Funerary scarab

Late Period, Dynasty 25–31
760–332 B.C.


Length x width: 5.6 x 3.8 cm (2 3/16 x 1 1/2 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


Not On View


The Ancient World


Mummy trappings

This scarab of chalky-white stone (likely steatite) is in worn and battered condition with remnants of a pale green glaze. It is partly covered by brown incrustation. Incised details appear on the back, while the lower face and base are flat and undecorated. It has been pierced six times for attachment to mummy wrappings and likely also for attachment of additional components shaped as wings.

In ancient Egyptian funerary religion, the winged scarab was an image closely associated with the sun-god and a popular symbol of protection and rebirth.


By 1836: Robert Hay Collection, Linplum, Scotland; 1863: to his son, Robert James Alexander Hay; 1868-1872: Way Collection, Boston (purchased by Samuel A. Way through London dealers Rollin and Feuardent, 27 Haymarket); 1872: given to the MFA by Samuel's son, C. Granville Way. (Accession Date: June 28, 1872)

Credit Line

Hay Collection—Gift of C. Granville Way