Mantleclock with Sphinx and Obelisks


Mantleclock with Sphinx and Obelisks  [ edit ]

This Egyptian revival mantleclock and pair of obelisks combines the majesty of the Egyptian sphinx with depictions of mummies and decorative hieroglyphs. The central clock has sloping sides, like those of a pylon gateway, and the base contains additional sphinxes and a vulture with outstretched wings (a similar motif can be seen in the drawing from the tomb of Seti I in Belzoni’s Decoration from the tomb of Seti I Plates illustrative of the research and operations of G. Belzoni in Egypt and Nubia). The use of two obelisks provides symmetry and mimics the placement of pairs of obelisks in front of the pylons of Egyptian temples. Although the hieroglyphs do not reproduce actual ancient Egyptian texts, the ensemble is a perfect example of the diverse and detailed motifs of nineteenth century “Egyptomania.” Curiously, though later in date than the Grove Street cemetery gate, the ensemble reveals a less sensitive, busier, and more inaccurate application of Egyptian motifs (for example, the vulture should be at the top of images and objects).




18 1/8 x 20 1/8 x 7 3/4 in.

Artist or Author

Tiffany & Co.




Marble, Bronze


Metropolitan Museum of Art

Accession Number


Credit Line

Purchase, The Edgar J. Kaufmann Foundation Gift, 1968