Example of Middle First Dynasty Wooden label (reign of DEN)


Francesco Raffaele http://members.xoom.it/francescoraf/ E Mail francescoraf@inwind.it


See more labels of DEN
(Or read a recent commentary on Qaa label 16 of my corpus)

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We'll now see the detailed reading (based on W. Helck 'Untersuchungen zur Thinitenzeit' 1987 p. 159):

Events of the Year :
[square above on the right]
Sed-fest (The King's actions and attributes are the same as those of Djoser's Step Pyramid Complex panels) Den sits under
the pavillion wearing the tight robe of the Heb Sed and carrying flail and white crown.
On the right he runs around the couple of three cairns wearing a skirt and bringing the Nekhekhw flail and the small Mks, a
symbol of control containing the Imyt-Per documents (cfr. J.A.R.C.E. 32 p. 1-42).
The enthroned king looks like Narmer on the Hierakonpolis Macehead (but there the King wears the Red crown).
[Second section on the right]
Opening of the Fortress' great portal (?) (a ceremony or a seizure), illness of the young (rnp) mistress (?), transport
of the Sem* and the sledges.
(* or Shsmt mineral; or Sem wizards and their medicines; or the Atum chapel ?)
[Third register on the right]
....to Nswy Bity Khasty .... birds offering (?) (Den 's Nswt Bity; this king is the first for whom this royal title is attested)
[Lower right register]
[Left register]
Hr Dn Sdjawty-Bity (or Khetemw-Bity) HMAKA : Chancellor - of the Lower Egypt King, Horus Den - Hemaka
Mdjhw ty Nswt hwt nw Nbw hwt nsw ITY SN : Director (?) of the Gold palace Oil press, of the King's Palace, Itysen (?)
(or Djebawty-Sen).
Stj wr Thnw hat 1200 ht : 1200 rod measures of Lybian Setj-wr [oil] (Setj-Hr) of the highest quality.
(the number and indication of a probable submultiple in palms -Shsp- at the base of the label is lost)
Hemaka was official under Den only (but this King reigned c. 40 years).
The title attested here is the most prestigious he bore , but he was also administrator and director of the Hr-Tpy-Ht domain
of the King and of the Hr-Skhenty-Dw which had already been administrated by Ankhka .
His vast tomb at Saqqara (3035) is one of the biggest in the I st Dyn. Cemetery. Excaveted and published by W. Emery
(1938) it revealed various seal impressions and a set of vessels, a gaming disk, a decorated dish and a uninscribed papyrus.

For a more recently written translation and commentary of a label see this one of Horus QA'A.