The entry to chamber C is a doorway of 1.25m height and 0.80m width, originally framed by a lintel and doorposts of limestone, and which included at its centre a wooden door, with inscriptions and paintings on both faces. The lintel and the left doorpost were donated to the Anthropological Museum of the University of California (N° 6-19871'); the right doorpost would be in the storeroom of Deir el-Medina; the threshold is still in its original place, whilst the door-leaf is at the Cairo Museum (Cairo museum, No. ME 27303, ).
A small decorated corridor then leads into the mortuary chamber.
This measures 1m long with a height of 42cm. At the top of the decorated surface is a blue hieroglyph for the "sky". Below this, decorated in an expanse of colour, is a representation of the solar barque of
"Atum, who rests in the mountain of the west", travelling from east to west on a shorter blue "sky" hieroglyph (but which can here also be representative of the underground Nile). The barque and its passenger are adored from in front of the prow and behind the stern by standing images of Sennedjem.
At the front of the barque squats the Horus–child (known to the Greeks as the Harpocrate), with a finger to its mouth. A frog, symbol of eternity, is placed under the prow at the level of the water. The mummiformed god Atum, wearing the pschent (or double crown of Egypt), faces left and holds the sign of life on his knee. In front of him, stands the shemset symbol meaning "followers" (Gardiner T18) and behind him, close to the two oar-rudders, is a representation of the primitive Lower Egypt sanctuary of Buto, with a rounded roof
Atum, creator god, whose name can mean
"the one who is" as well as
"the one who is not", has a strong interrelationship with the notion of rebirth.
The accompanying text proclaims, on the right :
"Praise be given to Atum […] resides in the mountains of the west, on behalf of the servant in the Place of Truth […]". On the left, the speech is addressed to Ra-Horakhty :
"Praise be given to Ra-Horakhty, who lives in truth (Ma'at), made […] of Sennedjem, justified". Note that Hor-akhty means
"of the two horizons".
This scene of the lintel thus illustrates perfectly the comment of Sennedjem : on the threshold of his vault. He wishes, for eternity, to share the destiny of the creator god, to be able to disappear in the evening on the western horizon, and to rise on the eastern horizon in the morning.
On the under side of the lintel is a :
: "An offering, which the king gives, to Osiris Wenennefer, that he might enter and might come out of the realm of the dead, for the Ka of the servant of the place of truth, Sennedjem, justified".
This measures 1.11m high and 15cm wide.
It includes :
on the front :
"[An invocatory offering to Ptah, ] Sovereign of the Two Lands, the beautiful of face, that he may open the door (of the chamber and the necropolis) every day, for the Ka of the Osiris, Sennedjem".
on the inner edge:
An invocatory offering, which the king gives, to Osiris, who is first in the West, Anubis, the lord of the Rasetjau, Hathor, the mistress of the western necropolis. That they may give cattle, birds, fresh water, for the Ka of the Osiris, the servant of the place of truth, Sennedjem, justified.
This is the same size as the one opposite, and also includes .
on the front, a prayer to
"[?] who lives in Truth, that he may render justice to him in the Place of Truth, for the Ka of the servant in the place of truth, Sennedjem, Justified".
on the inner edge,
An invocatory offering, which the king gives, to Ra-Horakhty. That he may give: glorification in the heavens, power on the land, justified in the realm of the dead, form before the gods, for the Ka of the Osiris, the servant of the place of truth, Sennedjem.
This is made of sycamore wood, painted in yellow. The large decoration is distinctly separated on a white background, with a black framing, the top of which takes the form of a sign "sky" hieroglyph. The design is divided into two registers, each carrying a scene of worship to the gods.
On the left, Osiris-Khentyamentiu, seated on a throne, wears the Atef crown, a central mitre of rushes (in the shape of the white crown of Upper Egypt) flanked with two curved ostrich feathers. This is coloured with green and blue longitudinal bands, indicating its plant nature. At he top is a ball, usually considered to represent a mandrake. His body, similar to that of Ptah, is enveloped in a shroud, with Usekh necklace provided with the Aper counterweight and red crossed straps. His hands, which appear from under the vestments hold the crook and flagellum as well as the Was sceptre.
