King Tutankhamun War Chest Chariot Ornament
This design is taken from the wooden war chest which was found in the Antechamber of Tut’s tomb. It is one of the most intricately decorated objects in the tomb. Fierce confrontations take place on both sides of the chest. King Tut is depicted in his chariot trampling Hittites on one side and Nubians on the other. Both his horses leap forward, rearing on hind legs, wild eyed, crushing the enemy. Plumed headdresses rise from caps on the crests of the horses' necks.
The king drives his chariot with the reins tied around his waist, so that he may free his hands to draw his bow. Immediately following the king's chariot, three fan bearers shield the king from the sun with feather fans on tall poles. Additional Egyptian soldiers help to fight the enemy. This design has been painted from the inside of the glass by skilled artisan. This ancient technique is achieved by special curved brushes that are inserted from the top hole. The enemy is frequently depicted as a confused mass. Chaos and disorder were considered disgraceful to the ancient Egyptian, since they represented the opposites of the balance and harmony upon which their entire culture was based. This is why scholars believe that the artists who composed the military reliefs for the pharaohs incorporated significant symbolism. Egypt is our window to humanity's distant past and in understanding its history, we find mankind's greatest glories and achievements, as well as his often repeated mistakes. We may follow along with the building of empires, only to see them collapse again and again. We find great men and rulers of renowned, but we often also see their ultimate demise. We learn about religion, its evolution and, as the world grows older, its replacement with newer religions. Yet, the ancient Egyptian religion has never really completely died out. Even today, many Egyptians continue customs, including some aspects of religion, held over from thousands of years ago. In fact, throughout the world, aspects of the ancient Egyptian religion, particularly funerary, continue to make an impact on our modern lives. There is probably no more famous group of artifacts in the world then those associated with the discovery of young King Tutankhamen's tomb. Tutankhamen died as young as 16 or 17 years of age. He was probably a son of King Akhenaton by one of his secondary wives. His wife Ankhesenamun was daughter of Akhenaton and Nefertiti. Tutankhamen came to the throne as a young child and ruled for about nine years under the regency of Vizier Ay and the strong influence of the army commander Horemheb. The main events of his reign were to move the capital of Egypt back from El-Amarna to Memphis and to begin the transition from the monotheistic cult of Aton created by Akhenaton back to the polytheistic religion of Egypt with Amun-Ra again as the main God.