Results 1 1033
353 Previous Next

Horus-Stele
Explore Object
Creative Commons License

Horus-Stele


Description Conservation Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description The Horus-stele, or cippus, was one of the most important items associated with magic in ancient Egypt. At the center of these stone slabs was the nude figure of the child Horus, or Harpocrates, associated with the newborn sun, with the head of the god Bes above him. Horus-the-Child, the son of Isis, stands on two crocodiles and holds dangerous animals (snake, scorpion, lion, and antelopes) in his hands, demonstrating that with supernatural powers even a child can overcome dangers. Texts and magical scenes occupy most of the empty space. Larger examples of these Horus-steles were placed in temple precincts, where priests poured water over them to absorb the magical power of the spells and images. Drinking the water, it was believed, would protect against the harmful bites of dangerous creatures as well as other dangers and evils. Smaller versions were used at home, and very small ones were worn as amulets.
Conservation
Date Description Narrative
7/01/2003Treatmentcleaned
7/24/2003Treatmentcleaned
10/01/2006Examinationexamined for exhibition
Exhibitions
  • Secret Signs: Egyptian Writing. The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2003-2004.
  • Daily Magic in Ancient Egypt. The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2006-2007.
Provenance Henry Walters, Baltimore [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters

Download Image Add to Collection Creative Commons License

Creator
Period
ca. 380-282 BC (Late Period-Greco-Roman)
Medium
black steatite
(Sculpture)
Accession Number
22.333
Measurements
8 x 2 15/16 in. (20.3 x 7.5 cm)
Geographies
  • Egypt (Place of Origin)
Location Within Museum
Not On View

Tags


    Thumbnail: Horus-Stele
    Zoom Out Zoom In Back to Details  
    Full Size: Horus-Stele