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proper right: Amulet of the goddess Taweret

Amulet of the goddess Taweret

Historical period(s)
Third Intermediate Period, ca. 1075-656 BCE
Faience (glazed composition)
6.0 x 2.0 x 2.4 cm
Credit Line
Gift of Charles Lang Freer
Freer Gallery of Art
Accession Number
Small amulets of faience, stone, ceramic, metal, or glass, were common possessions in ancient Egypt. They were most often fashioned in the form of gods and goddesses or of animals sacred to those deities. Amulets gave their owners magical protection from a wide variety of ills and evil forces, including sickness, infertility, and death in childbirth. They were often provided with loops so they could be strung and worn like a necklace. Some amulets were made to place on the body of the deceased in order to protect the soul in the hereafter.

Taweret, the hippopotamus goddess, was the goddess of women and children and, most importantly, of the moment of childbirth. With her rounded belly and pendulous breasts indicating a pregnant female, Taweret was associated most specifically with childbirth, and she was often depicted watching over the birthing bed. Taweret amulets would have been worn during life by women and children. In the tomb, they were placed on the body of the deceased as a symbol of rebirth.

To 1906-1907
Unidentified owner, Egypt, to 1906-1907 [1]

From 1906-1907 to 1919
Charles Lang Freer (1854-1919), purchased in Egypt from an unidentified owner in the winter of 1906-1907 [2]

From 1920
Freer Gallery of Art, gift of Charles Lang Freer in 1920 [3]


[1] See Original Pottery List, L. 1841, Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery Archives.

[2] See note 1.

[3] The original deed of Charles Lang Freer's gift was signed in 1906. The collection was received in 1920 upon the completion of the Freer Gallery.

On View Location
Currently not on view
Egypt, protection, Taweret, Third Intermediate Period (ca. 1075 - 656 B.C.E.)
Collection(s) Area
Ancient Egyptian Art
Web Resource(s)
Google Cultural Institute

Rights Statement
Copyright with museum

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