Egyptian cat hunting in the marshes A tawny cat catches birds among the papyrus stems. Cats were family pets in ancient Egypt, but the cat shown here in this context could also represent the Sun-god hunting the enemies of light and order. The cat's unusual gilded eye hints at the religious meanings of this scene. The Tomb-chapel of Nebamun Thebes, Egypt. Late 18th Dynasty, around 1350 BC Salt Collection British Museum, Room 61:
7. Prehistory - The Labyrinth - This is a variant of the spiral and was probably linked to a initiatory rite in which sacred doctrines were imparted. A modern revival of the symbol emanating from Grace Cathedral in San Francisco, considers walking the labyrinth to be an aid to meditation and self-knowledge.
Nebamun was an Egyptian "scribe and counter of grain" during the New Kingdom. His tomb in Thebes, the location of which is now lost, featured the famous Pond in a Garden false fresco painting. Nebamun's name is translated as "My Lord is Amun" and he is thought to have lived c. 1500 bc. The paintings were hacked from the tomb wall and purchased by a British collector who in turn sold them to the British Museum in 1821.
A detail of a vignette from the Book of the Dead of Lady Cheritwebeshet. The dead lady prays before the barge of the Sun-god which is drawn by jackals & uraea with human arms. 'Worship of Re-Harachte, the Great God, Lord of the Skies by the righteous Cheritwebeshet.' Country of Origin: Egypt. Culture: Ancient Egyptian. Date/Period: 21st dynasty c.1069-945BC. Material Size: Painting on papyrus. Credit Line: Werner Forman Archive/ Egyptian Museum, Cairo . Location: 129.
A painting of a feast for Nebamun to enjoy in the afterlife. Important female guests sit and talk while a servant girl offers refreshment. The ladies wear lumps of scented fat on their elaborate woolen wigs to help keep them cool. From the wall paintings of the tomb of Nebamun, a wealthy accountant in the Temple of Amun at Thebes circa 1350BC. British Museum, London