Behind him, standing and placing her left hand on his shoulder is Ma'at, goddess of the west, in red skin-tight dress; the feather of truth on her head makes her easy to recognise, even though she is not named.
On the right, separated from the gods by an altar, on which stands a libation (or Qebeh) vessel and a blue lotus bouquet, advances Sennedjem. Two women each bring an ovoid vase with a long neck, these are his wife Iyneferti and their daughter Irutnefer, both wearing an ointment cone. The white vestments of all three are stained of red in their upper part, a pictorial fashion of the time, perhaps to represent a conventional hue of transparency of the light materials.
is a praise to
"Osiris, first of the West" (= the land of the dead).
On the left, the hawk-headed Ptah-Sokar-Osiris, wearing the white crown of Abydos flanked with two feathers, is seated on a throne and holds the Was-sceptre and the Ankh-sign (symbol of life). Behind him, standing and (like Ma'at above) with her left hand on the god's shoulder, is Isis, again clothed in a red skin-tight dress. Separated from Ptah by an altar on which stands a vase and a blue lotus, seven sons of Sennedjem advance towards him. They have their right hand raised in greeting and hold a structure of papyrus stems in the left.
At the front is Khabekhnet; followed by the others, two by two, clothed in a long loincloth with the opening in front of the knees (as one worn between the end of the 17th and in the beginning of the 19th Dynasty).
The supplication is addressed at the beginning by Khabekhnet to Ptah-Sokar-Osiris, then by his brothers Pakharu, Rahotep, Khonsu, Ramose, Anhotep, Renekhu, all qualified as
After the entrance doorway, is a short passageway of 1m long, 1m wide and 1.50m in height. It has a flat ceiling and a ground level tilts in a gentle slope towards the inside of the chamber.
Once entered, and the door closed, the following can be observed.
The small corridor is decorated on its ceiling and on both the east and west faces. The decor has been applied on a yellow ochre base, which is the same for the whole of the main chamber. The scenes represent the solar cycle, that of the rising and setting of the sun, to which the deceased will be associated in the other world.
The decorated area, of the now closed door, is divided into two parts.
At the top, Sennedjem and his wife play the game of Senet. They are identified here in the text by their names and also at the end of the eleven vertical columns of text below them.
The scene of the game follows the style of this period, see for example : .
Under a light tent-like structure (which could for example be raised in the courtyard of the chapel), the couple are seated on chairs with feet decorated like lion paws (like ). They both wear long pleated garments. In front of this is a table, on top of which is the game of Senet.
Sennedjem stretches his left hand above of the game to seize a pawn. Which is quite remarkable, because there is no adversary opposite him, but a pile of offerings on a pedestal underneath which is represented lettuces and amphoras ().
Since its appearance, in a different forms, from the time of the pyramids, this scene became progressively highly symbolic.
In fact it represents the deceased's transition into the underworld and is symbolic with his reincarnation. The journey of the pawn on the checkerboard is likened to the deceased's journey in the body of the protective snake, Mehen, who will watch over him until a throw of the sticks allows him to leave the checkerboard.
The larger lower part of the door decoration contains , to be read right to left.
The start of the text (columns 1-6) is the postscript to Chapter (sometimes "Formula" or "Spell", which from here on will be referenced as "§") 72 of the Book of the Dead, which sets the context for all of the text and images of the entire chamber. The latter text columns (7-11) contain the introduction to §17, one of the longest. This begin the scenes and vignettes which continue on the walls of the passage and are completed on the adjoining upper part of the west side of the south wall of the burial chamber.
The sun sets between two lions, seated back to back, supporting the hieroglyph of the double hill, which represents the horizon. Above them is the hieroglyph of the sky.
