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ID number:  ECM 123
Named collection:  The Eton Myers Collection
Title / Object name:  Triad Amulet
Object type:  Amulet
Culture:  Egyptian
Date made:  26th Dynasty (664-525 BC)
Collector:  Myers, William Joseph
Materials:  Faience (blue)
Measurements:  overall: 2.80 cm x 1.62 cm x 0.68 cm (H x W x D)
Provenance:  Unknown

Amulet depicting Harpocrates (Horus-the-Child) flanked by his mother Isis and her sister Nephthys. The goddesses wear their distinctive headdresses while Harpocrates has a side-lock on the right of his head. The goddesses are wearing close fitting ankle length dresses indicated by lines above their feet. An old repair can be seen on the left leg of the goddess Isis, where the fragment has been reattached. A suspension loop is located in the upper centre on the reverse of the amulet.

Bibliography:  For further discussion of amulets, see:

Andrews, C. 1994. Amulets of Ancient Egypt. London.

Georganteli, E. And Bommas, M. (eds). 2010. Sacred and Profane: Treasures of Ancient Egypt from the Myers Collection, Eton College and University of Birmingham. London.

Petrie, W. M. F. 1914. Amulets. London

Spurr, S., N. Reeves, and S. Quirke. 1999. Egyptian Art at Eton College: Selections from the Myers Museum. Windsor and New York.

Notes:  Triad amulets (Petrie 1914: 35, type 152) depicting Harpocrates, Isis and Nephthys were produced during the Saite Period, 26th Dynasty of Ancient Egypt (Andrews 1994: 49). They typically illustrate the protective power of the two goddesses over the infant Horus prior to his accession to his father Osiris’s throne and the defeat of Seth. These amulets were placed within the mummy wrappings around the chest, stomach or thighs and bestowed these protective qualities over the deceased on the journey to the afterlife (Spurr et al. 1999: 59 [92]). The order of the goddesses on either side of Harpocrates can be reversed in different examples, as can be seen in the Eton Myers Collection. The amulets are often manufactured in blue faience, but bronze examples have been known. In rare examples the figures are depicted in profile across the plaque (Andrews 1999: 49). Suspension loops can be found on the back of the amulets or mounted on the top, and occasionally the suspension hole is simply drilled through the back of the plaque.

1 Related People

Myers, William Joseph
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