Egyptian Amethyst Beaded Necklace with Scarab Amulet


A beautiful Egyptian restrung necklace, composed of round amethyst beads in various shades of purple. The colour differentiation showcases the natural beauty and versatility of the gemstone. The centre of the necklace features a scarab amulet with incised detailing to form a ridged carapace and naturalistic features. The incisions display the elytra, prothorax with the head and two eyes above, while the reverse has been left unadorned. The necklace is finished with a gold-plated modern clasp (please be aware that the clasp has not been professionally tied).

Date: Circa 2055 – 332 BC
Period: Middle Kingdom – Late Period
Provenance: Acquired 1930-1940. From an early 20th century collection, London, UK.
Condition: Fine condition. Hairline cracks to scarab amulet.

In stock

SKU: CY-175 Category: Tags: ,

The name “amethyst” comes from the Greek, ‘amethystos‘, meaning “not intoxicated” (‘ἀ- a-, “not” and μεθύσκω ‘methysko‘ / μεθύω ‘methyo’, “intoxicate”). The Egyptians seem to have held similar beliefs in the protective qualities of the beautiful stone. They believed the stone had talismanic properties against malign influences. The Egyptians would have sourced their amethyst from Nubia, which was a province of Egypt, and the stone was a firm favourite among the pharaohs.

The scarab beetle was an exceedingly popular symbol in the art of Ancient Egypt, thought to represent the sun god, Ra. Ancient Egyptians believed that the scarab beetle rolling its ball of dung across the dessert mirrored the journey of the sun across the sky from day to night. As the beetle laid its eggs within the dung, it became a symbol of rebirth and regeneration. The use of carnelian as a material also linked to the sun god, Ra, as the stone’s fiery colour was connected to the solar cult.

Weight 28.8 g
Dimensions L 47.5 cm


Semi-Precious Stones

Reference: For a similar necklace, Brooklyn Museum, New York, accession number 13.1025. For a similar scarab, The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, accession number 76.31.2642.

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