Portrait of Aline

Aline Mummy Portrait Munich, photo by Following Hadrian on flickr CC-BY-SA
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License of this image: CC-BY-SA
License of original image: Ägyptisches Museum Berlin - Photo by Following Hadrian on flickr, CC-BY-SA
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By: Unknown Artist
Created: 24 AD, Collection: Ägyptisches Museum Berlin, Berlin, Germany Rights: Photo by Following Hadrian on flickr, CC-BY-SA

The sad and deep expression on Aline's face is the key to the magic of this painting. Wearing earrings and a necklace could give you her slightly distinguished allure. Chose a monochromatic background for better results.

Aline is one of the exceedingly rare cases where we know the name and appearance of a person from antiquity who did not belong to the ruling classes and is not otherwise known from literature. We know her name from the inscription on her tomb, that was found in Egypt.

The portrait of Aline was painted in tempera on linen. Below the painted cloth, scraps of linen pressed onto the mummy’s face were used to provide an even surface, so that the portrait is nearly flat.

The wavy hairstyle with a central parting is painted simply, but carefully. The small ringlets above the forehead are striking. The face appears full, but not fat. It conveys the impression that this woman, who belonged to the middle or upper levels of Egyptian society, had led a good life. The sad, wistful gaze is typical of mummy portraits. Altogether, it is a masterful portrait of a middle-aged woman.