Ivory inlay of a bustard

Classic Kerma
1700–1550 B.C.

Findspot: Nubia (Sudan), Kerma


Overall: 8.6 x 6.5 x 0.2 cm (3 3/8 x 2 9/16 x 1/16 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


Not On View


The Ancient World



Ivory. Crested ibis with wings spread.

This ivory inlay, which would originally have adorned a wooden funerary bed, is carved in the shape of a bustard (a large game bird, also sometimes called a crested ibis or shoebill stork) with wings spread. Details have been added by incision and notching, including facial details, crest, wings, and feet. It is largely complete except for a portion of the tail that has split away and is missing.


From Kerma, tomb K1096. 1914: excavated by the Harvard University–Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition; assigned to the MFA in the division of finds by the government of Sudan.

Findspot Information: From Kerma K 1096, March 1914.

Credit Line

Harvard University—Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition