An Egyptian Gold and Jasper Ring Bezel, late 18th Dynasty, ca. 1479 - 1295 BCE
EJ2032Regular price $15,000 USD
The Egyptian name for red jasper is khenmet, to delight, linking the positive aspects of red with connotations of energy, dynamism, power, and even life itself. For the Egyptians, it was the red stone par excellence, and this cowrie shaped ring bezel of exceptional red jasper, mounted in high karat gold, is indeed a delight. The stone is softly polished to a fine sheen, the setting constructed from a strip of gold foil wrapped around the sides of the stone and folded over the edges of the bezel's base so the underside could be seen. Soldered at both ends of the terminals are ring discs of gold foil, and originally a gold wire was fed through the bezel, creating a shank for wearing and allowing the bezel to swivel. Here, a modern 18k gold shank has been constructed in keeping with ancient design.
cf: Bulsink, M., Bomhof, P. J., & Kemp, A. . (2015). Egyptian gold jewellery: With a catalogue of the collection of gold objects in the Egyptian Department of the National Museum of Antiquities in Leiden, cat. 127, 128 p. 172
Andrews, C. (1996). Ancient Egyptian Jewellery. London: Published for the Trustees of the British Museum by British Museum Press. p. 163-165.
Condition: The jasper inlay and original gold bezel are intact, there is a small amount of tearing to the sheet gold but overall it is in very good condition for an object of this type and age. The 18K gold shank is modern, of typical ancient design, and in excellent condition. A modern 18K gold thread with rounded knob terminals attaches the shank to the bezel. Overall, the ring presents particularly well and can be adjusted for wearing if required.
Dimensions: US ring size 8.5 (UK: R, Germany: 18 1/2)
Bezel Provenance: J. Bowman private collection, Boston, MA., acquired in Europe between 1968 - 1972, thereafter private NYC collection.
An Egyptian Amethyst Hippopotamus Head Amulet, Middle Kingdom, ca. 2017 - 1730 BCE
EA2035Regular price $7,500 USD
Masterfully carved from bright amethyst, the hippopotamus head featuring a large snout, incised mouth, bulging eyes, and protruding ears at the back of the head, characteristically flat-backed and pierced through the side for attachment.
Hippopotamus amulets were worn to protect their wearers from the notoriously bad-tempered animals. Common inhabitants of the Nile, hippos were aggressive and very large, posing serious danger for those on the river. While protection was imperative, the hippopotamus was also linked with regeneration; it lived in the renewing waters of the Nile and was believed to roar noisily at dawn and dusk, thus linking itself with the sun's passage and the symbolism of death and rebirth.
Ref: Carol Andrews, Amulets of Ancient Egypt, London: British Museum Press (1994) p. 64.
For a similar example, see: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY, accession number 10.130.2310
Dimensions: Length: 6 mm (0.24 inches)
Condition: Intact and in excellent condition overall.
Provenance: Ronald Parct collection, New York, acquired Sotheby Parke Bernet, 3/20/1968, lot #52 (part). Sold with a copy of the original invoice.
An Egyptian Faience Amulet of a Recumbent Lion, Ptolemaic Period, ca. 332 - 30 BCE
EA2118Regular price $4,500 USD
With exceptional detail, a very fine pale turquoise glazed faience amulet in the form of a recumbent lion, on an integrated base, the front paws outstretched, the tail curling around the right haunch, a loop for attachment at the top.
Throughout Egyptian history, the lion played an important role in religious beliefs and was represented in Egyptian art since the earliest periods. As the lion was regarded as the mightily changing aspect of the sun, the funerary bier was quite often in the guise of a lion bed; a place of resting and rejuvenation for the returning sun. The lion is also depicted on the astronomical ceiling of the tomb of Seti 1, as a guardian within the place of eternity, and was one of the apotropaic gods. In Persian times, the lion was venerated as the god Mahes assimilated to Nefertem. The hoop on the spine for suspension recalls a protective spell against snakes when it is sewn on red linen. Overall, this lion amulet guaranteed its owner not only the animal's strength and courage but also its regenerative powers.
Dimensions: Height: 4 cm (1.57 inches)
Condition: Very minor chip to the left ear, very small loss to the right corner of base restored, neither of which detract, overall intact and in excellent condition.
