An extremely fine Egyptian gold amulet in the shape of the goddess Bastet as a cat. The deity is portrayed in her feline form, sitting on a rectangular base. Anatomical features are rendered in an extremely naturalistic manner.
The goddess Bastet was considered to be the daughter of Ra, the sun god, and was originally shown with the features of a lion up until about 1000 BC when she started being portrayed as a cat or human with a cat head. The maternal, protective and hunting characteristics of the cat are the most obvious in Bastet and she is seen as a protector of pregnant women and young children.
Amulets were popular in Ancient Egypt, and were worn by the living or buried with the dead. The common word for amulet in the dynastic period was mkt, which means protector: amulets were designed to protect their owners. Such amulets would have been worn particularly by women not only to place themselves under the patronage of Bastet, but also in the hope that the wearer might be endowed with the goddess’ fecundity.
Measurements: circa 1.8cm height, 0.5cm length
Weight: circa 0.51g
Provenance: From a French private collection, formed in the early 20th Century.
- Ancient Egyptian
- Bastet Amulet from French Collection
- Century/ Timeframe
- Circa 1550-1070 BC, New Kingdom Period
- Good Condition, See Photo