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Winged Scarab

Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art

Nets made of faience beadwork became a fashionable feature of mummy wrappings in the Late Period. Faience amulets formed part of the beadwork pattern and served to protect the mummy through their magical properties. This scarab is one of the finer examples of such amulets. It served as a substitute heart that would ensure continued existence in the hereafter.

CULTURE Egyptian
MEDIUM Faience
  • Place Made: Egypt
  • DATES ca. 712-342 B.C.E.
    DYNASTY second half of Dynasty 25 to Dynasty 30
    PERIOD Third Intermediate Period to Late Period
    DIMENSIONS 49.28a (Scarab): 7/8 × 1 5/8 × 2 1/2 in. (2.2 × 4.2 × 6.4 cm) 49.28b (Wing): 3/16 × 1 3/8 × 3 13/16 in. (0.5 × 3.5 × 9.7 cm) 49.28c (Wing): 3/16 × 1 5/16 × 3 13/16 in. (0.5 × 3.3 × 9.7 cm)
    MUSEUM LOCATION This item is not on view
    CREDIT LINE Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
    CATALOGUE DESCRIPTION Light blue faience scarab (A) with separate wings (B&C). Base of scarab uninscribed and pierced seven times for attachment, wings of body grooved, forepart of body outlined in purple glaze (mostly lost), body and legs in very high relief. Each wing pierced three times. Details of wings inlaid in dark purple glaze on upper surface. Under surface of wing C has unfinished incised wing design. Condition: Intact. Purple glaze inlay considerably deteriorated. Scattered specks of gold over surface of wings.
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