The Egyptians wore amulets alongside other pieces of jewellery. They were decorative, but also served a practical purpose, being considered to bestow power and protection upon the wearer. Many of the amulets have been found inside the wrappings of mummies, as they were used to prepare the deceased for the afterlife.
The heart was considered by the Egyptians to be the most important organ, not because it pumped blood around the body, but because it was the seat of intelligence and the origin of all feelings and actions. The heart became one of the most important of all amulets and was set on the torso of every mummy, deemed to protect the heart of the beholder. Furthermore, the heart acted as the store of an individual’s memory, and so at the judgment ceremony (Weighing of the Heart) in the afterlife, the heart could speak on the behalf of the deceased. As the heart accounted to Osiris for a lifetime of deeds, protection of the organ with an amulet was necessary to ensure that it could give a positive response at judgment.