Fragment: A young bird in low relief

Historical period(s)
Dynasty 26, 664-525 BCE or later
Soft limestone
H x W x D (overall): 11 x 10.7 x 1.7 cm (4 5/16 x 4 3/16 x 11/16 in)
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view
Sculpture, Stone

Figure: animal

bird, Egypt, Saite Dynasty 26 (664 - 525 BCE)

To 1908
Michel Casira, Cairo, to 1908 [1]

From 1908 to 1919
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919), purchased from Michel Casira, Cairo, in 1908 [2]

From 1920
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Charles Lang Freer in 1920 [3]


[1] See Micellaneous List, S.I. 58, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives.

[2] See note 1.

[3] The original deed of Charles Lang Freer's gift was signed in 1906. The collection was received in 1920 upon the completion of the Freer Gallery.

Previous Owner(s)

Michel Casira (C.L. Freer source)
Charles Lang Freer 1854-1919


Fragments such as this one carved in low relief have been identified as "sculptor's trials" or "sculptor's models," and were used in Egypt from the Third Dynasty to Ptolemaic times. The reliefs were used to aid sculptors in instructing apprentices about the canonical Egyptian grid. The models are often "framed" by L-shaped borders, which could have been used as depth measures. The human subjects of the sculptor's models were most often idealized versions of royal heads with headcloths or uraeus crowns. The animals used in hieroglyphic writing (the alphabet and royal titularies) were most commonly modelled.

Collection Area(s)
Ancient Egyptian Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
Rights Statement

Copyright with museum