and the

Allotment of Political and Ideological Power at the Dawn
of the State


Karol Mysliwiec, The Scheme 2 4 in the Decoration of

Old Kingdom Tombs


Adela Oppenheim, Three Deities in Procession: A Relief Block from the

Pyramid Complex of Senwosret II at Lahun in the
Metropolitan Museum of Art


R. B. Parkinson and Detlef Franke, A Song for Sarenput: Texts from

Qubbet el-Hawa Tomb 36


Diana Craig Patch, Third Intermediate Period Burials of Young

Children at Abydos


Mary-Ann Pouls Wegner, A Third Intermediate Period Burial

Ad Sanctos at Abydos


Stephen Quirke, Labour at Lahun


Ali Radwan, Concerning the Cult of Amenhotep III after His Death


Donald B. Redford, Some Toponyms and Personal Names Relating

to the Sea Peoples


Carol Redmount, El Hibeh: A Brief Overview


Janet Richards, The Archaeology of Excavations and the Role of Context




Gay Robins, The Decorative Program in the Tomb of Tutankhamun (KV 62) 321
Gerry D. Scott, III, Two Ceremonial Palette Fragments in the Collection
of the San Antonio Museum of Art


Stephan Johannes Seidlmayer, People at Beni Hassan: Contributions to

a Model of Ancient Egyptian Rural Society


Alaa el-Din M. Shaheen, Water Carrier or the Like in the Ancient

Egyptian Sources and Its Resemblance to Dilmun Glyptic Art


JJ Shirley, The Life and Career of Nebamun, the Physician of

the King in Thebes


David P. Silverman and Jennifer Houser Wegner, A Late Egyptian Story

in the Penn Museum


Rainer Stadelmann, King Huni: His Monuments and His Place in

the History of the Old Kingdom


Chip Vincent, International Conservation Methodology,

Practice and Ethics and Their Application at the American
Research Center in Egypts Conservation Project at Abydos


Deborah Vischak, Identity in/of Elephantine: The Old Kingdom Tombs

at Qubbet el Hawa


Josef Wegner, From Elephant-Mountain to Anubis-Mountain?

A Theory on the Origins and Development of the Name Abdju


The Life and Career of Nebamun, the Physician

of the King in Thebes1
JJ Shirley
University of Wales Swansea

efore beginning, I must first acknowledge that it is a great honor to contribute to the
Festschrift of such an esteemed Egyptologist. David OConnor has been a mentor to me for
several years, and has consistently encouraged me in my pursuits. To that end, the following paper
is most appropriate, as he has been urging me to publish it since I gave a version of it at the 55th
Annual ARCE in April, 2004. I only hope the result lives up to his expectations.
The private tombs stretching across the west bank of Thebes have long been acknowledged
as a principal source for our understanding of the officials who lived and functioned during the
New Kingdom. As a result, many of the most spectacular and interesting of them have been published, either in full or in part. The tomb decoration has been studied with respect to the style and
methods of painting or carving, while the owners have been categorized in areas of administration on the basis of their titles. Occasionally, and more often in recent studies, the tomb owners
have been discussed in light of the broader socio-historical context of the New Kingdom. This
is especially true when their inscriptions contain pertinent information, or if a particular scene
has historically informative content (e.g., Assmann 1991; Dziobek 1998; Brack and Brack 1980).
Overall, however, there is still a tendency to separate the epigraphic text from the image with
which it appears when examining these tombs and their owners.2 This occurs despite the general
consensus among scholars that for the ancient Egyptians there existed a correlation between
epigraphic text and image,3 and that inscriptions regularly correspond to the scenes with which
they are juxtaposed (see, e.g., Assmann 1987; Baines 1989; Baines 1990; Eyre 1996: 417f., 431f.;
Fischer 1986; Tefnin 1993).4
In addition, archaeology and the archaeological context of tombs also play a significant role
in interpreting the inscriptions and images found in them. This idea follows from Polzs comments that all aspects of a tomb have an archaeological context, including the decoration, which
consequently should be viewed as an archaeological object (Polz 1987; cf. Hartwig 2004: 14.). In
this vein, it is important to remember that although tombs are funerary monuments, many items










Fig. 1: Plan of Theban Tomb 17. After Porter and Moss

1994: 30.

illustrated on tomb walls are themselves

artifacts, if pictorially manipulated.
These objects physically existed, were
likely chosen to be represented for specific reasons, and thus are themselves
considerable sources of information. By
considering scenes within the context
of the entire tomb, analyzing the artifacts depicted in them, and incorporating the textual information both from
individual scenes and the tomb overall,
one can draw new conclusions about
the life and career of the tomb owner.
The tomb of Nebamun, a mid18th Dynasty elite official who was a
royal scribe and physician of the king,
presents an excellent example for demonstrating the valuable role archaeology can play in interpreting text and
image, and also reveals the kinds of
new data that can be gained
from examining these
tombs first-hand, even if
they have been published.5

Nebamuns tomb, Theban

Tomb 17 (henceforth TT17)
is a T-shaped tomb located
fairly high up the cliff-side
at the northern end of Dra
Abu el-Naga (approx. 110m,
see Kampp 1996: plan VI;
Porter and Moss (PM) 1994:
2931, Map II; Fig. 1). Based
on TT17s architecture and
faade (Kampp 1996: 198
9), as well as its decorative
style and content, it can
be dated to the mid-18th
Dynasty, to the beginning
of Amenhotep IIs reign or
perhaps slightly earlier (cf.
Fig. 2: TT17, north side of the rear (west) wall, transverse-hall, PM(7). (Authors
Dziobek et al. 1992: 6065;
Shedid 1988).6 The decorative program generally follows the pattern of other mid-18th Dynasty Theban tombs, including
the offering of braziers by Nebamun and his wife on the front wall of the hall, and the funerary
procession to the Western Goddess and mummy rituals on the walls of the passage (cf. Hartwig


