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Gnostic Gem with Scarab
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Gnostic Gem with Scarab


Description Conservation Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description This gem displays an "ouroborus," (a serpent which swallows its own tail to create a closed circle) encircling a scarab beetle and a long inscription, which is made up of magical words. The reverse displays a Pataikos standing on crocodiles, flanked by the goddesses Isis and Nephthys. Above the god is a head of Hathor with a winged sun-disk. Gems with magical icons and words were believed to be protective.
Conservation
Date Description Narrative
7/06/1978Treatmentcleaned
9/17/1998Examinationsurvey
Exhibitions
  • Early Christian and Byzantine Art. Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore. 1947.
Provenance Henry Walters, New York [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Sadie Jones (Mrs. Henry Walters), New York, 1931, by inheritance; Mrs. Henry Walters Sale, Joseph Brummer, New York, 1942; Walters Art Museum, 1942, by purchase.
Credit Museum purchase [formerly part of the Walters Collection], 1942

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Creator
Period
1st-3rd century (Roman)
Medium
hematite
(Precious Stones & Gems)
Accession Number
42.872
Measurements
H: 1 1/16 x W: 9/16 (2.66 x 1.38 x 0.02 cm)
Geographies
  • Egypt (Place of Origin)

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