Cow Goddess from an Offering Bowl



Cow Goddess from an Offering Bowl


sculpture, fragment


1539-1292 BC


New Kingdom, Dynasty 18


3 x 3 1/8 in. (7.6 x 7.9 cm)

Object Number



This bronze figure of the Hathor cow, the bovine form of the goddess Hathor, would have originally been affixed to the bottom of a metal bowl. Intact examples have been found in Thebes, where two temples dedicated to Hathor existed during the 18th Dynasty, and therefore may have been votive offerings to the goddess or precious household items. One scholar has suggested that the bowls may have once held flowers, and while such has not been confirmed, the bowl's Hathoric meaning may have been reinforced with flowers. Hathor was associated with the Northern Delta and is often represented striding out of a clump of tall water plants, it is possible that flowers in the dish may have mimicked this effect. Secondly, Hathor was associated with love, sexuality, and fertility and these associations could have been emphasized with the addition of flowers to the bowl as flowers are often represented in scenes relating to these themes.

Credit Line

Gift of Mohamed Farid Khamis and Oriental Weavers


From Pharaohs to Emperors: New Egyptian and Classical Antiquities at Emory, Michael C. Carlos Museum, January 14 - April 2, 2006|
MCCM Permanent Collection Reinstallation, 2006 - Present
MCCM Newsletter, December 2005 - February 2006.


© Michael C. Carlos Museum, Emory University. Photo by Bruce M. White, 2005.
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“Cow Goddess from an Offering Bowl,” Michael C. Carlos Museum Collections Online, accessed September 18, 2020,

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