British School / Egypt – The Ram Headed Sphinxes of Karnak (c.19th)


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Oil on canvas displayed in its original glazed and gilded oak frame with an embossed copper emblem of the winged sun pinned to the top. There are several handwritten inscriptions on the back of the stretcher including the title. Overall the condition is very good.

Canvas: 24 x 16 in. (61 x 40.5 cm.)
Frame: 31 1/2 x 21 3/4 in. (80 x 55 cm.)


The temples of Karnak and Luxor were in ancient times part of the upper Egyptian city Thebes, which was over a long time the capital and the cultural center of the Pharaoh’s empire and is known as the city of the hundred gateways. The avenue of ram-headed sphinxes line either side of the entrance to the temple.

The representations of the winged sun embossed on the copper plaque show as its name indicates – a sun or solar disk in the center with spread wings on either side. In many cases, as with ours, the Winged Sun also had Egyptian cobras flanking it. In Egypt the symbol represented royalty, power, and divinity.


Unidentified / Unknown Artist