Length: 1.500 inches
Diameter: 1.000 inches
Gift of Professor John Ruskin
Room 12b: Greece: Mycenaeans
Faience scarab bearing the name Amenhotep III
Egyptian, 1390-1352 BC
Found at Ialysos (modern Triánda), Rhodes, Aegean Sea
This seal is made in the form of a sacred scarab beetle, which was a manifestation of Khepri, an Egyptian sun-god associated with resurrection. The flat underside of this scarab is decorated with the name of the Egyptian king Amenhotep III (1390-1353 BC).
This scarab was one of the earliest finds in the Aegean that provided a fixed point in time from Egypt (that is, Amenhotep's reign) which allows us to date the Mycenaean material with which it was found. Links like this, between the Aegean and Egypt, have allowed archaeologists to establish an absolute chronology for the Aegean Bronze Age.