The Life and Career of Nebamun, the Physician of the King in Thebes

2004: 1819; Hodel-Hoenes

2000: 1222; Manniche
1988: 3242).
The two scenes that are
the focus for this discussion
are placed on either side of
the rear (west) wall of the
hall (PM(4) and (7) respectively), loci of prominence
because they are immediately visible to an external viewer looking into or
entering the tomb. As such,
they are generally interpreted as containing information that most distinguishes or represents how
a particular tomb owner
wished to present himself, whether to family or the
unknown visitor (Guksch 1994: 1316; Hartwig 2004:
1617, 513; Engelmann-von Carnap 1999: 411417).
While re-examining Nebamun and TT17 as part of a
larger study on New Kingdom bureaucracy,7 I began
to reevaluate earlier conclusions about the focal scenes
and to consider them in the context of what they
might contribute to our knowledge of Nebamuns life
and career.
Beginning on the north side of the rear (west) wall
of the hall (PM(7); Fig. 2), we can see Nebamun seated
and receiving offerings from his brother Sheni with two
registers of foreigners behind him, including a dignitary
and his wife, while in the bottom register there is a ship
and additional foreigners leading hump-backed bulls.
The foreigners are identifiable as Syrians by their facial
features, the items the bearers carry, the style of the
ship, and the type of bull, all of which are distinctly
Syrian.8 Typically, however, offering scenes depict the
tomb owner offered to by a family member, with sevFig. 3: TT17, north side of the front (east)
eral registers of family and guests or additional offerwall, transverse-hall, PM(5), with detail.
ing scenes placed adjacent to or below this location,
(Authors photo)
as seen on the northeast and south walls of Nebamuns
transverse-hall (PM(5) and (3), see below with Fig. 3 and Fig. 8 respectively). The content on this
wall of TT17 is thus unique among tomb representations and has been mentioned by several
scholars, some in connection with the function of ancient Egyptian physicians (e.g., Ghalioungui
1973: 71, pl.10; Ghalioungui 1983: 28 no. 85, 43, 97; Nunn 1996: 131), others with the depiction of
foreigners or ships in Egyptian tombs (e.g., Davies and Faulkner 1947: 43; Mller 1904: 23ff., pl.



3; Pritchard 1951; Sve-Sderbergh 1946: 54ff., fig. 10; Wachsmann 1987: 9, 50, 61; Wachsmann
1998: 4547, 50ff.). Explanations of the scene are quite disparate, falling into the general categories of either evidence for Egyptian doctors in foreign lands (Habrich et al. 1985: 17; Reeves 1992:
30, fig. 20), or the opposite view that it depicts Syrian dignitaries in Egypt (Kitchen 1982: 91;
Nunn 1996: 131; Sve-Sderbergh 1957: 257). These differing interpretations have essentially
been based on how the scene is read, that is, whether the ship is arriving or departing, whether
the bulls and wagons are related to transporting items (and perhaps people) onto or off the ship,
and whether the figure serving the Syrian is Nebamun or a servant.
The original theory posited is that this scene should be understood as a one of the ever-current representations of the meal of the dead in which are strangely mingled a Syrian dignitary,
his wife and servants who have nothing to do with the meal (Sve-Sderbergh 1957: 25). Yet
the idea that the Syrians presence would have no bearing on the remainder of the scene contradicts ancient Egyptian artistic principles generally and the conventions of tomb depictions
in particular (e.g., Fitzenreiter 1995). Indeed, I am unaware of any New Kingdom tomb where a
scene that is clearly the main component of a walls decoration would have elements completely
unrelated to each other.9
In examining the wall as an integrated whole the context of Nebamuns figure and his juxtaposition to the Syrians indicate that the scene is best understood as relating to Nebamuns
official duties. In the scene in question, Nebamun holds the staff and scepter of office, with a
scribal case and palette beneath his chair. The seated pose with staff and scepter is also known
from other contemporary elite Egyptian officials tombs where the officials are all performing
duty-related activities.10 Additionally, it is in marked contrast to the numerous other offering
scenes distributed throughout TT17 where Nebamun is seated but generally holds either a bolt
of cloth or a bolt of cloth and a lotus flower (PM(2)(4), (13)(14)). Only once does Nebamun
hold both flowers and a scribal palette (PM(5); Fig. 3), thus combining funerary and duty-related
items. Yet here Nebamun is twice referred to as scribe and he bears military epithets that may
be connected to his duties, suggesting that he chose to pictorially reinforce this aspect of his representation by holding a scribal palette. Indeed, although seated in the Syrian scene, Nebamuns
figure resembles that on the adjacent focal wall to the south, where he stands holding the same
staff and wearing the same costume while overseeing workers as part of his official responsibilities (PM(4), see below with Fig. 9).
The presence of a male figure offering a papyrus to Nebamun does not contradict the new
interpretation of this as a duty-related scene, but rather suggests an interesting parallel to the
depiction of the king in private tombs. Approximately twenty New Kingdom Theban tombs
depict the deceased offering a papyrus bouquet to an enthroned king, and in one-third of these
the scene directly adjacent relates to the deceaseds duties as an official.11 In half of these, the
adjacent scene depicts foreigners bearing tribute and is clearly part of the presentation before the
enthroned king.12 When the elements of Nebamuns north scene and parallels to it are considered
together it becomes clear that the composition of this walls decoration implies that this is not
a banquet scene at all, but rather a depiction of Nebamun in his official capacity, and that the
Syrians relate to one facet of Nebamuns duties.
A close examination of Nebamuns figure and accoutrements has provided an answer to what
the scene representsNebamun in his official capacity meeting with a Syrian dignitary. A second
issue is where and why this event happened, and what information the scene itself and the tomb
inscriptions contain that relate to these questions.
The two obvious possibilities for where Nebamun had this encounter are, of course, Syria


