Cuddly lions are generally not associated with Egypt, where these awesome beasts often serve as temple guardians or symbolize the power of kingship. However, this lovable feline from the Met–its head resting puppylike on its paws–dates to the Early Dynastic Period, a formative era in Egyptian art and an age of experimentation. Its soft modeling and lack of detail contribute to its docile appearance. In contrast, the MFA’s own lion from the same period is ferocious, with teeth bared. Animal sculpture was common in the Early Dynastic Period, and these works were often worshiped as deities. The Annual Summer Masterwork Exchange Program with the Metropolitan Museum of Art is made possible by the Malcolm Hewitt Wiener Foundation.