Cairo Museum

Pharaoh Amenophis IV took the name Akhenaten (Servant of Aten) when he established his cult of the Sun-disc (the god Aten) at Amarna. Akhenaten has been called the first monotheist, because he conceived of the Sun-disc as the sole god—self-engendered, universal, the creator of all things. This 10-foot-high sandstone statue from Thebes, now in the Cairo Museum, reveals another of Akhenaten’s peculiarities: He had himself depicted not as a powerful, imposing monarch but as an effeminate figure with rounded hips, an elongated neck and a lantern jaw.