Egyptian Inscribed Scarab: Monkey
An ancient Egyptian glazed steatite scarab inscribed on the base with a monkey holding a vessel, with Hieroglyphs above. Pierced for suspension or attachment.
New Kingdom - Late Dynastic Period.
The ancient Egyptians believed the Scarabeus Beetle was able to spontaneously regenerate itself from cow dung, which these beetles can be observed rolling into small balls and burying. Consequently the scarab came to symbolize a spontaneous continuation of the life cycle. These finely carved amulets were worn in life and in necklaces around the mummy. Often the bases were inscribed with symbols or "words of power," intended to magically invigorate the wearer.
Formerly in an American private collection.