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Title: Scarabs

An introduction to the study of Egyptian seals and signet rings

Author: Percy E. Newberry

Release date: April 9, 2019 [eBook #59233]

Language: English

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Egyptian Antiquities. Plate I.
Ring bearing the name of King Apepŷ.

Ring bearing the name of King Nefer-Ka-Ra.
Ring of King Amenhetep II.
Ring of King Akhenaten.
Ring of King Hor-em-heb.



Author of “The Amherst Papyri” “The Life of Rekhmara” “Beni Hasan,”
“El Bersheh,” &c.





Since the year 1895, when Professor Flinders Petrie’s book on Historical Scarabs became “out of print,” the want of a comprehensive work on these interesting little Egyptian antiquities has been much felt. Two volumes on Egyptian Scarabs, it is true, have been published since that date, but these works treat of private collections and do not claim to deal with the subject in its entirety or even in a scientific manner.

A long residence, extending over several years, at Thebes, the centre of the Upper Egyptian Scarab market, and the place where the best imitation Scarabs are now manufactured, has, I may claim, given me exceptional opportunities for studying this class of Ancient Egyptian antiquities and its allied forms. For some years it was my custom to pay a weekly visit to the Luxor antiquity shops, with the object of examining these and other articles in the dealers’ hands; and, latterly, scarcely a week has passed during my winter’s sojourn on the banks of the Nile but that someone, Egyptologist, collector, tourist, or dealer, has consulted me as to the genuineness, vireading, etc., of Scarabs that they have either purchased or intended to buy. The frequency of these appeals, and the ignorance so generally displayed by the traveller in speaking of Egyptian Scarabs, convinced me that I could at least advance a step or two on what had been previously written on the subject; so, after classifying my notes and visiting and studying the principal collections of England and the Continent, I have prepared the following Introduction to the Study of Egyptian Seals, which will, I venture to hope, be useful to Students and Collectors.

That I have spared no pains in order to make this book as complete as possible will, I think, be obvious to anyone who will take the trouble to read the letterpress and examine the plates. About one thousand three hundred specimens of Egyptian Seals and Signet-rings are figured, but these have been selected from drawings of some seven thousand, and from an examination of over thirty thousand examples. It may be noticed that the splendid collection preserved in the National Museum at Cairo has been drawn from but sparingly: this is due to the fact that M. Maspero had already commissioned me to prepare and publish a separate catalogue of the unique collection which is in that great savant’s care. The manuscript of this catalogue is now finished, and it will be published early in the coming year.

viiI have to thank the Keepers of Public Museums and many owners of Private Collections for the courtesy and kindness that they have shown in allowing me to inspect and draw from the specimens in their possession. To Prof. Erman and Dr. Schäfer I am indebted for plaster casts of the Berlin Museum seals; and to Prof. Petrie I am indebted for his generosity in placing at my disposal the magnificent historical series which he has gathered together at University College, London. To Mr. Walter Nash, F.S.A., I also wish to express my grateful thanks for much kindly help and encouragement in the earlier stages of this work; and in conclusion I must thank my friends and colleagues Prof. J. M. Mackay and Mr. John Garstang, for kindly looking through the proofs of this volume, and to the latter also for placing at my disposal the library of the Institute of Archæology of the University of Liverpool, wherein the manuscript has been completed.


Institute of Archæology,

University of Liverpool. 1905.



Preface V
Introduction to the Study of Egyptian Seals:—  
(1) General Remarks 1
(2) Importance of the Seal in Ancient Times 4
(3) Origin of the Seal 8
(4) The various Uses of the Seal:—  
(a) For securing property 12
(b) For authenticating documents, etc. 22
(c) For transference of authority 26
(5) The Egyptian Officials concerned in the use of the Seal 29
(6) Seal Engravers and the Technique of Seal Engraving 40
The Varieties of Egyptian Seals:—  
(1) Cylinder Seals 43
(2) Button-shaped Seals and Hemi-Cylinders 56
(3) Beetle-shaped Seals (Scarabs) 61
(4) Miscellaneous forms 85
(5) Signet-rings 92
Description of the Specimens illustrated in the Plates I-XLV 97
To Personal Names 201
To Titles 205
To Royal Names:—  
(a) Kings 211
(b) Queens 216
(c) Princes 217
(d) Princesses 218
Footnotes 304



  Plate I. Some specimens of rings Frontispiece.
Fig.   PAGE
1, 2. Two jars of the First Dynasty, to illustrate the ancient method of sealing 13
3, 4. Complete jar neck, bearing the stamp of Amasis 14
5-7. Jars showing method of securing contents. (From paintings in the tombs at Beni Hasan) 16
8. A man sealing up a honey jar. (From a tomb at Abusîr) 17
9. A sealed jar. (From a painting in a tomb at Medûm) 17
10. A sealed bag. (From a painting in a tomb at Medûm) 17
11. Sealing of doors 20
12. Securing of folding doors 21
13. Sealing of boxes 22
14. A papyrus roll, tied up and sealed 23
15. The office of the Superintendent of the Seal 35
16. The working of the bow drill. (From the tomb of Rekhmara) 42
17. A mounted cylinder-seal. (In the Louvre) 45
18. A Cylinder-seal. (Figured in a tomb at Medûm) 45
19. Cylinder-seal. (Figured in a tomb at Sakkara) 45
20. An early cylinder-seal 46
21. A cylinder-seal bearing the name of Merŷ-ra. (In the collection of Mr. Piers) 46
22. A cylinder-seal of Amenemhat III 47
xii23. A cylinder-seal of Khŷan. (Cairo) 47
24. A cylinder-seal of Sen-mut. (Petrie Collection) 47
25. Impression from a cylinder-seal in the Berlin Museum 49
26. Impression from a cylinder-seal in the Berlin Museum 50
27. Cylinder-seal bearing personal name 51
28. Cylinder-seal bearing rude hieroglyphic inscriptions written in vertical columns 52
29. Royal seal of Narmer, predecessor of Mena, reproduced in outline 53
30. Royal seal of Zer, Mena’s successor; gives besides the name a figure of the monarch 53
31. Official cylinder-seal, with royal name 55
32. Official cylinder-seal bearing the name and titles of officials 55
33. Button-shaped seal 56
34. Hemi-cylinder seal 56
35. Button-shaped seal 57
36. Button-shaped seal 57
37. Button-shaped seal 57
38. Button-shaped seal 57
39. Button-shaped seal 58
40. Button-shaped seal 58
41. Button-shaped seal 59
42. Button-shaped seal 59
43. Button-shaped seal 59
44. Button-shaped seal 59
45. Button-shaped seal 59
46. Button-shaped seal 59
47. Hemi-cylinder seal 60
48. Hemi-cylinder seal 60
49. Hemi-cylinder seal 60
50. Hemi-cylinder seal 60
51. Hemi-cylinder seal 60
52. Clay stamp from the terramare of Montale in the Modenese 61
xiii53. Scarab-shaped seal worn on the finger, attached by a piece of string 62
54. Scarab-shaped seal mounted as swivel to metal ring 62
55. Scarab-shaped seal enclosed in metal frame or funda 62
56. Scarab bearing the name of Mer-en-ra 68
57. Scarab bearing the names Thothmes III and Amenhetep II 68
58. Specimen of a Scarab-beetle (the real Scarabæus sacer) 70
59. Specimens of scarabs from El Mahasna 70
60. Specimen scarabs of the Twelfth Dynasty 71
61. Specimen scarabs of the Twelfth Dynasty 71
62. Specimen scarabs of the Twelfth Dynasty 71
63. Specimen scarabs of the Twelfth Dynasty 71
64. Specimen scarabs of the Thirteenth Dynasty 72
65. Specimen scarabs of the Hyksos Period 72
66. Specimen scarabs of the Hyksos Period 72
67. Specimen scarabs of the Hyksos Period 72
68. Specimen scarabs of the Hyksos Period 73
69. Specimen scarabs of the Hyksos Period 73
70. Specimen scarabs of the Early Eighteenth Dynasty 73
71. Specimen scarabs of the Early Eighteenth Dynasty 73
72. Specimen scarabs of the Early Eighteenth Dynasty 74
73. Specimen scarabs of the Middle Eighteenth Dynasty 74
74. Specimen scarabs of the Amenhetep III 74
75. Specimen scarabs of the Nineteenth Dynasty 74
76. Specimen scarabs of the Nineteenth Dynasty 75
77. Specimen scarabs of the Nineteenth Dynasty 75
78. Specimen scarabs of the Nineteenth Dynasty 75
79. Specimen scarabs of the Nineteenth Dynasty 75
80. Specimen scarabs of the Ethiopian dominion 76
81. Specimen scarabs of the Ethiopian dominion 76
82. Scarab of Usertsen I 80
83. A seal of the Twelfth Dynasty 85
84. A seal of the Eighteenth Dynasty 85
85. A seal of the Eleventh Dynasty 86
xiv86. A seal of the Eleventh Dynasty 86
87. A seal bearing the name of King Mentuhetep 87
88. Specimen seals of the Eighteenth Dynasty 87
89. Specimen seals of the Eighteenth Dynasty 87
90. Specimen seals of the Eighteenth Dynasty 87
91. Specimen seals of the Eighteenth Dynasty 87
92. Specimen seals of the Eighteenth Dynasty 87
93. A seal bearing the name of King Amenemhat III 88
94. A stamp seal 88
95. A seal bearing the name of King Seqen-en-ra 89
96. A seal bearing the name of King Sa-Amen 89
97. A stamp seal 89
98. A seal bearing the name of King Thothmes III 90
99. A seal bearing the name of the Hyksos Period 90
100. A seal bearing the name of the Twelfth Dynasty 90
101. A seal bearing the name of the Twelfth Dynasty 90
102. A seal bearing the name of the Eighteenth Dynasty 90
103. A seal bearing the name of Rameses II 90
104. A seal of the Saïte Period 91
105. A seal of Thirtieth Dynasty 91
106. A seal of Nekhtenebo 92
107. A ring of Usertsen III 93
108. A ring of the Thirteenth Dynasty 93
109. A ring of the Thirteenth Dynasty 93
110. A ring of Thothmes III 94
111. A ring of the period of Akhenaten 94
112. A ring of the Twentieth Dynasty 94
113. A ring of the Twentieth Dynasty 94
114. A ring of the Twenty-sixth Dynasty 95
115. A ring of the Twenty-sixth Dynasty 95
116. A ring of the Twenty-sixth Dynasty 95



I. Some specimens of rings.
II. Scene representing the Chancellor of Tût-ankh-Amen investing a Governor of Ethiopia with the signet-ring of office.
III. Pre-dynastic cylinder-seals.
IV. Impressions of early cylinder-seals.
V. Cylinder-seals of the Fourth to Sixth Dynasties.
VI. Cylinder-seals of the Twelfth Dynasty.
VII. Cylinder-seals of the Twelfth to Seventeenth Dynasties.
VIII. Miscellaneous cylinder-seals.
IX. Scarabs bearing royal names. Fourth to Twelfth Dynasties.
X. Scarabs of the kings of the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Dynasties.
XI. Scarabs of officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties.
XII. Scarabs of officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties—continued.
XIII. Scarabs of officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties—continued.
XIV. Scarabs of officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties—continued.
XV. Scarabs of officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties—continued.
XVI. Scarabs of officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties—continued.
XVII. Scarabs of officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties—continued.
XVIII. Decorative Scarabs: Twelfth to Eighteenth Dynasties.
XIX. Decorative Scarabs: Twelfth to Eighteenth Dynasties—continued.
XX. Decorative Scarabs: Twelfth to Eighteenth Dynasties—continued.
XXI. Scarabs of the Hyksos Kings. (I).
XXII. Scarabs of the Hyksos Kings. (II).
XXIII. Scarabs of royal and other personages of the Hyksos Period.
xviXXIV. Miscellaneous scarabs of the Hyksos Period.
XXV. Decorative scarabs, mostly of the Hyksos Period.
XXVI. Scarabs of kings, etc., mostly of the Seventeenth and Early Eighteenth Dynasties.
XXVII. Scarabs of the Eighteenth Dynasty. (Thothmes I to Hatshepsut.)
XXVIII. Scarabs of the Eighteenth Dynasty—continued. (Thothmes III and his family.)
XXIX. Officials of the Eighteenth Dynasty, and kings, etc., from the tomb of Maket, at Gurob (temp. Thothmes III).
XXX. Scarab of the Eighteenth Dynasty—continued.
XXXI. Scarab of the Eighteenth Dynasty—continued.
XXXII. Historical scarabs of Amenhetep III:
  1. Kirgipa and her Harîm.
  2. The Lion Hunts of Amenhetep III.
  3. The Parents of Queen Thŷi and the Limits of the Egyptian Empire.
XXXIII. Historical scarabs of Amenhetep III—continued:
  1. The Wild Cattle hunt.
  2. The Lake at Zarukha.
XXXIV. Scarabs of the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Dynasties.
XXXV. Scarabs of the Nineteenth Dynasty (Rameses II).
XXXVI. Scarabs bearing royal names: Meren-ptah I to Sa-Amen.
XXXVII. Scarabs of the Twenty-second to Twenty-fifth Dynasty Kings.
XXXVIII. Royal and private scarabs and rings (Twenty-fifth and Twenty-sixth Dynasties).
XXXIX. Scarabs bearing mottoes, good wishes, etc.
XL. Scarabs bearing mottoes, good wishes, etc.—continued.
XLI. Scarabs bearing names of figures of gods, etc.
XLII. Hieroglyphics, flowers, etc.
XLIII. Miscellaneous royal and private scarabs.
XLIV. Miscellaneous royal and private scarabs—continued.



1. General Remarks.

General Remarks on Egyptian seals.

There are few small objects of antiquity which present themselves so often to the traveller’s notice in Egypt, as the little seals of stone, pottery and other material, carved in various forms and engraved on their base, or around their circumference, with an ornamental device or brief hieroglyphic inscription. These seals are found in a variety of forms; some of them are cylindrical in shape, others are button-shaped, but by far the greater number are carved to represent the scarabaeus beetle standing upon an elliptical base, the under side of which is engraved with the device or inscription intended to be impressed upon the sealing clay. The specimens of this last variety of seal are universally known as “Scarabs.”[1] Like the gems of Greece and Italy, Egyptian seals are generally found in excellent preservation; other and larger antiquities usually show on their face the signs of weathering, or they bear the marks of mutilation by man, but 2these interesting little monuments of a long past age often continue to this day as perfect in their finish and delicate workmanship as when they first left the hands of the ancient lapidary. The soil of Egypt literally teems with them. Thousands have been found among the débris of long deserted and ruined towns and temples; the fellah often turns them up in the soil whilst ploughing his fields, and rich harvests of these little objects have been gathered by the antiquary from the myriad tombs that line the desert edge on both sides of the Nile from Alexandria and El Arîsh to Aswân. Outside the boundaries of the Nile Valley also, Egyptian seals are frequently discovered; and in our museums are to be seen specimens from Italy, Sicily, Cyprus and the Greek Islands, as well as from the Eastern shores of the Mediterranean, and even from as far afield as Nineveh and the valley of the Euphrates.

Clay impressions of seals.

Besides the actual seals, pieces of fine clay bearing impressions of them are often brought to light by the excavator; some of these served as sealings to jars of wine, honey, etc., whilst others had been affixed, like modern seals of wax, to documents written on papyrus or leather. The documents to which some of them had been attached have, unfortunately, too often perished from decay, or they have been consumed by fire, but in the stamped clay may still nearly always be seen the holes for the string, or the markings of it, by which the seal was fixed to the document: in some instances even the string itself remains. These sealings are usually unearthed in excellent preservation, and they are consequently as useful for the purposes of study as the seals themselves.

Importance of the study of Egyptian seals.

3To the student of the history and civilization of ancient Egypt the importance of these seals and “sealings” is very great; to him they are as the coins and gems to the student of Ancient Greece and Rome. Their range in date is greater than that of any other class of inscribed monument; the earliest appear as far back as the very dawn of History, and these little objects present from that period onward an unbroken series of such length and completeness that they afford a most valuable illustration of the early history of the Nile Valley. In some cases they supply the outline of a portion of history that was otherwise almost wholly lost. To them we owe most of our information regarding the earliest dynasties. For much of our knowledge of the period intervening between the end of the Twelfth and the beginning of the Eighteenth Dynasties we are also indebted to the same class of monument, while small scarab-shaped seals are as yet the only extant evidence of several of the Hyksos kings. Their value as corroborative evidence to other historical data must not be overlooked, nor can certain classes of them be lightly cast aside as bric-à-brac by the archaeologist who sets himself the task of solving, or of inquiring into, the many problems that have lately arisen concerning the early people of the Mediterranean region. To the student of Ancient Art also they afford a most happy illustration of the ever-varying styles in vogue in successive reigns, and their study, as will be seen in the following pages, often enables us to obtain those glimpses into the manners and customs of the ancient Egyptian people which so wonderfully help to elucidate our view of bygone days and men.


2. Importance of the Seal in Ancient Times.

Importance of the seal in ancient times.

It is very difficult for us, especially for those of us who are not familiar with Eastern civilization, to realize the great importance that was attached to the seal by the peoples of the Ancient World. It was far more of a necessity in everyday life to the people of antiquity than are our seals to us, or locks and keys to a modern householder. We still use the seal, it is true, for our legal documents, sometimes for our letters, for our post-bags, and occasionally for sealing up a room. Our Ministers of State have their Seals of Office, our Corporations and Companies have their registered official seals, and in our Coronation ceremonies there is the investiture of the Sovereign with the Royal Signet Ring. But all these uses of the seal are as ancient as the pyramid-builders of Memphis. When we use the signet for sealing our letters or our legal documents, we are but following in the footsteps of the Ancient Egyptian, who, many hundred years before the time of Moses, employed the seal for the same purpose. When our Ministers of State receive from the Sovereign their Seals of Office, they are but following a custom that prevailed in Egypt as early as the Fourth Millennium before Christ; and when Edward the Seventh was recently invested with the Royal Signet Ring at his Coronation, he was but conforming to a ceremonial act that was recorded by the rulers of the Nile Valley four thousand years before William the Norman set foot on the shores of Britain.