The Life and Career of Nebamun, the Physician of the King in Thebes

or Egypt. The presence of Egyptian physicians, also referred to as learned men or knower of
things (rx-xt), in foreign countries is known from textual sources dating from the later 18th
Dynasty into the Late Period. They were often requested by foreign princes and kings, and
sometimes sent to foreign countries by the Egyptian kings (see, e.g., Ghalioungui 1983: 7686;
Zaccagnini 1983: 25056). For example, the prince at Ugarit requested from Akhenaten several
palace attendants, including one who was a physician, because there were none at Ugarit (Moran
1992: EA49). From Akkadian records we learn that the practice of sending Egyptian doctors to
Hatti was a regular occurrence during the reign of Ramesses II. Indeed, the physician Paraemhat
traveled one more than occasion to Hatti to aid both Hattuilis III at the Hittite court and his
vassals (Edel 1948: 1516; Edel 1976: 6770; Goetze 1947; Kitchen 1982: 912). The Late Period
Bentresh stela, although fictitious, also reflects the historical reality of the physician exchanges
between Ramesses II and Near Eastern kings. It details the prince of Bakhtans request for a
learned man to aid his sister and the subsequent sending of Djhutyemhab from the House of
Life (pr-anx) to Naharin (Kitchen 1996 (KRI II): 28487; Simpson 2003: 3616). In addition, the
Late Period inscription of the chief physician Udjahorresnet, found on his naophorous statue,
relates that he was made a physician by Cambyses, living with the king at the palace, and
was later sent back to Egypt by Darius to restore the House of Life (Ghalioungui 1983: 814;
Lloyd 1982; Verner 1989; Burkard 1994).13 On the northern front wall of TT17 Nebamun is
called scribe and physician of the king and bears two epithets that have often been interpreted
as indicating military service (PM(5); Fig. 3).14 Neither of these epithets, however, imply that
he was involved in actual battles, and during the reign of Amenhotep II they become a means
of expressing loyalty to the king (Bryan 2005: 1056; Franke 1989; Guksch 1994: 5673). If
Nebamun did accompany the king abroad, then it is probable that like other men of this period,
he was performing his civil functions in a military setting because his talents, as physician and
scribe, were needed (Shirley 2006).
Based on textual parallels and TT17 inscriptions it becomes clear that Nebamun could have
been at a Syrian court in his role as a physician. However, a close examination of the artifacts and
inscription in the scene itself does not corroborate this hypothesis. Rather, a number of features
indicate that the event depicted took place in Egypt. As already noted, the Syrians are carrying
the same type of non-Egyptian objects found in other depictions of Syrian bearers. In contrast,
the jar stands are typically Egyptian, belonging to a style commonly illustrated and known from
archaeological contexts since the Middle Kingdom (Killen 1980: 70, fig. 37, pl. 116117); they
are depicted elsewhere in this tomb, as well as in other 18th Dynasty tombs (e.g., TT45, TT100,
and TT131). In contemporary depictions of Syrians bearing native objects, jar stands are not
included, nor are they among the many furniture items textually mentioned as parts of dowries
accompanying foreign princesses (e.g., Moran 1992: EA13, 22, 25). Presumably if Syrian jar
stands had been included as tribute or gifts, they would have been depicted amongst the items
carried, and not only shown when the context is clearly Egyptian, either in offering scenes or
holding items that are being presented to the king, officials, or scribes to record. The focal point
of the scene itself, where an Egyptian figure serves the seated Syrian, also implies that the event
took place in Egypt, as it seems unlikely that an Egyptian would be serving a Syrian in his own
court. While Davies and Sve-Sderbergh (following Wreszinski 1923: 115; Sve-Sderbergh
1957: 25) suggested that it is Nebamun himself who serves the Syrian, this is doubtful given that
other male servants in the tomb are depicted in exactly the same way. Additionally, we might
expect that if this did represent Nebamun he would be wearing the hairstyle, collar and bracelets
he sports elsewhere, including when he offers to his parents. Finally, the Syrian dignitary holds



Fig. 4: TT17, outer lintel, transverse-hall entrance to the passage, PM(8). (Authors photo).
a bolt of clotha purely Egyptian marker of status (e.g., Fischer 1975)and sits on an Egyptian
round-legged stool that developed during the 18th Dynasty out of an earlier Middle Kingdom
style (Killen 1980: 4850, pl. 7984). In the banquet scene on the west wall of the transversehall guests sit on the same stool type, and it is also depicted in several tombs dating to the 18th
Dynasty and New Kingdom generally.15 Although different types of chairs are mentioned in the
Amarna letters among the furniture items shipped from Egypt to Syria-Palestine and neighboring
states in the Near East, stools do not appear (e.g., Moran 1992: EA5, 14, 31, 34, 369). Likewise,
while furniture is included in the dowry lists of foreign princesses sent to Egypt, stools are not
part of the repertoire (e.g., Moran 1992: EA13, 22, 25).
Finally, considering the attention paid to the depiction of the Syrians we might expect that
if this interaction took place in Syria some indication of this foreign location would be reflected
in the scene. Although not common in the private sphere, depictions of foreign countries are not
unknown during the 18th Dynasty and in these cases the locale of the scene is made clear by the
surrounding environment. Indeed, in two roughly contemporary tombs (TT42 and TT199) officials
are clearly shown in Syria carrying out their official duties, as evidenced by the depiction of
forested lands and Syrians within their fortified towns (Davies 1933: pl. XXXVI; Strudwick 2001:
fig. 1, pl. 47.1; Strudwick 2006). If Nebamuns meeting took place in Syria, there was certainly a
precedent for such a depiction.
The texts found throughout the tomb also provide information that corroborates the suggestion that Nebamun was in Egypt when he met with the Syrians. Scholars generally refer
to Nebamun as royal scribe and (chief) physician of the king, interpreting these as the highest
positions he attained (e.g., Ghalioungui 1983: 28 no. 85, 43; Jonckheere 1958: no. 43; Nunn
1996: 116-118, App. B no. 100).16 However, in at least three inscriptions he is clearly called the
physician of the king in Thebes,17 and once chief physician and royal scribe in Thebes.18 The
locations where Nebamun is referred to as a physician in Thebes occur on the southern half of
the transverse-halls rear wall and the outer lintel of the passage doorway, areas already noted as
immediately visible from the tombs entrance. On the south wall Nebamun is shown prominently
in the context of his official duties (PM(4)), see discussion below with Fig. 9), and the addition of
Thebes to Nebamuns titles thus implies that his duties were centered there, attending to the king
when he was in residence in Thebes.19
The lintel carries the common representation of an antithetical offering before both Anubis
and Osiris, gods who are inextricably tied to the burial setting in Thebes (Fig. 4). Choosing the title
physician of the king in Thebes for placement in such a central area indicates that for Nebamun