The gods represented here could be Ruty and Aker, but the latter could also be Ra or Atum. Here, it is more likely that the representation is of the god Ruty (ru-ty being a nisbe form : two lions), linked with Shu and Tefnut in earlier times. The lion, which lived at the borders of the desert to the east and the west of the Nile valley, is appropriate to these two cardinal points. In §17 of the Book of the Dead, it is on the back of Ruty that the sun rises daily.
The two lions are sometimes named yesterday and tomorrow. So the idea of the solar cycle is perpetually renewed, typical of the Egyptian mentality which is obsessed, as the sociologist of religions Max Weber said, by "the strong desire to endure".
A in ten columns greets the sun when it descends in the western horizon.
The day will soon rise, but it is still necessary to prevent the snake Apophis from capsizing the solar barque. This is what the cat does as representative Ra, or a companion of Ra. Seated on his hindquarters, he slices the reptile with a knife. This representation is found elsewhere in Deir el-Medina, the most famous being the one of . Here, the scene takes place under the foliage of the Persea tree of Heliopolis.
The hieroglyphic , in nine columns, continues the one of the west wall and speaks of the extermination of the enemies of Ra.
Sennedjem, entering the tomb from the outside, stands making the sign of worship, in front of a representation of the goddess Nut. She is represented here by her breasts and her two arms coming out of the western horizon, which receives the sun at its setting, in order to pull it towards the depths of the land where it will be able to regenerate.
Between the two are three columns of celebrating the glorious dawn when Ra emerges from the Nun, the primordial ocean.
Thus, the whole cycle of the sun is represented, and Sennedjem identifies with the solar disc in this daily (cyclic) course and (linear) eternity.
At last the main chamber is entered.
Alas, the walls are currently protected by glass panels, which is useful for their safeguard, but disfigures the general visual impression (). Fortunately, the photos which are presented here were taken before the addition of these panels.
The chamber floor lies 8.35m under the surface of the courtyard, in a perfectly symmetrical rectangular room, measuring 5.12m long and 2.61m wide, with a vaulted ceiling, its apex being at a height of 2.40m maximum. The north-south orientation is off by only 3°, the end walls are situated to the east and the west.
The rock-cut chamber was levelled and then lined with unfired mud bricks of 15cm thickness, bound by a mortar mix of flexible clay and straw. The brick wall is separated of the rocky wall by an empty space by several centimetres in places. This provided air circulation and a good drying process for the brick construction on the one hand, but sometimes created problems such as bulging of the wall.
The floor is of compressed clay, formerly covered with a fine layer of red plaster.
The decoration of the chamber is polychrome on yellow ochre base, gorgeously preserved, achieved with the palette of the time, which consisted of six fundamental colours : white (chalk), black (soot), red and yellow ochre, blue lapis lazuli, and turquoise blue.
The yellow ochre base was painted over a layer of lime wash or thin plaster, which was intended to smooth out the imperfections. The choice of this colour is not neutral : it represents the solar light, and is a reminder of gold, the material of the flesh of the gods. The skilful artist also played cleverly with white, the other solar colour, for areas of a smaller size.
The groups of scenes are delimited from the floor by only two broad yellow and red bands, separated by narrow black lines.
The decoration is designed like the ornamentation of a Nubian sarcophagus with a arched lid; which means that the vault includes individual scenes or tableaux, separated by longitudinal and transverse bands, equivalent to the bands carrying the protective texts which surround a mummy's body, or its coffin. These bands, painted white, are covered with inscriptions in black hieroglyphs. Notice that dark colours are predominant, which are lightened by the white bands, giving an open window impression on to the upper world.
The numerous vignettes all come from the Book of the Dead, as do the texts of the walls; these texts, sometimes faulty, are not numerous, less than is usual in polychrome tombs, which usually include a great many more than in the monochrome tombs of the same period.
