Egyptian Steatite Hyksos Period Scarab


A large Egyptian Hyksos period steatite scarab with hieroglyphs to the reverse. The front features a detailed head and clypeus. The elytra (wing coverings) are indicated by slight indentations to each side. Decorated to the reverse it has been inscribed with the figure of a man wearing toga-like clothing. Beside him are two large signs, including the scarab ‘kheper’ sign. The figure also appears to be standing on a horizontal Red Crown of Egypt sign. The amulet has been pierced longitudinally for suspension and once formed part of a swivel ring. Elements of the metal wire still remain.

Date: Circa 1650 - 1550 BC
Period: Second Intermediate Period, 15th Dynasty, Hyksos Period
Provenance: Ex private London based collection, AH, formerly in English family collections acquired from the 1920s - 1990s.
Condition: Very fine. Once formed part of a swivel ring. Elements of the metal wire still remain.


SKU: AH-920 Category: Tags: , ,

This particular scarab is typical of those designed by Canaanite craftsman during the Hyksos period. The term ‘Hyksos’ can be traced back to the Egyptian expression ‘heka khasewet’, which means, “rulers of foreign lands”. The Hyksos of the fifteenth Dynasty of Egypt, ruling during the Second Intermediate Period, were thus of non-Egyptian origin. The Hyksos Kingdom was centred in the eastern Nile Delta and Middle Egypt. It was limited in size, never extending south into Upper Egypt, and it had Memphis as its capital. The figure depicted appears to be wearing either a short kilt or a toga, representing the way Asiatic chieftains were depicted in Egyptian art.

The red crown of Egypt, known as the deshret, was the crown of Lower Egypt. This was the area controlled by the Hyksos.

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

Weight 6.06 g
Dimensions L 2.5 x W 1.7 cm



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