Amulets were very popular in ancient Egypt and were worn by the living or buried with the dead. The word “amulet” has its roots in the Arabic language and it means “to bear” or “to carry”, however, the common name for “amulet” in the dynastic period was mk-t, which means protector.
In simple words, an amulet is an object that is created for a specific purpose and can be carried on the body or worn in special places on the body like the neck or the arms. All amulets carried a specific type of magical power and were used for anything from love and protection to being implemented in the mummy’s wrappings to prepare and protect the deceased for traveling through the underworld and for protection in the afterlife.
The amulets came in hundreds of different shapes and materials and were believed to have many different powers. They were worn to protect their body and mind not only from the evil effects extorted by invisible forces, but also to gain special magical powers.
Egyptian Amulets and Their Meanings and Definition
It is still unclear why Egyptians used such an ornament over their bodies, though it seems people designed them to protect the owner from savage animals and dangerous serpents. With the passage of time, people invented and designed different types of amulets for different purposes; some of the amulets were purely for protecting the owners, while the others to preserve and protect the dead.
Under the far-reaching influence of amulets and talisman, a dead body wore a number of amulets designed specifically to perform several duties. These amulets also protected the deceased body from fungus, mildew, serpents, bacteria, decay and putrefaction. In all, the exact purpose and the use are still under doubt, as amulets existed since 4000 BC; an amulet’s origin is still a deep mystery.
There are two basic types of amulets:
- Those that carry a series of magical formulae and verses,
- Those do not carry any magical formulae or verses.
The History of Egyptian Amulets
In ancient times, priests recited prayers and verses to strengthen the amulets with supernatural powers. The earliest name found on the amulets is hekau or words of power; it was necessary to provide these words of power to the deceased or dead souls. A special section on these amulets tells us about how they made the supernatural powers come to the diseased souls whichever the place they lived in.
Egyptian amulets have a varied and colorful history; the most ancient amulets are small pieces of green-hued schist and they came with a wide variety of shapes and sizes, including animals. These amulets came for use during funeral procedures when the priests placed selected amulets over the chest of the dead bodies. Such amulets are very common in the prehistoric graves of Egypt. This establishes the undeniable fact that there was indeed a pronounced religious cult existing during that time. It is unlikely that Egyptians of the later periods, especially post 1000BC, used these amulets for religious purposes. However, from the prehistoric periods to the late Fifth Dynasty, the usage of amulets was very common.
In the later part of the 3rd millennium BC, people discarded animal-shaped amulets and replaced them with those that were regular shaped, more often rectangular in shape, with figures of animals etched over the upper surface. There are recorded pieces of evidence to suggest that Egyptians used a green colored schist amulet on the breast of the dead bodies, and this provides a vital clue that such a kind of amulet is possibly a remnant of the prehistoric period.
Egyptians also used papyrus sheets to record and write down hekaku, or supernatural words of power and magic, which is probably much older than inscribing them over the amulets. Inscriptions on the walls of the old pyramid of Unas, one of the earliest kings of Egypt (3300BC), mentions that a book with magical verses was laid along with the body of the deceased king.
The ancient history of Egypt mentions the extensive use of many types of amulets, and their usage spread well over four or five millennia before the advent of Christ. Here are some of the most interesting amulets used throughout the known history of Egypt.
Amulet of the Heart (Ieb)
In ancient Egypt, the heart meant the seat of power and life. It was also the source of both good and bad, and in many cases, it mentioned the conscience part of the mind. The heart was a too precious thing to lose, and people guarded it with a strong sense of purpose even after the death. During the mummification process, people made it a point to preserve the heart, along with the lungs in a jar or a pitcher, under the protection of Tuamutef. When the heart was removed during mummification, The Amulet of Hearts was then placed on the body.
The Book of the Dead mentions this process in an elaborate manner. In fact, this book provides us a few lines of text on how one could conduct the procedures to preserve the heart and lungs.
When the deceased uttered these words of text, it would ensure that:
- He or she would obtain the powers needed to survive in the afterworld,
- He would also gain mastery over his heart and mind,
- Ultimately, the soul would also acquire the ultimate power to travel, wherever they wanted to, and do whatever they wished!
