EGYPTIAN LAPIS LAZULI AMULET
Measurements: 1.8 cm – height, 1.1 cm - width
Description: An Egyptian amulet carved in the semi-precious stone lapis lazuli, depicting a palmette. The amulet is similarly carved on both sides, with a piercing through the top loop for suspension. Lapis lazuli was considered a semi-precious stone and not found locally to the Egyptians. Its status and value derived in part from the fact that it had to be imported, most likely from Afghanistan. It was used as a material throughout ancient Egypt’s long dynastic history, including into the Amarna period.
The Egyptians wore amulets alongside other pieces of jewellery. They were decorative, but also served a practical purpose, being considered to bestow power and protection upon the wearer. Many amulets have been found inside the wrappings of mummies, as they were used to prepare the deceased for the afterlife. The precise significance of the palmette is unknown, though plant imagery and amulets were typically symbolic of new life.
Period: New Kingdom, Amarna Period, circa 1353-1336 BC.
Condition: Fine, intact.