Numerous scenes presented in the burial chamber of Sennedjem are also met in other tombs. But, according to Marta Saura i Sanjaume, their quality is
"only comparable to those of the tomb of Queen Nefertari"; moreover, some of the scenes which occur in both, such as the falcons who protect the deceased or the lions who sustain the horizon (§17 of the Book of the Dead) are of equal quality and technique. The iconographic relationship is often duplicated in the choice of superimposable formulae. Finally, mistakes and similar parcularities exist (determinatives, pronouns, conjugation).
Saura i Sanjaume suggests therefore :
that the tomb of Sennedjem could date of the same time as that of Queen Nefertari,
that these are probably the same craftsmen who worked in the two monuments,
that they used the same copy of the Book of the Dead, probably papyrus Leyden II. In spite of all this, some parcularities exist with Sennedjem that would bring it closer to other sources such as the Papyrus of Ani.
In passing, it should be noted that judgement of the artistic quality of the tomb varies.
Shedid, also judges the decoration of the tomb as being of high quality :
"Beeindruckt ist man von Übermacht der Bilder der, die Decke und Wände überziehen".
The opinion of Sigrid Hodel-Hoenes on the chamber is less flattering :
"the painting is not of the highest quality" (see bibliography, p 247).
Everyone will have their own opinion.
[TB] personally find that artistically the whole is successful and balanced, but the comparison with the quality of Nefertari seems abusive, and I am not entirely convinced that we deal with the same craftsmen in the two cases. You can see on Osirisnet.
The south wall is divided in two parts by the off-centred (slightly to the west of middle) opening of the small entry corridor. Before studying it systematically, the general layout should be noted. Both sides are divided in two horizontal registers. In the lower registers can be found the hosts of the funerary meal who are turned toward the entrance, to receive the deceased couple.
Above, on the left, when facing it, are the guardian demons who should prove whether they are worthy to enter.
Above, on the right (as already mentioned previously), is the continuation of §17 of the Book of the Dead started in the entry.
This represents the entry into the chamber by the deceased couple, and even though it seems to exist as two sub-registers, it is necessary to see them as being a single line; even though Sennedjem stands in front of the top row and his wife in front of the lower one. The couple must both clear the ten doors (also referred to as portals) guarded by ten genii with knives. They are simply clothed, a knee-length pleated skirt for him, a long pleated dress for her. They don't wear any jewellery, nor a fragrant ointment cone. The attitude of both suggests humility.
In order to pass these first tests before reaching the Fields of Iaru, it will be necessary to give the name of each door and its guardian !
The genii - guardians supervise five doors at the top (odd numbers : 1,3, 5,7 and 9) and the five below (even numbers 2,4, 6,8 and 10) ; they are all represented in an identical form () : seated on a blue Ma'at sign, under a door represented by an inverse-L, surmounted by khekeru. They each hold a large knife on their knees (except the anthropomorphous guardian of the door 5, who crosses two knives on its chest).
These guardians can be designated in different ways according to the situation, and their names are sometimes interchanged. As usual in the Book of the Dead (§145 and §146) they are identified by the text at their door, and they are all given a feminine sex. Here, for reason of space, it was only possible to represent ten doors instead of the full twenty-one. Hence eleven doors are missing, but it should be noted that these don't have any special names and are designated only by these words:
"The one who comes in help to the weak", except sometimes the eleventh :
"Ilerun-aukhekh" and the seventeenth
He is surrounded by four columns of text, proclaiming his allegiance to Osiris :
"Words spoken by the Osiris, the servant in the place of truth, Sennedjem. He says : ' I come to you Osiris, Lord of Amentet, Wenennefer, Lord of Djedu. I am loyal to you, I am loved in the Place of Truth, I loved the truth, I have done no evil; I know the ways of Amentet in the heart of Osiris, Sennedjem, Justified' ".
In front of him are :
Door 1 : guardian with the head of a vulture,
"Mistress of trembling, with the high walls, mistress of destruction, whose words (things) predict".