The Book of Dead states the following:
May my heart be with me in the House of Hearts! May my breast be with me in the House of Hearts! May my heart be with me, and may it rest there, or I shall not eat of the cakes of Osiris on the eastern side of the Lake of Flowers, neither shall I have a boat wherein to go down the Nile, nor another wherein to go up, nor shall I be able to sail down the Nile with thee. May my mouth [be given] to me that I may speak therewith, and my two legs to walk therewith, and my two hands and arms to overthrow my foe. May the doors of heaven be opened unto me; may Seb, the prince of the gods, open wide his two jaws unto me; may he open my two eyes which are blindfolded; may he cause me to stretch apart my two legs which are bound together; and may Anpu (Anubis) make my thighs to be firm so that I may stand upon them. May the goddess Sekhet make me to rise so that I may ascend into heaven, and may that which I command in the House of the Ka of Ptah be done. I shall understand with my heart, I shall gain the mastery over my heart, I shall gain the mastery over my two hands, I shall gain the mastery over my legs, I shall have the power to do whatsoever my ka (i.e., double) pleaseth. My soul shall not be fettered to my body at the gates of the underworld, but I shall enter in and come forth in peace.
This text also mentions the presence of two other gods, Ptah and Sekhet. Most probably, there are indications that the noble priests of Memphis created this text. The Papyrus of Nekhtu-Amen also mentions amulets created out of precious stones like Lapis Lazuli that contained many good qualities of amulets. Historical evidence also mentions these priests writing the LXIVth Chapter of the Book of the Dead, by using the fine crystals of Lapis Lazuli (most probably during the reins of Hesep-ti, king of Egypt about B.C. 4300).
Early Egyptians believed that monsters could snatch and steal their heart and lungs, which made them extremely cautious about the sanctity of their hearts. To ensure the safety of the heart, priests also composed almost seven chapters (Nos. XXVII., XXVIII, XXIX, XXIXA, XXX, XXXA, and XXXB) to enable people to save and protect their hearts. The XXVIIth Chapter deals with a heart amulet made of a white, semi-transparent stone, and it reads detailed inscriptions magical chanting to protect one’s heart.
One more chapter, XXIXB, deals with the heart amulet created out of a material called Carnelian, and this amulet also provides magical verses that provided protection to the heart elements. In all incidences, god Osiris and Re were the chief protectors of the heart and lungs. Another Chapter XXXB connected with Herutâtâf, the son of Khufu (Cheops), a man well known for his great intellect and wisdom, is also a great source for magic. Here, the magical words recited over a hard-faced, green stoned scarab or amulet ensured safety for the heart and other important constituents of the body.
The god Osiris had a profound influence over these procedures, and during the ceremony, he made sure that he would be in the Judgment Hall. During the procedure, he also oversaw the weighing of the heart in a balance against the purported symbolism of truth and right. The Amulet of the Heart had a significant and decisive role in the funeral procedures for the dead and deceased Egyptians.
Amulet of the Scarab (Kheper)
A Scarab is a unique insect that influenced the entire Egyptian civilization for many thousands of years. In fact, the basic idea of using a scarab as an instrument of amulet goes as far back as the time of the building of the Pyramids in the early Egyptian times. It was also true that a scarab always represented many sets of beliefs that were older, even those early periods of ancient Egypt.
To the ancient Egyptians, the Scarab was one of the most potent of all amulets and symbolized the sun, protection, transformation, and resurrection.
It is a widespread belief that the physical heart and lungs are essential for an afterlife, and to protect these vital organs from theft and robbery, Egyptians employed magical and supernatural powers of the heart amulet. Egyptians also believed that the importance of the body with respect to its perceived source of life and its transition to a new life of the afterworld. As a result, ancient Egyptians believed in the sanctity of the body of the dead.