The Life and Career of Nebamun, the Physician of the King in Thebes

Thebes was a place of importance,

and his connection to this specific
city was how he wished to be remembered. It is also significant that in the
offering scenes related to the festivals
in Thebes, found on the southern
front wall (PM(2)), a fourth inscription can be newly reconstructed as
bearing the title physician of the
king in Thebes, further cementing the
relationship of this title to a Theban
context (Fig. 5a).20
In Nebamuns Syrian scene the
inscriptions are extremely faded, and
Fig. 5a: TT17, detail of the inscription above the offerer, south
may have been left unfinished, as
side of the front (east) wall, transverse-hall, PM(2).2. (Authors
were other elements such as the
bouquet, offerings and eyes of the
figures. Sve-Sderbergh published
what Davies was able to discern of
the text (Sve-Sderbergh 1957: pl.
XXIII), which I was able to epigraphically confirm and make significant
additions to in 2001, based in part
on first-hand comparison with other
inscriptions in the tomb. From this reexamination it is possible to reconstruct the columns above Nebamun
to read scribe, chief physician of
the king in Thebes, Nebamun, (Fig.
5b)21 abbreviated in a way similar to another inscription in the
tomb (PM(2).2; Fig. 5a). Following
Fig. 5b: TT17, detail of the inscription above Nebamun, north
the argument detailed above, we can
side of the rear (west) wall, transverse-hall, PM(7). (Authors
conclude that because Thebes is menphoto).
tioned in the title used in this specific
scene it indicates that the event depicted more likely took place in Thebes.
Another factor in determining where this event took place involves the Syrians and their ship
depicted in the bottom register of the scene. Despite the fact that there are only two Theban tombs
that portray Syrian ships (ours and TT162), there exists a misconception that this is a stock scene
portraying Syrian ships arriving at an Egyptian port (Wachsmann 1987: 9). Based on Porter and
Moss there are only four or perhaps five tombs that depict foreign ships in addition to the two
already mentioned (PM 1994: 465 no.10(a)). Two of these (TT67 and TT143) depict Puntite ships,
and three (TT40, TT57, and TT130) involve Nubians and Nubian goods, although it is not always
entirely clear whether the ships are of Nubian origin. The extremely low number of foreign ships
depicted in Egyptian tombs indicates that these are highly unusual scenes that must have been
chosen by the tomb owners for very particular reasons. In addition, in all but one of these tombs



Fig. 6: TT130, detail of the west wall, passage, PM(8).2. (Authors photo).
the scenes are found on the focal and front walls of the transverse-hall.22 From this evidence it
becomes possible to conclude that the reason these scenes were chosen was because they relate
to each tomb owners official duties and responsibilities.23
For example, TT130 belongs to the overseer of the harbor in the southern city (i.e., Thebes)
May,24 who likely served under Thutmose IV and Amenhotep III. A badly damaged scene at the
rear of the tomb depicts Nubians arriving by boat before an Egyptian official (PM(8); Scheil 1894;
Fig. 6).25 Although the inscriptions above the Egyptian were not included, the figure can likely
be identified as May by his costume, stance, and location under a pavilion. As the overseer of
the harbor in Thebes May certainly would have had duties that entailed receiving and checking
the arrival of persons and their goods in port, and it is reasonable to conclude that this is what is
depicted here. A similar scene is found in TT162, whose owner was the mayor of the southern city
(i.e., Thebes) and overseer of the granary Qenamun,26 probably during the reigns of Thutmose
IV and Amenhotep III (Murnane 1998: 194; Shirley 2005: 258). On the front wall of the transverse-hall (PM(1)) is a scene that depicts the arrival and off-loading of Syrians and their goods
at a port in Egypt (Daressy 1895; Davies and Faulkner 1947; Davies 1963: 1418, pl. XVXX;
Vinson 1994: 401, fig. 28; Wachsmann, 1998: 42-45, 47ff.; see below and Fig. 7a).27 Although
there is apparently no inscriptional evidence from this scene, as the mayor of Thebes, Qenamun
certainly would have been involved in the arrival of foreign ships bringing goods to that city,
and it reasonable to conclude a Theban setting for the port. In a similar vein, Khaemhat Mehu
(TT57), who was in charge of granaries under Amenhotep III, depicts scenes of grain transport
and would thus have been involved with the arrival of grain in port (PM(9); Wreszinski 1923: pl.
199-200; Loret 1889: 11332).28 Hapuseneb (TT67), the high priest of Amun under Hatshepsut,
depicts boats connected to the retrieval of myrrh trees from Punt, an activity whose end result
would have been the erection of these trees before temples that Hapuseneb was in charge of
constructing (PM(1); Davies 1935: p. 47 n. 3).29 As the viceroy of Kush under Tutankhamun, it is
natural to find in Huys tomb (TT40) the depiction of goods and people, including Huy himself,
traveling to and from Nubia (PM(3), (5); Davies 1926: pl. XVIII, XXXIIIII).30 The same might be
said for the unknown owner of TT143, where the wall devoted to Puntite travel and tribute seems
to suggest a similar type of involvement of the tomb owner with this land (PM(6); Wachsmann


The Life and Career of Nebamun, the Physician of the King in Thebes

Fig. 7a: TT162, north side of the front (west) wall, transverse-hall, PM (1).2. After Davies 1963: pl. XV.

