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Artefact ID720
Findspot (DEChriM ID)15   (al-Baǧawāt)
ClassFunerary element, Textual
Writing mediumDipinto
Text contentSubliterary

Painted scene showing the sacrifice of Isak with Greek labels

On the North wall of the chapel, is depicted Abraham standing with one hand over the head of his son Isak and the other one holding a knife (Fakhry 1951: 87). Over their heads are written their names, Ἀβρααμ and Ἰσακ, written in red, in an angular majuscule (except for the final μ which is looser) similar to the one found in the dome of the Chapel of peace and to the acclamation and prayer in Chapel 53.

The sacrifice of Isak is also depicted in the Chapel of peace and in the Chapel of Exodus.

On the left of this scene, there is a shrub, painted in red, with the label βισωρ (about which see Cipriano 2003: 182 and n. 44) or [A]βισωρ (De Bock 1901: 19, after G. Schweinfurth).

Selection criteriaBiblical quote or paraphrase
Date from350
Date to450
Dating criteria

Cipriano suggested a date between the end of the 4th c. and the beginning of the 5th c. for the execution of the paintings in Chapel 25, on the basis of a stylistic analysis of the rich iconography of the chapel and more specifically of the Sacrifice of Abraham (Cipriano 2003: 193).

Absolute/relative dateRelative date
Archaeological context

Al-Baǧawāt necropolis, Chapel no. 25, North wall.

Chapel 25 is part of a group, with no. 23 and 24, belonging to one family and forming the most conspicuous building. They are by far the largest and most important of all the chapels and are the centre of them all (Fakhry 1951: 116).

Accession number

Al-Baǧawāt, in situ (Chapel no. 25)


• Cipriano, Giuseppina. 2003. El-Bagawat. Un cimitero paleocristiano nellʼalto Egitto. Rivista di archeologia cristiana 79. Todi, 168-194.

• De Bock, W. 1901. Matériaux pour servir à lʼarchéologie de lʼÉgypte chrétienne. St. Petersbourg, 20.

• Fakhry, Ahmed.  1951. The Necropolis of El-Bagawat in Kharga Oasis. Cairo: Government press, 79-88 and 116.

Valérie Schram, 2021
Suggested citation
Valérie Schram, 2021, "Artefact ID 720", 4CARE database - Fourth-Century Christian Archaeological Record of Egypt,
External links