One particular sect of ancient priests believed that the amulets of hearts were, after all, a stone heart that might not be safe enough to provide security to the heart. Thus, they believed that scarab or a beetle possessed remarkable prowess and magical powers to provide enough level of security. They also believed that an amulet made out of a scarab, with proper words of power written on it, might ensure maximum safety to the dead souls. It will also provide a brand new life and energy to them when they enter the harsh after-life. In addition, a scarab is a typical symbol of god Khepera that invisible power, which propelled the sun across the deep sky.
The variety of beetle used for copying amulets was the dung feeding and tropical, Lamellicorns, which have a streak of dark blue color on their body and, in some extreme cases, a wide variety of other colors. Anatomically speaking, these beetles have the extraordinary ability to a distinctive walking style. In addition, they also have a different set of anatomical features that do not exist in other beetles.
Mythological and religious connotations imply that such beetles had their own special characters that made them revered during the early and middle Egyptian periods. All scarabs of Egypt used to fly during the hottest parts of the day, and when they flew, it was easy to see their full body parts. In fact, Egyptians identified this phase in the development of a scarab’s life cycle with that of the sun and his solar phases.
Early Egyptians also believed that scarabs represented and symbolized the germs of life, while the ball of scarab eggs signified the appearance of the sun itself. God Khepera made the sun to roll across the sky, and this act of rolling was synonymous with the rolling actions of the scarab. Thus, the name kheper means “the one who rolls over again and again”. The god Khepera also symbolized inert but living physical matter, and thus he was a god of resurrection as well!
On the other hand, Egyptians believed that the dead human body contained germs of life, which they invoked by reciting special prayers on the day of the funeral. In this aspect, the ball of eggs and the idea of a dead body are almost similar. As the scarab provided potential life and energy to the eggs, Egyptians believed it was the symbol of the god Khepera, who also provided life to the deceased body with words of power.
Since time immemorial, scarabs represented life and freshness in both Sudan and Egypt (just check out those religious practices among nomadic people of Egypt and Sudan who still consume dried extracts of scarabs to enhance their generation!). A brief magical procedure that was in vogue was:
- Cutting off the heads and wings of a large scarab,
- Boiling the scarab in hot water and later in oil,
- Warming the boiled head and wings and steep them in the oil of a serpent,
- Consumption of the resulting mixture to drive away evil spirits and sorcery
Right now, there are hundreds of thousands of scarab amulets available in the nooks and corners of modern-day Egypt. Scarab amulets are available in several varieties and forms like:
- green basalt,
- green granite,
- green marble,
- blue paste,
- blue glass,
- purple, blue and green glazed porcelain
In each of these scarabs, one can find words of power etched neatly on the upper surface. In some rare cases, you can also find scarab amulets with a human face or a mane. In extremely rare cases, one can also find out scarabs with the boat of Râ, of the Bennu bird, “the soul of Râ,” and of the eye of Horus.
Some scarab amulets could also be:
- Green colored amulets set in gold with a pronounced band across and down the back surface where the two wings join.
- In other cases, one can also find the whole back glided, with its base covered with a shining plate of gold, on which the priests etch the words of power.
- In some extreme cases, there are scarab amulets with a heart like base signifying the close relation between the heart and scarab.
The oldest known and the most famous greenstone funeral scarab amulet is probably the one that is in the British Museum; this is from a region called Kûrna near Thebes, and it belongs to the period of the XIth dynasty, dating back to about B.C. 2600.
Once the ancient Egyptian recognized the importance of scarabs in the funerary procedures, the habit of using them as ornaments by living persons arrived as a popular fashion. As a result, hundreds of artisans started creating different varieties of scarabs for their clients. Very soon, the usage of scarabs spread across to other parts of Asia that bordered the great Mediterranean Sea.
Amulet of the Buckle – Knot of Isis (Tyet)
The Knot of Isis looks similar to and represents the girdle of Isis. It is also known as the Girdle of Isis, the Buckle of Isis, the Blood of Isis., and as the tjet or tjed.
The origin of the Knot if Isis is not known. It is often translated to mean welfare or life and symbolizes the power and strength of the Goddess Isis. It is said to possess the magical powers to protect the wearer, living or dead, from every kind of evil, including protection from sickness and negative influences.