Provenance: Ex. Charles Gillot Collection (1853 - 1903), France, thereafter a private Virginia collection, acquired in 2015.
Published: Christie's Paris, March 4-5 2008, lot 123; and Christie's London, October 7, 2010, lot 323.
An Egyptian Steatite Scarab Swivel Ring, 2IP, ca. 1759-1539 BCE
EA2073Regular price $3,950 USD
This ancient scarab was carved during a time of great unrest in Egypt's Second Intermediate Period. According to the accompanying paperwork, it was found in the Egyptian Delta, an area overrun at the time by the Hyksos invaders. Hand carved from soft steatite, the underside, carefully incised with wedjet eyes and lotus blossoms, carries messages of power and protection that perhaps reflects the political climate of the times. During this time, the scarab was also carefully set in a ring of high karat gold. As it was originally a ring, a shank of 14K gold was added in modern times in keeping with ancient design, allowing this lovely piece to be worn once more.
Condition: The scarab and bezel are intact and in very good condition overall, a modern swivel shank of 14K gold has been added so it can again be worn.
Dimensions: US ring size: 8, Scarab length: 1 inch (2.5 cm)
Provenance: Mariann Hansen, Racine, Wisconsin private collection, acquired from Blanchard's Egyptian Museum, Cairo in the 1950s. Copy of original Blanchard's documentation will be provided.
An Egyptian Glazed Steatite Cylinder Seal for King Amenemhat II, 12th Dynasty, ca. 1914-1879/76 BCE
EA2069Regular price $3,950 USD
carved from steatite, with traces of the original glaze remaining, particularly around the inscription that reads: "Nubkaure [Amenemhat II, 12th Dynasty] beloved of Sobek of Sumenu". Sumenu was the cult center of Sobek, the crocodile god of Upper Egypt, and a little south of Luxor. Cylinder seals of 12th Dynasty kings naming them and Sobek (sometimes Sobek of Sumenu, sometimes of Shedyt) are well attested.
Background: Amenemhet II, was the grandson of Amenemhet I (founder of the 12th dynasty [1938–c. 1756 BCE]). He furthered Egypt’s trade relations and internal development. While he was coregent with his father, Sesostris I, Amenemhet led a gold-mining expedition to Nubia. Later, during his own reign, more expeditions went to Nubia and Sinai for gold and copper; a new mine shaft was opened in Sinai; and a trade venture was made to Punt (probably located on the African coast south of modern Ethiopia). Statues of Amenemhet have been found at several Syrian cities, and treasure of his reign discovered in a temple at Ṭawd, a town in Upper Egypt, contains gold and silver vessels of Cretan origin as well as cylinder seals from Mesopotamia, verifying foreign contacts. Within Egypt, the provincial governors continued to play key administrative roles, and fine tombs were provided for them near their hometowns. Amenemhet’s pyramid tomb, built at Dahshūr, south of Memphis, was patterned after his father’s, with a fine limestone casing built over mud-brick retaining walls and a rubble core. Near it was found the jewelry belonging to a daughter of Amenemhet, revealing the artistic heights of his reign.
cf: Petrie, W.M.F. "Scarabs and Cylinders with Names" London, 1917 page XIII, 12.3.9-11
Condition: Much of the original glazed surface lost, but still remains in the incision, otherwise intact and in very good condition overall.
Dimensions: Height: 7/8 inches (2.2 cm)
Provenance: Private collection of M. Hansen, Wisconsin, acquired from Susette Khayat, New York, 1955-58.
A large Egyptian Faience Wedjet Eye, 26th Dynasty, ca. 664 525 BCE
EA2115Regular price $3,750 USD
This large striking amulet of bright blue faience depicts a highly detailed wedjat eye. Convex in form, careful attention has been paid to the rendering of the cosmetic lines, especially the cross-hatch extension. The back of the amulet is flat and undecorated and is pierced horizontally for attachment.
Wadjet eye amulets were among the most popular amulets of ancient Egypt. The Wadjet eye represents the healed eye of the god Horus and embodies healing power as well as regeneration and protection in general. It was thought to help the dead pass safely into the afterlife, and wedjat eye amulets were commonly placed within mummy wrappings to help the deceased. In one myth, Horus uses the power of his healed eye (repaired by the god of wisdom, Thoth) to revive his deceased father, the lord of the netherworld, Osiris, and therefore came to symbolize the general process of "making whole" and healing.
