Funerary scarab

Late Period, Dynasty 25–30
760–332 B.C.


Length x width: 6.3 x 4.4 cm (2 1/2 x 1 3/4 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


Not On View


The Ancient World


Mummy trappings

This faience funerary scarab carries a bright, light blue glaze. Incised details on the back define various components of the beetle’s body and head (with especially pronounced front portion, or clypeus). The base is flat and undecorated. Six holes have been drilled: two on each side, likely for attachment of separate wing components, and one at each end for stringing to mummy wrappings. the scarab was broken and has been mended.

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