An Egyptian blue faience Mourning Isis plaque, Late Period, ca. 664 - 332 BCE
Object No: EA1812
A trapezoidal shaped faience amulet in the form of a plaque with the raised relief image of the goddess Isis. The goddess kneels upon a low base and holds her right hand in front of her face in a gesture of mourning. She wears a long sheath gown and a tripartite wig. Her characteristic headdress is actually a hieroglyphic writing of her name: the sign for a throne. Numerous funerary amulets were usually placed among the many layers of linen strips used to wrap mummies. Specific amulets, along with their required position on the body, are listed in funerary texts such as "The Book of the Dead." Amulets were sometimes sewn directly onto the wrappings or could be incorporated into a bead net shroud covering the mummy. This amulet has been modeled with a flat underside and is pierced for attachment.
For a related example see: Jewelry - Ancient to Modern. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1979-1980. Objects of Adornment: Five Thousand Years of Jewelry from the Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1984-1987.
Jewelry from the Walters Art Gallery and the Zucker Family Collection. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1987.
Dimensions: Length: 1 5/8 inches (4.1 cm)
Condition: Intact and in excellent condition overall.
Provenance: John J. Slocum Collection. Mr. Slocum (1914-1997) collected most of his antiquities while serving as US cultural attache to Egypt in the 1960s. He later served as Assistant to the Director of The Smithsonian, was appointed by President Reagan to the Presidential Cultural Property Advisory Committee, and was a Trustee Emeritus of the Archaeological Institute of America. He was a well-respected scholar/collector, whose medieval crusader coins were sold in a single-owner sale at Sotheby's, London in 1997.
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