Andrews, Carol, 1994. Amulets of Ancient Egypt. Austin: University of Texas. 43-4.
Bianchi, R., 1998. “Symbols and Meanings.” In Gifts of the Nile: Ancient Egyptian Faience, edited by Florence Dunn Friedman. Cleveland: Thames and Hudson. 22-31.
Petrie, William Flinders, 1914. Amulets: Illustrated by the Egyptian Collection In University College, London. London: Constable & Company, Ltd. 32-4.
Pinch, Geraldine, 1994. Magic in Ancient Egypt. Texas: University of Texas. 104-119.
Condition: Very minor chip to proper left upper corner, otherwise excellent condition.
Dimensions: Height: 1 1/2 Inches (3.5 cm)
Provenance: Private Virginia collection, acquired Royal Athena Gallery, NYC, August 2014, JME private collection, NY, acquired Bonhams, London, Dec 1993.
A Pre-Columbian Gold Figural Pendant, Calima, Colombia, ca. 800 - 1000 CE
PJ2103Regular price $3,000 USD
A fabulous cast figural gold pendant in the form of a human head, the two hands each holding a crescentic implement. Mounted as a pendant on a 14K gold chain.
Goldworking in the Calima area of Colombia reached its apogee in the so-called Yotoco period-from the 3rd to the 10th centuries CE, a time of great population expansion whereby complex and handsome attire, dominated by a great quantity of gold - diadems, nose and ear ornaments, pectorals, bracelets, and large anklets - became popular.
Condition: One ear circlet missing, with minor losses along the top and crescent implements that do not detract, intact and in very good condition overall with much of the original casting core remaining on the rear.
Dimensions: Pendant Height: 2 inches (5 cm), Overall drop length: 12 inches (30.5 cm)
Provenance: Private Florida collection, acquired in the 1960s, thereafter private NY collection, acquired from Merrin Gallery, NYC.
A Published Egyptian Glass Heart Amulet, New Kingdom, 18th - 19th Dynasty, ca. 1350 - 1250 BCE
EA2061Regular price $2,750 USD
Core-formed the body in dark blue, with turquoise marvered threads, pierced for attachment.
Published: Christie's, London, Ancient Egyptian Glass and Faience from the 'Per-neb' Collection, Part III, 8 December 1993, lot 234.
Dimensions: Height: 1.3 cm (0.5 inches)
Condition: Body still with bright, shiny surface, some pitting to the body and loss to the rim otherwise intact and in very good condition overall.
Provenance: Private collection, Switzerland, acquired between the 1920s to early 1940s, thereafter Jacobs collection, Switzerland.
An Egyptian Superb Azure Blue Glazed Wadj Amulet, Third Intermediate Period, Dynasty 21, ca. 1069 - 945 BCE
EA2117Regular price $2,500 USD
Known in Egyptian as a wadj, this papyrus-column amulet is made from faience with a superb bright blue/green glaze, and has a pierced suspension ring at the top. Green fresh plant life represented youthfulness, new life and rebirth to the Egyptians, and the presence of this particular amulet on the body was to ensure that the deceased remained forever young, and was not injured. Both Chapters 159 and 160 concern a papyrus column of feldspar to be placed at the throat of the deceased: 'If it is sound, I am healthy; if it is undamaged, I am uninjured; if it is not struck, I am unwounded . .. my limbs shall not become dried out.'
A papyrus scepter was often carried by goddesses and the plant was the emblem of Lower Egypt and its patroness Wadjyt; hence its amuletic form not only guaranteed the wearer rejuvenation, it also linked them with the divine and in particular one of the great protective goddesses.
Condition: Professionally rejoined from two pieces, the amulet is complete and in very good condition overall. Superb bright blue glaze.
Dimensions: Height: 2 3/4 inches (6.9 cm)
Provenance: Private Virginia collection, acquired from Royal Athena Gallery, NYC, 2014, JME collection, NY, acquired Bonhams, London, Dec 1993, previously a private English collection, acquired in the 1930s.
An Egyptian Green Glazed Faience Scarab, Amarna Period, ca. 1353 - 1336 BCE
EJ1924Regular price $2,500 USD
Condition: Intact and in very condition overall.