But in ancient times the seal was used for many 5purposes for which later inventions have proved more convenient. At the present day, when closing our doors, we generally lock them by a spring-bolt, and only attach a seal on very rare occasions. Locks and keys, however, are comparatively modern inventions, for the most ancient in Egypt are not older than the Roman period; and what locks and keys are to us, seals were to the people of the Old World. In ancient times, whenever a man left his home he always sealed up such parts as contained stores or other valuable property, so that they might be rendered secure from the attacks of thieves or slaves. In like manner boxes containing clothes or personal ornaments, and jars containing wine or oils, were kept under seal. The words meaning “to close” and “to seal” were in Egyptian[2] synonymous; indeed, to place a thing “under seal” was an ancient expression equivalent to the modern one of keeping a thing “under lock and key.”

To secure property from theft was, however, only one of the many uses of the seal; it was employed in other equally important ways. In Western countries, where writing has now become a universal accomplishment, a person’s written signature is sufficient to give authority to a document, but in ancient 6times a seal or signet was a necessity to anyone possessed of even the smallest amount of property, for without it no legal or other writing could be attested. Herodotus (I, 195) mentions that everyone in Babylonia carried a seal, and the same remark would apply with equal truth to Egypt. In England, from the Norman Conquest to the time of the taking effect of the original Statute of Frauds (1677), the seal was always used to make a writing valid and binding, and in Scotland every freeholder was required by law to have a registered seal.[3] At the present day an Eastern, when sealing a letter, smears the seal, not the document, with the sealing-substance, and illiterate persons will sometimes use the object nearest at hand, such as their own finger, which they daub with ink, and press upon the paper therewith. In Babylonia the finger-nail was sometimes impressed into the clay as a seal; while in America, in comparatively recent times, the eye-tooth impressed upon the wax has been used for attesting a document (1 Wash. Va. 42, quoted in American Law Review, Vol. XXVIII, p. 25). The right hand smeared with ink and impressed upon a parchment was often used in mediaeval times in place of a signature, and this, with the seal impressed beside it, gave rise to the modern legal expression, “Witness my hand and seal.” The Sultan’s cipher, which appears on the coinage and official documents of the Turks, is said to have originated in this way. The Republic of Ragusa concluded a commercial treaty with the Ottomans in 1395, by which it placed itself under their protection, and it is 7said that Murad signed the treaty, for lack of a pen, with his open hand, over which he had smeared some ink, in the manner of Eastern seals—a veritable sign-manual. (Stanley Lane-Poole, Turkey, p. 35.) In ancient times, however, the document was rolled up and tied with a piece of string, the knot of which was covered with a pellet of clay and sealed. It was not only in Egypt that this was so, but in all countries of the ancient world; in Babylonia and Assyria as well as in Greece and Italy. A written signature would have been of no avail to attest a document; a seal had always to be used. Doubtless in the earliest times only the most powerful persons possessed seals, but as civilization advanced the officers of the administration came to use, besides their own personal seals, official ones for government purposes. Thus it was that the seal, being the real instrument of the power and authority of an office, came to be used as the symbol of it, and the delivery of an official or State seal to an individual, gave to that individual the authority and power to execute the rights and duties of his office.

The various links in the history of the seal which connect its original employment for securing the contents of jars, to its latest one for transferring authority from one person to another, are all preserved, and form a most interesting object lesson in “social evolution.” The seal is, indeed, so intimately associated with the early history of civilization, that it is probable that its origin goes back to the very institution of the right of private property. Its early history is full of interest. If we turn to any of the literatures of the Old World—whether it be the Egyptian or Babylonian, the 8Hebraic or Assyrian, the Greek or Roman, it is the same; we find in each and all of them abundant passages concerning the importance of the seal and the various uses that it was put to. Further, if we study these references, we discover that the signification of these little objects was everywhere the same, and if passages were selected from the Egyptian writers regarding the uses of the seal, it would be easy to parallel them all from the works of any of the other Old World peoples. We ought, however, before discussing the various uses of the seal, to inquire into its origin.

3. Origin of the Seal.

Origin of the seal.

In his Hand-book of Engraved Gems,[4] King has stated his belief that the use of the seal was almost coeval with the very institution of the right of private property, and this seems to be well borne out by what we actually know of its early history. All the evidence from Babylonia and Egypt available as to its original use appears to point in one direction, that it was first employed for securing household stuff and other moveable property. In the earlier stages of civilization this consisted mainly of grain, honey, etc., always liable to be pilfered by the dishonest slave, or by smaller hands addicted to picking and stealing. If the proprietor, therefore, wished to keep his stores of food intact, it was necessary that he should adopt some means of 9checking the pilferer, and the idea early occurred to him that if he placed his little store in a jar or other vessel, and covered the mouth of it with a plaster of mud or clay, it might be protected to a certain degree against the thief. But merely plastering the mouth with mud or clay was not enough to preserve the contents from a skilful plunderer, for he might easily, and without fear of immediate detection, remove a capping, steal the contents of a jar, put on another plaster of mud, and leave no trace of his theft until the jar was opened by its owner. It was obvious therefore that a capping of clay alone was not sufficient. Now it is probable that the mud used in the process of covering the mouth of the vessel would often be rolled or smeared flat with a piece of stick, a joint of a reed, or a flat-bottomed pebble. Many of these objects must have had natural markings on them which would have left impressions on the clay, while these impressions, we can hardly doubt, were early noticed by the primitive store owner, and their condition served to tell him whether or not his closed jars had been tampered with. In this connection it is interesting to note that Aristophanes (Thesmo., 424-428), when referring to the custom of securing doors by sealing them, alludes to certain [Greek: thripêdesta sphragidia], which were worm-eaten bits of wood used as rude seals. He speaks of them as having supplanted the simple seals of olden days, but they ought rather to be considered as a return to the early type of “reed” seal. (Muller, Archäol., I. Kunst., 97, 2.) From the natural markings upon the objects employed to smooth the clay, the transition was easy to some definite device scratched around 10the circumference of the stick or reed, or upon the surface of the stone or pebble, by the owner, and appropriated to himself as his own peculiar mark. But as these markings or devices would have had little weight with a determined thief, we can hardly doubt that, in Babylonia at any rate, they became early imbued with a magical signification: so that their real power would be moral rather than physical. The reasoning of the lawyers of the Middle Ages regarding the sealing of contracts was that a seal attracts and excites caution in illiterate persons, and thereby operates as a security against fraud.[5]

The simple scratchings that we find on so many of the early Egyptian pots were the possessors’ marks; indeed, King contends that “this instinct of possession extending itself to the assumption of exclusive ownership in certain configurations of lines, or rude delineations of natural objects, is a universal impulse of man’s nature, and one found existing amongst all savage nations when first discovered, wheresoever the faintest trace of social life and polity have begun to develop themselves.” A great number of these signs Professor Petrie has preserved in his various records of explorations. (Cf. his Naqada, p. 44.) Thus the Red Indian has besides the tribal mark, that of the individual (his special totem), wherewith to identify his own property, or the game he may kill. The South Sea Islander carries the tattooed pattern that distinguishes his particular family, imprinted upon his own skin, and also draws the same upon his credentials like a regular coat of arms. It is therefore in these markings firstly scratched on pots, and next on rude seals, that we 11have the very beginnings of writing; but a long period probably elapsed before these primitive signs were combined together to form words. The designs on these seals were probably at first rough configurations of lines, which sufficiently served their purpose if they could be readily identified by the owner; but after a time these primitive figures seem to have given place to rude delineations of natural objects which expressed the name of the owner, like the Greek coins of Rhodes (a rose); of Melitaea (a bee), and were consequently looked upon as his particular mark. We have not as yet got back in Egypt to such primitive forms, but on Greek gems and coins this type parlant, “figured speech,” is well known.

The original forms of the two great groups of Egyptian seals we have in the piece of notched reed and in the small scratched pebble; the first the true prototype of the cylinder, both in form and in mode of application; the second as clearly the original of the stamp seal. Simple as the invention of these two forms and the art of sealing may now appear, the discovery that an impression of a seal could be obtained by pressing it on clay or other plastic substance was nevertheless one of the most momentous that has yet been made, and the seal-impression furthermore suggested the idea of decoration in bas-relief. From the invention of the simple seal to the complex printing-press with its moveable types appears a long way to travel, but that we have the germ of this great invention in the simple seal is obvious when we come to think of it. The old Egyptian or Babylonian who first took an impression of his signet on a lump of plastic clay, had discovered the 12principle of printing, though it took the human mind many hundred years before the next great step was made, that of smearing some black or coloured substance upon the seal and taking a “print” of it on plaster, as in the tomb of Thothmes IV (circa B.C. 1400), and in ink on a papyrus of the Ptolemaic age.

4. Various Uses of the Seal.

(a) For securing Property.

It has been suggested in a preceding paragraph that the original use of the seal was for securing stores of food from dishonest servants; and this statement is corroborated by the fact that the earliest “sealings” that have been found in Egypt are from jars that were used for storing wine, honey, grain, and other food stuffs. Figures 1 and 2 represent two jars found by M. de Morgan in a First Dynasty cemetery in Upper Egypt,[6] (circa B.C. 3500), and the general system of sealing jars and large vessels may be clearly seen from these examples. The mouth of the jar, it will be observed, was first covered by an inverted plate or cup of pottery (fig. 1), in order to prevent the wet clay (the [Greek: gê sêmagtris], “sealing earth,” of the Greeks) used in the process of closing the mouth from falling into the jar. Upon and around this was plastered a high cone of clay (fig. 2), mixed with palm fibre, and carefully smoothed, so as to take easily the impression 13of the cylinder seal, which was rolled across it at right angles. Generally two impressions of the same seal are found on each clay cone, but sometimes two or more impressions upon the same cone occur from different seals. This shows the great care that was given in early times to secure the contents of a vessel from thievish servants, a fact which is emphasised by our sometimes finding that a jar had often two separate sealings, one below the other, the outer coat being put on while the inner one was still damp. “Thus,” writes Professor Petrie of some clay cones of this 14kind which he found at Abydos, “often a quite illegible cone may yet yield a good inscription by carefully knocking away the outer coat.”[7]

Figs. 1 and 2.

Figs. 3 and 4.

This system of sealing large jars with high clay cones apparently lasted on till the beginning of the sixteenth century B.C.; then another kind of sealing is met with. In the place of the high clay cone, a clay cap with flat top was used, the flat top and sometimes the sides being impressed with a wooden stamp. Later still, at the time of the Twenty-sixth Dynasty, the early inverted cap or plate gave way to a pottery cap or bung, which was secured in place by string or linen bands, and covered with a rounded cap of plaster. There is an interesting specimen of a complete jar neck bearing the stamp of Amasis, with clay and plaster sealing still fixed to it, found at Tell Defenneh (see figs. 3 and 4); it is important as showing the very 15elaborate system of sealing jars at that time in vogue. Firstly, a large bung of pottery (fig. 3), made hollow, was put into the mouth of the jar. This was then fastened down by linen bands, the ends of which were tied up in the middle, and a lump of sealing clay fixed upon it and impressed with six different seals of inspectors. Although this clay had crumbled and been washed out by rains in the course of ages, it still left a cast in the plaster showing the seals as they appear in fig. 4. After the six inspectors had each put his seal on it, the jar was sent out to the plasterer, who capped the whole top with a head of plaster, and sealed it with the royal name in its oval-cartouche. Even these elaborate precautions, it would seem, did not suffice to secure the contents of this particular amphora from the thief, for the jar neck, as Professor Petrie remarks, is an instance of a successful attack upon the royal stores. The cap of plaster has been bored through just at the edge of the jar, and the large bung inside smashed through, so as to enable the thief to reach freely the wine. The piece of plaster broken out here is shown missing in fig. 4, though it was found in the jar; the hole just shows the edge of the neck, and was filled up with a scrap of the old plaster and a smear of new of a different quality; no attempt was made to imitate the missing part of the cartouche, and this probably raised the cellarer’s suspicion, and made him break off and preserve the whole jar neck as evidence. (Petrie, Defenneh, p. 72.)

This method of securing the contents of large jars and amphorae lasted on far into Roman times. Horace mentions as a test of a good tempered house 16master, that he did not go wild with passion even if he found that a seal of a wine jar had been broken. And even at the present day the traveller on the Nile may still see boats, at certain seasons of the year, floating down stream from Erment, Kûs, and other centres of the sugar industry, laden with molasses in peculiar jars (ballalîs), secured, in place of the early bung and the earlier inverted plates, by a plug of sugar cane leaves thrust into the mouth of the vessel, and plastered over with a thick cap of white clay.

Figs. 5, 6 and 7.
(From paintings in the tombs at Beni Hasan.)

For securing the contents of smaller vessels the Egyptians had another method. This was by stretching over the mouth a piece of skin or beaten metal, which was then firmly tied down by a cord, the two ends and knot of which were covered by a pellet of clay, and impressed by a small stamp or scarab (see figs. 5, 6, and 7).

Fig. 8.
(From a sculpture at
A.Z., Vol. xxxviii, Pl. v.

An illustration of a man actually engaged in the process of covering up a jar of honey has been 17preserved in a tomb at Abusîr; he is fastening the string around the vase, and above him is the legend, Khetem bati, “sealing honey” (see fig. 8).

The beautiful dolomite marble and carnelian vases found in the tomb of King Khasekhemui (circa 3300 B.C.) at Abydos are secured in this way. Each of these has a cover of thick gold foil fitted over the top, and tied down with a double turn of twisted gold wire, over the tie of which a small lump of clay is fixed, which in this instance has not been impressed with a seal, but merely pressed together by the fingers. Generally the pellet of clay to be “sealed” was placed on the top of the jar (as in figs. 5 and 7), but sometimes it covered the knot at the side (as in fig. 9). The same manner of securing the mouth of a jar still survives in the way our liqueur bottles, etc., are often sealed, and in the way we close our jam pots, except that in the latter case we no longer find it necessary to attach a seal.

Fig. 9.
(From a painting
in a tomb at

The contents of bags and sacks were also secured by means of the seal; a piece of cord was tied round the neck, the knot of which was immersed in a pellet of clay and “sealed” (see fig. 10). A large number of broken seals of this kind have been found 18in Egypt, and sealed bags containing gold dust and other materials are often figured in the ancient paintings of the tombs. To the custom of sealing bags Job alludes (xiv, 17). In the story of Hor-ded-ef we read of certain midwives who had assisted in bringing into the world a child, being rewarded by the father with “a bushel of barley,” which is straightway sent to the brewhouse to be kept under the midwives’ seal. Our modern post bags are rendered secure from being examined by unauthorised persons in exactly the same manner.

Fig. 10.
(From a painting in
a tomb at Medûm.)

The Ancient Egyptians, it has already been remarked, were unacquainted with the use of locks and keys, hence we find that they employed their seals for the purpose of securing the doors of their houses and storerooms. These latter, indeed, were termed Khetemu, “sealed rooms,” and they are frequently alluded to in the ancient inscriptions:[8] Such storehouses in foreign lands were provision depôts for the Egyptian troops or garrisons. Government storehouses were, of course, in charge of officials who kept them under their seals. Nebuaiu (circa 1500 B.C.), for instance, proudly boasts that the treasury of the Temple of Osiris was kept “under his signet ring,” and the Vezîr Rekhmara (circa 1500 B.C.) tells us that it was his duty to “seal up all the precious things in the temple of Amen,”[9] and that all the bags of gold dust and other valuables were “under his 19signet.”[10] When a storeroom was opened, the official responsible for the things contained in it appeared in person and sealed it up again when the stores were taken out.

There are many passages in the papyri which tend to show how great was the care taken to prevent irresponsible hands from pilfering.[11] The storehouses of private people were probably in the care of the housewife, or some other woman of the household, for when scarab seals are discovered in graves, it has been noticed that they are usually found at the side of, or near to, the body of a female.[12] Thus it is probable that in Egypt, as in other countries, it was the matron of the household who had charge of the grain and other provisions, and her little string of seals has its direct lineal descendant in our modern housekeeper’s bunch of keys. “How happy the times,” wrote Pliny, “how truly innocent, in which no seal was ever put to anything; at the present day, on the contrary, our very food even and our drink have to be preserved from theft, through the agency of the ring.” The modern “wedding ring” originated in the custom of the man presenting his wife, on her marriage, with a seal, which she was to use for sealing up her stores of provisions, etc. At first these seals were worn suspended from a string of beads around the neck. Sometimes they were strung on a cord which was tied round the 20wrist, and at a later period they were secured to the finger by a piece of string or wire. This wire and seal developed into the signet-ring. Then, with the introduction of locks and keys, it was the key-ring that was given by the husband to his wife. These key-rings, however, were soon found to be too cumbersome to be worn with comfort on the finger, and so a plain band of metal was given to the bride with a key. “The key,” writes Cicero (Ph. 2. 28), “was given to the bride on entering her home, to signify that she was appointed mistress of the house (mater familias)”; it was, in fact, used by her to lock up her store-room, and in case she was divorced it was taken away from her. At the present day, if the ring is not forthcoming at a wedding, the key of the chancel door can be used instead.

Fig 11.

The manner of sealing doors was very simple. In the case of single doors a wooden peg with projecting head was fixed in the jamb and another in the door (see fig. 11). When the door was closed the two pegs would be near to one another, so that a piece of string could be easily tied round them. This string having been securely fastened by a knot, the knot was then covered with clay, and the clay impressed by seal, thus making it impossible to open the door without destroying the seal or removing the pegs.

Folding doors were secured by a sliding bolt, but such bolts of course gave no security against a thief, so they also were sealed. They were shaped as in fig. 12, with a groove running across the 21centre; a piece of string was stretched across this groove, and then, after pellets of clay had been put on the two ends, it was sealed down as shown in the figure.

Fig. 12.

An interesting reference to this last method of sealing doors occurs in the well known inscription of Piankhy preserved in the Cairo Museum. This Ethiopian king, after his victorious journey through Egypt, goes to Heliopolis to present offerings of flowers, etc., to Ra, the famous god of that town. Proceeding to the shrine of the deity, Piankhy relates that “he stood alone,” that he “broke the seals” and “slid back the door bolt,” opened “the double doors” and saw his father Ra in the holy shrine. After performing certain ceremonies therein, he goes on to tell us that the doors were again shut, “clay was applied” to them, which was then sealed by the king’s own hand. Herodotus also, it may be remembered, refers to the Egyptian custom of sealing up doors, in the story of Rhampsinitus and the clever thief, who succeeded in pilfering the royal treasury by means of a loose stone in the wall of it. When the king happened to open the chamber, says the historian, he was astonished at seeing the vessels deficient in treasure, but he was unable to accuse anyone, as the seals were unbroken and the chamber well secured.

