Standing Figure of the Finance Minister Maya
ca. 1330 BCE
New Kingdom, Dynasty 18 (1550-1295 BCE)
33 9/16 x 11 in. (85.2 x 28 cm)
Medium and Support:
R. T. Miller Fund
Location: Currently on view
The inscription identifies this relief as belonging to the tomb of Maya, the son of Iwy and Werit. Maya, the Overseer of the Royal Treasury who served the pharaohs Tutankhamun, Aya and Horemhab, also supervised the preparation of the tombs of Tutankhamun and Ay in the Valley of the Kings. An inscription from another part of the tomb, now in Liverpool, England, tells us that Tutankhamun himself ordered Maya to journey from Aswan, a city in the south, to the shores of the Mediterranean. His instructions were to levy taxes in order to establish offerings for all the gods of Egypt.
In this relief, Maya is shown wearing an elaborate wig, the individual curls of which are tied at their ends. His facial features are distinctive, particularly his aquiline nose and strong chin. His accessories include two collars of disk beads that represent the “gold of honor.” Pharaohs of the period gave this type of collar to distinguished administrators as a reward for their service.
Richard Lepsius, a famous German Egyptologist, studied the tomb of Maya during the 1900s. He and his team published drawings that place the Gallery’s relief on the exterior south side of the entrance to the antechamber of the tomb.
[Excerpted from gallery label text, 2004]