Dimensions: US ring size 6.5. Can be resized.
Provenance: Private Boston collection acquired in the 1950s, thereafter private Virginia collection since 2009.
An Egyptian Faience Royal Name Bead for Shabaka, 25th Dynasty, ca. 705 - 690 BCE
EA2046Regular price $2,500 USD
Light brown glazed composition flat-backed lentoid name-bead: longitudinally pierced. Inscribed on the rounded surface with the prenomen cartouche of Shabaka, the full text reads: "The Son of Ra, Shabaka, living eternally”.
Neferkare Shabaka (or Shabako) was the third Kushite pharaoh of the 25th Dynasty, reigning from 705 – 690 BCE, inheriting the throne from his uncle Shebitku. Shabaka's reign is significant because he consolidated the Nubian Kingdom's control over all of Egypt from Nubia down to the Delta region. It also saw an enormous amount of building work undertaken throughout Egypt, especially at the city of Thebes, which he made the capital of his kingdom. In Karnak he erected a pink granite statue of himself wearing the twin crowns of Egypt. Shabaka succeeded in preserving Egypt's independence from outside foreign powers—especially the Neo-Assyrian Empire of Sargon II. The most famous relic from Shabaka's reign is the Shabaka Stone which records several Old Kingdom documents that the king ordered preserved.
Shabaka name beads were sold at the Cairo museum in 1948. In old inventory at the Krakow, Poland records a purchase of 19 plaques, three being name beads for Shabaka, at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, Sales No. 226, Unit Price: 5 Pt. (sic). The list also states the entire batch of items came from discoveries in the Holy Lake of Karnak (Sliwa).
for related examples see:
Hall H.R., "CATALOGUE", London -1913, 2494.
Matouk F.S., "CORPUS DU SCARABEE EGYPTIEN" vol. 1° Beyrouth-1971, 199, 807; 221,860.
Fraser, G., "A CATALOGUE OF THE SCARABS BELONGING TO GEORGE FRASER" , London-1900, pl.XIII, 367.
Sliwa J. "EGYPTIAN SCARABS, SCARABOIDS AND PLAQUES FROM THE CRACOW COLLECTIONS", Universitas Iagellonica, Varsavia-Cracovia-1985, pag. 12 e nota 24; nn. 25-43.
Nfa , classical auctions Inc. Dec.11, 1991, 296.
Dimensions: Length: 2 1/2 inches (6.4 cm)
Condition: Complete with surface wear, in good condition overall.
Provenance: Ex. J.B. collection, United Kingdom, acquired between 1970 - 2012, with old inventory labels (073, 739) on the back.
An Egyptian Gold Amulet of Zeus Serapis, Roman Imperial Period, ca. 1st Century CE
EA1709Regular price $2,500 USD
Serapis was essentially a construct of the Ptolemaic Greek rulers of Egypt, a conflation of the local gods Osiris and Apis. Although gradually subsumed into the all-pervading cult of Isis, Serapis was worshipped throughout the Roman world in the guise of Zeus, ruler of the heavens, or that of Hades, god of the Underworld. This small figure wears the Egyptian modius (grain measure) headdress and carries a cornucopia (horn of plenty) in his right hand to symbolize a plentiful food supply.
Dimensions: Length: 11/16 inch (1.75 cm)
Condition: Intact and in excellent condition overall.
Provenance: Private Swiss collection, acquired prior to 1972.
An Egyptian Faience Isis & Horus Amulet, 26th Dynasty, ca. 664-525 BCE
EA002-PBRegular price $2,250 USD
of pale green faience, the goddess seated on a throne decorated with feather pattern, holding her child Horus in her lap, and wearing a long close-fitting sheath dress, broad beaded collar, and striated tripartite wig surmounted by a crown in the form of her hieroglyphic name-sign, the "throne."