The sealings to tomb doors, the Egyptian’s “eternal habitation,” being required to be permanent, were much 22more elaborate.[13] After the mourners had retired, and the door had been closed, clay was smeared round the juncture of it with the lintel, jambs and threshold, and then stamped all over by the seal of the priest in charge.

As in the case of doors of houses and store-chambers, so also with boxes, the lids were sealed down to secure their contents.

Fig. 13.

On nearly all ancient Egyptian boxes that have been found are to be seen two knobs (or the holes into which they were fastened), one on the lid, the other on the box itself. Fig. 13 shows how these were placed, and with a piece of string, a lump of clay and a seal, it was an easy matter to secure the contents; all that had to be done was to follow the same process that has already been described for securing doors.

Fig. 14.
(This hieroglyph was used as a determinative of all abstract words from a very
early period.)

(b) For authenticating Documents, etc.

With the advance of civilization, and the development of the art and practice of writing, the seal began 23to be employed for documents also. Till very recent times writing has been an accomplishment of few except professional scribes, hence it was natural that seals which bore the personal badge or mark of the owner, began to be used by those who could not write their names for giving that authenticity and authority to a document which is now more usually conferred by a written signature. Legal documents were therefore attested by the seal, and a legal contract was known in Egypt by the name Khetemt, “the sealed.”[14] But the method of attaching the seal to the document was different in ancient times to that of the present day. The old Egyptian, instead of impressing with his signet the surface of the sheet of papyrus, used to roll it up,[15] tie it round with string, and then, after knotting the string in the middle of the roll, he affixed the clay to the knot and sealed it (see fig. 14). Thus 24the roll could not be opened, and consequently the writing of it could not be altered nor new matter introduced without the seal being first broken, and the mere breaking of the seal would be legal proof enough to show that the document had been tampered with. It is not till the Ptolemaïc period that there is an instance of a document stamped with ink,[16] although the stamp in paint has been shown to be as early as the Eighteenth Dynasty.[17] A familiar instance of the use of the seal for legal documents is given by the prophet Jeremiah. Having bought a field of Hanameel, he payed the owner seventeen shekels of silver for it; then subscribed the evidence and sealed it. This being done, he took the evidence of the purchaser, “both that which was sealed according to the law and custom and that which was open,” and gave it to Baruch in order that it might be put in an earthen vessel, and so preserved in case of any dispute. (Jeremiah xxxii, 9-14.)

But it was not only legal documents that were attested by the signet; letters also were sealed up by the sender before they left his hands,[18] and several such letters, with the seals still unbroken, have been found by the excavator. The aim of the signet in this connection was of course to afford proof of the identity of the sender, and to warrant the contents of the letter. The importance attached to the seal at present in the East is so great, that without one no document is regarded as authentic.

25From the use for authenticating documents, the seal came to be employed for another purpose—that of authenticating the purity or weight of a piece of gold or other metal; the stamp upon the coin being the government guarantee of the fineness and weight of the piece of metal. It has often been supposed that the specimens of the scarab class of Egyptian seals were used as tokens of value, that they represented the small change of the Pharaohs. In support of this interpretation a remark of Plato, to the effect that “in Ethiopia engraved stones were used as money,” has often been quoted. It is of course true that the Egyptians had no coined money of their own before the time of the Macedonian Conquest; taxes were collected and salaries were paid in kind, and all trade was done by barter, as in Central Africa at the present day. The idea, however, that scarabs themselves were used for the purposes of barter, or as tokens of exchange, is not supported by the inscriptions, or by any of the scenes depicted on the monuments. But we do find, and this is very important, that during the Hyksos period (circa 1700 B.C.),[19] and later under Amenhetep III (circa 1400 B.C.),[20] the Khetem or “seal” is given as a measure of value, although here it is probable that it was not the seal itself that is meant, but the impression of it upon another substance. The Athenian General Timotheus, Polyaemus relates, being in want of money to pay his troops, “issued his own seal” for coin, and this substitute was accepted by the traders and market people confiding in his honour. This can only mean 26that impressions of his signet on clay, or some other substance, were put into circulation as representatives of value, and so received by the sellers. It is in the impression of a seal or stamp upon a piece of gold or other metal that we have the origin of coined money.

The study of the early history of coined money is a most curious one. Rude peoples pass from barter to the use of metallic currency; and the most general article of wealth is taken as the standard to which, either as a multiple or a fraction, all other possessions are adjusted.[21] In Greece, as in Italy, the ox was the unit of value, and in Italy[22] a piece of metal was stamped with the impression of an animal (nota pecudum), whence it was termed pecunia,[23] but when and by whom such a stamp was first placed on “the bar or piece of metal it is, of course, impossible to say.” The Egyptian inscriptions, fortunately, throw some light on this subject, for as early at least as B.C. 1700, a khetem is mentioned as a unit of value for metals, while “an ox” is valued as one seal. Furthermore, the word khetem, determined by an ox, actually occurs as a measure of value, and means a seal with the figure of an ox stamped on it, or an ox skin sealed.[24]

(c) For Transference of Authority.

We have just seen that the affixing of a seal to a document gave to that document its validity 27and binding force, and it is now not difficult to realize that, being the real instrument of the power and authority of an office, it should have become the symbol of it. The delivery therefore of the seal or signet either by the king or by his minister, committed to the individual the authority and power to execute the rights and duties of his office. The Egyptian monarch himself was invested at his Coronation[25] with the Royal Signet,[26] upon which his name and titles were engraved; this was as important a part of the insignia of royalty as his sceptre or his crown. In an early text (circa 2500 B.C.) it is said that “Mer-en-Ra maketh his appearance as king, he hath taken possession of his signet (sah) and of his throne.”[27] The word for signet is here Sah (variants and Sah, note the necklace and cylinder seal as determinative), and the signet was repeatedly used in ancient Egypt to denote a man of noble rank, one who was allowed to carry a signet with the royal name engraven upon it. Osiris is named Sahu, “seal bearer” of the gods whom he has called into existence, and a hymn[28] calls him the glorious Sahu among the sahus. The Prince Khnemhetep (2000 B.C.), at Beni Hasan, says of himself that he was 28distinguished above all the king’s nobles (sahu); that is to say, the order of men bearing the signet or sign of investiture. A mummified person is also called Sahu, in virtue of investiture.[29]

The Great Seals of State were as important in ancient Egypt as they are in this country, and it was only by the king bestowing his own seal, or one of the Great Seals of State, on one of his subjects, that he could delegate his authority. In the Biblical account of Joseph we read, “and Pharaoh said unto Joseph, see, I have set thee over all the land of Egypt. And Pharaoh took off his ring from his hand, and put it upon Joseph’s hand ... and made him ruler over all the land of Egypt.” That this ceremony was true, and that the giving of the seal or ring of office by the king, or by one of his ministers, on the appointment of a high government official, was indeed usual, is proved by several inscriptions: at the time of the middle of the Eighteenth Dynasty, Amenhetep III (1450 B.C.) places “the two lands” in the “hands” of the Vezîr Ptahmes, and “the signet rings of the Horus” (i.e., the Sovereign) upon his fingers.[30] In a scene in the tomb of Hûy at Thebes, which is here (Pl. II) published for the first time, the Chancellor of King Tutânkhamen, 1350 B.C., presents the gold signet ring of the office of Royal Son (i.e., Viceroy) of Ethiopia “to the Prince Hûy, in order that the office of the Royal Son of Ethiopia may be made to flourish.”


5. The Officials Concerned in its use.

As the seal was put to such varied and important uses in Ancient Egypt, it is no wonder that many officials of the Government were concerned in its employment. There were khetemtiu,[31] “sealers” (singular khetemu, “a sealer”), attached to almost every department of the public service,[32] as well as to all the religious institutions of the country; and even wealthy noblemen[33] usually had one or more of these “sealers” in their household, whose duty it was to give out from the khetemu, “sealed rooms” or “store rooms,” the provisions and other private property required by the great man or by his household. So important was it that the process of sealing jars, boxes, and doors should be done properly, that seḥez,[34] “instructors,” in the art were employed.

30A scene in a tomb at Sakkara[35] shows one of these officials carrying a pail of mud with a ladle in it, going to instruct his pupils. These “sealers” formed a regularly organized body, and served under a mer or “superintendent.”[36]

The reader’s attention has already been drawn to the fact that the monarch was invested at his coronation with a Royal Signet, upon which his name and titles were engraved. In the earlier periods of Egyptian history this Royal Signet was, doubtless, either worn by the monarch himself or carried in some secure way about his person. We do not read in the inscriptions of the earliest dynasties of any “Keeper of the Royal Seal,” as we find so frequently alluded to in the hieroglyphic texts from the Middle Kingdom onwards, and it would consequently appear as if the king himself in those early times attended to the business connected with his Treasury Department.

Two important officials of the oldest period, however, were closely concerned with the use of the seal, and their titles were derived from its name. One of these was the “Sealer of the Honey [jars]”; the other was the “Divine Sealer,” “Sealer of the God.” The first title[37] “the Sealer of the Honey [jars],” was, 31perhaps, the oldest of the many hundreds of titles that we find at all periods of Egyptian history, and from the Third Dynasty onwards there was probably not a man of less than royal rank who would not have been proud to bear it. It originally meant, as we have said, “the Sealer of the Honey [jars]” honey being the greatest of all primitive luxuries, and its use reserved for the king’s table. This title must therefore be regarded as a relic of the most extreme antiquity, and it certainly goes back to the time before the use of wine in the Nile Valley. At the beginning of the Fourth Dynasty (circa 3000 B.C.), however, its meaning had probably become already obsolete, and from that period onwards it meant nothing more than a “Royal Sealer,”[38] or one entitled to use a seal with the monarch’s name engraven upon it. Doubtless there were several of these officers employed in the royal palaces to look after the security of the king’s private property, and it was the duty of some of them to accompany the sovereign on his various military expeditions.[39]

In contradistinction to this secular title we find the “Divine Sealer,” the priest who had 32charge of the temple treasure, furniture, and goods that were kept under the temple seals. This title, like the one that we have just discussed, occurs also at an early period, and continued in use till very late times.[40] These “Divine Sealers” were attached to the service of various gods, or they were employed by the religious authorities of certain districts. In the first case they are specified as “of Amen,”[41] “of Horus,” etc.; while in the second as “of Abydos,”[42] “of Thebes,” etc. It is possible that they were placed under a mer[43] or “Superintendent,” but the title is so rare that this was not usually the case. It was the Divine Sealer’s duty to obtain and supervise the transport of stone for the temple buildings,[44] and to pay for and, if necessary, to collect in far distant countries precious things for the service of the gods. In order to obtain stone for statues or for temple buildings, he sometimes led semi-military expeditions to quarries far in the deserts,[45] and when it was necessary to convey the huge blocks of granite and other material down the river, he was usually placed in command of the transport ships.[46]

33From the time of the Middle Kingdom[47] (circa B.C. 2000) onwards the title mer khetem,[48] “Superintendent” or “Keeper of the (Royal) Seal”[49] is constantly occurring in the hieroglyphic inscriptions. During the first half of the Twelfth Dynasty, while each province was yet ruled over by semi-independent chieftains, there appears to have been a Keeper of the (Royal) Seal employed in the administration of each nome,[50] whose duty it was to collect and transmit treasure to the central office. Next to the chieftain himself, he was perhaps the most important personage 34in the province, for he had control over its revenues, and all its public works were carried out under his supervision. Baqt, the Keeper of the (Royal) Seal in the Oryx nome, supervised the excavation and adornment of Khnemhetep’s magnificent monument at Beni Hasan.[51] When that great nomarch’s officials defiled before him, the Keeper of the (Royal) Seal stood in the place of honour[52] behind the uhem or “Herald,” and in front of the mer meshau or “General of the Troops.” He was the nomarch’s trusted friend, and accompanied him on his hunting and fowling[53] expeditions in the desert and on the river, while in Khnemhetep’s funeral procession to Abydos, his place was in the State barge at the side of the deceased prince’s children.[54] A very interesting scene at Beni Hasan shows the Keeper of the (Royal) Seal seated in his kha[55] or “office,” watching one of his assistants weighing gold, or some other precious metal, in a balance, while a seated scribe writes down the weight on a wooden tablet or sheet of papyrus (see fig. 15). The office here shown was very similar to that of the Vezîr;[56] it was a columned hall of six columns in two rows, the front being open to the air, while at the back was a door which gave entrance to the bêt el mâl or treasury.


Fig. 15.
(From a painting in a tomb at Beni Hasan.)

About the middle of the Twelfth Dynasty a great change appears to have taken place in the political constitution of Egypt; we no longer hear of the Chieftains of Nomes or Provinces, and it seems that the Government, for a short time at least, became much more strictly centralized than it had ever been before. With this centralization of the administration several new offices were created, the provincial “Keepers of the (Royal) Seal” appear to have been suppressed, and adenus, “wakîls” or “deputies” of the Chief Keeper, appointed in their stead. The Treasury Department, however, was still presided over by a single[57] “Keeper of the Royal Seal,” who 36henceforth was one of the most important and powerful personages in the realm;[58] he became, in fact, the Chancellor of the Exchequer,[59] an Lord Chancellor, Keeper of the Seal.

Unfortunately we have no long inscription recording this great official’s duties, as we have in the case of the Vezîr,[60] so it is only by gathering a fact here and there from many sources that we can obtain any idea of his multifarious duties. That he had charge of the Government stores, and supervised everything connected with the bêt el mâl or Treasury, is certain;[61] he had also to be responsible for the payment of all Government bills. If any important public monument had to be erected,[62] or if any government business was to be undertaken, it was his duty, together with his staff of assistants, to make all necessary arrangements regarding the payment of the employés, which must have been a most onerous task, when we remember that the Egyptians possessed no coined money 37until after the time of Alexander the Great. The supervision of the taxation of the country appears also to have been placed in the Chancellor’s hands, and it was his custom, as it still is with the heads of the departments of the various services of the Khedive’s administration, to make an annual tour of inspection throughout the length and breadth of the country.[63] In time of war a number of his officers accompanied the military expeditions, and when a town was plundered by the royal troops, they took possession of the spoil, some of which was kept for the Treasury, while the rest was given to the temples as an offering to the gods.[64]

But not only did the Egyptian Chancellor have charge of everything connected with the Treasury, he seems also to have had a considerable share of the responsibility of appointing various State officials. We have already referred to the story of Joseph’s appointment to the Vezîrate, in which case the Seal or Signet of office was given by the king personally. With other officials, however, it seems to have been the custom for the Chancellor to deliver the Seal, and this ceremonial in a bureaucratic country such as Egypt then was, must have entailed a vast amount of time. Possessing the authority to appoint high officers, and also the means of controlling the State Treasury, it is no wonder that these old Chancellors attained to a great degree of power, and there seems 38reason to believe that more than one dynasty had its origin in a Chancellor’s family.

So many and various were the duties of the Keeper of the (Royal) Seal, that it is hardly matter for surprise if we find that he employed a large staff of assistants to help him. Among these the , “Deputy of the Keeper of the (Royal) Seal,”[65] appears to have been the most important. When his chief was absent from the capital on one of the official tours of inspection through the country, this adenu or “deputy” was left in charge of the central office, and the duty naturally devolved upon him of looking after the permanent staff of the Treasury Department. This staff consisted of:—

(1) A “Chief Overseer of the Courtyard of the Keeper of the (Royal) Seal,”[66] an official who was, I believe, deputed to personally supervise everything that went in or out of the Bêt el mal or Treasury. There was also

(2) A or “Overseer of the Courtyard of the Keeper of the (Royal) Seal.”[67]

(3) A or “Overseer of the Courtyard of the Office of the Keeper of the (Royal) Seal.”[68]

39(4) Several “Assistants.”[69]

(5) A “Chief Scribe,”[70] and several

(6) “Scribes,”[71] who had their own

or “men servants?” These scribes of the Chancellor were very important officials: they were intrusted with official seals, and allowed to transact on their own responsibility important business affairs connected with the State. They appear generally with the title “Scribe in Charge of the Seal,” or, more literally, “he who writes with an Official Seal.” They are found under this title only towards the end of the Twelfth Dynasty, and their services were retained by the bureaucratic kings of the Thirteenth Dynasty, but no mention occurs of them in later times. They were employed in writing official documents, in keeping accounts, and in fixing prices to be paid for wages of labourers. From inscriptions that have been preserved, it would seem that each town[72] had its own “Scribe in Charge of the Seal,” and we read of a “Scribe in Charge of the Seal of the labour bureau” in a Thirteenth Dynasty papyrus.[73]

40Besides the foregoing officials, who were doubtless paid by the Government, the Chancellor had also his private staff to manage his own estates and affairs. Among these may be mentioned[74] a mer per, or “Steward;”[75] a mer shenti, or “Superintendent of the Granary;”[76] a sesh sha, or “letter writer;”[77] and an ari aa, or “doorkeeper.”[78]

The profession of the seal engraver was obviously an important one in Egypt, but we do not find any references to his occupation in the ancient literature. He was called the mer kesti, and the scarab-seal of one named Amenŷ-ankh is in the possession of Mr. Arthur Evans (see Pl. XVII, 27).[79]

6. Seal Engravers and the
Technique of Seal Engraving.

The process of making a seal out of hard stone was simple enough; a suitable piece of amethyst, 41jasper, or other material was taken, cut into the shape of a cylinder, stamp, or scarabaeus beetle, and polished. The device or inscription was then engraved in intaglio. In the case of steatite, schist, and other soft stones, the device was sometimes drawn in ink[80] before being cut, and the seal was finished by being dipped into a vitreous glaze in order to harden it.

Pottery and paste scarab seals were moulded in terra-cotta moulds. A lump of potter’s clay or paste was taken, then pressed into a dusted mould, and flattened with a knife at the bottom. It was then shaken out and left to dry. When dry, the scarab was placed in the engraver’s hands, and the inscription or device was cut on the elliptical base; the whole was then sometimes coated with vitreous glaze.

The glazes used were of different colours, varying from pale blue to deep violet, and from pale to dark green. Sometimes red and yellow glazes were also employed. Often the glazes have changed colour, and sometimes only faint traces of it remain on a seal. Seals that are now brown in colour were originally green, while grey or white examples were generally blue.

The tools used were apparently of four kinds: a knife, a graver, a simple drill, and a tubular drill.

