The nude figure, standing facing right with his left arm raised to head and his right arm holding a cornucopia, represents Harpocrates. In Ancient Egyptian culture and mythology Harpocrates, also known as Harpa-Khruti (Horus the Child), was the son of the goddess Isis and her husband Osiris. The deity was often depicted as a small boy, with a finger held to the lips, a typical Egyptian gesture symbolising childhood and also the Ancient Egyptian hieroglyph for “child”. The deity was later adopted by the Greeks and the misinterpretation of the gesture of the finger to the lips led to the association of Harpocrates with silence, hence making him the god of silence, secrets and confidentiality in Ancient Greek mythology.
To discover more about Intaglios, please visit our relevant blog post: Intaglios: Miniature Masterpices.