Egyptian Glazed Steatite Scrab Dedicated to Amun

£ 295.00

An ancient Egyptian, steatite scarab with a turquoise glaze, with hieroglyphs to the reverse. The obverse features beautifully moulded anatomical features. The scarab has a knotched clypeus, detailed head with eyes, smooth folded legs, and elytra detailed by a single line. The reverse is inscribed with five clear hieroglyphs, formulating a dedication to the god Amun. To the left is a large feather, which is translated as ‘i/a’. To the right are two more signs; the familiar checkerboard / senet board sign, which transliterates as ‘mn’. Together these two signs form the name of the god Amun. Beneath the senet board is a stylised ‘tit’ sign, described as the markings seen on the wedjat or Eye of Horus. This hieroglyph translates as ‘image’.  Thus, all together the hieroglyphs thereby read, ‘Image of Amun’. The scarab is pierced for suspension.

Date: Circa 664-332 BC
Period: Late Period
Provenance: Ex North London, UK, gentleman, 1990s.
Condition: Excellent condition. The scarab is wholly intact. There is some glaze discolouration consistant with age.


SKU: MJ-08 Category: Tags: ,

Scarabs are amongst the most popular and most numerous of all Ancient Egyptian artefacts and were often associated with funerary contexts. The Ancient Egyptians believed that the Scarabaeus Beetle had the ability to spontaneously regenerate itself from cow dung. Consequently, the scarab came to be associated with the cyclical nature of the natural life cycle.

The Egyptian god, Amun-Ra, was a highly important deity in the Egyptian pantheon. Originally, he was worshipped as two gods, the creator of the universe, Amun, and the sun-god, Ra. He gained national importance after the defeat of the Hyksos at Thebes in the 16th century and it is from this date we see a combination of the two gods. As his position grew, Amun-Ra’s worship was almost monotheistic in nature, with the other gods considered manifestations of him. So great was his influence that he was identified with the Greek god Zeus from the Ptolemaic period, to form Zeus Ammon. Alexander the Great claimed divine descent as the son of Amun.

To find out more about Ancient Egyptian amulets please see our relevant blog post: Egyptian Amulets and their Meanings.

Weight 1.4 g
Dimensions L 1.35 x W 0.90 x H 0.70 cm
Egyptian Mythology




Reference: For similar hieroglyph formation: Liverpool World Museum, UK, item 49.47.443

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