Egyptian Steatite Janiform Scaraboid from the Hyksos Period


A steatite Egyptian, Hyksos-period janiform scaraboid with incised decoration to both sides. One side features a stylised figure of a pharaoh, striding forward and wearing a kilt and a neme headdress. The striped head covering, whilst not a crown, was still a symbol of Pharaonic power. The male figure holds a staff in his left hand. To the reverse is a stylised floral motif within the centre, with rounded petals and four undulating uraei to each corner.

The scaraboid is pierced longitudinally for suspension.

Date: Circa 1640–1500 BC
Period: Second Intermediate Period, Hyksos Period.
Provenance: Ex major S.M., London, Collection 1970-2010.
Condition: Very fine.


SKU: AH-1047 Category: Tags: , , ,

This particular scaraboid bears resemblance to those carved by Canannite craftsmen during Egypt’s Hyksos period. The Hyksos period, during the late Middle Kingdom, was a period of foreign rule by a succession of Asiatic chieftains, hailing from the Levant. Craftsmen followed on the tradition of using scarabs as protection amulets however their style and motifs were different. Hieroglyphs were often used for their apotropaic properties, rather than specific meaning. This scaraboid is a prime example of how Egyptian motifs were adapted into the Canaanite repertoire.

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

Weight 0.57 g
Dimensions L 1.2 x W 0.8 cm