A dark green, mottled hardstone, possibly jasper, scarab amulet detailed to the reverse with hieroglyphs. Incised markings to front add detailing to the clypeus and head, whilst the thorax and elytra remain unmarked. Incised lines to the sides indicate the feet if the scarab. To the reverse the amulet has been marked with hieroglyphs in two horizontal registers. To the top of the scarab is a large falcon, depicted holding a flagellum, standing in front of two vertical strokes. The second register features two ankh signs, flanking a crude ‘sa’ (sꜣ) sign. The ankh was the symbol for life, whilst the ‘sa’ sign translated as protection. The amulet is pierced longitudinally for suspension.
Date: Circa 1550 - 1070 BC Period: New Kingdom Condition: Very fine. Beautiful vivid colour.
The hieroglyphs used here do not translate into a particular phrase or name but were chosen instead for their apotropaic meaning. The ankh sign and the ‘sa’ sign were popular symbols, used on scarabs to convey messages of protection for the afterlife and a continued re-birth. The falcon sign also calls upon the protection of Horus. The colour green was also associated with vegetation and regeneration and so was a popular colour for scarabs. Mostly we see examples in green faience, as it was cheaper to produce and inscribe on a larger scale, but other green hardstones were used. This example is most likely green jasper, with its beautiful mottled green colouring. Feldspar, serpentine and malachite were stones also used.
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