Egyptian Turquoise Glazed Steatite Scarab with Pharaonic Figure


A vivid turquoise faience scarab decorated to the reverse. The front features a detailed head and clypeus. The elytra (wing coverings) are divided by an incised vertical line down the centre of the body, whilst a similar horizontal line marks the thorax.

The reverse features a large, prominent figure, a pharaoh wearing the blue crown of Egypt, known as a khepresh. He holds in his right hand the curved heka scepter. To his left are three distinct inscribed hieroglyphs, including the ‘kheper’ beetle sign, the ‘Ka’ sign and the circular sun disc.

Date: Circa 1550 - 1069 BC
Period: New Kingdom
Provenance: Ex private London based collection, AH, formerly in English family collections acquired from the 1920s - 1990s.
Condition: Excellent. Vivid blue colour


SKU: AH-916 Category: Tags: , ,

The hieroglyphs included on this scarab combine to form the name Kheperkare. This translates as ‘The Ka of Ra is created’. It was also the prenomen of the 12th Dynasty pharaoh, Senusret I. Ruling from 1971 BC to 1926 BC, the son of Amenemhet I, he was one of the great pharaoh’s of this Dynasty. Judging that there is no cartouche encircling the hieroglyphs, we can ascertain that rather than being the prenomen of Senusret I, it was more likely a blessing for the deceased. The portrayal of the pharaoh wearing the blue ‘khepresh’ crown was one that gained popularity during the New Kingdom. It had powerful connotations to rebirth and solar imagery. The term ‘khepresh’ also phonetically alluded to the solar deity, Khepri, who was often represented as a scarab-faced man. It was also believed that the ruler wearing the Khepresh crown was the god’s representative on Earth, a living king and the representative of Amun-Re.

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

Weight 1.02 g
Dimensions L 1.5 x W 1 cm

Egyptian Pharaohs