One of the most celebrated goddesses in Egyptian mythology, Isis was the daughter of Seb, the earth god, and Nut, the goddess of the heavens. She was also both the wife and the brother of Osiris. Osiris was killed and dismembered by Seth, brother of Isis. In her myths, Isis searches for, retrieves, and miraculously reassembles the body of her dead husband. She then conceives and gives birth to her son Horus. To the Egyptians, Isis was the archetypal mother goddess. She was both a faithful wife and devoted, loving, mother; and this is the way she is depicted in this small statuette. Sitting on her throne, Isis holds the infant Horus to her breast supporting his head with her left hand. Despite its size and deeply human subject, the work displays all the hallmarks of Egyptian sculpture in its monumental frontality and serene dignity. In later Christian times, the image of Isis and the infant Horus became the model for the Madonna and child.
cf. Brooklyn Museum, Egyptian Glass and Glazes, no. 78, and Geschenk des Nils, no. 300.
Dimensions: Height: 6.03 cm (2 3/8 inches)
Condition: Complete with minor cosmetic restoration, overall in very good condition.
Provenance: Private Connecticut collection, acquired Ancient World Arts, Ltd. New York in the 1970's.
An Egyptian Faience Amulet of Khnum, Late Period, ca 664 - 332 BCE
EA2063Regular price $2,200 USD
Condition: Intact and in very good condition overall
Dimensions: Height: 4.7 cm (1.85 inches)
Provenance: RDA private collection, acquired from the NY trade as part of a collection assembled in the 1970s and 1980s.
An Egyptian Ball Bead & Pendant Necklace, Middle Kingdom, ca. 2017 BCE
EJ1728Regular price $2,000 USD
The Middle Kingdom is known for some of the most beautiful jewelry ever produced in ancient Egypt and this necklace is such an example. It comprises sixty exceptional ball beads constructed from glossy black faience that alternate with vivid blue faience ring beads. The quality of the faience facilitates its positive association with luminous celestial bodies and the life-giving waters of the Nile. A hematite pendant jewel of deep black stone completes the ensemble.
Notes: Ball beads were very popular during the Middle Kingdom for, as Bourriau observed, “Like anhydrite and amethyst, they are one of the hallmarks of the period which the excavator of any Middle Kingdom site expects to find”.
Dimensions: Pendant length: 5 cm (2 inches) Necklace length: 45.5 cm (18 inches)
Condition: Re-strung, all beads are intact and in very good to excellent condition overall. Pendant with signs of wear and abrasion that does not detract.
Provenance: Art gallery, Rotterdam 1970, thereafter private Dutch collection.
An Egyptian Obsidian Two Finger Amulet, Late Period, ca 664 - 332 BCE
EA2120Regular price $1,950 USD
This realistically rendered 'two-finger' amulet shows the index and middle fingers, with the nails and joint creased clearly indicated on the front. These amulets were placed on the mummy near the incision where the internal organs were removed before embalming. This suggests the amulet was intended to reaffirm the embalming process; the fingers representing those of Anubis, the god of embalming. However, the amulet could also have been intended to 'hold' the incision sealed, to prevent malign forces from entering the body, like the plaques sometimes placed over the wound.
The use of amulets played a very large part in ancient Egyptian religion. They were generally made of various materials including stone and were believed to transfer magical properties to the wearer. The amulets from ancient Egypt can be divided by type. These different types of amulets had different purposes in protecting the deceased. They were usually placed on specific areas of the body to help achieve their intended purpose. 'Two-finger' amulets were mostly made of a dark hard stone such as basalt, obsidian (volcanic glass) such as this example, or steatite. Black was associated with the Underworld. Black stones were often used to make statues of Osiris and for sarcophagi and other objects which were to be placed inside tombs. The hardness of the stones was symbolic of endurance. Amulets were made of such materials to ensure that their magical powers lasted for all eternity. This is consistent with both interpretations of the function of the 'two-finger' amulet, as it was important that the body remained intact for all eternity, so the deceased could enjoy the Afterlife.
Of the different types of amulet placed on the mummy, the 'two-finger' amulet was a late arrival, first evident only after around 600 BC.
See: C.A.R. Andrews, Amulets of Ancient Egypt (London, The British Museum Press, 1994)
G. Pinch, Magic in Ancient Egypt (London, The British Museum Press, 1994)
Dimensions: Height: 1 1/8 inches (2.8 cm)
Condition: A loss to the back surface and some minor chipping to the back edges but overall intact and in very good condition.
Provenance: Private collection of Egyptologist Geoffrey Metz, Sweden with Metz catalog number M238 in white pigment on the back.
