The Sphinx of pharaoh Hatshepsut in the Egyptian Museum Berlin

Sphinx of pharaoh Hatshepsut

The Sphinx originates from the processional avenue running up to the tomb temple of Hatschepsut in Deir el-Bahari, and dates back to the 18th Dynasty of the New Kingdom around 1475 B.C.. The head was found in 1844 by a Prussian expedition in the immediate vicinity of the slope approaching the tomb temple buried in masonry rubbish. The American Egyptologist, Winlock conducted excavations 80 years later between 1922 and 1926, and discovered fragments of the body of the Sphinx.
Within the scope of the removal of the Egyptian Museum Berlin from the current Charlottenburg site back to the Museum Island, the Sphinx will in future be housed and exhibited in the newly to be erected 4th wing of the Pergamum Museum.
A photographic reconstruction evidenced the correct association of all the fragments of the body, which were then taken to New York; the head of the Sphinx however being exhibited in the Museum in Berlin. Thanks to an exchange of artefacts, the fragments of the body of the Sphinx arrived in Berlin packed in several crates in the Spring of 1930. There, they were successfully reassembled and missing pieces supplemented. A hit by a bomb during the Second World War considerably damaged the Sphinx in the halls of the Berlin ‘Neues Museum’. The figure was reassembled during the years after the war by a stonemason and last restored between 1990 and 1992.


Up to the date of the reopening of the museum area (in 2020), objects, which will then be on view can only be made available to the public to a limited extent in the meantime. For the ‘Hatschepsut’ Sphinx, an intermediate exhibit location was selected at the Berlin ‘KulturKaufhaus Dussmann’. Before the coming new exhibition, a checkup of the condition is to be undertaken and a restorative working-over of the currently damaged sculpture, and the no longer satisfactory supplementations to the general aesthetic image of the whole. The aim of the restoration work is to elaborate all supplementary repair-work and to harmonise the overall aesthetic impression of the original, and to remove the divergences between the red granite and the extremely smooth and colour-shade monochrome supplementations.



Ägyptisches Museum und Papyrussammlung, Staatliche Museen Berlin


Restaurierung am Oberbaum (RAO) 2007