Door 3 : guardian with the head of a crocodile,
"Mistress of the altar, great of offerings […] all gods, after the journey to Abydos. The guardian's name is […]".
Door 5 : the naked bald-headed child,
"The one who lights fires, mistress of praise, who care consumes, none have admittance to you. The guardian's name is […]".
Door 7 : guardian with the head with two feathers,
"Shroud that veils the weak, mourner of their love".
Door 9 : guardian with the head of a jackal,
"The one who stands erect, mistress of power, who gave birth her Lord, whose extent is 350 measures".
Like Sennedjem above, she is also surrounded by a text. Her prayer is also addressed to Osiris.
She faces :
Door 2 : guardian with the head of a lion,
"Mistress of the sky, who rules the Two-lands, the destroyer, mistress of totality, whom everybody knows".
Door 4 : guardian with the head of a cow,
"The one who is powerful by her knives, mistress of the Two-lands, destroyer of the enemies of the weak of heart […] ".
Door 6 : guardian with the head of a snake,
"Mistress of light, the great roaring, whose length is not known […] whose number are not known" […]".
Door 8 : guardian with the head of a bird with a long straight beak,
"Breath of the burning flame, who cannot be extinguished, provided with tongues of flame that reach afar, the one who slaughters by her hand".
Door 10 : guardian with the head of a dog,
"The one who is powerful of voice, mistress of power, who hears those who cry out loud, the fear one, the terrifying one".
As can be seen, these designations are very mysterious and - it is necessary to note - are largely incomprehensible. Besides it is not certain that the Egyptians themselves fully understood the designation of some of the entities, whose origins went back to much earlier times. They may, according to one typical way of thinking, very well be referenced because of tradition.
Because the lower register, running the whole length of the south wall, on either side of the entry, constitutes a single scene, it will now be examined as such. It involves the funerary banquet. Whether indeed this meal took place or whether it is fictional won't be considered here.
The guests are distributed as follows :
On the left, east side, are the descendants of Sennedjem and the remainder, more or less in order of their relationship are closer to the entry. They all come from the world of the living, bringing their offerings.
On the right, west side, are the ascendants, placed here because they are supposed to have died before Sennedjem.
All the guests are placed either side of (and facing) the corridor which came indirectly from the chamber B, where the food and drink was apparently meant to be placed.
The first character seated on the left is Tutuja, with behind him is his brother Mesu. Tutuja stretches out his hand towards a small table containing breads, only roughly drawn in outline, before him. The couple seated behind them are Khabekhnet and his wife Sahti.
All four of these characters are seated, feet on a raised carpet or cushion, on high-backed chairs; the legs of which end in lion paws. The men all have a goatee beard, wear long pleated skirts and a headband, also an ointment cone, but no jewellery. They hold tightly in their right hand a piece of cloth. Mesu and Khabekhnet both hold a open lotus blossom to their nose. Sahti lovingly holds her husband's shoulders. She is clothed in a long pleated dress, wearing earrings and a beautiful tripartite wig surmounted with an ointment cone pierced by an opened blue lotus.
Two small girls stand under the second and fourth chairs. They carry the sidelock of childhood, but are fully clothed in long pleated dresses, which suggests that they are pubescent. The first is named Taia, and the second () Henutweret.
Behind these seated hosts advance eight characters (), six men, a woman and a girl. None, except the woman, have an ointment cone on the head. The men are in short pleated skirts, the woman and the girl wear a long pleated dress. The woman, like the previous one, has a beautiful tripartite wig. All bring gifts which are, without exception, of natural products, gifts of the Nile.
The first man : Bunakhtef, brings two stems of papyrus in bloom.
The second : Rahotep, a papyrus and a duck from the Nile.
The woman : Irunefer, a papyrus and a small oval vial with a long neck, containing the water from the beginning of the flood.
The third and fourth man, standing side-by-side : Khonsu and Ramose, offer the shoots of papyrus and a duck.
