This limestone artifact, originating from the New Kingdom and specifically the 18th Dynasty in Ancient Egypt, circa 1300 BCE, depicts Pharaoh Horemheb, the dynasty's last ruler, in submissive posture before the deity Atum. Atum is characterized traditionally as the creation god of Heliopolis and is represented seated, emanating divine authority and superiority.
Featuring hieroglyphic inscriptions, the piece contributes valuable context about religious and societal conditions in this historical period. Horemheb, known to have served as a military commander and high priest prior to his ascendance, appears in the process of presenting two vessels to Atum, symbolizing his loyalty to the deity and adherence to the contemporary rituals.
The relief offers significant historical narration and visual detail. The carefully detailed figures show Horemheb in military dress, including a ritualistic kilt indicative of his military origins. Atum, contrastingly, is depicted with a regal ostrich feather and sun disk crown, symbols commonly affiliated with this deity.
The artifact's craftsmanship stands out for its attention to detail and accuracy of proportions, hallmarks of Amarna art, the dominant style of this epoch. Despite identifiable signs of attrition in the lower sections, the overall preservation is commendable and enables detailed study of the piece.