Fig. 7b: TT17, detail of the Syrians leading hump-backed bulls to their ship, north side of the rear (west)
wall, transverse-hall, PM(7). (Authors photo).
1998: 32; Davies 1935: 469, figs. 13).31 Even this brief summary demonstrates that in all of
the above examples the representation of ships in tomb scenes must be understood as relating to
the tomb owners duties.
The scene of Syrian goods being off-loaded in Egypt found in the tomb of Qenamun (TT162),
already mentioned above, provides an important comparison to the Syrian ships in Nebamuns
tomb. Examining the two tombs together demonstrates that the Syrian ships depicted in each are
quite similar, although in Qenamuns they are more elaborate, as is the scene in general (Fig. 7a,
7b). It is also evident that in Qenamuns tomb the ships are clearly docked with sails furled and
oars at the rear, they are being unloaded using ladders, and Egyptians are checking the goods.
This is in marked contrast to Nebamuns scene, where the Syrians are leading Syrian bulls and
wagons towards a single ship, and the unfurled sails and placement of the oar signify that the
ship is facing (and sailing or preparing to sail) away from land. Taken together, these elements
indicate that Nebamuns scene must be depicting the departure of the ship from Syria, and not its
arrival in Egypt. Although humped-back bulls are included among scenes of tribute and gift-giving in contemporary tombs (e.g. TT42, TT119, TT162, and TT367), their exclusion from the registers
immediately above the ship in TT17, as well as the wagons they drag, clearly indicates that rather
than being part of the tribute or payment destined for Egypt, the bulls and attached wagons were
used to transport the vases and ingots, and perhaps people, to the ship. This leads to the conclusion
that the ship can not be departing from Egypt because it is quite unlikely that the Syrians would
have brought their own bulls and wagons to Egypt, only to transport them home again.



From these comparisons

we can read Nebamuns scene
as representing the departure
of Syrians from their homeland, and their subsequent
presence in Egypt. Placing
the locale of Nebamuns
interaction with the Syrians
in Thebes in particular is
suggested both by Nebamuns
own title of physician of the
king in Thebes, and by parallels with other officials and
their tombs. It is particularly
significant that in two of the
examples discussed above
(May, TT130 and Qenamun,
TT162) the port involved was
most likely Thebes, based
in part on the titles of the
officials themselves. Thebes
during the mid-18th Dynasty
Fig. 8: TT17, south wall, transverse-hall, PM(3). (Authors photo).
was certainly a city of great
importance, both religiously and as one of the kings residences, making it a likely place to find
foreign emissaries as well as visitors. In addition, the conception of Thebes as a port of call during
the 18th Dynasty is further supported through cuneiform documents, indicating that foreigners
also recognized the status of Thebes during this period (Bryan 2000: 7779; Murnane 1998: 194;
Murnane 2000: 103ff.; Panagiotopoulos 2006).
Despite these assertions, two important questions remain unanswered. The first question is
why these Syrians came to Egypt and why Nebamun was present, or perhaps hosted them at a
banquet. It has been argued above that in this scene Nebamun is acting in his capacity as chief
physician of the king in Thebes, and thus this could be part of a royal event at which Nebamuns
presence was requested. The scenario might also be separate from a royal event but still connected to Nebamuns position, depicting a private visit by a Syrian dignitary to the royal physician. However, there is also the possibility that Nebamun was related to these visitors, i.e. was
descended from Syrians, and he depicts here a family visit.32 Establishing such familial ties is
often quite difficult, especially when there are no obvious signs to suggest a relationship between
the tomb owner and the foreigners. In order to determine whether family, and not career, brought
the Syrians to Nebamun a thorough re-examination of the additional persons named or depicted
in his tomb is required.
Nine or perhaps ten individuals besides Nebamun are named in his tomb, although the
damaged nature of much of the inscriptions creates problems for accurately discerning the
relationships between these people. Many of them are shown on the wall at the southern end of
the transverse-hall (PM(3); Fig. 8), which in the style of Rechmire (TT100, PM(9); Davies 1944:
pl. IXX) depicts multiple registers of family members in a banquet setting. According to the
original publication, Nebamuns parents were the judge (sAb) Nebseny and his wife the chantress


The Life and Career of Nebamun, the Physician of the King in Thebes

of Amun Amenhotep (or perhaps simply Hotep); his siblings were Sheni, Senebefwer and Nofret;
his maternal grandparents were Djhutynefer and Hapynofret; Nebamuns wife was Taamunnofret
(or perhaps Tamutnofret); and their daughter was Iymire (Sve-Sderbergh 1957, 24ff.). In the
course of epigraphically re-recording this tomb I concluded that significant revisions must be
made to this genealogy, as well as minor changes to the readings of certain names.33 The result
of this re-working is that the family members named in the tomb are Nebamuns father the judge
(sAb) Nebseny and mother Hapynofret; his siblings Senebefwer, Nofret, ///-hotep and Sheni; his
paternal grandmother I/// and maternal grandfather Djhutnofer; and finally Nebamuns wife
Ta-//// (possibly restorable as Taamun) and their (probable) daughter ///-mire. Additional family
may have been included on the south wall, but their names and filiation are no longer extant.
As these names are all distinctly Egyptian and there is nothing in their representation to suggest
a non-Egyptian identity,34 the additional family members depicted in Nebamuns tomb do not
provide any clear evidence for a familial link to the Syrians.35 Combining the epigraphic and
pictorial evidence with the lack of familial ties, the most probable interpretation of the scene is
still that Nebamun is acting in his official capacity.
The second question that arises concerns whether the Syrian scene depicts a particular event,
or commemorates business as usual for Nebamun as the royal physician in Thebes.36 While
the answer is perhaps not certain, it seems likely that were this a special occasion the Syrian
dignitary would be identified, if not by name at least by general locale. This is certainly the
case in TT42, where Amenmose receives tribute from the chief of Naharin while in Syria (PM(4);
Davies 1933: 30f., pl. XXXVI); in TT85 where Amenmeheb-Mahus autobiography detailing his
exploits in the wars of Thutmose III is accompanied by a depiction of the submitting chiefs of
Upper and Lower Retenu (PM(17); Davies 1934: pl. XXV); and in TT43 where the tomb owner,
with two kneeling Puntite chiefs behind him, presents items retrieved from Punt before the king
(PM(6); Davies 1935: 46f., fig. 1). In Nebamuns tomb however there is no indication that any text
associated with the Syrian dignitaries was ever intended, and despite the unfinished condition
of some elements of the scene this does appear to be the case. This lack of identification could
perhaps indicate that visits from Syrian dignitaries were a recurring part of Nebamuns career as
a royal physician in Thebes.
The fact that Nebamun chose to depict two particular aspects of the Syrians journey, namely
the original departure by ship from Syria and his subsequent interaction with them in Thebes
at a banquet, suggests that these two episodes were of great personal significance to him. Taken
together, they lend support to the theory that the Syrian dignitary came to Thebes at least in part
to consult the royal physician, and that the items carried by the Syrians were perhaps intended
as gifts for Nebamun in exchange for his professional services (cf. Ghalioungui 1983: 97).
Additional information about Nebamuns career can be gained by studying the adjacent focal
scene on the south side of the rear wall of the hall (PM(4); Fig. 9). Here Nebamun stands holding a staff and watching four registers of activities that include grain storage, baking, brewing,
grinding, and possibly brick production. The inscription above Nebamun indicates that he is
inspecting goods in Upper Egypt in his capacity as scribe and physician of the king in Thebes.37
The fact that the content appears somewhat mundane for such prominent placement suggests
that a closer examination is warranted. Nebamun is clearly carrying out duties of some type,
and precisely what work he is engaged in and its relationship to his position as physician can
be determined from investigating the various artifacts depicted in the registers of the scene in
conjunction with the text.
Nebamun is accompanied by an unnamed attendant who is noteworthy because he does



