From Michael Fox, The Song of Songs and Ancient Egyptian Love Songs (Madison: Univ. of Wisconsin, 1985), p. 32.



The only comprehensive publication of Turin Papyrus 55001 is Joseph Omlin, Der Papyrus 55001 und seine Satirisch-erotischen Zeichnungen und Inschriften, (Turin: Fratelli Pozzo-Torino, n.d.). Related to the vignettes of this papyrus are numerous explicitly erotic ostraca and figurines; see Lisa Manniche, Sexual Life in Ancient Egypt (New York: Kegan Paul International, 1987).


For translations and discussion of these love poems, Michael Fox, The Song of Songs and Ancient Egyptian Love Songs (Madison: Univ. of Wisconsin, 1985); John Foster, Hymns Prayers, and Songs: An Anthology of Ancient Egyptian Lyric Poetry (Atlanta: Scholars Press, 1995), pp. 162–166 (a selection).


Quotations and materials in this paragraph from Philippe Derchain, “Symbols and Metaphors in Literature and Representations of Private Life”, in Royal Anthropological Institute Newsletter 15 (1976) pp. 6–10.


Derchain, “Symbols and Metaphors,” pp. 9–10.


For a forcefully worded discussion, see Marianne Eaton-Krauss and Erhart Graefe, The Small Golden Shrine from the Tomb of Tutankhamun (Oxford: Griffith Institute, 1985), Chapter 3.


For the sexual aspects of creation accounts, see Lana Troy, Patterns of Queenship in Ancient Egyptian Myth and History (Uppsala, 1986), 12–23; for divine families, Dimitri Meeks and Christine Farvard-Meeks, Daily Life of the Egyptian Gods, (Ithaca, NY: Cornell Univ. Press, 1996), pp. 36–37; on the sexuality of deities, Meeks and Farvard-Meeks Daily Life of the Egyptian Gods, pp. 66–69.


On this sense of decorum, a major factor in Egyptian art and other aspects of culture, see John Baines, “Society, Morality and Religious Practice” in Byron Shafer, ed., Religion in Ancient Egypt (Ithaca, NY: Cornell Univ. Press, 1991), pp. 137–146.


On myths and beliefs associated with Osiris, see Troy, Patterns of Queenship, pp. 32–34; Stephan Quirke, Ancient Egyptian Religion (London: British Museum Press, 1992), Ch. 2.


A typical example of the scene in question is illustrated in Manniche, Sexual Life in Ancient Egypt, p. 58 (Fig. 51).


On the (half-) divine birth of kings, see David Silverman, “The Nature of Egyptian Kingship”, in David O’Connor and David Silverman eds., Ancient Egyptian Kingship, (Leiden: Brill, 1995), pp. 69–71. The depictions of the divine birth cycle at Luxor and Deir el Bahari are discussed and depicted in Hellmut Brunner, Die Geburt des Gottkönigs (Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz, 1964).


Labib Habachi, “King Nebhepetre Mentuhotep: His Monuments, Place in History, etc.”, in Mitteilungen der Deutschen Archäologischen Instituts Abteilung Kairo 19 (1963), pp. 19–28.


David O’Connor, The Dendereh Chapel of Nebhepetre Mentuhotep: a New Perspective, in Anthony Leahy and John Tait eds., Studies on Ancient Egypt in Honor of H.S. Smith (London Egypt Exploration Society, 1999) pp. 215–220.


See Troy, Patterns of Queenship, pp. 20–23. How ancient Egyptian women underwent such a process is a more difficult issue, discussed recently by Ann Roth, “Father Earth, Mother Sky: Ancient Egyptian Beliefs About Conception and Fertility”, in Alison Rautman ed., Reading the Body Representations and Remains in the Archaeological Record (Philadelphia: Univ. of Pennsylvania Press, 2000), pp. 198–199.


The scene of Mereruka and his wife is conveniently reproduced in John Baines and Jaromir Malek, Atlas of Ancient Egypt (New York Facts on File Publications, 1988) p. 205. For a very similar, contemporary scene see Aylward Blackman and Michael Apted, The Rock Tombs of Meir, part 5, Egypt Exploration Society, London, 1953, Plate XLV. See also, for related issues, David O’Connor, “Sexuality, Statuary and the Afterlife; Scenes in the Tomb-chapel of Pepyankh (Heny the Black)” in Peter Der Manuelian (ed.) and Rita Freed (supervisor), Studies in Honor of William Kelly Simpson Vol. 2 (Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, 1996), pp. 621–633.


Most recently, see Hartwig Altenmuller, Geburtsschrein und Geburtshaus, in Der Manuelian and Freed, Studies, Vol. I, p. 30.


So far as I know, noted only by Erik Hornung, as cited in H. Buchberger, Sexualitat und Harfenspiel Notizen zur “sexuellen” Konnotation der altgyptischen Ikonographie in Göttinger Miszellen 66 (1983), p. 18.


Ernestine Friedl, “Sex the Invisible”, in American Anthropologist 96 (1994), p. 833.