As early as the third dynasty, this symbol was used as decoration, and it appears both with the ankh symbol as well as the djed column. Later it appears with the scepter as well. It has to be mentioned that the Knot of Isis is much older, as it already appeared as early as the Predynastic Period.
The Buckle of Isis appears on many items that are associated with funerals and burials, as well as sarcophagi and shrines.
How the Amulet of the Buckle was Prepared and Used
The procedure for placing this amulet over the deceased body was very simple; it needed a lengthy dipping in ankham flower-rich water with words from the chapter of the Buckle recited continuously chanted during the dipping process. This supernatural amulet provided the dead, guaranteed protection of the blood of Isis and her words of immense power.
Several materials like carnelian, red jasper, and red-hued glass form the base for these amulets. Costlier amulets included gold and other substances covered with gold sheen. The Knot of Isis has a close relation to the CLVIth chapter of the Book of the Dead.
It states as followed:
The blood of Isis, and the strength of Isis, and the words of power of Isis shall be mighty to act as powers to protect this great and divine being, and to guard him from him that would do unto him anything that he holdeth in abomination.
and Spell 156 states:
You possess your blood, Isis, you possess your power, Isis, you possess your magic, Isis. The amulet is a protection for this Great One, which will drive off anyone who would perform a criminal act against him.
Amulet of the Tet (Djed)
The Amulet of the Tet symbolizes the resurrection of Osiris and is a symbol of rebirth, new life, and hope. It is the oldest symbol of Osiris and considered the counterpart of the ankh symbol. The word tet means preservation, balance, firmness, and stability.
It has four crossbars that indicate four important cardinal points and the four branches of the World-tree. It was a revered object in entire Egypt and symbolized the topmost religious priority for the Egyptians. It also signified the establishment of Djed at a place called Busiris; this action formed the reconstituting of the mortal remains of Osiris.
The Amulet of the Tet represents a tree that grew by the casket of Osiris and also represents the place where the goddess Isis hid the dead corpse of her husband. It was also used as a pillar in a Byblos palace.
The ancient Egyptians used the amulet to help in the transformation of human flesh into the spiritual form assumed by the deceased in eternity.
The Tet (djed) symbol is also known as the Backbone of the Egyptian god Osiris and the Emblem of the Mystery. The earliest source of the Djed is the ancient Delta town of Djedu. They called their town the birthplace of Osiris. Per Usir (Busiris) means “The Emergence of Osiris”.
The Amulet of the Tet used as an amulet
This significant amulet relates to the CLVth Chapter of the Book of the Dead. It reads as followed:
Rise up thou, O Osiris! Thou hast thy backbone, O Still-Heart! Thou hast the fastenings of thy neck and back, O Still-Heart! Place thou thyself upon thy base, I put water beneath thee, and I bring unto thee a Tet of gold that thou mayest rejoice therein.
Just like the Amulet of the Buckle, this amulet needed to be immersed in ankhem rich water and was then laid upon the neck of the deceased or where the mummy’s spine would rest. This solemn process provided an immense power to reconstitute the body, to become a well-formed Khu (i.e., spirit) on the underworld. It should also bring the resurrection of the deceased, allowing their life to be eternal und their fertility to be undiminished.
Amulet of the Pillow
This rare amulet is in the shape of a pillow or head-rest and placed under the neck of the mummy within the coffin. Its main purpose is to lift and protect the sensitive head of the deceased in the Other World and to prevent the decapitation of their heads.
The Amulet of the Pillow was worn by the dead as a protective talisman and also to produce sleep and peace.
It is made of hematite, a dark reddish-black stone, and occasionally hosts the text from the CLXVIth Chapter and Spell 167 of the Book of the Dead:
Thou art lifted up, O sick one that liest prostrate. They lift up thy head to the horizon, thou art raised up, and dost triumph by reason of what hath been done for thee. Ptah hath overthrown thine enemies, which was ordered to be done for thee. Thou art Horus, the son of Hathor, . . . who givest back the head after the slaughter. Thy head shall not be carried away from thee after [the slaughter], thy head shall never, never be carried away from thee.