The knife, perhaps of hardened bronze, was used for cutting the specimens of the softer materials into shape, while the graver, of flint or obsidian, was employed for cutting the device or inscription. Herodotus mentions[81] that the Ethiopians pointed their 42arrows with the same sort of hard stone or flint that was used for engraving signets.

The simple drill, used for drilling the soft stone seals and for engraving those of the hard stone class, consisted of a metal drill with handle, the butt end of which revolved inside a stone or wooden cap which the engraver held in his hand, and was thus able to direct the point to the right place. The drill itself was made to revolve by means of rapidly moving forwards and backwards by a bow, the string of which was wound round the stick of the drill. Carpenters and cabinet workers in the East still use a similar bow drill at the present day.

Fig. 16.
(From the tomb of Rekhmara.)

The tubular drill was also worked in the same way with a bow, but instead of the drill being pointed as in the simple drill, it was tubular. With hard stones both these kinds of drill were used, with emery powder and oil or water.



Varieties of Egyptian seals.

It has already been remarked that Egyptian seals may be divided into two great groups: namely (1) those of cylindrical shape, which were rolled over the clay or other substance to be impressed; and (2) those with a flat base, which were used as stamps. Both these types probably originated in Western Asia. The first group comprises all (a) cylinder seals; to the second belong all (b) hemi-cylinder and cone shaped seals, (c) button shaped seals, (d) scarab shaped seals, (e) plaques and other miscellaneous forms, and (f) Signet rings.

1. Cylinder Seals.

Cylinder seals.

The oldest seals that have been discovered in Egypt are of cylindrical shape, hence their name, cylinders, or more correctly, cylinder-seals. They range in size from half an inch to three and a half inches in length, and from a quarter of an inch to three quarters of an inch in diameter. They are pierced longitudinally with a hole, the diameter of which varies from a size just sufficient to receive a small thread of linen, to an aperture in which an ordinary sized finger can be thrust. The two ends are always quite plain, the engraving, in intaglio, being confined to the convex surface, which, as a rule, is parallel to the axis. In some specimens, however, 44the surface is hollowed in such a way that the diameter of the cylinder is greater at the ends than in the middle, but such cylinders are rare, and generally show traces of nearly erased signs appearing through the engraving; they must therefore be considered as having had their original inscription ground down in order to be re-engraved with other characters; they are in fact cylinders that have been re-used.

How used.

When the cylinder seal was required for sealing, it was gently but firmly rolled over the soft clay or other substance destined to receive the impression. To make a good and continuous sealing with an unmounted cylinder is not, however, an easy matter, and consequently we find that this class of seal was often mounted by inserting a rod of metal through its aperture, the ends of which rod projected from the cylinder, so that it could be easily held by the forefinger and thumb, while the rod, serving as an axle, enabled the operator to keep the seal in place, and at the same time to preserve an even pressure whilst rolling it over the clay. This metal rod was sometimes finished off at one end into a kind of boss, while the other end was coiled round to form a loop, so that the cylinder might be attached to a necklace or string (fig. 17). The cylinder seals of kings and nobles had more elaborate mountings, and their ends were often encased in gold, as in a specimen found by Dr. Reisner near Girgeh, and as in an example figured in a Fourth Dynasty tomb at Medûm (fig. 18). Another method of mounting is shown in a hieroglyph (fig. 19) from a Fifth Dynasty Tomb at Sakkara. Here the cylinder appears to be mounted on a metal rod, the projecting ends of which were fixed to either side of a small 45frame, with a handle in which the cylinder seal could revolve. By holding the handle and dragging the cylinder over the clay to be impressed, the seal would revolve as easily and evenly as a wheel on its axle, and consequently leave a good and firm impression behind. The greater number of cylinders, however, are found without any trace of having been mounted, and as many show signs of wear on the edges inside the hole, we may conclude that they were generally simply threaded on a cord, which, for security sake, was either hung by the owner round his neck or waist, or tied to his girdle or garment. It is possible that sometimes the cylinders were kept in boxes. (Abydos, II, p. 25, 12.) Prof. Petrie has discovered an ivory panel of a box for King Den engraved with a group of hieroglyphics, suggesting that the box had contained the gold seal of judgment of the king.

Fig. 17. A MOUNTED CYLINDER SEAL. (In the Louvre.) Fig. 18. CYLINDER SEAL. (Figured in a tomb at Medûm.) Fig. 19. CYLINDER SEAL. (Figured in a tomb at Sakkara. From a drawing by Borchardt, A.Z., vol. xxxv, p. 106.)
Its history.

The history of cylinder seals in Egypt covers the period from prehistoric times to the end of the 46Twenty-sixth Dynasty, but they were only in general use down to the end of the Twelfth Dynasty, when they gave place to the more convenient “scarab” form of seal. They may be most conveniently classified according to the subjects found engraved upon them, but it is also an important matter for the student to carefully note the shape and the size of their perforation, two points which are often of considerable importance when it is desired to accurately date a specimen.

Fig. 20.

Fig. 21.
(In the collection of Mr. Piers.)

Varieties of shape and perforation.

The earliest examples that are at present known are of a peculiarly short thick type, with a narrow hole running through them (fig. 20); they are almost identical in shape with the Chaldean and early Babylonian cylinder seals, and consequently may be thought to indicate a connection at a very remote period between the civilizations of Western Asia and Egypt—a connection which is still more apparent when we come to consider the subjects engraved on many of the seals themselves.[82] At a later period appears another variety, which is long and thick (see fig. 21), but with a much larger perforation than that of the cylinders of the earliest period. These two varieties have been found together in tombs of the beginning of the First Dynasty, but the earlier disappears soon after the reign of King Zet (First Dynasty), 47while the later one was in general use down to the end of the Sixth Dynasty.

With the beginning of the Middle Kingdom we have another type of cylinder seal making its appearance; this resembles more a long cylindrical bead (fig. 22), with an aperture of only sufficient size to admit of its being strung on a thin cord or thread. The examples dating from the time of Amenemhat III and his immediate successors are often of fairly large size, but with narrow perforation, while those of the latter part of the Thirteenth Dynasty are always much smaller, and dwindle down in shape to mere cylindrical beads.

The few cylinder seals of the Hyksos period that are known are of medium size (fig. 23), with narrow perforation, and are somewhat like those of the earlier half of the Twelfth Dynasty. The specimens of the Eighteenth and later Dynasties vary in size considerably, but they always have a narrow perforation (fig. 24).


48Although comparatively few specimens have been found in wood, it is clear from many clay impressions[83] that cylinder seals were generally made of this material. One example of wood was found at Abydos[84] having the inscription written upon it in ink, showing that the design was sketched out on the cylinder by a scribe before it was cut by the engraver. Next to wood, the commonest material in early times was black steatite; but a few specimens have been found of hæmatite, green jasper, and ivory. Copper and bronze examples appear during the Fifth and Sixth Dynasties, and glazed pottery specimens appear a little later. White or grey steatite, coated with blue or green glaze, was the favourite material of the Twelfth Dynasty kings and officials, and this material was in vogue till the Nineteenth Dynasty. At the beginning of the Eighteenth Dynasty carnelian cylinder seals make their appearance, and the latest specimen known is of this hard stone.

The subjects engraved upon Egyptian cylinder seals.

The subjects engraved upon Egyptian cylinder seals may be grouped into three well defined divisions. Firstly, there is a small class the engraving on which depicts figures of men and animals, sometimes very beautifully executed. Secondly, a much larger class, represented by several hundred specimens, which bear true hieroglyphic inscriptions. Thirdly, a very small class with scroll patterns or other ornamental devices.

I. Figures of men and animals.

49The specimens of the first class require to be studied in some detail, for they contain elements which are of great importance to the comparative archaeologist. A typical example is given in fig. 25, and a second will be found in Pl. III, fig. 1. One of the most distinctive features of these seals is the double-forequartered animal, a feature which occurs again on the button-shaped seals[85] of the period intervening between the Sixth and the Twelfth Dynasties. This does not appear to be an Upper Egyptian motif, but one common to the Delta and to an early civilization of Western Asia.

Fig. 25.

Another distinctive feature of these early cylinder seals is a curious bow-legged figure of a man, which is found also on the button-shaped seals[86] of a later date. “The characteristic form of the lower limbs,” writes Mr. Evans, who was the first to draw attention to this class of seal,[87] “shows that we have here to deal with 50the same grotesque personage who so often makes his appearance in a secondary position in Babylonian cylinders[88]” of an extremely archaic type, and Mr. Evans is of opinion that this figure has been taken direct from the early cylinders of Babylon.[89] I would suggest, however, that this feature, like that of the double-headed animals, is but another instance of Delta and Western Asian influence. It is not, indeed, improbable that in the cylinders of this class we have relics of a Delta civilization which was distinct from that of Middle and Upper Egypt. In point of date the specimens of this group range from prehistoric times to about the end of the Old Kingdom (circa 2500 B.C.), when they appear to have entirely died out.

Fig. 26.

II. Hieroglyphic inscriptions.

Of the second group of Egyptian cylinder seals, namely, those bearing hieroglyphic inscriptions, a large number are figured in the plates, but a glance at the reproductions of them will show that they are of several different types, and that they may be more 51conveniently studied if they are grouped into subdivisions. The examples of an earlier period than the First Dynasty may be subdivided into two separate classes.

Primitive cylinder-seals. Class I.

In the first may be placed all those bearing any primitive hieroglyphic signs which appear to give personal names written in a horizontal line (fig. 26). A remarkable feature of this class is, that on most of the examples occurs a curious figure of a stork with head turned over its back.

Class II.

To the second class belong all those seals which give personal names, with a seated figure as determinative, and always written in a horizontal line (see fig. 27). This seated figure is very unlike that which occurs in later hieroglyphic inscriptions; it is always represented as wearing a long wig of hair, which falls behind the head to some distance below the shoulders, and in front of the figure is generally shown a table upon which are figured loaves of bread. The standard-sign Neith is often found on cylinder-seals of this type, and would perhaps point to the Western Delta as the place of their origin: the stork, so common on specimens on Class I, seems, however never to occur in them.

Fig. 27.

Class III.

With the beginning of the historical period appears another class, which is characterized by rude 52hieroglyphic inscriptions written in vertical columns, which columns are generally divided by lines (see fig. 28) These are the true prototypes of the Egyptian cylinder-seals of the Old and Middle Kingdoms.

Cylinder-seals of Dynastic times.

Cylinder-seals of Dynastic times which bear hieroglyphic inscriptions may be divided into groups according to the meaning of their inscriptions. Thus we have (I) a group which bears the names and titles of kings and other royal personages; (II) a group of officials which bear the king’s name and the title of the office or official, but never the personal name of the latter; and (III) a small group of private seals which bear the name and titles of the former.

Fig. 28.

Fig. 29.
(From Petrie’s Royal Tombs, II, Pl. XIII, 91.)

Fig. 30.
(From Petrie’s Royal Tombs, II, Pl. XV, 108.)

Cylinder-seals bearing Royal names.

One of the earliest Royal seals that we know of is that of Narmer, the predecessor of Mena; it is reproduced in outline in fig. 29, and gives merely the Horus-name of the king. The Royal seal of Zer, Mena’s successor, gives besides the name of 53the monarch, a figure of him seated and wearing the two crowns, typical of Upper and Lower Egypt (see fig. 30). At the time of the Third Dynasty the Royal name is first put into an oval ring or cartouche, and a little later the name is generally accompanied by the statement that the king is “beloved of 54the gods,” or beloved “of the goddess Hathor.” With Men-kau-ra the title Sa Ra, “Son of Ra,” first appears,[90] but it is not till the Twelfth Dynasty that we find the full name of a king cut on a single seal. At the time of the Twelfth and Thirteenth Dynasties the king’s name is generally given in a cartouche either with[91] or without[92] his official titles, and then it is often accompanied by the statement that he is “beloved of Sebek”[93] of some specified locality. A few cylinder-seals of this period also bear the names of two or more kings.[94] The only specimens of the Hyksos period that are known up to the present are those of Khŷan; one of these is in the Museum at Athens,[95] another is in the possession of Signor Lanzone,[96] and a third is in the Cairo Museum (see fig. 23). Two remarkable cylinders of about the same period are figured in Pl. VII, 2, and VIII, 1; while to the latter half of the Hyksos period must be placed the cylinder-seal of King Antef (Nub-kheper-ra), of the early Seventeenth Dynasty, which is figured in Pl. VII, 12. The Royal cylinder-seals of the Eighteenth Dynasty generally bear the king’s name in the cartouche without other decorations,[97] but some have also a figure of the king, or figures of gods and animals.[98] The large specimen reproduced in outline on Pl. VIII, 7, is the seal of Sety I of the Nineteenth Dynasty, and is one the latest specimens of Royal cylinder-seal known.


Fig. 31.

Official cylinder-seals.

Official cylinder-seals are of two kinds. They either bear (a) the name of the king together with the title of the office or official, but not the personal name of the latter; or (b) simply the title of the official without the name of the king. The Royal name appears once or thrice on the seals of the first group, and, if repeated, the rest of the inscription is placed between the names; the titles and name of the king are almost always written in a direction contrary to that of the other words, apparently as a mark of respect (see fig. 31). These official cylinder-seals range in date from the First Dynasty to the time of Pepŷ II of the Sixth Dynasty, when they became superseded by the seals of the stamp form.

Private cylinder-seals.

Fig. 32.

Cylinder-seals bearing the name and titles of officials are also known (see fig. 32). These appear 56to have been used as the private seals of the persons whose names are engraved upon them. They date from the Twelfth Dynasty into the Twenty-Sixth but are very rare.

III. Scroll patterns, etc.

A very small class of cylinder-seal bears scroll patterns or geometrical devices.[99] These appear for the first time during the intermediate period between the end of the Sixth and the beginning of the Twelfth Dynasty, when they are generally made of glazed pottery, and are very coarsely executed. The specimens of a later time (probably Seventeenth or early Eighteenth Dynasty) are of glazed steatite, and beautifully cut.

Figs. 33 and 34.

2. Button-shaped and Hemi-cylinder Seals.

Button-shaped seals.

A small, but very distinctive class of seal, cut in the shape of a button, with flat circular disc and loop at the back (see fig. 33), has recently been found in Egypt, and closely akin to this class is another, but much smaller one, the examples of which are cut in the form of a hemi-cylinder (sometimes with projecting base), and pierced through their length by a hole of | Hemi-cylinders.| sufficient size to admit of a fine piece of string being 57inserted (see fig. 34). Some of the button-shaped seals have ornamented backs: instead of the loop being plain as in fig. 39, it is cut in such a way as to represent two hawks’ heads, or the fore-parts of two lions back to back. Occasionally we also find specimens in the shape of a hippopotamus’ head (fig. 40).

Figs. 35 and 36.

How used and mounted.

The specimens of these two classes were used as stamps, and they are generally found either attached to a finger by a flaxen thread, or threaded to a string of beads, in which case they were worn around the neck as pendants.[100] Occasionally they have been found without any attachment, but simply held by the owner in his or her left hand.

Figs 37 and 38.

Their history.

These two classes of seal were in use in Egypt for a limited period only. They appear for the first time in graves belonging to the end of the Sixth Dynasty,[101] 58and during the period intervening between that time and the beginning of the Middle Kingdom they were the commonest form of seal in use.[102] Before the end of the Eleventh Dynasty they seem to have entirely disappeared.

Fig. 39.

Fig. 40.

The subjects engraved on (1) button-shaped seals.

The patterns[103] that we find engraved upon button-shaped seals are distinctive, and they are certainly not Upper Egyptian in their origin. Hieroglyphs very rarely occur (cf. fig. 41), and when they do, they are clearly imitations of Egyptian characters made apparently by foreigners. The motives for some of 59the designs are clear; thus a common type is that which has already been noticed as occurring on a class of early cylinder-seal—the linked forequarters of gazelles and other animals symmetrically arranged (cf. figs. 39, 40); sometimes also we find a curious running figure of a man (fig. 42, and cf. fig. 35), and occasionally a tortoise, a lizard (cf. fig. 43), or a spider (cf. fig. 44). Conventional and geometrical patterns are also found, the meander[104] and the radiated disc being perhaps the most frequent. See also figs. 45-6.

Figs. 41, 42 and 43.

(2) Hemi-cylinders.

The patterns occurring on the hemi-cylinder seals are nearly all geometrical, as shown in figs. 47-57, but the human figure is sometimes represented, as in fig. 34.

Figs. 44, 45 and 46.

Figs. 47, 48 and 49.

Figs. 50 and 51.

Historical importance of button-shaped seals.

The button-shaped seals are of considerable interest to the student of comparative archaeology, and they are certainly not Upper Egyptian in their origin. The earlier forms have, moreover, no affinity 60to the Mycenaean series of designs, and, as Mr. Petrie[105] has remarked, the spirals, butterfly, cuttlefish and other characteristic types are absent. On the other hand, they have several links which connect them to the Greek Island and Cretan class of seals, and also to some found in Italy, from which we may perhaps infer that they are of common origin.[106] An almost exact reproduction of some of these steatite buttons in clay actually occurs in the Italian terramare, and in the Ligurian cave deposits of neolithic and æneolithic periods. Mr. A. Evans writes, “The clay stamp from the terramare of Montale in the Modenese, represented in fig. 52, the top of which is now broken, 61was probably once perforated, is not only analogous in form but bears a simple geometrical design almost identical with that on an early steatite button-seal from Knossos.”[107]

Fig. 52.


Specimens of button-seals have been found in gold, amethyst, carnelian, lapis lazuli, black steatite, steatite glazed blue or green, ivory, bone, and blue or green glazed pottery. The hemi-cylinders are only as yet known in steatite glazed blue or green.

3. Scarab-shaped Seals.

Scarab-shaped seals.

By far the commonest form of Egyptian seal was that cut in the shape of the scarabaeus beetle, hence its name, “Scarab” or “Scarabaeus,” from the Greek name of the insect, [Greek: skarabos] or [Greek: skarabeios] (Latin scarabaeus).[108] The beetle is represented standing on an elliptical base, on which is engraved in intaglio a hieroglyphic inscription or ornamental pattern. The seals of this class range in size from a fifth of an inch in length to four or even five inches, but the commonest size is about three-quarters of an inch, by half-an-inch broad and a quarter of an inch high. They are nearly always pierced longitudinally with a hole, the size of which is usually just sufficient to receive a thread or thin wire.