The fifth and sixth, again side-by-side : Anhohep and Kanekhu, a duck, a bouquet and two papyrus stems.
The girl who finishes the parade is not named. She, like the other two girls, has a sidelock of youth. She holds a papyrus stem in both hands.
Now, passing on to the other side of the door.
The participants seat here are all represented in their festive attire of either long pleated skirts for the men or long pleated dresses for the women. They all wear headbands and fragrant ointment cones, and, for the ladies, the addition of a lotus flower in the wig (except, curiously, for Iyneferti, at the west end). But no one wears jewellery. Once again all of the men have a goatee beard,
The characters are arranged in three groups, seated on high-backed chairs, which rest on a green coloured carpet. Between them, standing facing the respective group, is a young man acting as a servitor.
The beginning of the scene is located close to the entry, with Khabekhnet, and his two wives, Tahennu and Rosu. Khabekhnet and Tahennu, according to Sanjaume's family tree research, are Sennedjem's parents. Under the chair of the last wife squats a small anonymous girl, dressed identically to the female above her and so obviously wearing earrings. A servant by the name of Roma places ointment (represented by a cone) on the head of Khabekhnet, who holds a cloth in one hand and a Sekhem sceptre of power across his chest.
The middle group is centred on Tjaro and Taia (), who, according to Sanjaume's family tree research, are Iyneferti's parents. In front of them is another Roma (or the same one ?) who presents a sail inflated by wind, the "soft breath of the North". Does he answer the deceased's major wish who chokes in the chamber's closed space, and which is expressed in many chapters of the Book of the Dead ? With his other hand, he makes a libation of water with the aid of a libation vessel.
The legend reads :
"Bringing the breath of life and water for the Osiris, Tjaro. From the hands of your son Roma, Justified, Imakhu". This last term ("blissful" or "venerated") signifies that Roma had died as the scene has been painted.
Under the chair of Taia, another small attendee of the banquet, very similar to the previous one, but this one is named here as : Ta-ash-sen.
Finally, comes the main couple, represented in slightly larger size : Sennedjem, who holds a large sekhem-sceptre, and Iyneferti. In front of them stands their son Bunakhtef, draped with the panther skin of the sem-priest, of which he holds a paw with his left hand. He doesn't however have the shaven skull, as is usual for this function. With his right hand he pours water offerings from a libation vessel.
The commentary text is of a very classic formula :
"An offering of all good and pure things, for your Ka, (consisting of) breads, cakes, beer, cattle, poultry and pure water; on the offering-table are other offerings from the hand of your son Bunakhtef, justified".
Finally, note that there are two children standing under the chairs, a small naked boy with a sidelock, named Ranekhu, he holds a lotus blossom in his hand; a young girl, also with a sidelock, named Heteput; she holds a duck and a lotus blossom.
A final glance reveals the beautiful quality of the representations of characters in the whole banqueting scene.
Above the banquet is a scene of funeral vigil of the mummy, which occupies the whole upper register on this side of the entry. This is a another vignette concluding §17 of the Book of the Dead, which began in the entrance. It probably also makes reference to a ceremony which would have been held in the courtyard of the chapel before the burial.
A light construction, in wood and canvas, protects the mummy of Sennedjem. The beautiful red material, heightened of pendants, appropriate to the Osirian context, is often found.
A lion-styled bed (head, tail and paws) expresses the arrival at the end of the journey, at the horizon of the western sky. The beautiful anthropoid coffin, the main body of which is enclosed prophylactic bands on which text would have been written, lays with the head towards the west, the domain of the deceased. It is protected by two milans (and not falcons as one sometimes reads) representing the two goddess sisters, Isis and Nephthys. They wear on top of their heads the hieroglyph of their name.
Isis is at the feet and behind her is the text, a reminder of her functions; she is
"the great divine mother, mistress of the sky, wife of all gods".
