Amenemhat IV’s Sphinx
Gneiss sphinx


Amenemhat IV




Solidifies trade relations


Requires constant offerings


Possession or proximity while striking a commerce agreement

Collected by

Warehouse 2


Ancient Archives





Date of Collection

215 BC



Amenemhat IV was the final pharaoh of the 12th Dynasty of Egypt (c. 1990–1800 BC) during the late Middle Kingdom period (c. 2050–1710 BC). His reign started with joint rule alongside his predecessor and maintained peace during his time as king. An abundance of artistic rather than military artifacts from his era indicated goodwill between the dynasty and neighboring nation-states.

Expeditions into the Sinai (Middle Eastern Egypt) mined amethyst for the artisan class. In Byblos (modern Lebanon) archaeologists uncovered obsidian and gold chests inscribed with Amenemhat’s name. Even pottery fragments mention visits into the mythical land of Punt under his oversight.

Gneiss sphinx side

Side profile

At home, temples for Renenutet, Sobek and Hathor were completed. Serabit el-Khadim, the same site of the amethyst mines, hosted the Hathor complex. Regarded as one of the more powerful goddesses of ancient Egypt, she was known for representing music, joy and sexuality when benevolent and channeling pure berserker rage as a companion of Ra. Many of the finest gifts were offered daily to respect her powers. Turquoise, incense and fine necklaces were often presented with musical sistra and copious amounts of alcohol.


Solidifies the trading relationships between different parties. No, literally. Agreeing to any type of two-way commerce creates an actual rock. The signatories can glimpse the rock through some precious resource like a gem. It acts as a barometer that measures the level of fairness between deals. The larger it appears, the more profitable the relationship becomes. Cracks indicate growing conflicts that may worsen future business plans. As both parties have unrestricted access without needing to be physically present or fully aware of another’s intentions, it often qualms fears and leads to productive discussions.

To keep complacent, something of value needs to be offered as tribute to show a willingness to accept the stone’s forecast, whether good or concerning. Anything will suffice; food, beer and music always seem to be good starts.

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