Egyptian Procession Carrying an Ark

Ancient Egyptian Procession Carrying an Ark on Long Staves
Illustration of an Ancient Egyptian Procession Carrying an Ark on Poles

This sketch contains a colored illustration of ancient Egyptian priests carrying an ark on long staves, similar to the ancient Hebrew Levitical priests in Old Testament times. The scene is from the stele of Meri-meri, the treasurer of Thebes (19th Dynasty) and depicts an ark being carried in ritual procession by his servants. Other servants are carrying water jars. Click to see an enlarged image.
 

"One of the most important ceremonies was "the procession of shrines," which is mentioned in the Rosetta Stone, and is frequently represented on the walls of the temples. The shrines were of two kinds : the one a sort of canopy ; the other an ark or sacred boat, which may be termed the great shrine. This was carried with grand pomp by the priests, a certain number being selected for that duty, who, supporting it on their shoulders by means of long staves, passing through metal rings at the side of the sledge on which it stood, brought it into the temple, where it was placed upon a stand or table, in order that the prescribed ceremonies might be performed before it. The stand was also carried in the procession by another set of priests, following the shrine*, by means of similar staves ; a method usually adopted for transporting large statues, and sacred emblems, too heavy or too important to be borne by one person. The same is stated to have been the custom of the Jews in some of their religious processions, as in carrying the ark " to its place, into the oracle of the house, to the most holy place," when the temple was built by Solomon." [Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians]

"The mode of carrying the sacred arks on poles borne by priests, or by the nobles of the land, was extended to the statues of the Gods, and other sacred objects belonging to the temples. The former, as Macrobius states, were frequently placed in a case or canopy ; and the same writer is correct in stating that the chief people of the nome assisted in this service, even the sons of the king being proud of so honourable an employment. What he afterwards says of their " being carried forward according to divine inspiration, whithersoever the Deity urges them, and not by their own will," cannot fail to call to mind the supposed dictation of a secret influence, by which the bearers of the dead, in the funeral processions of modern Egypt, pretend to be actuated. To such an extent do they carry this superstitious belief of their ancestors, that I have seen them in their solemn march suddenly stop, and then run violently through the streets, at the risk of throwing the body off the bier, pretending that they were obliged, by the irresistible will of the deceased, to visit a certain mosk, or seek the blessing of a particular saint." [Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians]

"It was also usual to carry the statue of the principal Deity, in whose honour the procession took place, together with that of the king, and the figures of his ancestors, borne in the same manner on men's shoulders ; like the Gods of Babylon mentioned by Jeremiah."  [Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians]

1 Chronicles 15:1-3 "And [David] made him houses in the city of David, and prepared a place for the ark of God, and pitched for it a tent. Then David said, None ought to carry the ark of God but the Levites: for them hath the LORD chosen to carry the ark of God, and to minister unto him for ever. And David gathered all Israel together to Jerusalem, to bring up the ark of the LORD unto his place, which he had prepared for it."

1 Chronicles 15:15 "And the children of the Levites bare the ark of God upon their shoulders with the staves thereon, as Moses commanded according to the word of the LORD."

2 Samuel 15:24 "And lo Zadok also, and all the Levites [were] with him, bearing the ark of the covenant of God: and they set down the ark of God; and Abiathar went up, until all the people had done passing out of the city."

Joshua 3:17 "And the priests that bare the ark of the covenant of the LORD stood firm on dry ground in the midst of Jordan, and all the Israelites passed over on dry ground, until all the people were passed clean over Jordan."

1 Kings 8:6-7 - 6 - "And the priests brought in the ark of the covenant of the LORD unto his place, into the oracle of the house, to the most holy [place, even] under the wings of the cherubims. 7 - For the cherubims spread forth [their] two wings over the place of the ark, and the cherubims covered the ark and the staves thereof above."

See also:

The Journey. On the journey the pillar of cloud led them and the Kohathites carrying the ark
followed. The tribe of Judah, first of all took up its position and marched behind
the ...
www.bible-history.com/tabernacle/TAB4The_Journey.htm 

Bible History Online - Ancient Sketches and Reconstructions. Egyptian Procession Carrying an Ark Jesus Reading Isaiah Scroll Ancient
Torah Scroll Man Carrying Lamb Man Threshing Wheat Woman with Two
Oxen ...
www.bible-history.com/biblehistoryonline_ancientsketches.php 

ARK OF THE COVENANT in the Bible Encyclopedia - ISBE. In the account of the solemn march around Jericho, which according to Josh 6
caused the walls of the city to fall, the carrying of the ark around the city is ...
www.bible-history.com/isbe/A/ARK+OF+THE+COVENANT/ 

STAVES in the Bible Encyclopedia - ISBE (Bible History Online). The only passage in which these staves are mentioned by another name is 1 Ch 15:15, where the staves used for carrying the ark from its captivity into ...
www.bible-history.com/isbe/S/STAVES/ 

ABIATHAR in the Bible Encyclopedia - ISBE (Bible History Online). This is of a piece with David's carrying the ark on a new cart (2 Sam 6), before he had been taught by the death of Uzza. "And also Ira the Jairite was priest to the ...
www.bible-history.com/isbe/A/ABIATHAR/ 

Ark Carried on Poles by Egyptians in Procession - Images of Ancient Egypt. Ark Carried on Poles by Egyptians in Procession - This scene from the stele of Meri-meri, the treasurer of Thebes (19th Dynasty) depicts an ark being carried in ...
http://www.bible-history.com/ibh/Egyptian+Stone+Reliefs/Processions/Ark+Carried+on+Poles+by+Egyptians+in+Procession


 

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