EGYPTIAN CARNELIAN SCARAB
Measurements: 2.3 cm – length, 1.5 cm - width
Description: A beautiful carnelian scarab with simple and naturalistic carving. Underside of the scarab is plain but features the natural pattern of the stone. Carnelian was credited with magical properties and as a material for scarabs it was popular within the 18th Dynasty. The Egyptians have regarded the scarab as an embodiment of the creator god Khepri, who was self-engendered, based on the belief that scarab (dung) beetles were self-creating.
The Ancient Egyptians believed that the Scarabeus Beetle had the ability to spontaneously regenerate itself from cow dung, which these beetles roll around, forming small balls they push forward and bury themselves in. Consequently the scarab came to be associated with the spontaneous continuation of the life cycle. In addition, this movement resembled the journey the sun does everyday across the sky and therefore the Egyptian God Khepri, who represents the morning sun, became strongly associated with this insect. Scarabs are amongst the most popular and most numerous of all Ancient Egyptian artefacts and were especially employed in the funerary context.
Reference: The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Period: 18th- 19th Dynasty, 1549-1189 BC
Condition: Very fine, intact.