Amulet of Khnum or Harsaphes (Heryshef)

Nubian
Napatan Period, reign of Piankhy (Piye)
743–712 B.C.


Findspot: Nubia(Sudan), El-Kurru, Ku 53

Dimensions

Height: 4.2 cm (1 5/8 in.)

Accession Number

24.580

Medium or Technique

Faience

Not On View

Collections

Jewelry, The Ancient World

Classifications

Amulets

This rather schematically rendered amulet of pale blue glazed faience depicts a ram-headed male deity standing and walking forward. Egypt, and later Nubia, had multiple ram gods and it is often difficult to identify which one is intended. This god may therefoe be Khnum, the patron deity of Elephantine (modern Aswan) or Harsaphes, the patron of Heracleopolis. In either case, amulets of this type were placed in burials to assist the rebirth of the deceased in the afterlife. There is a hole at the back for suspension.

Provenance

From el-Kurru, Ku. 53 (tomb of Queen Tabiry). 1919: excavated by the Harvard University–Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition; assigned to the MFA in the division of finds by the government of Sudan.

(Accession date: January 1, 1924)

Credit Line

Harvard University—Boston Museum of Fine Arts Expedition