- Museum number
Mould-made scarab in glazed composition scarab; rather flattened back with well-marked clypeus, curved prothorax and elytra, and humeral callosities shown as triangular winglets, but slightly skewed and marred; at side, legs quite well-modelled with undercut triangular space; underside incised with winged seated griffin to right and half a cartouche to left, containing three debased hieroglyphic signs (cross-shaped symbol between two discs); inscription separated from griffin by vertical line; longitudinally pierced; glaze dirty yellow in colour, with some tinge of green; dull cream core.
- Production date
- 600 BC-570 BC (mainly)
Length: 1.45 centimetres
Thickness: 0.70 centimetres
Width: 1 centimetres
- Curator's comments
- The faience object was analysed by proton induced X-ray emission spectrometry (PIXE) under a 3 MeV energy proton beam for characterisation of the elemental chemical composition (major, minor and trace elements), in March 2014, by the Centre de Recherche et de Restauration des Musées de France (C2RMF).
This scarab belongs to a standard group produced at the 'Scarab Factory' (on its various productions, see Webb forthcoming). It was widely distributed in the Mediterranean area, particularly in Italy and Punic sites and in south Russia (Gorton 1996, 109-111, type XXX A, subtype A1-18, see especially A17 for this specimen). The hieroglyphs in the "half cartouche", as seen in many similar examples, are often interpreted as a debased version of pharaohs' names (Gorton 1996, 93), and, in that case, Gorton suggested the inscription could stand more precisely for Wa-ib-re, the Horus name of Psamtek I or the name of Apries (Gorton 1996, 110).
For a similar motif on a scarab from Naukratis: see Oxford, Ashmolean Museum AN1896-1908-EA.925. See also Petrie 1917, pl. 54, no. 25 G.2.
Gorton, A. F. 1996, Egyptian and Egyptianizing scarabs: a typology of steatite, faience, and paste scarabs from Punic and other Mediterranean sites, Oxford.
Petrie, W. M. F. 1886, Naukratis. Part I, 1884–5 (Third Memoir of the Egypt Exploration Fund), London.
Petrie, W. M. F. 1917, Scarabs and cylinders with names, British School of Archaeology in Egypt 29, London.
Webb, V. forthcoming, 'Faience finds from Naukratis and their implications for the chronology of the site', in R. Thomas (ed.), forthcoming. Naukratis in Context I: The Nile Delta as a Landscape of Connectivity. Proceedings of the First Naukratis Project Workshop held at The British Museum 16th – 17th December 2011.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Egypt and Sudan
- BM/Big number
- Registration number