Funerary cone of Tjay

New Kingdom, Dynasty 19–20
1295–1070 B.C.

Catalogue Raisonné

Davies & MacAdam 311


Height x diameter.: 4.1 x 8.9 cm (1 5/8 x 3 1/2 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


Not On View


The Ancient World


Architectural elements

Funerary cone fragment of buff clay with tapering cone element broken off and missing. Circular head end carries two identical impressions of oval stamps, each of two divided columns of hieroglyphic text that carry an offering formula for the owner; somewhat worn and indistinct with two fragments broken away from upper right and lower left extremes.

Translation of text:
“An offering which the king gives (to) Osiris, Lord of Eternity, Ruler of Infinity
who made the heaven; the Merchant/Trader(?) Tjay.”

Htp-di-nsw Wsir nb HH HqA Dt Swty(?) TAy

Funerary cones were components of a frieze, inserted above the doors of private tombs, particularly in the Theban region. They have been variously interpreted as: name-plates of sorts to identify the tomb owner, decorative memorials, boundary markers for a tomb, dummy bread loaves or meat offerings, symbolic roof beams, or (for the visible circular head) depictions of the sun disk.

Davies and Macadam, A Corpus of Inscribed Egyptian Funerary Cones (1957), type #311.


Probably from Sheikh Abd el-Qurna. By 1836: Robert Hay Collection, Linplum, Scotland; 1863: to his son, Robert James Alexander Hay; 1868-1872: Way Collection, Boston (purchased by Samuel A. Way through London dealers Rollin and Feuardent, 27 Haymarket); 1872: given to the MFA by Samuel's son, C. Granville Way.
(Accession Date: June 28, 1872)

Credit Line

Hay Collection—Gift of C. Granville Way