Amulet of a djed-pillar

Late Period
664–332 B.C.

Findspot: Egypt, Tell Nabasha, Body A, Tomb 23


Overall: 3.4 x 1.9 cm (1 5/16 x 3/4 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Fine grained basalt or possibly obsidian

Not On View


Jewelry, The Ancient World



This amulet is possibly made of a fine grained basalt or obsidian. It is one of sixty beads and amulets from the wrappings of a single mummy. (Body A, Tomb 23). The amulet represents the djed-pillar. The pillar, which symbolized the spinal column of the funerary god Osiris, was the hieroglyphic symbol for stability.


From Tell Nabasha, Tomb 23, body A. 1886, excavated by William Matthew Flinders Petrie for the Egypt Exploration Fund, assigned to the EEF by the Egyptian government; presented to the MFA at EEF fifth annual general meeting; sent over June 1, 1887. (Accession date: January 1, 1887)

Credit Line

Egypt Exploration Fund by subscription