The Amulet of the Vulture
The Amulet of the Vulture (Ner-t) possesses the extreme powers of Isis, and it acts as the divine mother that provides protection for the dead and deceased.
On the day of the funeral, the Amulet of Vulture was tied around the neck to give the dead the strength and fierceness that Isis possessed when she wandered the papyrus swamplands of the Delta in the form of a vulture.
It contains gold as the raw material and is in the form of a vulture flying in the high air, with an outstretched pair of wings. In each of the claws, it holds a tau cross with a circle at the apex, a unique symbol of life. Priests used to place this amulet over the neck of the deceased, and it relates closely to the CLVIIth Chapter of the Book of the Dead:
Isis cometh and hovereth over the city, and she goeth about seeking the secret habitations of Horus as he emergeth from his papyrus swamps, and she raiseth up his shoulder which is in evil case. He is made one of the company in the divine boat, and the sovereignty of the whole world is decreed for him. He hath warred mightily, and he maketh his deeds to be remembered; he hath made the fear of him to exist and awe of him to have its being. His mother the mighty lady, protecteth him, and she hath transferred her power unto him.
Amulet of Collar of Gold (Usekh-t)
The Amulet of the Collar of Gold is also called The Collar of Pectoral (Usekh-t). It was tied to the neck of the deceased and provided an immense strength and power to free oneself from the surrounding swathing. It also provided freedom from all fetterings about the neck.
A priest conducts a ritual by placing the CLVIIIth Chapter of the Book of the Dead over the neck of the dead on the day of the funeral.
Being very rare, this special amulet found its bearing in the period of the XXVIth dynasty, about B.C. 550.
The text reads:
O my father, my brother, my mother Isis, I am unswathed, and I see. I am one of those who are unswathed and who see the god Seb.
Amulet of the Papyrus Scepter (Uadj)
The Amulet of the Papyrus Scepter gave the dead endurance, renewed energy, youth, vitality and vigor, and all the qualities of the growing papyrus plant to survive the ordeals of the afterlife.
Materials like mother-of-emerald, light green, or blue porcelain formed the base of this amulet. It was worn as a pendant or tied around the neck of the deceased and often inscribed with the text of the CLIXth Chapter of the Book of the Dead.
As a gift of Thoth, it was supposed to protect the limbs and confer eternal youth on the dead.
It is in sound state, and I am in sound state; it is not injured, and I am not injured; it is not worn away, and I am not worn away.
When the priests started reading the text, the amulet was placed over the neck on a funeral day.
After the 27th dynasty, the amulet began to represent the powers of the Goddess Isis, who derived her power from her father, the husband of Renenutet, the goddess of nourishment, and abundant harvest.
Amulet of the Soul
The Amulet of the Soul was used to enable the soul to unite with the mummified body. And for the soul to remain with the body of the deceased.
It acted as a medium between the body and the spirit (khi)
The Amulet of the Soul is created of gold that is inlaid with precious stones in the form of a human-headed hawk wearing a beard.
Once the words of the LXXXIXth Chapter of the Book of the Dead had been recited over it, it was placed over the breast of the dead.
Hail, thou god Anniu! Hail, thou god Pehrer, who dwellest in thy hall! Grant thou that my soul may come unto me from wheresoever it may be. If it would tarry, then let my soul be brought unto me from wheresoever it may be. . . . Let me have possession of my soul and of my spirit, and let me be true of voice with them wheresoever they may be. . . . Hail, ye gods, who tow along the boat of the lord of millions of years, who bring it above the underworld, and who make it to travel over Nut, who make souls to enter into their spiritual bodies, . . . grant that the soul of the Osiris may come forth before the gods, and that it may be true of voice with you in the east of the sky, and follow unto the place where it was yesterday, and enjoy twofold peace in Amentet. May it look upon its natural body, may it rest upon its spiritual body, and may its body neither perish nor suffer corruption for ever!
Amulet of the Ladder
The Amulet of the Ladder (maq-t) was believed to provide the deceased a safe passage from the earth to the floor of heaven, and it symbolizes the divine help of reaching the heavenly world of the afterlife.