"powerful in speech, mistress of the sky, mistress of the two lands", who has the power to transfuse the vital fluid, is at the head, and proclaims :
"I come to protect the Osiris, the servant in the Place of Truth, Sennedjem".
Why were these birds of prey chosen as icons for the goddesses ? Could it be because their shrill cry is a reminder of eastern laments, a cutting sharp scream, which usually accompany funeral vigils ?
In accordance with the well known Osirian myth, the sisters watch over the deceased, the new Osiris, as they watched over their brother (husband of one, lover of the other) the dead Osiris.
So the assimilation of Sennedjem with the Great God appears complete. Notice the spatial disposition : this scene is inseparable from that of the mummy's revivification by Anubis, which faces it on the north wall, because the god and the two goddesses act jointly to bring the Osiris back to life.
As already mentioned, this representation is complementary with the one just described, and the decor is almost superimposable. It is easier to understand thanks to this .
The deceased again appears mummified on a bed, head towards the west. Anubis, by the magic passes of his hands, "warms" the mummy's heart, which starts beating again; at the time of the real ceremony, a priest having dressed in a mask with head of canine plays the role of the god. This scene is usually (and also more logically) represented on the west wall of the chamber.
All around the scene is inscribed the long text of the §1 of the Book of the Dead, which asks for the exit on the day after the funeral. From lack of space, the scribe could not write the whole chapter, which is interrupted in the middle of a sentence (which shows maybe that he didn't really understand what he recopied…).
This section involves the introduction of Sennedjem in front of Osiris, guided by Anubis.
The whole is divided into three sections, of roughly equal size.
The action begins at the north-east corner.
It is in fact the final stage of a larger scene which normally should have included the weighing of the heart (or psycho-stasis) which justified the dead in front of the court of gods. But this is missing (possibly for space reasons), in any case the outcome for the deceased is evidently always that he is justified, the whole scene has been telescoped in its final result : Sennedjem passed the test victoriously.
He is shown wearing a beautiful pleated long skirt overlain with a shorter one; on his jet black wig he has a headband and on top an ointment cone; on his chest spreads a large necklace of multicoloured pearls. His left hand, held to his right shoulder, corresponds either to a gesture of fear, or to a gesture of respect, or both.
His right hand is held by Anubis who assumes his duplicate role of protector and opener of the paths to the beyond, leading the deceased from east to west.
The god, as always, has a black canine head (jackal, dog of the desert…?). He wears a blue-lapis wig, the great Usekh necklace, armbands on his upper arms, a body garment with shoulder straps and an off-white loincloth with a mid-yellow striped rear section, held in position by a belt, the clasp of which has an Isis (Tyet) knot design. In his right hand he holds the Was sceptre.
Above the two characters, 22 columns of text say that Anubis introduces the deceased to the gods of the Duat, without him having to fear that the doors would be closed in front of him. Other columns, in front of the characters, give the titulature of Anubis and access to the Duat to Sennedjem.
Sennedjem is squatting on a mat, resting on his left heel, raised right knee, which corresponds to the Egyptian way of representing the cross-legged position. He also holds his left hand on his right shoulder. His wig is now streaked with greyish white strands. This phenomenon is also met in the tomb of , and that of , and in others.
Its significance is not very clear. Perhaps it indicates a person's seniority in relation to others ? It is possible with Inerkhau and Pached, but not here. Is it about showing the time that was necessary for the deceased to reach the place where Osiris resides ? Or, as Bruyère suggests, is this a consequence of the ordeals experienced by the deceased during his journey? Or of the terror of being in front of the great god in person?
Above him, a green mat supports two lettuces between three amphoras of wine, closed by a plug of clay and decorated with a blue lotus, of which the stem spirals around the body of the vessel. Between the two, a short text proclaims :
"May you sit at the side of Wenennefer, may you be given bread and beer before Osiris-Khentyamenti (u), by the Osiris, the servant in the place of the truth, Sennedjem, Justified".
