Head of Ram, The God Amon-Re

Head of a ram—the god Amon-Re

Egyptian, Late Dynastic Period, 25th Dynasty

717-665 BC

Limestone and bronze

2 ⅓ in (6 cm)

The sensitively sculpted Head of a Ram combines two materials — limestone and bronze — to create a compelling image of the animal.  The strongly modeled head contrasts with the lightly etched fleece and drooping ears.  A large bronze horn curves around the animal’s left ear and up toward its nose.  In all the work presents an iconic image of the ram that is immediately identifiable as a work of Egyptian art.

Amun, an air god, was a major Egyptian deity.  He became significant throughout ancient Egypt when he was fused with the divine sun disc Re and became the powerful chief god Amun-Re.   As such, he was depicted in human, animal-headed human, and animal form.  The goose, snake and ram could all be used to represent him. Images of Amon-Re in his ram form signify divinity and majesty. 

The limestone and bronze ram’s head is carefully sculpted with great detail. This feature and its use of composite materials signal that it was certainly more than a sculptor’s model.  The ram would have worn a headdress of some sort, most probably a sun disc.  Two sockets on the bottom indicate that the head was attached to another object.