How used.

62When the scarab-seal was used for sealing, it was simply pressed upon the clay destined to receive the impression, just as a signet is used at the present day. A large number of clay-sealings from scarabs have been found in different localities in Egypt, and bear witness to the manner in which this class of seal was used.

How mounted.

Fig. 53.

The greater number of scarabs were probably simply strung on a thread of string, by which they were secured to the garment or girdle of the person to whom they belonged. Sometimes they were worn on the finger, attached by a piece of string (fig. 53), or they were simply mounted as swivels to metal rings, in which they revolved (fig. 54), or they were enclosed in a metal frame or funda in order to protect their edges from injury, and then mounted as swivels to metal rings (fig. 55). Such mountings often give us a clue to the date of these objects, and will be found described in detail in the section on signet-rings.

Fig. 54. 1:1 and Fig. 55. 2:1.

Current ideas regarding scarabs.

The beetle upon which these little seals are modelled, and from which they take their name, 63is the Scarabaeus sacer of entomologists, an insect which is remarkable not only for the structure and situation of its hind legs, which give it a singular appearance when walking, but also for its habit of rolling up balls of excrementitious matter in which the female encloses her eggs. The balls of dung the insect rolls about the sand until they become coated with a thick layer of dust, and grow to a size often as large as the insect itself. The Egyptians, who were always keen observers of nature, early noticed this remarkable habit, and selected the scarabaeus as the symbol of their god Khepera, “he who turns” or “rolls;” for the conception was that Khepera caused the sun to move across the sky, as the beetle causes its ball to roll along the sand. There was also another reason for the Egyptian linking the insect and the god together: as the young beetle came forth from the ball of clay it was believed that a female beetle did not exist, that it was consequently the “only-begotten,” because it was a “creature self-produced and not conceived by a female.” Hence we find that for this reason it is said to have been taken as the emblem of Khepera, the “Father of the Gods,” who created all things out of clay. Consequently we find that several archaeologists attach a sacred meaning to the myriads of scarabs that have been found in Egypt; they regard them simply as emblems of the god Khepera.

It is, however, as a “charm” or “amulet” having magical qualities that the scarab is usually spoken of at the present day, and that a few of them had a magical signification is proved beyond a doubt 64by the inscriptions that are found engraved upon some of them. There is also a mention of a scarab being employed for the purposes of magic in a magical receipt book[109] of the period intervening between the end of the Twelfth and the beginning of the Eighteenth Dynasty; but it must here be remarked that in this case the scarab is called a khetem or “seal,” which clearly shows that the Egyptians regarded these objects primarily as seals, to whatever other uses they may have put them.

From the fact that scarabs bearing royal names are often found with mummies in the tombs, it has been conjectured that they were laid with the dead “to place them under the protection of their former lord in the next world, and to ensure that they should follow him and share in all the immunities and privileges that so great a divine being would enjoy with the gods.”

Another theory regarding Egyptian scarabs is that they were employed as tokens of value, but, as we have already remarked,[110] the idea that they were used for the purposes of barter or exchange is not supported by the inscriptions, or by any of the scenes depicted on the walls of the ancient tombs or temples. The statement of Plato that engraved stones were used in Ethiopia as money refers to Ethiopia alone and not to Egypt, for there was certainly no coined money in the Nile Valley until the period of the Ptolemies.

Other archaeologists there are who hold that these objects were made and used for the purpose 65of personal decoration; but although there is every reason to believe that they were often, perhaps generally, worn on the person, it by no means follows that this was their only or even their principal use. At the present day we often carry our seals on our watch chains, or we wear our signets as rings on our fingers, but we cannot rightly say that these articles were made solely for the adornment of the person.

These are the principal theories regarding the use and signification of the Egyptian scarab which have been set forth in works hitherto published on the subject, but archaeologists are beginning to abandon these views in favour of another and a simpler one, that has not as yet been discussed at length, but that recognizes in these little objects nothing more than a simple seal or signet.[111] This use is borne witness to by the great number of actual impressions of them on bits of clay that have served as seals to letters and other documents, as well as to boxes, vases, and bags that have been found in the ruins of ancient towns; and these impressions include every variety of scarab—royal, official, and private, as well as those bearing figures of animals and ornamental patterns. The large number of scarabs which bear the names of officials and private persons also points to the same conclusion, for it is impossible to regard the examples of this extensive group in any other light than as the “direct forerunners of the private seals which are so universal in the East at the present day.” A large 66number of scarabs have also been dug up by excavators which are mounted in metal bands (fundae), showing that they had served as bezels to rings, and many early rings with scarab bezels may be seen in our museums; these can hardly be regarded in any other light than as signet-rings.

It has been urged against this interpretation that the manufacture of scarabs in such profusion as we find them, precludes the idea that they were signets and nothing more, but it seems to have been forgotten that many millions of people must have lived during the several thousand years of ancient Egyptian history. The fact also that so many bear the royal superscription of one and the same king has likewise been brought forward as a serious objection to the theory that royal scarabs were used as seals; but here again the two kings whose names are most often found on these objects are the two—Thothmes III and Rameses II—whose reigns were the longest of all the Egyptian monarchs, and they must have employed a great number of officials entitled to use the royal seals during their long administrations. It is in the light of seals, therefore, that scarabs are considered in the present volume.

Their history.

It is difficult to fix the precise period at which the scarab form of seal first appears in history. It is a noteworthy fact, however, that not a single specimen has yet been authenticated from a grave of a date anterior to the Sixth Dynasty. The remarkable tombs discovered by Petrie, de Morgan and others, at Abydos, Nagada, and Bêt Khalâf, though they contained not a single scarab or impression of one, produced a large series of clay sealings used for wine jars, etc., exhibiting 67impressions of cylinder seals. It is remarkable also that in the extensive cemetery of Dendera, where there were many remains of the Sixth to Eleventh Dynasties, not a single scarab was found which could be attributed to an earlier period than the Twelfth Dynasty, and a similar result was obtained from the cemetery at Hu of the same period. In Mr. Garstang’s excavations at Beni Hasan, out of eight hundred tombs of the period that were opened and examined, not one inscribed scarab was found of the Eleventh and early Twelfth Dynasties. These facts would lead one to suppose that at least scarabs were not in general use in Egypt until the middle of the Twelfth Dynasty.

Fig. 56.

A few scarabs, however, bear the names of kings of the Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth Dynasties, but from the forms of the backs, the glaze and general technique, they all appear to me to be of a much later period than that of the monarchs whose names they bear. The names anterior to the Twelfth Dynasty that occur upon such scarabs are Mena, Khufu, Kha-ef-ra, Men-kau-ra, Unas, Merŷ-ra (Pepŷ I) and Mer-en-ra. The Mena scarabs are admitted by Prof. Petrie and other Egyptian archaeologists to be of a much later date than the Old Kingdom. That scarabs of Khufu, Kha-ef-ra and Men-kau-ra were made during the Eighteenth and later dynasties there can be no question. In the Cairo Museum are four scarabs, all found together by Mariette at Sakkara, which are of exactly the same modelling, material and glaze: one bears the name of Khufu, another that of Nefer-ka-ra, the third that of Nefer-ra, while the fourth is of Amenardes of the Twenty-Fourth Dynasty. In a 68private collection in Cairo is a scarab bearing the name of Kha-ef-ra in green glazed steatite, with cutting, form of back, and glaze exactly similar to that of a well-known type of Thothmes III. All the Men-kau-ra scarabs are also undoubtedly not earlier than the period of the Eighteenth Dynasty. The Unas scarabs bear a great resemblance to a certain class of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Dynasties: they are generally coarsely cut, and the glaze has turned a dull brown. The only scarab of Merŷ-ra known is of the same style as the scarabs of the Thirteenth Dynasty, and Merŷ-ra was a fairly common personal name at that period. About the Mer-en-ra example I am inclined to believe that it is perhaps contemporary with the king whose name it bears, for it is of glazed pottery, and closely resembles in style and technique a very small and distinctive class of scarab-seal which has been recently found in association with button-shaped seals in graves of the intermediate period between the end of the Old Kingdom and the beginning of the Twelfth Dynasty.[112] That scarabs sometimes bear the names of two or more kings, is also another proof that we cannot always treat of them as contemporary with the kings whose names they bear. Thus scarabs are known of Thothmes I, III, and Setŷ I, of Thothmes III and Usertsen III, of Men-kau-ra and Thothmes III.

Fig. 57.

69It seems clear, therefore, that scarabs were not employed in Egypt before the end of the Sixth Dynasty, and then only very rarely. At the beginning of the Twelfth Dynasty their use was still very restricted, but at the middle of that dynasty they came into general use very quickly, and by the time of Amenemhat III they seem to have been widespread in Egypt. From that time onwards to the end of the Twenty-sixth Dynasty the history of Egyptian scarab-seals can be traced in an unbroken line; after the latter period they became very scarce, and finally disappear early in Roman times.

Geographical range of Egyptian scarab-seals.

Many Egyptian scarab-seals have been found in regions other than the Nile Valley. In Syria they have been turned up in plenty. In Cyprus, Rhodes, the Aegean Islands and the Greek mainland, numerous examples have been found. They have also been discovered at Crete, in Italy and Sardinia, on the north coast of Africa, and in Babylonia,—in all places in fact that had trade relations with the Egyptians.

Varieties of Shape.

The period to which a scarab belongs may often be determined from its shape and the markings on the back of the beetle; hence it is important to carefully note the varieties of form which occur. In fig. 58 will be seen a specimen of a scarab-beetle (the real Scarabaeus sacer[113]) with the nomenclature of its various parts described: these names will be used in later references.

Pre-Middle Kingdom.

Fig. 58.

The earliest examples known are of pottery, glazed, small in size and somewhat rough in modelling. The lines are coarse, but distinguish the head, prothorax and body, with elytra marked. The specimens figured, No. 59, are from El Mahasna, and are now in the museum at Cairo. Probably they may be dated, the discoverer tells me, to the rise of the Middle Kingdom, just before the Eleventh Dynasty. The example bearing the name of Mer-en-ra (fig. 56) is of this class.

Fig. 59.

The Twelfth Dynasty.

Three varieties of form are characteristic of the Twelfth Dynasty. The earliest, dated approximately to the reigns of Usertsen I and Usertsen II, show the beetle carefully modelled, with clypeus (fig. 60), prothorax and elytra, as well as the legs, well defined. 71Just later, about the time of Amenemhat III, a more decorative and conventional style appears, in which, while the lines are treated with more freedom, and small embellishments are introduced for ornamental purposes as in fig. 61, the form and details of the beetle are nevertheless well preserved. A common form of this date is shown in fig. 62: it is noticeable that the elytra are not outlined, but the marking of the head, eyes, and legs appears as in the previous examples. This type, with slight variations, perseveres, being traceable through the Hyksos period, and reflected in specimens of the early Eighteenth Dynasty.

Figs. 60 and 61.

Figs. 62 and 63.

The closing years of the royal line of the Middle Kingdom, commonly called the Twelfth and Thirteenth Dynasties, are marked by a special variety of beetle, which has a high back (particularly at the prothorax, where the scarab is thickest) and a narrow waist, produced by an indent on either side at the point where the 72prothorax and elytra adjoin. The head shows clypeus and eyes: the legs are usually shown in outline only, while the elytra are not marked. There is a second type, characteristic also of these times, which is in reality a development from earlier forms, as may be seen by comparing the example in fig. 64 with that previously illustrated in fig. 60. The tendency to decorative effect seen in this case is further exemplified by a number of scarabs which seem to follow the prototype of fig. 61, though failing to preserve the quality of the lines and cutting.

Figs. 64 and 65.

The Hyksos Period.

As previously mentioned, the type of back in which no elytra are shown remains the common variety through the Hyksos period. A short notch on each side indicates the point of division of the prothorax from the body, and in the example shown in fig. 65 the legs are suggested only. The head and clypeus are plain; the eye is sometimes represented. A decorative effect is produced in some instances, as 73in fig. 66, by representing hairy legs upon the back of the beetle. A unique example for the period is illustrated in fig. 67, where the back is scored with lines diagonally in each direction. Another typical form is shown in fig. 68, in which the threading holes are supported by a ring carved with the scarab, while the beetle itself is developed apparently from the type in fig. 63. In such scarabs the hairy legs upon the back occasionally may be noted. Another Hyksos type characteristically represents the human head (fig. 69, and compare the scarab of King Apepŷ figured in Plate I) upon the body of the scarab with or without the legs over the back.

Figs. 66 and 67.

Figs. 68 and 69.

Figs. 70 and 71.

Figs. 72 and 73.

Figs. 74 and 75.

The Eighteenth Dynasty.

With the close of the Hyksos period there is no discontinuity in the forms of scarab-backs commonly represented, but there is a marked incoming of new motives. Fig. 70 well shows the survival in the early Eighteenth Dynasty of the plain-bodied scarab which 74we have seen surviving throughout the earlier periods. Marks hitherto naturalistic are seen to be becoming conventional or decorative, but the form both in outline and in section is well preserved. In fig. 71, however, there is seen a new type, characterised by the oval base, the curving of the lines separating the prothorax from the body, and a superiority of technique evidenced both by symmetry and firm cutting. Fig. 72 illustrates a development of this tendency in a highly-finished and decorative specimen, in which ornamental feeling now predominates for the first time over the naturalistic. The support of the thread-hole survives in this instance in the decoration, while the legs overspread upon a broader margin to the base. The date of this example is Amenhetep I. But the typical form of the middle Eighteenth Dynasty is illustrated by the example shown in fig. 73, which is 75dated by the name of Hatshepsut. The head and back are well shaped in the section, while the clypeus and head are clearly and exquisitely cut. The prothorax is rounded at the base, while in the forepart of the elytra a small notch is indicated in the wing case on each side. The legs are sometimes well modelled, at other times indicated only in outline. A variation is illustrated in fig. 74, which dates from the time of Amenhetep III.

Figs. 76 and 77.

Figs. 78 and 79.

The Nineteenth Dynasty.

With the advent of the Nineteenth Dynasty the tendency to enlarge the base, and the spreading legs upon it and around the scarab, becomes typical of the period, as illustrated in figs. 75, 76. Another numerous class is of pottery, glazed as before, in which the head is elongated while the prothorax and elytra are not outlined. A downward notch on either side of the forepart of the wing cases, however, indicates the separation of the prothorax from the body. The legs stand high, but project only a little (fig. 77). 76During the reign of Rameses the Great an interesting decorative motive is introduced in a few examples, of which figs. 78, 79 are specimens of interest. The former, in the Amherst Collection, is of ivory, finely cut. Upon the base is the device of Rameses in his chariot, while upon the back is the outline of the beetle, filled in with his cartouche and emblems. During the same period the human head upon the scarab body makes its reappearance as a device for decoration.

The Ethiopian dominion.

Fig. 80.

With the Ethiopian dominion a ram’s head (the emblem of Amen-ra) frequently is found upon the beetle body (fig. 80); while sometimes, as shown in fig. 81, the body of the scarab is replaced by the familiar Hathor head with uraei on either side.

The subjects engraved on scarab-seals.

The subjects engraved on Egyptian scarab-seals may be divided into several well-defined groups. Firstly, there are those which bear hieroglyphic inscriptions. Secondly, there are those which bear figures of men, animals, or flowers; and thirdly, those which bear geometrical designs, coil and rope patterns, etc.

I. Hieroglyphic inscriptions.

For the purposes of study the first group may be subdivided into: (1) those which are inscribed with the names of kings and other royal personages; (2) those which bear the names of officials and private people; (3) those which have titles without names; (4) those which represent the names or figures of deities, and (5) those which bear good wishes, mottoes, and magic formulae.

Fig. 81.

(1) Royal names.

77The largest class of these objects bear the names and titles of the Egyptian kings; they are consequently most valuable for the illustrations they afford of Egyptian history: some of these names being scarcely, if at all, known except from these sources. The information they convey is, of course, usually very laconic, but sometimes the names are coupled with some facts connected with them, such as that the king is the son of a certain prince (Pl. X, 2), or that he is born of a queen (Pl. X, 3), or that he is beloved of some god (Pl. XXX, 22), or that he has conquered the foreigners (Pl. XXVIII, 10).

(2) Private names.

Scarab-seals bearing seals of officials and private persons form the second largest class. They usually give one or more titles of the official, together with the personal name. The earliest example known is one in the Amherst Collection, bearing the name of the “Mayor Tahutihetep,” from a tomb at El Bersheh, and the date of it is Usertsen II (Pl. XI, 15). They were common during the late Twelfth Dynasty and early intermediate period; they occur fairly often during the first half of the Eighteenth Dynasty, but are rarely found after that date. Frequently these private scarabs are decorated with a scroll pattern or other ornament, often very beautifully executed.

(3) Titles.

A very small number bear titles without personal names, such as “the courtier” (Pl. XLI, 20), “the governor of the royal city” (Pl. XLI, 22), “the priest,” and “the mayor.” These are all of a late date (Twenty-sixth Dynasty), and are very rare.

(4) Names or figures of deities.

Names or figures of deities engraved on scarabs are common, but they are mostly of the principal gods and goddesses of Egypt, such as Amen, Amen-Ra 78(Pl. XLI, 18), Ptah (Pl. XLI, 13), Khensu, Isis, Hathor (Pl. XLI, 5), Mut, Horus (Pl. XLI, 10), and Set (Pl. XLI, 15). These date from the beginning of the Eighteenth onwards to the Twenty-sixth Dynasty.

(5) Good wishes, mottoes, and magic formulae.

Scarabs bearing good wishes, mottoes, and magic formulae are numerous. Some of them not only give the good wishes, but even the names of the persons from whom they emanated and to whom they were sent. Thus the inscription on one in the Petrie Collection reads: “May Ptah give a Happy New Year, from the Prince Shashanq to his mother Ka-ra-ma-ma” (Pl. XL, 8). Others give simply the words, “A Happy New Year” (Pl. XL, 2), or “May Bast give a Happy New Year” (Pl. XL, 3). Some read, “If Amen is behind, there is no fear” (Pl. XXXIX, 27), while a little plaque in the Hood Collection says, “I am true of heart” (Pl. XL, 21).

II. Figures of men and animals, etc.

Many scarab-seals bear the figures of men and animals, the principal animals figured being the lion, bull, cynocephalus, horse, and gazelle. Birds are also often engraved, the hawk, the emblem of Horus, being the commonest. Serpents are very common, and we also occasionally find combinations of serpents with animals, sphinxes, griffons, and sometimes beetles and locusts (see Pl. XXV). Flowers, such as the lotus, are frequently found engraved on these seals.