not carry the expected

scribal equipment (board
and square case), but rather a small pink bag or
sack with a white, roundtopped, oval-shaped case
held onto his back by a
broad strap. This case is
quite different from that
worn by scribes and their
assistants depicted in other
contemporary tombs, as
well as in the granary portion of this very scene.38
Both of these items do
however bear resemblance
to medical boxes and bags
known from other sources,
including a bag worn by a
servant statuette found in
Fig. 9: TT17, south side of the rear (west) wall, transverse-hall, PM(4).
an Old Kingdom tomb (CG
(Authors photo).
241; Hawass et al. 2001:
57), a Middle Kingdom carrying case now in Berlin (gyptisches Museum no. 1176; Reeves 1992: 61, fig. 61), a portable
wooden box found in Tutankhamuns tomb that contained medical implements and bandages (no.
12n+79+574; Carter 1923: pl. XVIIIXIX; Edwards 1972: no.17; Killen 1994: 77, fig. 77, pl. 62;
Murray and Nutall 1963: 5; Reeves 1990: 18893), and the relief on the inside of the outer wall
of the temple at Kom Ombo that depicts medical paraphernalia (Nunn 1996: 1635, fig. 8.2).
Although the jars and sacks carried by the men and women depicted in the lower two registers
are not perhaps unusual, it is interesting to note that the jar carried by the foremost woman in
the third register is of the same type as that held by the servant offering to the Syrian dignitary.
In addition, this jar and the sacks carried by several people in the scene, including the attendant,
resemble those depicted in a scene from the Ramesside tomb of Ipwy at Deir el-Medina (TT217;
Davies 1927: pl. XXXVIIIII; Fig. 10). Nunn (1996: 567 with fig. 3.6, 201) suggested that the
entire scene displays a satire on workplace injuries, and Westendorf (1999: 472) views this as the
only tomb depiction of a physician at work. The portion to be compared with Nebamuns tomb
scene occurs in the lower left corner where a man with boxes, a sack and a jar placed nearby
holds a long stick against a craftsmans eye. Although some scholars have interpreted this as
depicting a man re-applying kohl paint to a craftsmans eye (e.g., OConnor, pers. comm.), it
seems more likely that it depicts a craftsman who has suffered an eye injury of some sort and is
being treated for it by a physician. The physician uses a stick to apply a remedy that probably
was made by mixing a powder contained in the sack with a liquid in the jar, all of which were
brought in the box placed above him (cf. Nunn 1996: 201). Indeed, the treatment of eye injuries
is discussed in a section of the Ebers papyrus (336431), where many of the prescriptions and
remedies involve applying to the eye a mixture of eye-paint, ground food, minerals and liquids
(Nunn 1996: 197-202; Westendorf 1999: 146-56, 609-624).


The Life and Career of Nebamun, the Physician of the King in Thebes

Fig. 10: TT217, detail of the north wall, transverse-hall, PM(6).3. After Davies 1927: pl. xxxviii.
Medical texts such as the Ebers and Edwin Smith papyri39 also provide details concerning
the preparation of medicines, which utilized a number of the same types of activities depicted in
Nebamuns scene, namely, grinding, brewing, cooking, and sieving or pressing through. Indeed,
many medicines were also given in liquid form, especially using beer and wine to mask their
taste, or make them soluble (Nunn 1996: 136-162, esp.138-43; Westendorf 1999:482-88). There
is also the probability that most physicians made their own medicines, and the physician Iwty
during the reign of Ramesses I seems to have had his own workshop or pharmacy for this purpose
(Ghalioungui 1983: 26 no. 73, 43; Nunn 1996: 132, App. B no. 84; Reeves 1992: 60; Westendorf
1999:479ff., 489-90, 515-20). Perhaps then Nebamuns scene depicts just such a physicians
workshop, with the granaries connected to it depicted in the upper registers, and the staff, activities, and presentation of results for inspection in the lower registers. The fact that Nebamun chose
to refer to himself in this scene as the physician of the king in Thebes also suggests that this
workshop existed somewhere in Thebes or the nearby vicinity.
This single case-study demonstrates how important it is to view tombs as archaeological
objects. By integrating image, text, archaeology and artifact in the examination of these two
highlighted scenes we have been able to gain a better understanding of what Nebamuns career
as a royal physician in Thebes entailed. Although at first glance the scenes Nebamun chose as
focal points of his tomb were somewhat mysterious in nature, the preceding re-examination



demonstrates that they each represent important aspects of his career. The north side evokes the
visits of Syrian dignitaries and their entourage who traveled to Egypt and Thebes and Nebamuns
interaction with them in his role as chief physician in Thebes. And on the south side Nebamun
depicts the more mundane, but equally significant, making of medicines and inspection of his
physicians workshop, again as the physician of the king in Thebes. As the only New Kingdom
tomb of a physician whose scenes actually depict aspects of his career, Nebamuns TT17 becomes
an important source of information about the role and duties of New Kingdom physicians.40
A more holistic approach to analyzing tombs, therefore, presents us with new possibilities for
interpreting data already considered familiar. At the same time, such an approach offers exciting
new insights into the lives and careers of those ancient Egyptians who played important roles in
their community.

