Judgement after death was the most difficult ordeal an ancient Egyptian had to face before entering the afterlife. It involved a confession of innocence before 42 divine judges, and the weighing of the heart in a balance to assess its owner’s moral character during life.
In a lecture titled “The Threshold of Eternity: the Judgement of the Dead as represented on ancient Egyptian Coffins” John H. Taylor, Assistant Keeper of Egyptian Art at The British Museum, traces the evolution of these beliefs and the various ways in which the judgement was portrayed on highly decorated coffins and other items destined for the tomb.
This lecture is presented in conjunction with the Carlos Museum 2023 exhibition Life and Afterlife: Ancient Egyptian Art from the Senusret Collection, which is sponsored by the Forward Arts Foundation, Dr. Ira and Mrs. Linda Rampil, Sandra Still, and Emily Katt. There will be more information about this exhibition, and programs related to it, in 2022.
Image copyright The British Museum