Hunting scenes on scarab-seals appear for the first time during the Hyksos period, and a beautifully cut specimen of this date is in the Ashmolean Museum at Oxford (Pl. XXV, 26). It represents a king clad in a striped loin-cloth with fringed edge, and wearing a curiously-shaped head-dress. Armed with a bow and arrows, he hunts three ibex-gazelles and a lion among 79bushes of a desert wady. To a later period, probably not earlier than the Nineteenth Dynasty, belong the common hunt scarabs of the types figured in Pl. XLII, 33-39. The first and rarest type (Pl. XLII, 33) shows a hunter with lions and cheetahs chasing a gazelle. The second and commonest type represents an archer hunting the lion and other desert animals (Pl. XLII, 35). The third type is more elaborate, and depicts the hunter riding in a chariot drawn by one or more horses (Pl. XLII, 37-39), while on other scarabs we sometimes see the huntsman overtaken by a lion, and lying flat on the ground, apparently slain (Pl. XLII, 34). The cutting of these Nineteenth Dynasty hunt scarabs is generally deep, and the subject is always more or less coarsely rendered: few specimens bear any trace of glazing, and when found it is always of an inferior kind, which has turned brown.

Coil and rope patterns.

Scarabs with ornamental devices, such as coils and twisted rope patterns engraved upon them, appear first about the reign of Usertsen I, and continued in use to the middle of the Eighteenth Dynasty, after which period they rarely occur. The date of any single specimen may generally be determined by the form of the back, but the glazing and general style of cutting is also important in this connection. Specimens of the late Twelfth and early Thirteenth Dynasties are often fine examples of ornamental art: they are generally designed with much care, and executed with wonderful minuteness and delicacy of touch. Finely worked specimens are also found of the time of Queen Hatshepsut and Thothmes III. A representative series of coil and rope-pattern scarabs is given in Pls. XVIII and XIX. The rope-patterns figured in 80Pl. XIX, 1-3, are of the Hyksos period, while those on Pl. XVIII, 1-15, 18, range in date from the Twelfth to the Eighteenth Dynasties. The coil-patterns given in Pl. XIX, 4, 5, 9, are certainly of the Hyksos period, while the remainder of the coil patterns are mainly of the late Twelfth and Eighteenth Dynasties. Often the continuous loop coil was used to ornament the scarabs of kings and officials. The earliest example, indeed the earliest example of any coil-pattern in Egypt, is found on a scarab of Usertsen I, most exquisitely worked and fully developed (fig. 82).

Fig. 82.

For a long time past it has been thought that the spiral as a motive in decoration originated in the Nile Valley, and much misconception seems to prevail among archaeologists as to its occurrence in Egypt. Prof. Petrie says[114] that its earliest use in the country was for the decoration of scarabs, and he would trace the spiral motive back as far as the Fifth Dynasty. The single scarab that he instances, it is true, bears the prenomen of Dad-ka-Ra (Assa), but there is not the slightest reason to make one believe that this particular specimen is contemporaneous with the king whose name it bears; the whole style of it, on the contrary, clearly shows that it belongs to no earlier a date than the Eighteenth Dynasty. Prof. Petrie also attributes 81a number of scarabs bearing coil, hook and link ornamentation to the Sixth and Eighth Dynasties, but these have been conclusively shown by Fraser[115] and Griffith[116] to be in reality post rather than pre Twelfth Dynasty. The fact is that the spiral has not yet been found on Egyptian monuments of an older date than the reign of Usertsen I. It was then used as a motive for decorating a ceiling in the tomb of a chieftain at Assiut.[117] Employed architecturally it is not found again until the beginning of the Eighteenth Dynasty, when it was perhaps the most frequent motive for ceiling decorations in Theban tombs. In these tombs it is generally coloured yellow, to represent gold, and it is highly probable that the ornament itself originated in metal wire-work.[118]

At the same time as we find it occurring at Assiut, we also find the spiral used to decorate a scarab bearing the prenomen of Usertsen I (fig. 82). On this specimen the ornament is cut with very great care and regularity, indicating that the design was “a 82novelty, which had not yet become stereotyped[119] and reproduced as a matter of course.” The same exquisite workmanship is found on some scarabs bearing private names of the time of Amenemhat III or a little later; and here the continuous coil is combined with the lotus in a most beautiful design—a continuous coil, with flowers and buds in the spaces (Pl. XIV, figs. 21-26). It is difficult to believe that such a design sprang into being fully developed; but nothing has yet been found in Egypt at all like it of a period anterior to the Twelfth Dynasty; we must therefore search for the origin and development of the spiral motive in ornament elsewhere than in the Nile Valley. We do not yet know sufficiently the history of the Delta to say definitely that it did not originate there, but the probabilities are that we should look for its earliest employment and development outside the realm of Egypt.[120] However that may be, the spiral was one of the most important of the motives of the decorative art of the ancient world. From very ancient times it was largely used by the peoples of Western Asia and the Eastern Mediterranean, and in “the wake of early commerce it was spread afield to the Danubian basin, and thence in turn by the valley of the Elbe to the Amber coast of the North Sea; there to supply the 83Scandinavian Bronze Age population with their leading decorative designs. Adopted by the Celtic tribes in the Central European area, it took at a somewhat later date a westerly turn, reached Britain with the invading Belgae, and finally survived in Irish art.”[121]

Material. Hard stones, obsidian, etc.

Scarabs are made of all kinds of material, from the hardest obsidian and amethyst, to soft steatite and even wood. In all ages they were made of hard stones. Obsidian, spotted diorite, beryl, white quartz, hematite, amethyst, serpentine, green and red jasper, as well as red carnelians, lapis lazuli, and turquoise were all in use from the end of the Twelfth Dynasty onwards to the Twenty-sixth. Rarely during the earlier periods were the bases of the hardest stone specimens engraved; they were usually covered with a gold plate, upon which the device or inscription was incised.

Gold, silver, etc.

Metal scarabs are very rare: a few of gold, and two or three of silver are known of the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Dynasties, while about a dozen examples of bronze, of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Dynasties, are preserved in our museums.

Glass and cyanus.

At the middle of the Eighteenth Dynasty glass first appears, and of the reigns of the Amenheteps III and IV a number of seals have been found of a beautiful semitransparent deep blue glass. Of the late Eighteenth Dynasty a few specimens are known of 84cyanus, an alkaline silicate coloured a deep blue with carbonate of copper, and this material was used in increasing quantity till the Twenty-sixth Dynasty.

Schist and steatite.

Besides the hard stones enumerated above, shelly-limestone, schist, and steatite were also employed, and a few scarabs are known that were made of ivory. Steatite (or soapstone) was used in the manufacture of scarabs from the Twelfth to the Twentieth Dynasties, and by far the greater number of specimens are made of this material. It is a silicate of magnesium, soft, easily cut, and at the same time its superior compactness secures it from being readily broken or injured, and it is also capable of receiving a higher finish and much sharper impression of the subject than porcelain.

The Glazes.

The steatite scarabs were nearly always glazed, and the glazing often helps to indicate the date of a specimen. Only by a careful study of a large number of specimens can the eye be accustomed to differentiate between the varieties of glazing used at different periods. A very fine blue glaze of excellent quality is characteristic of the Twelfth Dynasty, and green glaze was also often used at this period. Many shades of blue and green glaze of very hard quality are found on the specimens of the Thirteenth Dynasty, and the few Hyksos scarabs that yet retain their colour show that a green glaze of a poorer quality was used at that period. The characteristic glazes of the early Eighteenth Dynasty are green, of a slightly greyish tint, generally of a fine surface, while those of the latter half of the dynasty, though coarser in quality, are often very brilliant in colour, and show a variety of tints ranging through all the shades of blue 85and green. Violet glaze was also employed at this period. The glazes of the Nineteenth Dynasty are often poor in quality, and generally of a dark yellowish-green colour, though sometimes blue and violet. The colour commonest during the Twentieth and later period are blue of various shades. It should be remarked here that the greatest number of scarabs are brown or white: the brown ones were invariably coloured green, and the white specimens blue.

4. Miscellaneous Forms of Seals.

Miscellaneous forms.

Besides scarabaei, other forms of seals are met with in Egypt. Many of them have little models of men or animals on the back, as human-heads, symbolic eyes, hippopotami, lions, hedgehogs, ducks, fish, frogs, flies, crocodiles; while not a few are shaped like cowries.

A large number are also cut in geometrical forms, tablet-shaped, squares, rectangles, ovals, cubes, and cones. Like the scarabs, they are all pierced, through their long axis or diameter, with a narrow cylindrical hole, and were similarly mounted.

Figs. 83 and 84.

Animals as devices.

The specimen illustrated in fig. 83, now in the MacGregor Collection, bears a private name upon the base. The material is steatite, beautifully carved. 86The figure is that of a male, squatting in the familiar attitude, his hands upon his knees, and wearing a full wig. The date is late in the Twelfth Dynasty. Fig. 84 is another illustration of the same motive, dating from the Eighteenth Dynasty.

Fig. 85.

Fig. 86.

Fig. 87.

Figs. 88 and 89.

Figs. 90, 91 and 92.

Animal forms are illustrated in the figs. 85, 86, 87, 88, 89. The first represents a naturalistic group, a cow suckling its calf, exquisitely cut in steatite. It is in the collection of Captain Timmins in Cairo. The design upon the base is analogous in its symmetry and the devices employed to the steatite stamp, fig. 94, in the same collection, which probably dates from about the Eleventh Dynasty. The two stamps, figs. 86 and 87, are very important, one of them being dated by the cartouche of Mentuhetep of the Eleventh Dynasty, the other by its analogy, and by the device of a running figure in line frequently employed upon 87the button-seals (fig. 42, and cf. fig. 28). Hornets are employed upon the Karnak three-sided seal, fig. 86, which is probably of earlier date, about the close of the Sixth Dynasty. A further example of this |Miscellaneous devices.| character, being a ram with horns, is in the MacGregor Collection: upon the base is an interesting pattern in coils, dating probably from the end of the Twelfth Dynasty. A great number of seals with cats (fig. 88), hedgehogs, hippopotami (fig. 89), and fish (fig. 90), date from the time of Thothmes III in 88the Eighteenth Dynasty, while those with ducks (figs. 91, 92), frogs, and flies, seem to be slightly later, dating from the reign of Amenhetep III.

Fig. 93.

Fig. 94.

Figs. 95 and 96.

Fig. 97.

Fig. 98.

Figs. 99, 100 and 101.

Figs. 102 and 103.

A number of large seals are oval in form; one of these, with a device of animals incised upon the back, shown in fig. 93, bears upon the base the blundered cartouche of Amenemhat III. One of rectangular form (fig. 94) is rather of the nature of a stamp, being without decoration upon the back other than the necessary suspension hole in the attachment, while upon the base is the device previously described as belonging to the period which precedes the Middle 89Kingdom—between the Sixth and Eleventh Dynasties, from its analogy to the button-seals of that time. Other stamps are illustrated in figs. 95 and 96, having oval bases. They date from the Seventeenth Dynasty, bearing the names of Seqen-en-ra and Se-Amen. Another stamp (fig. 97) of larger size, has a simple handle down the middle of the back. The device in this case represents a number of captives or votives below the emblem of Anubis. This class of stamp, used generally for the sealing up of tomb-doors, as in the case of the tomb of Thothmes IV at 90Thebes, seems to date from the Eighteenth Dynasty. Fig. 98 represents another common form of the same period, itself dating to the reign of the emblem upon it, Thothmes III. A less usual class, dating from the Twelfth Dynasty, is represented in fig. 99. The back in this instance is plain, the form of the stamp resembling 91a slice from a sphere, with the device upon the plane face. A hole pierces the thickness. Figs. 100 and 101, represent other objects of this class, which from its Aegean analogies is of peculiar importance. The former specimen is dated, from an inscription on its back, to the reign of Usertsen III; the coil device is employed in each case. Two interesting examples are shown in figs. 102 and 103, the one being of the Eighteenth Dynasty, from its cutting and its glaze, the other of the Nineteenth Dynasty, from the cartouche of Rameses II incised upon it. A late example is that shown in fig. 104, and is a common type of the period of the Saïte renaissance in the Twenty-sixth Dynasty. The inscription gives the name of Tahuti son of Aahmes, chief of the scribes of the temple. It is of pottery, glazed green, and is in the Collection of Captain Timmins.

Figs. 104 and 105.

92Two typical stamps of the Thirtieth Dynasty, one in bronze, the other in pottery, are pictured in figs. 105 and 106. They are both without device upon the plain handle of suspension. The one fig. 105 bears the name of the Royal son Za-hapi-amen; the other bears the name of king Kheper-ka-Ra, otherwise Nekht-neb-ef, with whom the list of Egypt’s kings comes to a close.

Fig. 106.

5. Signet-Rings.


The signet-ring was called in Egyptian zebat (var. , pl. Coptic : ). In its earliest form it consisted of (a) a perforated bezel, the part that bears the inscription or device, and (b) a hoop or wire which runs through the bezel and round the inside of the finger. The bezel was generally a separate piece of stone or metal, and when that was the case, it was generally encircled by a metal band (funda) and pierced so that it formed a swivel ring.


Fig. 107.

Their history.

The earliest examples that we know of are not older than the middle of the Twelfth Dynasty, but from that period onwards they are fairly common in Egypt. A number were found by M. de Morgan, at Dahshûr, of the date of Usertsen III to Amenemhat III, and these are all of one type: a scarab threaded on a piece of gold wire, the ends of which are twisted round several times on the back of the hoop (fig. 107). At a somewhat later period we find the gold wire thickened in the middle to lend additional strength, and the two ends thrust into the perforation of the scarab. The specimen illustrated (fig. 108) dates from the Thirteenth Dynasty. A second type of this period is shown in fig. 109. Here the scarab is mounted in a gold funda and the perforation is threaded by a wire, the ends of which are wound tightly round the hoop, which is made of a separate piece of metal. The same form survives during the Hyksos period (see Pl. I, ring of King Apepŷ), and on to the end of the Eighteenth Dynasty (fig. 110, and the ring of Hor-em-heb, Pl. I). With the beginning of the Eighteenth Dynasty another form appears, that of a plain metal 94ring with the outer surface of the bezel flat and the inner curved (fig. 111). This form was rare during the earlier reigns of the dynasty, but common under Amenhetep III and Akhenaten (see ring of Akhenaten, Pl. I), and it survives to the present day. At the time of Thothmes III, a ring consisting of a plain hoop beaten out into a lozenge shaped plate occurs (Pl. XXIX, 31), but it is a very rare form until after the Twentieth Dynasty. With the reign of Amenhetep III, pottery rings of all forms are found, and these are very common till the beginning of the Nineteenth Dynasty.

Figs. 108 and 109.

Fig. 110. RING OF THOTHMES III and 111.

Figs. 112 and 113.


Figs. 114 and 115.

Pottery rings, with long bezels, as shown in figs. 112 and 113, appear first at the end of the Twentieth Dynasty, and continue on till the end of the Twenty-third. The examples of the Twenty-sixth Dynasty are of several forms, the commonest being the plain hoop beaten out into a rectangular or lozenge-shaped plate which bears the inscription. Other forms give the outer surface of the bezel flat and the inner curved, as in figs. 114 and 115: the one being a ring of a priest of Khufu, named Nefer-ab-ra; the other that of a priest of Tahuti, named Hor-se-ast. A rarer form is that illustrated in fig. 116, where the flat engraved plate is welded on to a plain hoop.

Fig. 116.




The following abbreviations are used to denote the collections and works most frequently quoted in the descriptions of the Plates:—

Alnw. The Duke of Northumberland’s Collection at Alnwick Castle, Northumberland.
Amh. Lord Amherst of Hackney’s Collection at Didlington Hall, Norfolk.
Ashm. The Ashmolean Museum at Oxford.
Ath. The Athens Museum.
A.Z. Zeitschrift für Ägyptische Sprache, Berlin.
Benson Mr. E. F. Benson’s Collection, London.
Berl. The Egyptian Museum, Berlin.
B.M. The British Museum.
Bol. The Museo Civico, Bologna.
B.P. (Delhaes Coll.) Buda Pesth.
C.d.M. The Cabinet des Medailles, Paris.
C.M. The Cairo Museum.
Dat. G. Dattari’s Collection, Cairo.
Davis Mr. Theodore M. Davis’ Collection, Newport, Rhode Island, U.S.A.
de M. D. M. de Morgan’s Fouilles à Dahchour.
Dres. The Dresden Museum.
Edw. The Edwards’ Collection, University College, London.
Evans Col. John Evans’ Collection, London.
100Fitzw. The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.
F.Sc. Mr. G. W. Fraser’s book “Scarabs.”
Gibs. Mr. Gibson’s Collection, Liverpool.
Gdn. Mrs. Goodison’s Collection, Waterloo, near Liverpool.
Gr. The late Dr. Grant’s Collection, Liverpool.
Green Mr. F. W. Green’s Collection, Tunbridge Wells.
Har. The Harrow School Museum, Harrow.
Herm. The Museum of the Ermitage, St. Petersburg.
Hood Mrs. Hood’s Collection, Nettleham Hall, Lincoln.
H-P. Mr. Hilton Price’s Collection, London.
L. The Egyptian Museum of the Louvre, Paris.
Leyd. The Leyden Museum.
Liv. The Liverpool Museum.
Luxor Specimens seen in Dealers’ shops at Luxor.
Mars. The Château Borelly Museum, Marseilles.
M. B. M. Maspero’s Guide du visiteur au Musée de Boulaq.
M. Cat. Ab. Mariette’s Catalogue général des Monuments d’Abydos.
M.D. Mariette’s Monuments Divers.
M-G. Mr. W. MacGregor’s Collection, Tamworth.
M. Mast. Mariette’s Les Mastabas de l’Ancien Empire.
Murch Mr. Chauncey Murch’s Collection, Luxor.
Myers The late Major Myers’ Collection, now in the Eton College Museum, Eton.
Nash Mr. W. Nash’s Collection.
Newb. Scarabs in the possession of the writer.
N.Y. The Abbott Collection at New York.
Piers’ Coll. Mr. Piers’ Collection, New York.
P. Prof. Petrie’s Collection at University College, London.
P. I. Prof. Petrie’s Illahûn, Kahun and Gurob.
101P. K.vProf. Petrie’s Kahun, Gurob and Hawara.
P. R. T. Prof. Petrie’s volumes on the Royal Tombs of Abydos.
P. Sc. Prof. Petrie’s Historical Scarabs.
P.S.B.A. Proceedings of the Society of Biblical Archaeology.
S.K. The South Kensington Museum.
Thomp. Sir Herbert Thompson’s Collection, London.
Timmins’ Coll. Capt. C. Timmins’ Collection, Cairo.
T. The Turin Museum.
Vat. The Egyptian Museum of the Vatican, Rome.
Vien. The Vienna Museum.
v-B. Baron von Bissing’s Collection, Munich.
W. Mr. John Ward’s Collection, Belfast.
W. S.B. Mr. John Ward’s volume on The Sacred Beetle.



