About this object

Cream coloured stone amulet made in the shape of the heart-shaped hieroglyph, taking the form of a jar with lug handles, perhaps representing veins and arteries. The suspension loop at the top is not pierced. Heart-shaped amulets were believed to protect the wearer's heart from both physical and spiritual harm both in life and after death. Spell 29b in the Book of the Dead states that such amulets should ideally be carved from the red-coloured stone carnelian. In the ancient Egyptian language the word heart (ib) appears in the expression for a close friend, “one who has entered the heart” (ak-ib).

Object specifics

  • Type
    Religion
  • Culture
    New Kingdom; Third Intermediate Period; Late Period
  • Artist/Maker
    Unknown or unrecorded
  • Place made
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt
  • Date made
    1550 BC - 332 BC about
  • Materials
    Steatite
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Acquisition
    Gift of Joseph Mayer
  • Collector
    Joseph Mayer
  • Place collected
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt
  • Date collected
    19th Century
  • Measurements
    25 mm x 17 mm x 11 mm
  • Related people
    Joseph Mayer (Collector, previous owner)

Ownership

Previous owners

  • Joseph Mayer

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: Unknown or unrecorded
    Owned until: 1867
    Disposal method: Unknown or unrecorded
Object view = Humanities
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