1 This article began as a conference paper delivered at the 55th Annual Meeting of ARCE, April 2004. I
would like to thank David OConnor (little did he know!) for encouraging me to revise it for publication.
In addition, I am grateful to Raphael Cunniff, Deanna Kiser, and Andrew Bednarski for their editing and
reference assistance, and to Kasia Szpakowska, Thomas Schneider, and David Gill for reading earlier versions and providing their thoughtful comments and suggestions. Any remaining mistakes are solely the
responsibility of the author.
2 It is most noticeable in recent publications of the Archologische Verffentlichungen and Theben series.
There are of course exceptions to this, but in the 40-odd recent publications and articles that I have examined, only a handful discuss the correlation between the scenes and their corresponding inscriptions,
e.g., Bryan 1990; Joachim-Seyfried 1995; Polz 1997; Strudwick 1996.
3 Here I refer not to narrative art as it is understood in the classical, i.e., Greek, tradition (Gombrich 1989:
99125), but to the ancient Egyptian use of text placed alongside the images depicted as a means of further identifying, explaining, or complementing the image.
4 Although it is true that in the case of royal monumental art there can be a disjunction, and that often the
text and image convey different versions of the same subject; see, e.g. Bryan 1996; Tefnin 1981.
5 The tomb was copied and prepared for publication by Davies, but published posthumously by Sve-Sderbergh, see Sve-Sderbergh 1957: 2232, pl. XXIXXIX. Nebamuns family is discussed in Whale 1989:
1647 (case 66).
6 The decoration of the tomb was not quite completed, and names with the theophoric element of Amun
as well as priest-figures suffered from Amarna-period defacement; there is also some post-Amarna restoration. While Shedid (1988) places TT17 in the Thutmose III-Amenhotep II range, Dziobek et al. (1992)
believe it to belong more firmly in Amenhotep IIs reign.
7 This larger study was for my Ph.D. dissertation, The Culture of Officialdom: An examination of the acquisition of offices during the mid-18th Dynasty, the degree for which was conferred in 2005 (Shirley
2005); a revised version will be published by Brill.
8 The men bearing gifts may belong to the so-called hybrid style seen in several mid-18th Dynasty
tombs combining Aegean costume with Syrian facial features; see, e.g., Davies 1933: pl. IVV, VII;
Wachsmann 1987: 69, 438, pl. III. However, figures depicted in exactly the same way are also found
among the foreigners depicted in TT42 of Amenmose, where they are shown both in Lebanon before Amenmose, and in Egypt as part of a tribute scene. Perhaps then these are not hybrid figures,


The Life and Career of Nebamun, the Physician of the King in Thebes






but darker-skinned and more simply dressed due to their lower social position; see Davies, 1933: pl.
XXXIVVI; cf. Panagiotopoulos 2006: 390-1. The costumes of the seated chief and his wife, as well as
the other women and children in the scene are typically Syrian and also have close parallels to Syrians
depicted in contemporary tombs; see, e.g. Pritchard 1951; Redford 1992:196, fig. 7; Davies 1933: pl.
IVV, VII, XXXIVVI; Davies 1944: pl. XXIIIII; Dziobek 1994: pl. 2022, 24b; Davies 1934: pl. XXV.
The vessels and ingots, despite the lack of detail, are comparable in shape and style to others born by
Syrians in contemporary tombs, as are the hump-backed bulls; see, e.g., Bass 1967: 627; Davies, 1933:
pl. XXXIVXXXVI; Wreszinski 1923: pl. 340. The ships are described as Syrian ships that conform to
the menesh type, a word that first appears during the reign of Amenhotep III; see Mller 1904: 23ff.;
Sve-Sderbergh 1946: 54ff.; Vinson 1994: 401; Wachsmann 1998: 4547, 50ff. See also the excellent
comparisons afforded by a scene in TT162 of Qenamun, discussed below with references, which depicts
Syrians ships being off-loaded in Egypt.
On the planning and execution of tomb decoration there are several useful contributions in Davies 2001;
see also Hartwig 2004: esp. 14, 15-19, 2835, 512 for excellent discussion and references.
E.g., TT29 PM(4), TT88 PM(1), TT93 PM(12), TT96 PM(13), TT100 PM(13) and (14), TT131 PM(6).
Based on the list found in Porter and Moss (PM) 1994: 463 no.1 (e) and checked against descriptions of the
tomb scenes; they all date to the 18th Dynasty. The tombs with duty-scenes adjacent to the deceased offering a bouquet to the king are TT56 PM(9), TT74 PM(6), TT85 PM(9), TT86 PM(8), TT88 PM(4), TT90 PM(9),
TT91 PM(3) and (5), and possibly TT162 PM(4). The veracity of the PM descriptions has been checked by
the author either in person or through publications of the scenes.
TT86 PM(8), TT90 PM(9), TT91 PM(3) and (5). With the exception of TT162, which depicts a ploughing
scene, the remaining tombs have adjacent scenes that relate to military duties.
On the house of life and its function see, Gardiner 1938; Ghalioungui 1983: 912; Nunn 1996: 12931;
Weber 1980: 9547; Westendorf 1999: 47678.
Sms nswt r nmtt.f Hr xAst rsy mHtt tmtS r nb tAwy m grH mi ra.
Note especially Killen 1980: pl. 84, which mirrors the type found in TT17. Other contemporary tombs in
which this stool is depicted include TT93 of Qenamun (Davies 1930: pl. XXXV) and TT100 of Rechmire
(Davies 1935: pl. LIV); See Killen 1980: 48 for additional examples. On the construction of these types of
stools see, e.g. Gale 2000: 355ff., esp. 358, 361 f.
Nebamun is called scribe (sS) and royal physician or physician of the king (swnw (n) nswt) in nearly every
inscription. Royal scribe (sS nswt) is found in only one inscription in the transverse-hall (PM(3)), though
it may have originally occurred more frequently as there is often a break after the scribe title. The title of
physician (swnw) occurs at least three times (PM(2), (8), and a ceiling text in the passage, and physician
of the king/royal physician at least six times (PM(5), (8), (12) and three ceiling texts), though here too the
breaks may indicate that this title was more common. Nebamun is called chief physician (of the king) wr
swnw (n nswt) in two ceiling inscriptions in the transverse-hall. For the original, see Sve-Sderbergh
1957: pls. XXII, XXIV, XXVIXXIX.
The title occurs twice at PM(4), where Nebamun is identified as [sS wr](sw)nw n nswt m WAst and as sS
swnw n nswt m [WAst]; and at PM(6) on the outer lintels south side Nebamun is identified as sS swnw m
WAst. For the original, see Sve-Sderbergh 1957: 245, 27, pl. XXII.
On a ceiling inscription on the southeast side of the transverse-hall, above PM(2), Nebamun is identified
as wr swnw sS n nswt m WAst. For the original, see Sve-Sderbergh 1957: 29, pl. XXVII, 2.
An excellent comparison is afforded by the titles of the chief steward Qenamun (TT93) under Amenhotep
II, who was also called chief steward of the king in Perunefer (see Davies 1930), and more generally by
other such specific definitions of titles, e.g. viziers and overseers of the seal who were divided between
north and south, and upper-level priests who were connected to particular temples.