I. Signet-ring of Apepŷ I. In the possession of Mr. Theodore M. Davis. The bezel is of green-glazed steatite, carved in the shape of a scarabaeus-beetle with a human head, and mounted in a thin gold funda. On the base of the bezel is engraved in intaglio, and within a cartouche, the name of the “Good King Aauser-ra (Apepŷ I), giving life.” The cartouche is surrounded by a continuous rope-pattern. The hoop of the ring is of gold, and the bezel is secured to it by means of a gold wire running longitudinally through the funda and scarab, and coiled tightly round its two ends.

II. Signet-ring of Amenhetep II. In the Egyptian Museum of the Louvre. The bezel is of solid gold, in the form of a rectangular plaque. On one face are engraved, in intaglio, the titles and prenomen of Amenhetep II: “The King of Upper and Lower Egypt, the Lord of the Two Lands, Aa-kheperu-ra,” the cartouche being surmounted by two cobras, and resting on the nub-sign. On the other face are the titles: Heru, ka nekht, user pehtet, “the Horus and Mighty Bull, strong in power.” The bezel is pierced longitudinally by a narrow hole, and it is fixed to the hoop of the ring by 104means of a rod running through it, and rivetted to the shoulders.

III. Signet-ring of Nefer-ka-ra (Psamtek II). In the possession of Mr. Walter Nash. A plain hoop of gold, beaten out into a lozenge-shaped plate, upon which is cut, in intaglio, the prenomen of Psamtek II.

IV. Signet-ring of Neferu-kheperu-ra Setep-en-ra (Akh-en-aten). In the possession of Mr. Walter Nash. A hoop of silver, with massive bezel, the inner surface of which is curved, and the outer flat, with the prenomen of Akh-en-aten engraved upon it.

V. Signet-ring of Zeser-kheperu-ra Setep-en-ra (Hor-em-heb). In the Egyptian Museum of the Louvre. This is the most remarkable specimen of an ancient Egyptian signet-ring known. It is formed of a quadrangular plaque and a thick hoop, swollen in the middle for strength, both of solid gold; it weighs 125.50 grs. On one face of the plaque is engraved, in intaglio, the prenomen of Hor-em-heb, while on the other is a marching lion, emblem of royal power, and the words Neb Khepsh, “Lord of Valiance,” above it. Upon the two sides are delicately engraved: (1) a scorpion, and (2) a crocodile. The bezel is pierced longitudinally through its centre, and secured to the hoop by means of a thick gold wire, which threads the bezel, and is coiled round the two ends of the hoop.



Scene representing “the Superintendent of the Seal” (i.e., the Chancellor) of King Tût-ankh-Amen, investing Prince Hûŷ with the Official Seal of the Governorship of Ethiopia. The inscription above and between the figures reads: “The giving of the Seal of the Royal Son by the Superintendent of the Seal, in order to make to flourish the office of the Royal Son of Ethiopia, Hûŷ; (his boundary) begins at Nekhen (Hieraconpolis) and (ends) at Kerŷ[122] (Gebel Barkal).” The ring and bezel are coloured yellow, to represent gold. From a painting in the tomb of Hûŷ at Kurnet Muraî, Thebes.



1. Three animals in a desert wadŷ (?). M-G.

2-7. Black steatite cylinder-seals, bearing personal names written in primitive hieroglyphic characters, each name being determined by the seated figure of a man. These examples are all in the M-G. Collection, except No. 3, which is in the Amh. Collection.

8 and 9. Black steatite cylinder-seals, bearing personal names (?), written in primitive hieroglyphic characters, but without a seated figure determinative. M-G.

10. A personal (?) name reading Asunut. Amh. A fine specimen in wood.

11-13. Three black steatite cylinder-seals, bearing inscriptions of uncertain meaning. M-G.

14. A beautifully cut ivory cylinder-seal, bearing a personal name reading Sheden. Murch.



1.* Birds, gazelles, and other desert animals, with traps for capturing them. This sealing belongs to the pre-Dynastic group, but was found in a First Dynasty tomb at Abydos. (P. R.T. II, xiv, 104.)

2.* “Aha,” the Horus-name of Menes, the founder of the First Egyptian Dynasty. (P. R.T. II, xiv, 98.)

3. A black steatite cylinder-seal, bearing a hieroglyphic inscription of uncertain meaning. M-G.

4. A personal name (?). Berl. 14594.

5. “The Royal Daughter, Meh-en-pet-tha.” v-B. (F. Sc. 1.)

6. A wooden cylinder-seal, bearing a hieroglyphic inscription of uncertain meaning. M-G.

7.* “The King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Mer-pa-ba.” (P. R.T. I, xxvi, 60.) First Dynasty, found at Abydos.

1088.* “Sekhem-ab,” the Horus-name of King Per-ab-sen. (P. R.T. II, 165. See also infra, Nos. 12 and 13.)

9.* “Den,” the Horus-name of King Setuî. (P. R.T. I, xxii, 39.)

10.* “The Mayor of the Town of Se-ka.” (P. R.T. I, xxii, 32.)

11.* “The King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Khasekhemui.” (P. R.T. II, xxxiii, 201.)

12.* “The King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Per-ab-sen.” (P. R.T. II, xxii, 164.)

13.* “Sekhem-ab,” the Horus-name of King Per-ab-sen. (P. R.T. II, xxi, 164.)

14. A black steatite cylinder-seal, bearing a hieroglyphic inscription of uncertain meaning. Gdn.

15. Fish in a stream. Berl. 15338. This seal should be classed in the pre-Dynastic group.

16.* “The Mother of Royal Children, Ne-Maat-Hap.” (P. R.T. II, xxiv, 210; cf. also, Borchardt, Naville and Sethe, in A.Z. XXXVI, p. 142.)



1. “Kha-ef-ra, (?) beloved of the Gods.” P.

2. “Men-kau-ra, beloved of the Gods and beloved of Hather.” P.

3. “The King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Men-kau-ra, beloved of the Gods daily and of Hather-duat daily.” Evans. This cylinder-seal gives the earliest known instance of the king’s title Sa-Ra, “Son of Ra.”

4. “Men-kau-ra.” At the side of the cartouche is a seated figure of the goddess Hather holding the uas-sceptre; before her is the word neter and the name of Men-kau-ra’s pyramid (?) Men-ab. Murch.

5. “Sahu-ra, beloved of the Gods,” and his Horus-name, Neb-khau. v-B. (Fr. Sc. 12.)

6. “Sahu-ra, beloved of Hather, the beautiful Star and Mistress of the Sycamore.” Fitzw.

7. “User-ka-ef, beloved of the Gods,” and the Horus-name of this king Ar-maat. Found on the Island of Elephantine. M.D. 54 e.

1108. “User-ka-ef, beloved of the Gods and beloved of Hather.” B.M. 16774.

9. “Nefer-ar-ka-ra, beloved of the Gods daily, and priest of Hather.” W. S.B. XVI, 331.

10. “The Royal Favourite who executed the orders of his Lord the King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Pepŷ (I), beloved of Anhur.” The inscription also gives the Horus-name of Pepŷ: Merŷ tauï, and states that the official for whom this cylinder was cut was “chief over the secret things of the court,” and that “he made the favours of the court.” B.M. 29061.

11. “The King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Merŷ-tauï (Pepŷ I), the Good God, and Lord of the Two Lands,” with the Horus-name of Merŷ-tauï. In the horizontal line at the bottom of the seal the king is said to be “beloved of Sak, Lord of the Two Rats (?).” Like the specimen No. 10, this is a seal of the “Royal Favourite, the Regulator of the Festivals, he who executed the orders and made the favours of the king,” his master. B.M. 5495



1. A steatite cylinder-seal, giving the prenomens of the six consecutive kings of the Twelfth Dynasty:—

(1) Sehetep-ab-ra (Amenemhat I).

(2) Kheper-ka-ra (Usertsen I).

(3) Nub-kau-ra (Amenemhat II).

(4) Kha-kau-ra (Usertsen III).

(5) Kha-kheper-ra (Usertsen II).

(6) Ne-maat-ra (Amenemhat III). Brocklehurst Collection. (P. Sc. 272.)

2. “Nub-kau-ra (Amenemhat II), beloved of Sebek, Lord of Ref-sam (?).” B.M. 16408.

3. “Nub-kau-ra (Amenemhat II), beloved of Sebek, Lord of Ha.” C.M. 3657.

4. “Nub-kau-ra (Amenemhat II), beloved of Sebek, Lord of Semenu.” P. I. VIII, 24.

5. “Usertsen, beloved of Sebek, Lord of Semenu.” Amh.

6. “Kha-kheper-ra (Usertsen II), beloved of Sebek, Lord of Re-sehui.” M-G.

1127. “Kha-kheper-ra (Usertsen II), beloved of Sebek, Lord of Semenu.” B.M. 3928.

8. “Kha-kheper-ra (Usertsen II) and Kha-kau-ra (Usertsen III).” P. I. VIII. 28.

9. “Kha-kau-ra (Usertsen III).” C.M. 3654.

10. The nomen of Usertsen and the prenomen (Ne-maat-ka) of Amenemhat III. B.M. 16747.

11. “Kha-kau-ra (Usertsen III) and Ne-maat-ra (Amenemhat III).” P. K. X, 11.

12. “The Good God, Lord of the Two Lands, Ne-maat-ra (Amenemhat III).” B.M. 16746.

13. “Ne-maat-ra (Amenemhat III), beloved of Sebek, Lord of Shediti.” M-G.

14. “Ne-maat-ra (Amenemhat III), beloved of Sebek, Lord of Shediti.” Amh. (formerly in the possession of Bonomi: cf. Sharpe, Eg. Insc., II, p. 23).

15. “Usertsen and Ne-maat-ra (Amenemhat III).” M-G., said to have been found at El Bersheh.

16. “Amenemhat, beloved of Sebek, Lord of Ḥent.” Davis.

17. “Amenemhat, beloved of Sebek, Lord of Ref-sam (?).” Amh.

18. “Amenemhat, beloved of Sebek, Lord of Aa-neferu (?).” Leyd. 663.

11319. “The King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Ne-maat-ra (Amenemhat III), son of Ra, Amenŷ, the Lord of the Two Lands, the Good God, Amenemhat.” M-G.

20. “Amenemhat and the Royal Daughter A-ta-ka[-ŷt].” M-G. A-ta-Kayt was a daughter of Usertsen II. (A.Z. XXXVII, 91.)

21. This cylinder-seal bears the full titles and name of Queen Sebek-shedeti-neferu. B.M. 16581.

22. “The King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Maa-kheru-ra (Amenemhat IV),” with the legend fu qe es neb tem, and “beloved of Hather, Mistress of Re-aat (?).” M-G.



1. “The Mayor of Het-kha-Usertsen and Superintendent of the Temple ... Senba, justified.” Alnw. Het-kha-Usertsen was probably the pyramid town of Usertsen II (Griffith, K.P., p. 58). Other mayors of this locality are recorded in the tomb of Tehuti-hetep at El Bersheh (Newberry, El.B. I., XXXIII); on a statue at Alnwick Castle (Birch, Cat. Alnw., pp. 60-62), and on a scarab published on Pl. XIII, 20 of the present work.

2. Cylinder-seal of a king with the Horus-name of Her-tep-tauï, “Chieftain of the Two Lands,” and “beloved of Sebek, Lord of Sunu.” Murch. This king certainly belongs to the beginning of the Thirteenth Dynasty, but his personal name has not as yet been fixed.

3. The full names and titles of king Amenenhat-senb-ef. Amh. This beautiful cylinder-seal is of steatite, coated with a fine blue glaze, and the hieroglyphs are very delicately cut. It was found at Mohalla (Mualla), opposite Gebelên, and the monarch whose name it records is otherwise unknown (cf. my note in P.S.B.A., XXI, 282).

1154. “Sekhem-khu-tauï-ra, beloved of Sebek, Lord of Ref-sam (?).” B.M. 3663.

5. “The Good God, Uah-ab-ra (Aa-ab), beloved of Sebek, Lord of Sunu.” Gr.

6. “The Good God, Se-bak(?)-ka-ra, beloved of Sebek, lord of Sunu.” Amh.

7. “The Hek Khaskhet, Ruler of the Mountains,” Khŷran (Khŷan). In the possession of Signore Lanzone of Turin.

8. A cylinder-seal with decorative coil-pattern. It was found at Nubt (Petrie, Naqada, LXXXI, 79), and belongs to the intermediate period between the end of the Twelfth and the beginning of the Eighteenth Dynasty.

9. Cylinder-seal, with interlacing coil-pattern. M-G. Of the early Intermediate period.

10. “The Hek nefer, Good Ruler, Khŷan.” Athens.

11. Cylinder-seal, with human figures and cartouches with hieroglyphic inscriptions of doubtful reading. P. Hyksos period.

12. A green glazed steatite cylinder-seal, bearing the legend “Kheper-nub-ra,” the prenomen of Antef V. B.M. 30772. Late Intermediate period.

13. “The Governor of the (Royal) City (i.e., Thebes) and Vezir, Ankhu.” Figured in the Brit. Mus. Add. MS. 29816, f. 193. This vezir lived under King Khenzer, of the Thirteenth Dynasty (cf. my note in P.S.B.A. XXII, 64).



1. Cylinder-seal, with figures of men and flowers, and a cartouche with unreadable inscription. v-B. (Fr. Sc. 153.) Hyksos period.

2. “Zeser-ka-ra (Amen-hetep I).” B.M. 16579.

3. “Neb-maat-ra (Amen-hetep III) and Queen Thŷï” C.d.M.

4. “The Superintendent of the Garden of Amen, and Chief Steward of the Queen [Hatshepsut], Sen-mut.” P. Sen-mut was the favourite minister of Queen Hatshepsut, and the architect of the famous temple at Dêr el Bahari. (For his biography, see my account of his life in Benson and Gourlay’s The Temple of Mut, pp. 299-312, and a supplementary note in the P.S.B.A. XXII, 63.)

5. “Zeser-ka-ra (Amen-hetep I).” P.

6. “Aa-kheperu-ra (Amen-hetep II),” with figures of Ptah and Khnem, and a gazelle among bushes. Dat.

7. Cylinder-seal of Setŷ I, with titles. P.

8. “Sahu-ra,” with his Horus and Hor-nub names. In the possession of Alan Joseph, Esq., of Cairo.

1179. “Kha-ef-ra.” Berl.

10. “Kha-ef-ra,” with his Horus-name, User-ab. C.d.M.

11. “Nub-kau-ra (Amenemhat II),”[124] beloved of Sebek, Lord of Anu.” Mr. Nahmann, Cairo.



1-9. Scarabs bearing names of kings of the Ancient Kingdom:—

1. “Neb-ka-ra.” B.M. 23296.

2. “Khufu.” B.M. 22949.

3. “Khufu.” Gr.

4. “Kha-ef-ra.” Alnw.

5. “Kha-ef-ra.” M-G.

6. “Unas.” Amh.

7. “Merŷ-ra.” Luxor.

8. “Neb-kha-ra.” H-P. 166.

9. “Men-kau-ra.” Gr.

10-39. Scarabs bearing names of kings and other royal personages of the Eleventh and Twelfth Dynasties.

10. “Se-ankh-ka-ra” (Mentuhetep [IV ?]). P. For this king’s personal name, see a monument in the Cairo Museum (No. 31439).

11. “Se-hetep-ab-ra” (Amenemhat I). W. S.B. I, 215.

12. “Se-hetep-ab-ra-senb.” Mr. Nahmann, Cairo. The back of this seal is of the button-type.

11913. “Kheper-ka-ra” (Usertsen I). Gr. This scarab-seal has a back of the “Yabek-her” type (cf. fig. 68, p. 73), with a lotus flower engraved on the right wing.

14. “Kheper-ka-ra” (Usertsen I). M-G.

15. “Usertsen.” Luxor.

16. “Amenemhat.” P.

17. “Kheper-ka-ra” (Usertsen I). Amh.

18. “Kheper-ka-ra” (Usertsen I). Gr.

19. “Kha-kheper-ra” (Usertsen II). C.M.

20. “Kha-kheper-ra” (Usertsen II). Gr.

21. “Nub-ka-ra” (Amenemhat II). M-G.

22. “Kha-kau-ra” (Usertsen III). Davis.

23. “Kha-kheper-ra” (Usertsen II). M-G.

24. “Kha-kau-ra” (Usertsen III). C.M. Found at Dahshûr (cf. de M. D. I, vi, 4).

25. “Ne-maat-ra” (Amenemhat III). Gr.

26. “Ne-maat-ra” (Amenemhat III). Ashm.

27. “Ne-maat-ra” (Amenemhat III), with titles. C.M. This scarab is of lapis-lazuli, set in a gold funda, and was found at Dahshûr, (de M. D. I, fig. 148.)

12028. “Ne-maat-ra” (Amenemhat III). C.M. Of emerald stone, and found at Dahshûr. (de M. D. I, fig. 149.)

29. “Ne-maat-ra” (Amenemhat III). Gr.

30. “The Royal Daughter, Merert.” C.M. Of lapis-lazuli, and found at Dahshûr. (de M. D. I, fig. 147.)

31. “The Good God, Lord of two Lands, Nub-ka-ra, Usertsen.” M-G. This scarab is perhaps a “late issue,” which might account for the prenomen of Amenemhat II being joined to the nomen of an Usertsen; or it may be a contemporary specimen, the two names appearing being due to the co-regency of Amenemhat II and Usertsen II.

32. “The Royal Wife who is joined to the Beauty of the White Crown.” C.M. A queen’s scarab, found at Dahshûr. (de M. D. I, xx, 48 b.)

