Home > Collections > Ancient Egyptian Art
Amulet of a goddess, perhaps Sakhmet
ca. 1075-656 B.C.E. or later

Third Intermediate Period
Possibly Saite Dynasty 26

Faience (glazed composition)
H: 10.3 W: 2.0 D: 3.2 cm
Egypt

Gift of Charles Lang Freer F1907.30

Enlarge this image | Purchase this image

This is an amulet in the form of a striding female deity whose image combines the body of a woman with the head of a lioness. She wears an ankle-length sheath gown and tripartite wig; on her head is a sun disk with uraeus, the cobra-like serpent representing the radiance of the sun god.

The amulet depicts either the goddess Sakhmet or the goddess Bastet. Sakmet, a lion-headed goddess, was a symbol of power and protection for the Egyptian king. Bastet was the feline-headed, benevolent counterpart of Sakhmet. If no accompanying inscription identifies the figure, as in the case of this amulet, it can be difficult to tell which goddess is represented.




Please note: The Freer Gallery of Art will be closed to the public from January 2016 until summer 2017. The Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Library, and Archives will remain open for the duration of the renovation. Learn more »