Sitting merrily in front of the god: the votive chapels of Deir el-Medina
On display from Friday 13 January until Sunday 19 March 2023, the exhibition looks at religiosity and personal piety in the New Kingdom (1539-1076 BCE).
The focus of the exhibition are votive seats with inscriptions dated between 1292-1070 BCE, their presence has only been documented in Egypt in the chapels of Deir el-Medina and Amarna. It is precisely the inscriptions that have enabled scholars to trace the rituals practised in votive chapels, presumably by families or small guilds. Similar finds are also preserved in the Louvre in Paris, but these do not contain inscriptions.
According to reconstructions, worshippers used the seats, which were placed in front of deities to enjoy a day of feasting including libations and beer. The name of the owner was often inscribed on the votive seat, they were guaranteed a place of honour in a sacred space during life, and could continue to be symbolically associated with rituals after death. A number of stelae and ostraka depicting sacrifices and religious rituals also form part of the exhibition.
Cédric Gobeil will accompany you on two special tours in English on Tuesday 7 February at 4.30 pm and Thursday 9 March at 4.30 pm. Book your ticket HERE