Isis and Nephtys in a Paprus from Turin. Ancient Egypt.

Isis and Nephthys overlaped behind Osiris in a Papyrus from Turin.

The artists of Ancient Egypt had a particular conception of perspective, which affected in the way they depicted groups of living beings and amounts of things.

In our last posts we saw how in Ancient Egypt the funerary scene of Osiris being flanked by Isis and Nephthys was usually depicted with the two mourners of Osiris juxtaposed. It allowed to draw Isis always preceding her sister Nephthys and to make both images complete, so effective for the dead’s resurrection.

Book of the Dead of Khonsumes. Ancient Egypt

Isis and Nephthys juxtaposed behind Osiris. Book of the Dead of Khonsumes.

But the ancient Egyptian artisan could also use the technique of superposition for drawing collectives of people (troops, groups of workers…), of animals (for instance flocks) or amounts of objects (offerings, vases…).

The superposition was also applied to the scene of Isis and Nephthys behind the resurrected Osiris on his throne. We can see it for instance in the famous Papyrus of Ani from the XIX Dynasty and in many others.

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