Many ancient tombs from the early and middle civilizations reveal plenty of small objects of wood and other similar materials. However, their significance or usage is still not clear. Nevertheless, the wall art and inscriptions found in the tombs of Unas, Teta, Pepi, and other early kings, reveal that Egyptians believed the floor of the heaven has a large number of iron plates that are rectangular. The four stable corners of this platform rested upon four pillars that made the cardinal points of heaven. Legends inform us that gods, the blessed dead people resided over this plate, and it was the ultimate duty of every Egyptian to reach this point soon after the death.
However, on certain strategic points, the edge of the plate was very close to the steep tops of hills that a dead soul might easily climb up and reach the heavens. However, other places were too far from the edges of the mountains that eventually made the travel very difficult for the dead. Now, they needed help from someone, so that climbing became easier. There is a stern belief that even Osiris experienced difficulty in then travel and he had to seek help from his father Ra to climb up the steep gradient.
Ra provided a sturdy ladder to his son Osiris so that he could climb up the ladder very easily. Horus and Seth stood guard on one side of the ladder, while Osiris himself monitored the other side. The importance of the ladder is in considerable detail in the Theban Recension of the Book of the Dead. Chapter CXLIX of the book has much chanting that helped the amulet of the ladder placed near the casket. However, in the later period, priests started using a painted ladder on the papyri with inscribed texts from the Book of the Dead and both buried together.
Amulet of Two Fingers
The Amulet of the Two Fingers (dje-baui) represents two fingers, the index, and medius. After the mummy’s internal organs were removed, the Amulet of the Two Fingers was placed close to the incisions just before the embalming. It is believed that the amulet was either used to reaffirm the embalming process or to hold the incisions sealed to prevent evil forces from entering the body.
In some cases, the Amulet of the Two fingers was placed loosely in the coffin or among the wrapping of the mummy to symbolize the two fingers of god Horus that helped his father Osiris up the steep ladder all the way up to the heavens. It was believed that the two fingers were a symbol of strength and power. The Pyramid Texts of Pepi state: “two fingers of the Lord of de Ladder”, referring to Horus, who helped Osiris to reach the sky.
They were made of obsidian and hematite, or other dark hard stones. Hard material was used because it is symbolic of endurance, while the black color is associated with the Underworld. This ensured that the magical powers lasted for eternity.
Amulet of the Eye of Horus
The Amulet of the Eye of Horus (Utchat/Udjat/Wadjet) was one of the most common and popular amulets in ancient Egypt. The word Udjat/Wadjet literally means “Eye”.
The tremendous amount of Udjats/Wadjets, which have been found in the thumbs, show that it was of utmost importance to the ancient Egyptians.
The Amulet of the Eye of Horus is close to the CLXVIIth Chapter of the Book of the Dead.
To make the best quality amulet, one needed to make it of Lapis-Lazuli, plate it with rich gold, and later offer it to the summer solstice. On the other hand, another needed to be from the jasper class and needs blessings with the specified chapter for placing over any part of the deceased body.
There are two types of Udjats/Wadjets:
- One facing the left direction,
- While the other facing the right
These two, in conjunction, the twin Eye of Hours, represent the eye of the sun and the eye of the moon.
In ancient scriptures, one of these eyes was white, while the other was black in color. Some historians argue that one eye represents the Sun, while the other signifies the moon or god Ra and Osiris in mythological terms.
The Amulet of the Eye of Horus was made out of several materials like gold, silver, granite, copper, hæmatite, carnelian, crystals, lapis-lazuli, porcelain, wood, and many kinds of semi-precious stones.
When the Utchat/Wadjet was worn as an amulet, it was intended for the following benefits:
- Excellent health
- Riches and name
- Sound mind
- Physical comfort
The Ankh is one of the oldest amuletic signs used by the dynastic Egyptians. Its origin and purported usage is still a profound mystery; nevertheless, it signifies and symbolizes “everlasting life”, “life”, “living” and also “life which cannot die”.
It was worn by the living and the dead and was often combined with the was-scepter and the djed.
