Fighting bulls (Bos taurus)

Egypt, Beni Hassan, Khnumhotep II (Tomb 3), Upper Cemetery, North wall.

Bull-fighting scenes are uncommon in Egyptian art. It is unclear whether the fights were organised events or if scenes such as that shown here represent the animals' natural aggression. The images are well observed, however, capturing the bulls' rippling neck muscles as they push against one another.

Date
Middle Kingdom, Dynasty 12, Reign of Amenemhat II (c. 1918-1884 BCE).
Location
Egypt, Beni Hassan, Upper Cemetery, Khnumhotep II (Tomb 3), North wall, register 5.
Medium
Polychrome paint on limestone (photograph).
Technique
Relief (photograph).
Parent Context
Chapel.
Data Credits
Compiled by Linda Evans and the Beni Hassan Research Group with resources from the Macquarie University Ancient Cultures Research Centre, and the Australian Centre for Egyptology.
Project Funding
Supported by the Australian Research Council Discovery Project scheme: DP160102223 "Measuring meaning in Egyptian art: A new approach to an intractable problem" held by N. Kanawati (MQ), L. Evans (MQ), A. Woods (MQ) and J. Kamrin (Met), the Macquarie University Department of Ancient History, and the Macquarie University Faculty of Arts.
Original Citation
N. Kanawati & L. Evans, Beni Hassan: Volume I: The Tomb of Khnumhotep II (Australian Centre for Egyptology: Reports 36, Aris and Phillips, Oxford, 2014, ISBN: 978-0-85668-846-1), pl. 56b (photograph),
Rights
Recorded and published with permission from the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities. Photographs by Effy Alexakis as part of research on site. Copyright Macquarie University 2018. All rights reserved.
Cite this
Linda Evans "Fighting bulls (Bos taurus)." In The Beni Hassan Visual Dictionary: Khnumhotep II, edited by Alexandra Woods, Brian Ballsun-Stanton, and Nicolle Leary. Sydney: Macquarie University, 2018. https://benihassan.com/exhibition/Kanawati-Evans-BH1-Pl-56b-Beni-Hassan-3-Khnumhotep-II-Chapel-Scene-North-wall-Centre-section-Wall/