Funeral Banquet Scene – Tomb Of Shalam Al’Lat


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This funeral bed was found sandwiched between two niches in front of one of the tombs within the main wing of the Shalam al-Lat cemetery. A double bed is engraved and decorated with three bands composed of grains, in the middle of which are plant leaves and flowers within circles. The head of this bed is decorated with a horse’s trunk and a bunch of grapes, with circles in the middle, a picture of a boy with curly hair, and between the two bed legs separated by four busts representing in the middle two curly-haired young men and on the sides two girls wearing each She wears a scarf, a wrapped umrah, an embroidered headband, and two hanging earrings, and her neck is decorated with a large beaded necklace. It is strange that the two young men and girls are quite similar and it is clear that they are siblings. Above the above-mentioned bed is the scene of the funeral feast, also carved from harsh limestone, and includes four persons. The first is a bearded man with mustaches twisted around his head, a wreath of leaves (possibly laurel) with a bust of a priest in the middle. This man is leaning on two pillows embroidered with vegetal leaves, and above the fingers of his left hand he holds a vase decorated with geometric lines. He wears a long Tadmur traditional dress. Followed by a clean-shaven priest wearing the monks’ hood and around it a wreath of plant leaves in the middle is a bust of a priest in a hood, who in turn leans on two pillows, slightly ahead, and above the fingers of his left hand is a receptacle similar to the first. His right arm is bare, his palm rests above the knee, holding a branch of the plant. His left leg is bent under his right leg and is covered with a long robe up to the feet. He wears slippers that are curved and knotted with a ribbon. Behind this priest stands a young boy in the traditional Palmyra pose, his beautiful features matching the features of the two young men represented on the bed. At the end of the scene, a Palmyrene woman sits wearing a scarf, an umrah, and an embroidered headband. Her hair is raised on both sides, her earrings are spherical, her neck is decorated with knots of large beads, her long dress hangs from the shoulder with a rounded medal. In terms of appearance and dress, this woman is similar to the charming woman depicted on the front of the funeral bed. It is clear that the scene belongs to a notable of the family participating in the cemetery, who appears with his brother and the youngest of his sons, and then his wife. And on the bed, as we presented his two sons and daughters, and it is in one’s mind about this scene and the bed that the family of the dead is present at this feast to connect him with the world of the living and comfort his long estrangement

  • Material: Limestone

  • Date:

  • Item Dimensions: 170 cm x 77 cm

  • Excavated from: Palmyra- Tomb Of Shalam Al’Lat

  • Archaeological Mission:

  • Archaeological Museum Of Palmyra – 2011

Excavation Site Location

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