Head from a Statuette of Zeus Serapis

Head from a Statuette of Zeus Serapis
Faience; H. 9.8 cm; W. 7.3 cm; D. 6 cm
Alexandria Region; 125–100 BCE
Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund; Brooklyn Museum: 58.79.1
© Brooklyn Museum Photograph


The syncretistic representations of the Greek and Egyptian gods Aphrodite, Zeus, Osiris, Isis, Hathor, Serapis, and Ammon reflect the Ptolemaic strategy of embracing existing religious traditions while adapting them to fit royal propaganda and appease the kingdom’s multicultural subjects.

This faience statuette of the god Zeus Serapis was most probably meant to be displayed together with a similarly rendered statuette of the goddess Isis, also on display in the exhibition.

E. Riefstahl. Ancient Egyptian Glass and Glazes in the Brooklyn Museum. The Brooklyn Museum, 1968. 113, no. 90.