In Egyptian myth, it rises from the Tet, and its arms support the sun. It was created from many different types of materials, such as wood, metal, different stones, and wax.
Every god and goddess possessed the Ankh Amulet, and the paintings on the tomb walls show the gods offering “eternal life” to the king.
Amulet of Nefer
The Amulet of Nefer signifies good luck, youth, extreme happiness, joy, strength, and good tidings.
The word nefer means good, beautiful, and represents a musical instrument, the lute.
As an amulet for the dead, it was used to extend good wishes for happiness in the afterlife.
It was also common practice to drink water from a nefer shaped bottle or vase to attract beauty, happiness, good fortune, and joy into their lives.
It was made of materials like carnelian, red stone, and red porcelain and was popular as pendants and necklaces.
Amulet of the Serpent’s Head
The Amulet of the Serpent’s head provided protection against the bite of the cobra and other venomous snakes and was worn by the living as well as the dead. It chased away poisonous snakes from biting the dead in the dark and ugly underworld! The amulet was made of red stone, red jasper, red paste, and carnelian.
The great power of the goddess Isis came in to play while placing this amulet in the tomb. Isis’ power could chase away bad and poisonous snakes from the tomb.
The power to vanquish the snakes comes from Chapter XXXIVth Chapter of the Book of the Dead that contains the text necessary for invoking the magical powers.
The text reads:
O Serpent! I am the flame which shineth upon the Opener of hundreds of thousands of years, and the standard of the god Tenpu
or as others say
…the standard of young plants and flowers. Depart ye from me, for I am the divine Lynx
Amulet of the Menat
The Amulet of the Menat symbolizes joy, health, and happiness. It was always worn by Ptah, the creator god, at the back of his neck, and it is sometimes also used as a symbol of the goddess Hathor.
It was used in ancient Egypt from the period of the Sixth Dynasty and has always been a favored amulet of the gods, kings, priests, and priestesses.
It is visible in their hands, but it could be on their neck and hands as well!
It was made out of stone, bronze, porcelain, and other materials. When placed on the dead body during the funeral ceremonies, it was intended to bring to it the power of life and reproduction.
The Amulet of the Menat represents:
- Joy and happiness
- Health and a sound mind
- Magical properties
Amulet of Sam
The Amulet of the Sam (or Sma) is believed that it symbolizes an internal organ of the deceased.
It was found buried in the swathing of mummies or inside of the body to give the deceased the power to breathe.
The primary meaning of this very ancient amulet resided in “union” and animal pleasure and refers to pleasure in the afterlife.
It was most often made out of or craved in Lapis lazuli and other hard substances, such as dark basalt or other dark stones.
Amulet of Shen
The Amulet of the Shen symbolizes the sun’s orbit and the sun bringing “eternity”, as well as the all-encircling power of the sun god.
As an amulet for eternity, it was placed on the body of the deceased with the intention of providing it with a life that endures as long as the sun took revolutions in orbit in the high heavens.
The Amulet of the Shen was made out of carnelian or Lapis lazuli.
When used as a symbol, it was often painted and craved into coffins and walls.
Amulet of Steps
The amulet of the Steps (Khet) is associated with resurrection and symbolizes:
- A lift to the high heavens
- The throne of Osiris
As per a legend, god Shu, the god of wind and air, wished to raise the goddess Nut, the goddess of the sky from the vice-like embrace of god Seb, he discovered that he was not tall enough to lift her. To make this possible, he used the steps to reach the top.
The Amulet of the Steps is usually made of green, blue, or white glazed faience or porcelain.
Amulet of the Frog
This meaningful amulet hints at burgeoning life and resurrection.
The great frog-headed goddess Heqt was the wife of Khnum, and she signified the great qualities of rebirth and resurrection.
When placed over the dead body of the deceased, the soul will receive the extraordinary powers of resurrection in the next incarnation.
The frog is the symbolic animal of the upper part of Egypt, and this animal represents the resurrection by telling people, “I am the resurrection”.
Many tombs and coffins contain these amulets, while the others are in the different types of crowns of Egypt.
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