A rare Egyptian Red Jasper Hand Amulet, Old Kingdom, ca. 2730 - 2544 BCE
Object No: EJ1721
Hand carved in red jasper, the red stone, par excellence, the Egyptians linked with energy, dynamism, power, even life itself. This amulet is particularly well executed with straight, elongated fingers, defined wrist and long thumb. Hand-shaped amulets in particular were usually incorporated into necklaces and bracelets. Amulets in the shape of parts of the human body or organs are characteristic of burials of the late Old Kingdom and First Intermediate Period, although a few had greater importance than others and continued to be made until the end of dynastic history. This tiny amulet in the shape of a hand forms part of a bracelet and is particularly well executed in red jasper, the par excellence of stones. Pierced for suspension at the wrist, it undoubtedly conferred dexterity and the power of manual activity.
Dimensions: Length: 12 mm (0.47 inches)
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 between 1920-1948, # 45.930 (part).
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