An amulet such as this was used as a counterpoise to a large necklace, which would hang down the spine to counteract the weight. The aegis is itself the broad collar seen in this amulet and was an element of the sacred menat necklace. Seen from the 18th dynasty, Sekhmet and Bastet were common representations, although other gods do appear.
Ancient Egyptian Aegis of Sekhmet Counterpoise Amulet
A vivid turquoise faience ancient Egyptian counterpoise amulet of the goddess Sekhmet wearing an aegis, or broad collar necklace. Depicted with a lions head, in profile, Sekhmet wears a lappet-wig and large sun-disk and uraeus to her head.
Beneath the broad collar are two further detailed sections to the amulet. The first, rectangular section depicts a figure, possibly Nehebkau who was responsible for binding the Ba and Ka in the afterlife. He is often represented as a two-headed snake, hence the further addition of the two uraei, at each side.
The third and last oval section includes three incised glyphs, however only one is clear enough to decipher. The first symbol represents the nḫb phonogram (nkhb), used commonly for the vulture-goddess Nekhbet. Both the uraeus and the vulture combine to form the Two Ladies name, part of the pharaoh’s titular.
The reverse features a suspension loop for hanging.
Period: Third Intermediate - Late Period
Provenance: Ex Charles Ede Gallery, Mayfair, London
Condition: Very fine. Professionally repaired.