An Egyptian Carnelian Scarab, Late Period, ca. 664 - 525 BCE
EA1428Regular price $1,950 USD
Carved from fiery carnelian, the base inscribed with a seated king with a subject in front of him, the back uninscribed, pierced longitudinally for attachment.
Background: A scarab is an amulet of a dung beetle; an insect that held particular significance for the Egyptians, who interpreted the rolling of a ball of dung along the ground and down a hole as simulating the sun moving across the sky and setting. The scarab laid its eggs inside the dung, and after an incubation period, the offspring emerged from beneath the earth. Thus the Egyptian word for scarab was ‘Kheper’ meaning ‘to come into existence’. This creature became the embodiment of the creator god Khepri, who had a human body and the head of a dung beetle, and whom it was believed brought the sun from the underworld and moved it through the sky. One of the most popular amulets in Egypt, scarabs were produced for over 2000 years, from the end of the Old Kingdom to the Ptolemaic Period.
Dimensions: Length: 5/8 inch (1.5 cm)
Condition: Intact and in excellent condition overall.
Provenance: Acquired in Egypt by Goddard Du Bois (b. 1869 – d. 1925) and Josephine Cook Du Bois (b. 1864 – d. 1961), New York between 1900 and 1907, exhibited Metropolitan Museum of Art (1920-1948) # 45.930. Goddard & Josephine Dubois, husband & wife team, took frequent excursions throughout Egypt between 1900-07. They became experts at assessing ancient Egyptian art and would routinely take their acquisitions to Egyptologist experts of the day for added approval ( Josephine’s handwritten letters while in Egypt referring to meeting Barsanti). Josephine was particularly proud of her collection of necklaces which were loaned & exhibited at Metropolitan Museum New York to open their Egyptian Jewel Gallery in 1920.
An Egyptian Faience Uraeus Amulet, 21st Dynasty, ca. 1069 - 945 BCE
EJ2101Regular price $1,750 USD
Deep green glazed faience openwork amulet of a uraeus, the great coil of the body arching up behind to the height of the head, pierced vertically for attachment.
Background: From the earliest dynasties the upreared cobra, the uraeus, was the emblem of royalty, worn on the pharaoh's forehead to signify his kingship and divinity. As a goddess she was the eye of the sun, spitting fire at the king's enemies. The uraeus was among the amulets depicted in both the MacGregor papyrus and the Osiris complex at Dendera. Usually, more than one was placed on the mummy, sometimes at the forehead or even over the feet, but most often on the torso. The uraeus, which as an amulet was intended to provide the non-royal dead with the protection usually reserved for royalty, but which, because of the sloughing of its skin also symbolized resurrection, exists in two basic forms from the twenty-sixth dynasty onwards. In both the fully puffed-up hood is carefully detailed; in the commoner type, a great coil of the body arches up behind to the same height as the head (as is the case on our amulet) and has a suspension loop on top of it. In the other form, only the tip of the tail appears to one side of the base of the hood which lies against a back pillar pierced for suspension.
See Carol Andrews, Amulets of Ancient Egypt (London, British Museum Press, 1994), p. 34-35 and especially p. 75-76 and fig. 76b.
Condition: The amulet is intact and in excellent condition overall.
Dimensions: Amulet height: 3/4 inch (2 cm), set as a pendant 20-inch chain of 14K gold
Provenance: Private collection of Dr. Joseph Touma, VA, acquired from Christie's, April 28, 1993, Lot 67 (part).
An Egyptian Feldspar Wedjat Eye Amulet, Middle Kingdom, Dynasty 12, ca. 1991 - 1797 BCE
EA151BRegular price $1,750 USD
Finely carved, a large Eye of Horus (wedjat-eye) amulet. Feldspar was one of the six stones considered most precious by the Egyptians and was frequently listed with lapis lazuli and turquoise. Being green, it was symbolic of new life just like turquoise and was the prescribed material for papyrus amulets in accordance with Chapters 159 and 160 of the Book of the Dead
Dimensions: Length: 1 1/8 inch (2.09 cm), Width: 3/4 inch (1.9 cm)
Condition: Intact and in excellent condition overall. Pierced for attachment, a superb example!
Provenance: Private NYC collection, ex. CT collection, ex. John N. Winnie, Jr. collection, Georgia, 1980’s - 1990's.