Scaraboid inscribed with glyphs
Measurement: 1.6 x 1.1 x 1.55 cm
Material/colour: black ceramic
Technique: The back, head and clypeus have minimal detail. The longitudinal piercing has worn through into the back on top and bottom suggested extended contact with an abrasive stringing material.
Condition: The unorthodox shape of the scaraboid may have resulted from faulty firing. Abraded at the edge, a deep chip divides the back into 1/3 and 2/3. The glyphs are distinct and clear, almost as if punched into the surface.
Date: Late New Kingdom – early Third Intermediate period, c. 1182-715 BC
Provenance: Golden Chariot; original collection of Gustav Jecquier, reportedly from Sakkara.
Identification and Interpretation: Inscription is Nefer-kheper-re’ – Beautiful is the transformation of Re. This is similar to the throne name of Akhenaten, Neferkheperure, which, however, is always written with the plural strokes after the scarab. If the sun disk is taken as a determinative, the statement might be read as “Beautiful is the Dawn,” or “Beautiful is transformation.”
Workmanship: Glyphs are neat and well made, but the back is amorphous, neither a scarab nor a simple plain shape.
Function and Meaning: worn as an amulet during life