Bachelor of Arts
Ny-ankh-nesut, Old Kingdom, Agency, Tomb, Looting, Fragments
This paper’s aim is to place the looted fragments from Ny-ankh-nesut's tomb back into their original context within the tomb, based on what remains in the tomb today and on the meaning and significance behind the iconographic themes. In order to understand the meaning behind the fragments, this paper will begin with an introduction to the purpose of Old Kingdom tombs. Through observing the basic necessities of an Old Kingdom tomb, one can begin to discover how and why Ny-ankh-nesut would have chosen the specific program exhibited in his tomb. Along with illustrating the underlying principles of Egyptian funerary practices, this section will also highlight the variation that can be seen in iconographic programs and how this variation can relate to a tomb owner’s personal influence, and thus their agency, in constructing a tomb.
With an extensive compilation of fragments and inscriptions known to have come from the tomb, section two of the paper will deal with reconstructing the professional career of Ny-ankh-nesut. Through an investigation into Egyptian funerary practices, traditional tomb layouts, and the life of the tomb owner, one can begin to place the looted fragments from Ny-ankh-nesut’s tomb in their original locations. The paper will conclude with a discussion of the iconographic program of the tomb and a tentative placement of the fragments in their original location within the tomb. This final section will relate the variation in theme choices between Ny-ankh-nesut and his contemporaries to the specific intents of the tomb owner, based on his profession, wealth, and the contemporary ideals of the time. Subsequently, this paper will demonstrate that the variation can be attributed to Ny-ankh-nesut’s expression of his agency, as he chose specific scenes to be displayed in his tomb that would have benefited him the most. In particular, Ny-ankh-nesut was concerned with expressing his high status, a concern that he was able to satisfy through choosing an iconographic program that continually evoked his position in the upper-echelon of Egyptian society.
Austin, William L., "The Tomb of Ny-ankh-nesut: A Contextualized Study of Looted Fragments" (2015). Honors Papers. 250.