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Fayum mummy portraits

Fayum mummy portraits is the name given to a large number of paintings from the first to third century. These are encaustic paintings, made with hot, pigmented wax on wooden panels, which were inserted into the mummies of the deceased. The surviving paintings are predominantly from the Fayum[?] region in Egypt, where the practice was common and the dry heat preserved many of the paintings until today.

Together with the surviving frescoes and objects from Pompeii, they are the among the best preserved art from ancient times.

Portrait of a young woman, A.D. 11020
Encaustic on wood; 43.7 x 34 cm (17 1/4 x 13 in.)
Royal Museum of Scotland, National Museums of Scotland, Edinburgh

A gallery of Fayum mummy portraits can be found on a separate page.



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