Flake with drawing of Osiris seated on his throne within a shrine. Egyptian Ptolemaic Period, 305- 30 B.C.E.
Even if he were not labeled by the hieroglyphs at the right (“Osiris, the great god”), this deity would be easy to identify. Osiris, lord of the underworld, is always shown as a mummy, often wearing the White Crown of Upper Egypt adorned with two feathers of Ma’at (cosmic harmony). Here the god holds his characteristic crook and flail and is seated in a shrine or under a canopy.
Though the almond eye, long nose, and full lips suggest a New Kingdom date (Dynasties XVIII–XX, circa 1539–1070 B.C.), many other details indicate that the sketch was made in the Ptolemaic Period. The meticulous detail, manifest in the delineation of the ear, the eye, the plaited beard, the nostril, the thumbnails, and the feather pattern of the throne, is diagnostic for Egyptian drawing and relief of the fourth through first centuries B.C.