"This is Harsomtus-em-hat, noble prince, scribe of the royal documents, record-keeper of dwellings, priest of Neith, priest of Hathor, priest of Horus.”
As the inscription says, Harsomtusemhat was a priest who lived between 664 and 610 B.C. He was devoted to serving several gods. As a priest, he had been circumcised, and he had to shave his entire body from head to toe each day. His only garment was a white linen tunic, and he was not permitted to eat pork or the flesh of unclean animals. His daily routine consisted of ablutions, prayers and libations to honour the gods. The handle of the sistrum in his hands reminds us that he was consecrated to the goddess Hathor, among other deities. Harsomtus-em-hat was also a high-ranking government official: a record-keeper of property titles, treasuries and censuses. His daily job, which he combined with his priestly duties, was to write official documents. He also worked in the archives and libraries, where valuable papyrus scrolls on mathematics, engineering, astronomy and medicine were zealously guarded alongside ancient theological texts, mythical accounts and liturgical documents.