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1442. **SOLD** Very intriguing, unusual, finely coloured praise scaraboid

 
 
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One does not all that often come across scaraboids with good glaze remaining. More than that, one does not come across this combination of signs on scarabs or scaraboids.

The incised face shows a Hes vase with Was sceptres on either side. The Hes vase signifies "praise" and the Was was a symbol of power and authority. It was however also a motif for the malign god Seth! In fact the top of the sceptre is a canine head which represents the head of Seth.

Another association is  that the was sceptre formed the hieroglyph for the fouth Nome of Upper Egypt whose capital was Thebes and known as Waset by the ancient Egyptians; this means city of dominion.

But why two Was sceptres here? For sake of balance of design?

Well, the emblem of the 19th Nome of Upper Egypt, Per-Medjed,  called Oxyrhynchus by the Greeks, was a pair of Was sceptres, but they faced the same direction, so I don't think it refers to this.

The Was was held by both Osiris and Ptah but I cannot see why they might be being referred to here. Of course the king held the Was as well so it is possible that the Was here stands in for the king.

So what does this very unusual combination of signs mean here? The two terminal motifs are designs motifs I believe and not signifying meaning.

It could be a really most unusual praise to Seth! There were cults devoted to Seth especially in Ombos where there is the Temple of Seth,  and in Sepermeru where Seth had the epithet "Powerful of forefoot"."

However I think it more likely to be either praise to Thebes or praise to the king. But one cannot know for sure.

23.5 mm.

New Kingdom.

Price: sold GBP

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