Bes was known as a household deity primarily. Depicted as a ferocious dwarf he was the protector of women and children. His fierce nature lent itself well to protection and Bes was also regarded the protector of huntsmen and the god of war. He gained popularity in the New Kingdom and was worshiped extensively, even into the Roman period. Archaeological evidence, found at Bawiti of a temple dedicated to Bes, comes from the Hellenistic period, with further evidence to show continued use into the Roman period.
Exceptional Large Egyptian Faience Amulet of Bes
A large Egyptian amulet of the dwarf-god Bes made from brilliant turquoise faience. He is depicted, as is typical, with a lion’s mane surrounding his face and protruding ears, with a feathered headdress upon his head. He appears squatting, knees angularly bent and his hands rest lightly at his waist. The reverse has also been styled, with a broad suspension loop to the back of the head. The characteristic lion’s mane and long tail can also be seen, with additional decoration incised as linear patterns.
Period: Third Intermediate Period
Provenance: Property of a South West London gentleman; acquired by his father in the 1970s; by descent 1986.
Condition: Very fine. Small chip to top right of the headress.