20 Unfortunately none of the titles in the brazier scene (PM(2).1), which was likely set in Thebes, are preserved, though in the adjacent offering scene where Nebamun is offered a bouquet of Amun (PM(2).2) it
is probable that the title should be reconstructed as sS swnw nswt (m) WAs(t). For the original see SveSderbergh 1957: 23, pl. XXVIII, 34.
21 sS wr swnw n nswt m WAst.
22 The exception is TT130, in which the scene is found in the passage, PM(8).
23 So too, Davies and Faulkner with regard to the scene in TT162, see Davies and Faulkner 1947: 456.
24 imy-r mryt m niwt rsyt.
25 Although now poorly preserved but for the ships, which are laden with Nubian produce, when originally
copied the Nubians could be identified by their hairstyles, which are comparable to those seen in TT78 of
Horemheb (PM(8); see Brack and Brack 1980 and TT57 (PM(9); see Wreszinski 1923: pl. 199200).
26 The titles, which are also found on a funerary cone (Davies and Macadam 1957: no.12), read: HAty-a m niwt
rsyt imy-r Snwty //[n Imn ?]//.
27 Unfortunately the tomb has been covered since the mid 1940s, and is still covered by the hillside and
completely inaccessible, so we have to rely on the early photos and copies of the scene.
28 The ships carry a mix of Egyptians and Nubians, the latter with the same hairstyle as found in TT130
and TT78 (see above n. 25). For a discussion of this official and the duties of the overseer of the double
granary, with references, see Murnane 1998: 18385.
29 For a recent overview of Hapusenebs career, with references, see Bryan 2006: 107ff.
30 The transport ships with cattle coming from Nubia in TT40 closely resemble the ones found in TT130 of
May, although in Huys tomb they appear to be leaving Nubia manned by Egyptians.
31 On the possibility that this tomb belonged to Thutmose IIIs treasurer Min see Shirley 2005: 15760.
32 I must thank Thomas Schneider for very interesting and productive discussions about this possibility.
33 The full discussion, which is rather involved, is the topic of an article in progress and will be published
34 Although not all of the names are included in Ranke, those that are have several New Kingdom parallels;
Ranke 9 no. 9, 29 no. 14, 183 no. 10, 186 nos. 1314, 201 no. 10, 357 no. 8, 408 no. 6. Likewise, none of
the names appear in Schneider 1992.
35 Although, as Thomas Schneider suggested (pers. comm.), it might be argued that the naming and depicting
of only the paternal grandmother and maternal grandfather is significant for Nebamuns ethnicity, it could
as likely be due to preservation as choice and hence can not be used as conclusive evidence.
36 Here again I must thank Thomas Schneider for discussions about this issue.
37 wDA mAA bw nfr imy tA-Smaw in sS swnw n nswt m WAst //////// Nb-(Imn) mAa-xrw nb imAx xr nTr Aa.
38 It is also possible that the carrying case was meant for papyrus rolls, and made of basketwork and leather
similar to those depicted on Middle Kingdom coffins, and in numerous tomb scenes from the Old through
New Kingdoms. If this is the case, then possibly rolls of medical papyri were carried inside it. See, e.g.,
Parkinson and Quirke 1995: 323, fig.18, 36, fig. 20.
39 On the papyri see, e.g., Nunn 1996: 2434; Westendorf 1999: 1635; 547748.
40 Despite a number of officials carrying this title during the New Kingdom (Ghalioungui 1983: 2629, nos.
73112, App. II; Nunn 1996: App. B), I am aware of only two others who have tombs: Pentu at Amarna
(Davies 1908: 1-6, pl. I-XII) and Nay the owner of TT271 at Qurnet Murai (Habachi and Ghalioungui 196970:
1523; Ghalioungui 1983: 28 no. 84; Porter and Moss (PM) 1994: 350); additionally, Tjutju may have had a
tomb at Saqqara as his stele was found re-used in the Serapeum at Memphis (Berlandini-Grenier 1976: 315;
Ghalioungui 1983: 29 no. 99, 58). All three bear military epithets and are also called royal scribe.


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