This artifact is a fragment of the Canopic Box of Seti I, dating back approximately to the Dynasty XIX period (circa 1290-1279 BC) in the New Kingdom era of Ancient Egypt. It was found in the burial place of Pharaoh Seti I in the Valley of the Kings, near today's Luxor, Egypt.

Designed and produced with expert skill, the fragment displays a precise level of carving and detailing. It was a component of a wooden, quad-chamber canopic box that stored alabaster jars. These jars held the mummified organs of Pharaoh Seti I, a practice consistent with Ancient Egyptian beliefs in life after death.

Created from cypress wood, the fragment's tallest dimension measures 33 cm. Its surface includes a thorough display of hieroglyphs, primarily meant to provide protection through spells and invocations. The inscriptions are sourced from the 'Book of the Dead' and the 'Amduat', which are funerary texts from Ancient Egypt. It also retains remnants of ancient paint in colors of indigo, red, yellow, and black.

This artifact highlights representations of four significant Ancient Egyptian deities: Qebehsenuef, Duamutef, Hapi, and Imsety. These gods were associated with safeguarding the lungs, stomach, liver and intestines respectively, implying a connection with the original content of the jars. Each deity, depicted as a human-headed figure, corresponds to the specific side of the box. Thus, this fragment is a significant testament to the complex funeral rituals and customs of Ancient Egypt.

Sir John Soane Museum
Tomb of Seti I