In front of Sennedjem is an enormous offerings structure, which he presents to Osiris, comprised of three stands supporting a single top. Between the supports are two wine amphorae. On top are piled various food offerings : firstly, three vases and four cakes; on top of these are two baskets with figs and grapes, an ox thigh, a waterfowl, an assortment of onions, a lettuces and more grapes. Crowning all of this is a large basket of flowers and an assortment of fresh herbs.
Above the offerings, Sennedjem recites the famous §125 of the Book of the Dead. It contains what has become known as "the negative confession". This is quoted, in principle, at the time of the Psycho-stasis, in front of the divine court. Sennedjem judged it sufficiently important to represent it here although the corresponding vignette does not appear. It is interesting, because it shows the importance at that time of having led a "correct" life, conforming to Ma'at. Otherwise, a there would be no foreseeable chance of a destiny in the beyond. [NB: Why not read more detail in .]
""Words spoken by the Osiris, servant in the place of truth, Sennedjem, Justified. He says : 'Hail to you, Osiris, first in the west, Wenennefer, Lord of the Kingdom of the Dead, Lord of the Atef-crown with the pointed horns, beautiful of youth, first in the west.
I have come to you, Oh Lord, life-health–strength. I am powerful on Earth, I did good things.
I didn't remove the bread offerings from the temples; I didn't steal the cakes offered to the gods.
I entered through the doors of the Duat; I was not found guilty by the scales.
Thot chose me as one of these gods, servants of Horus.
I am a servant in your temple, Osiris, so that you may give me air to breathe and water.
Spoken by the Osiris, the servant of the Place of Truth to the west of Thebes, the western mountains of Ma'at, Sennedjem, Justified' ".
Osiris stands upright (which is quite rare, he is normally seated) in a magnificently decorated kiosk with a white background. The kiosk stands on a pedestal, also white, and has a coving at the entrance.
The roof is sustained by four fascicule columns (of which only two are represented), green and blue, arising from a white discoidal base, imitating sheaves of papyrus stems bound at the top, at which point are tied red and white ribbons.
Each composite capitol () is :
"superimposed on four levels are the four flowers which symbolise the four great regions of the kingdom, from north to south, when journeying up the Nile, from the Delta to the Nubia. These are, from top to bottom : the papyrus of Lower Egypt, framed by two uraei with the head of a solar disk; the lily of Upper Egypt; the blue lotus of the cataract of Syene (Aswan) ; the pink lotus of the Nubia. These emblems of the four regions of Pharaonic Egypt are at the same time recalled by the four types of wines offered to the god as it is written in the temple of Abydos." (Bruyère - translated).
These columns support a polychromatic coving, the summit of which is decorated by erect solar snakes, while at its base runs a horizontal grapevine, identical to those of Lower Egypt. This is a reminder of the legend which says that the culture of the grapevine has been taught to the men by Osiris, at the time when he still reigned on land.
In the kiosk, the Great God stands on a blue Ma'at sign edged in yellow, on which is also a labelled vase standing on a pedestal, as well as a bound bouquet of flowers resting on top. Sheathed in his white shroud, Osiris holds in his hands the two usual symbols of his function : the crook and the flagellum. A large necklace decorates his neck. His complexion is greenish, a reminder that flesh is thus in putrefaction, but also of the renewal of vegetation. His chin is decorated with a large false beard with a hooked tip. He wears the Atef crown, either side of which are two udjat eyes, symbolising the resurrected god.
Two "imuit" fetish-symbols are visible on the floor of the pavilion. Each is composed of a vase, from which emerges a pole (a reminder of the uprights of a boat cabin). Around this is attached a stuffed animal skin, from which the head and the rear legs have been removed. The front legs are attached to the pole, while the rear end (finishing in a lotus flower) twists around the upper part of the pole. According to Moret, it refers to a skin being used during the pressing of the grape in the wine-making scenes, another expression of the blood of Osiris. In this skin the mysteries of gestation take place.