The Representations of the Amarna Princesses and Their Religious Role During the Amarna Period



Marx, Courtney

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The six daughters of Akhenaten and Nefertiti are known as the Amarna princesses. Their father, Akhenaten, established a new religion centered on the Aten, a solar deity, and shunned the rest of Egyptian gods. Akhenaten also brought about intense changes to the ancient Egyptian artistic style that had been virtually unchanged for over 1,000 years. These changes are evident in the representations of his daughters. In this paper I explore the unique depictions and iconography of the Amarna princesses. The princesses wear a specific hairstyle, referred to simply as a “sidelock of youth,” in the majority of their images. The princesses also hold instruments called sistra in many of their portrayals. This paper will provide an examination of the artistic context of the representations of the princesses to determine the broader symbolism behind the iconography of the sidelock and sistra.


This thesis has been embargoed for 5 years and will not be available until at least August 2025 at the earliest.


Amarna, Akhenaten, Princess, Aten, Sidelock, Sistra