Head of a nobleman (The Josephson Head)

1878–1841 B.C.


Width x height x depth: 24 x 18.5 x 21 cm (9 7/16 x 7 5/16 x 8 1/4 in.) Width x height x depth (base): 16.5 x 16 x 14 cm (6 1/2 x 6 5/16 x 5 1/2 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


Out on Loan

On display at Basilica Palladiana, Vicenza, December 24, 2014 – June 2, 2015


The Ancient World



Reddish brown quartzite head of an official, with distinctive features of late dynasty 12, including large ears, heavily-lidded and sunken eyes, furrowed brow, hollow cheeks and downcurved mouth. Nose broken.


Possibly from Memphis on the basis of style. By 1947: said to be with dealer in Egypt (according to Jack A. Josephson was photographed at dealer's shop by J. Cooney, Curator from the Brooklyn Museum); by 1951: private collection of Ernest Kofler of Lucerne, Switzerland; February 12, 1986: purchased by Jack A. Josephson. (Accession Date: May 21, 2003)

Credit Line

Partial gift of Magda Saleh and Jack A. Josephson and Museum purchase with funds donated by the Florence E. and Horace L. Mayer Funds, Norma Jean and Stanford Calderwood Discretionary Fund, Norma Jean Calderwood Acquisition Fund, Marilyn M. Simpson Fund, Otis Norcross Fund, Helen and Alice Colburn Fund, William E. Nickerson Fund, Egyptian Curator's Fund, Frederick Brown Fund, Elizabeth Marie Paramino Fund in memory of John F. Paramino, Boston Sculptor, Morris and Louise Rosenthal Fund, Arthur Tracy Cabot Fund, Walter and Celia Gilbert Acquisition Fund, Marshall H. Gould Fund, Arthur Mason Knapp Fund, John Wheelock Elliot and John Morse Elliot Fund, Miguel and Barbara de Bragança Fund, Brian J. Brille Acquisition Fund, Barbara W. and Joanne A. Herman Fund, MFA Senior Associates and MFA Associates Fund for Egyptian Acquisitions, and by exchange from an anonymous gift