Egyptian Faience Amulet of Goddess Baubo

£ 500.00

A finely modelled Ancient Egyptian blue faience amulet of the Greco-Egyptian goddess Baubo. The female deity is portrayed nude in her usual stance, squatting, with legs a part, and her hands indicating her genitals. The amulet’s reverse appears flat and unworked. The amulet has been pierced longitudinally for suspension. Representations of this type were extremely popular across different cultures in the ancient World and became also archetypes of the later Medieval compositions known as sheela-na-gigs.

Date: Circa 305-30 BC
Period: Ptolemaic Period
Condition: Extremely fine.

SOLD

Product Code: ES-110
Categories: , Tags: ,

The Ancient Egyptians wore amulets alongside other pieces of jewellery. Amulets 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. Amulets depicting women with raised legs exposing their genitals have been classified as representations of the Greek goddess Baubo or of the queen Omphale. In Greek mythology Baubo was a deity upon childbirth, fecundity and female bonds, while Omphale received from the god Herakles power over the womb and the travails of childbirth. Due to their connection with childbirth and fecundity, both figures were also worshipped in the Egyptian World, and later across the Roman Empire, where Baubo-shaped gaming dice have been recovered. The popularity of Baubo-Omphale indicates how apprehensive the moment of childbirth and the assertion of a descendant was perceived by ancient people.

To discover more about amulets in the Ancient Egyptian world, please visit our relevant post: Amulets in Ancient Egypt.

Dimensions H 1.8 cm
Faience

Blue Faience

Region

North Africa

Reference: For a similar item, The British Museum, item 1868,0501.6.

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