33. “The Royal Daughter, Sat-hather.” C.M. Found at Dahshûr. (de M. D. I, fig. 153.)

34. “The Royal Daughter, Merŷt.” C.M. Found at Dahshûr. (de M. D. I, fig. 152.)

35. “The Hereditary Chieftainess, the Royal Princess, Anket-nefret-uben.” v-B. (Fr. Sc. 75). Two other scarabs of this princess are known, one in the v-B. Coll. (Fr. Sc. 76), and the other in the Petrie Coll.

12136. “Ne-maat-ra” (Amenemhat III), with titles. L. A similar specimen is in the Petrie Coll.

37. “Ne-maat-ra” (Amenemhat III). Alnw.

38. “Maa-kheru-ra” (Amenemhat IV). L.

39. “The Hereditary Chieftainess, the Royal Princess, Nub-em-ant.” v-B. (F. Sc. 80.)



1. “Sekhem-khu-taui-ra.” Murch.

2. “Sekem-se-uaz-taui-ra, Sebekhetep [II], made of the Divine Father Mentuhetep.” C.M.

3. “Sekem-se-uaz-taui-ra, Sebekhetep [II], born of the Royal Mother Auhet-abu.” B.M. 30506 (cf. M.D., 48 i).

4. “Kha-seshes-ra (Neferhetep), made of the Divine Father Ha-ank-ef.” v-B. (Fr. Sc. 46.)

5. “Neferhetep, born of the Royal Mother Kema.” v-B.

6. “Kha-nefer-ra,” Sebekhetep [III]. Nash.

7. “Kha-nefer-ra,” Sebekhetep [III]. Gr.

8. “Kha-nefer-ra (Sebekhetep [III]), made of the Divine Father Ha-ankh-ef.” C.M.

9. “Kha-nefer-ra (Sebekhetep [III]), born of the Royal Mother Kema.” B.M. 3934.

10. “Kha-nefer-ra” (Sebekhetep [III]). H-P. 3693.

11. “Kha-nefer-ra” (Sebekhetep [III]). B.M. 25554.

12312. “Kha-nefer-ra” (Sebekhetep [III]). L.

13. “Kha-nefer-ra (Sebekhetep [III]), combined with the prenomen of Kha-ankh-ra (Sebekhetep [IV]).” Ashm.

14. “Kha-ka-ra.” Gr.

15. “Kha-ka-ra.” Amh.

16. “Kha-hetep-ra,” Sebekhetep [V. ] C.M. 3666 (cf. M.D. 48 p).

17. “Uah-ab-ra’ (Aa-ab).” P.

18 and 19. “Mer-nefer-ra, Aŷ.” Alnw. and C.M. 3668 (for the latter, cf. M.D. 48 o).

20. “Mer-nefer-ra” (Aŷ.) Nash (cf. M.D. 48 q).

21. “Mer-hetep-ra, Ana.” L.

22. “Maa-ra, Sebekhetep [VI ?].” Gr.

23. “Maa-ra (Sebekhetep [VI ?]).” M-G.

24. “Sebek-em-sau-ef.” H-P. 187. This specimen is in dark green basalt, with a gold covering, upon which the cartouche is incised.

25. “Dedui-ankh-ra” (Mentu-em-sau-ef). P.

26. “Dedui-ankh-ra” (Mentu-em-sau-ef). Murch.

27. “Sebek.” In the possession of Mr. A. H. Sayce. Bought at Luxor. (P. Sc. 281.)

12428. “Shens.” Grant Coll. Another specimen is in the B.M. 32392.

29. “Nefer-ded-ra” (Dedu-mes). v-B. (Fr. Sc. 62.) For the nomen of this king, see a stone slab in the Cairo Museum, 20533.

30. “Nefer-ankh-ra.” Found at Defenneh. (Petrie, Defenneh, Pl. XLI, 57.)



1. “The Governor of the (Royal) City and Vezîr, Ptah-dedut-senb, justified.” H-P. 3726. A clay impression of a somewhat similar seal (of the Vezîr Ŷ-meru) was found by Prof. Petrie at Abydos.

2. “The Governor of the (Royal) City and Vezîr, Auŷ.” Murch. This Vezîr is mentioned on a stela in Vien. (No. 117; cf. Rec. des trav., IX, 62.)

3. “The Scribe of the Vezîr, Ren-ef-senb.” Thomp.

4. “The Superintendent of the Seal, Neb-re-sehui.” L. 6288. Three other scarabs of this official are known: one is in the v-B. Coll. (Fr. Sc. 90), another is in the Fitzw. Mus. (Budge, Cat. 155), and the third is in Mr. Nahmann’s hands in Cairo.

5. “The Superintendent of the Seal, Up-em-heb.” Gr.

6. “The Superintendent of the Seal, Senba.” Gr. Another scarab of this official is in the B.M. (24108, P. Sc. 445.)

1267 and 8. “The Superintendent of the Seal, Senb-su-ma.” (Gr. and M-G.) Several other scarabs of Senb-su-ma are known. Three are figured by Petrie (Sc. 446-448), from the Louvre, Petrie and Grant Colls.; other specimens are in the Cairo Mus., the Amh. Coll. and the Edws. Coll. A beautiful light blue glazed specimen was found at Kahûn (P. I. VIII, 42), its provenance and style pointing to the late Twelfth Dynasty as the date of this official. Senb-su-ma is named on several stelae; one, in the Cairo Mus., gives the name of his father, Sert-taui (M. Cat. Ab. 784); another, in the Leyd. Mus. (V. 106) names his wife, “the Lady Tau-ma;” a third stela, in the Cairo Mus. (M. Cat. Ab. 904) gives the name of his son, the ari at abu, Pepa, whose scarab seal is in the Meux Coll. (Budge, Cat. 455). Senb-su-ma’s name also occurs on stelae in the B.M. (252); in the Ermitage Mus., St. Petersburg (58); and in the Turin Mus. (1303). His tomb was at Dahshûr, a slab of stone from it having been found in the cemetery of that place (M. Mast., p. 583).

9. “The Superintendent of the Seal, Yu-senb.” v-B. (Fr. Sc. 86.)

10. “The Superintendent of the Seal, Amenhetep.” v-B. (Fr. Sc. 91.) Three other scarabs of this State Officer are known: one, with continuous loop-pattern around the name, was found at Abydos (M.D. 52 f.), and is figured in Pl. XVI, 3; another is in the Petrie Coll., and the third is in the v-B. (Fr. Sc. 87.)

12711. “The Superintendent of the Seal, Herfu.” L.

12. “The Superintendent of the Seal, Erde-ne-Ptah.” B. 17230. Another specimen is in the Petrie Coll.

13. “The Deputy Superintendent of the Seal, Sehetep-ab-ra.” C.M. From Abydos. (M. Cat. Ab. p. 541; cf. M.D., pl. 48 m.)

14. “The Scribe of the Superintendent of the Seal, Nehesi.” P.

15. “The Mayor, Tehuti-nekht.” Amh. This scarab was bought in Cairo in 1899, and came with many other antiquities from the tomb of Tehuti-nekht at El Bersheh. Hence it can be dated to the reign of Usertsen I, or at latest to the early years of Amenemhat II (see Griffith and Newberry, El Bersheh II, p. 13); it is consequently the oldest absolutely dated scarab of an official known.

16. “The Mayor, Amenemhat-senb-ne-Hather-ab.” L. Found in Phoenicia.

17. “The Mayor, Amenemhat.” L.

18. “The Mayor, Auŷ-mes.” B.M. 21906.

19. “The Great Uartu of the (Royal) City, Sa-sebek.” -G. Another scarab of this official, ornamented with a continuous loop decoration, is in the v-B. (Fr. Sc. 118.)

20. “The Uartu of the Ruler’s Table, Sebekhetep, son of the Uartu of the Ruler’s Table, Mentuhetep.” Ashm. Several other scarabs of this 128official are known; two specimens are in the Louvre (P. Sc. 389, 391); another is in the Turin Mus. (1134; Klaproth, Palin Coll. 1113); a fourth is in the Cairo Mus. (3795; from Abydos, M. Cat. Abyd., p. 541; cf. M.D. pl. 48 n); and a fifth and well preserved example is in the Petrie Coll.

21. “The Great General Pehui-ef-hu?” Murch.

22. “The General, Hora.” Ashm.

23. “The Superintendent of the Mentiu (Asiatics), Ren-senb.” Evans.

24. “The Superintendent of the Great Kitchen (?) Herŷt (?)-si-hetep.” Murch.

25. “The King’s Friend, the Superintendent of the Musicians, Neb-qemiu.” Murch. A stela of this man, in the Cairo Mus. (M. Cat. Abyd. 813), gives the names of his father, Hora, and mother, Sefget, and certainly dates from the period of the Sebekhetep kings.

26. “The Surveyor, Nefer-sebek-dedu.” B.M. 28235.

27. “The Royal Scribe ... Aka-senb-na.” Murch.

28. “The Private Sealer, Sa-hather-aa.” Murch.

29. “The Storekeeper, Neb-seshenu.” Murch.

30. “The Instructor of the Followers, Deda, son of the Instructor of the Followers, Beba.” Murch.



1. “The Royal Son, Antefa.” P. From the style of the cutting and the back of this scarab, I should be inclined to recognize in this Antefa one of the princes of the intermediate period between the Thirteenth and Seventeenth Dynasties, rather than a prince of the Eleventh Dynasty.

2. “The Royal Son Kha-kau.” L. Formerly in the Palin Coll. (Klaproth, Pl. VI, 295.) Perhaps this is a scarab of Usertsen III before the Ra was added to his name (?).

3. “The Royal Son, Sa-hather.” C.M. 3796. (M. Cat. Abd. 539.) Sa-hather was the son of King Neferhetep.

4 and 5. “The Great Royal Wife who is united to the beauty of the White Crown, Ana.” L. and v-B. Another specimen is in the Petrie Coll. The style and cutting of these scarabs would point to the period of the Sebekhetep kings.

6. “The Royal Wife, Sat-sebek.” Davis. A similar scarab of this queen is in the B.M. 32265.

1307. “The Royal Clothier, Nehy.” v-B.

8. “Tehepenkhet-mery (?).” B.M. 4323.

9. “The Scribe of the Great Prison, Sesa.” P.

10. “The Great Uab-priest of Hather, Mistress of Tep-ahu, Khnem-set-heru-sebek (?).” v-B.

11. “The Royal Friend, Dedut.” B.M. 4322.

12. “The Guardian of the Storehouse, Hap-hetepu.” B.M. 17544.

13. “The Great One of the Southern Tens, Tha-ath.” L.

14. “The Royal Friend, Hepu-em-sha.” P.

15. “The Steward Sep, Son of Ankh.” v-B.

16. “The Royal Friend, Sa-sebek.” C. (cf. M.A. 48 i).

17. “The Doctor and Judge, Ha-ankh-ef.” Ashm.

18. “The Lady, Merŷt.” Gr.

19. “The Lady, Nub-em-sau-es.” T.

20. “The Superintendent of the Interior, the Superintendent of the North Land, Senb-tefi.” Ashm.

21. “The Royal Friend, Aŷ.” Gr.

22. “The Doctor and Embalmer, Ptah-ur.” B.M. 29226.

23. “The Priest of Sebek in Thebes, Neferhetep.” B.M. 24132.

24. “Sebek-aa-senes.” Murch.

13125. “The Royal Friend, Apepa.” W. (W. S.B.)

26. “The Great Royal Wife who is united to the beauty of the White Crown, Nub-hetep-tha.”[125] Murch. Another Scarab of this Queen is given in Pl. XLIV, 13.

27. “The Lady, Nenna.” Murch. A lady of this name is mentioned on a stela in the C.M. (No. 77).

28. “The Royal Sealer, Chief Steward and Royal Attendant, Tha-tha.” Davis. Tha-tha is named on a stela in the Fitzw. Mus. (Budge, Cat. 73).

29. “The Royal Sealer, Chief Steward and Royal Attendant, Ren-ef-em-ab.” B.M. 28226.

30. “The Guardian of the Storehouse, Hor-khent-nefer.” Murch.



1. “The Royal Son, Tar (or Ar?).” Murch.

2. “The Steward, Teta-shera.” Berl. 3613.

3. “The Attendant, Antef.” Berl. 9747.

4. “The Steward, Sebek-se-ankh.” Berl. 13618.

5. “The Superintendent of the ... Ar-sa-khet.” Edws. Found at Kahûn (P. I. VIII, 20).

6. “The Superintendent of the District, Mentunesu.” Petrie Coll. Found at Illâhûn (P. I. VIII, 41).

7. “The Lady Hez-uah-mert (?).” Berl. 3618.

8. “May the King give an offering to Ptah-seker for the ka of the Uart of the Ruler’s Table, Nushu.” Berl. 3664.

9. “The Great One of the Southern Tens, Sebek-ur.” Berl. 7417.

10. “The Royal Sealer and Chief Steward, Aka.” Fitzw. (Budge, Cat. 157). Another scarab of this official is in the v-B. (Fr. Sc. 85.)

13311. “The Superintendent of the Interior of the Dep., Nehŷ.” Fitzw. (Budge, Cat. 154.)

12. “The ankhet[126] of Upper Egypt, Nefer-hetep.”

13. “The Scribe of the Temple of Hetep-Usertsen, Senbu.” Clay-sealing found at Kahûn. (P. I. IX, 26.) Hetep-Usertsen was the name of the pyramid of Usertsen III at Dahshûr. (Griffith, K.P., pp. 89 and 90.)

14. “The Uartu of the Ruler’s Table, Hora.” Chicago Mus.

15. “The Regulator of the Palace, the Superintendent of the Temple, Hora.” Clay-sealing found at Illâhûn. (P. I. IX, 18.)

16. “The Superintendent of the Interior of the Dep., Ankha.” Gr.

17. “The Royal Sealer and General, Sa-nab.” P.

18. “The Guardian of the Department of Meat, Hor-ankh.” v-B.

19. “May the King give an offering to Ptah-seker for the ka of the Guardian of the House of Offerings, Sen-pu.” Found at Illâhûn (P. I. IX, 17). Another scarab of this official is given in Pl. XXIX, 2.

20. “The Scribe in charge of the Seal of Hetep-Usertsen and the Seal of Ankh-Usertsen, Y-ab.” A clay-sealing found at Illâhûn (P. I. IX, 20).

13421. “The Mayor and Superintendent of the Temple, Ankh.” Found at Illâhûn. (P. I. IX, 16.)

22. “The Royal Sealer, Chief Steward and Royal Attendant, Erde-en-Ptah.” Davis. (P. Sc. 438.)

23. “Amenemhat.” Berl. 15135.

24. “The Royal Sealer and Superintendent of the Field Labourers, Surtha.” P.

25. “The Scribe of the Army, Nefer-iu.” Berl. 9519.

26. “The Slave of the Ruler, Sat-Ptah.” Gr.

27. “The Royal Sealer, Chief Steward, am-as, Ankh-ef.” This Ankh-ef is mentioned on a stela in the Cairo Mus. (Cat. Ab. 887), and the names of the officials who served under him are given.

28. “The ankh of the Ruler’s Table, Îu-senb.” Gr.

29. “The Guardian of the Storehouse, Sehetep-ab-ra.” Berl. 15363.

30. “The Royal Wife, Senb-hena-es.” Berl. 10977. Another scarab of this queen is in the same Coll. (9518), and a third example is in the Davis Coll.; cf. my note in P.S.B.A.

31. “The Royal Sealer and Superintendent of the Seal-bearers, Sedemŷ.” Berl. 3667.

32. “The Superintendent of the Interior and of the North Land (i.e., the Delta), Sehetep-ab-ra.” Amh. On this officer, see my note in Garstang’s El Arabeh, p. 32.

13533. “The Royal Sealer, Superintendent of the Sealers and Royal Attendant, Res.” (Tubieres, Recueil d’Antiquités Égyptiennes, Vol. VI, Pl. III, 8.)

34. “The Instructor of the House of Life, Senb.” C.M.

35. “The Guardian of the Bows, Senb-ef.” P.



1. “The Mayor and Divine Treasurer, Amen-hetep.” P.

2. “The Chief Scribe of the Superintendent of the Seal, Sa-ptah.” S.K. (Garstang, El Arabeh, Pl. X, p. 34.)

3. “The Uab-priest, Ab-ah(?)-senb-tefi.” v-B. (Fr. Sc. 92.)

4. “The Guardian of the Granaries, Seresa.” Ashm.

5. “The Steward of the Accounts of Corn, Aŷ.” H-P. 3719.

6. “The ser hayt, Senaa-ab.” B.M. 4316.

7. “The Great One of the Southern Tens, Senaa-ab.” M-G.

8. “The Great One of the Southern Tens, Ptah-*hetep.” Amh.

9. “The Superintendent of the Department of Beer (?) Sat-ab.” For the title, cf. infra, Pl. XVI, 17.

13710. “The Royal Sealer and Superintendent of the Domains, Erde-en-ptah.” P.

11. “The Lector of Nekheb (i.e., El Kab), Sebek-*hetep.” Lansing Coll. (P. Sc.)

12. “The Attendant of the ... Beba.” B.M. 15706.

13. “The Great One of the Southern Tens, Ankh-tefi.” P.

14. “The Scribe of the Great Prison, Pa-enti-en.” P.

15. “The Lady, Neferu.” B.M. 24094.

16. “The Scribe of the Great Prison, Sezeda.” B.M. 17251. Found at Kurneh. (Brit. Mus. Add. MS. 29857, f, 8.)

17. “The Royal Friend S.... sutekh (?).” Murch.

18. “The Eldest Royal Daughter, Erdet-en-ptah.” Brocklehurst Coll.

19. “The Great Royal Wife who is united to the beauty of the White Crown, Khensu.” L.

20. “The Divine Father, Sebekhetep.” P.

21. “The Steward, Mŷ.” C.M.

22. “The Great Uartu of the Ruler, Au-su-ankh.” T.

23. “The Chief Scribe of the Great Prison, Sa-sebek.” P.

13824. “The Royal Sealer and Superintendent of the Field Labourers, Aŷ.” An obsidian scarab, v-B. (Fr. Sc. 111.)

25. “The Wakil of the Superintendent of the Seal, Nethenu.” B.M. 28223.

26. “The Superintendent of the Labour Bureau, Antef.” B.M. 28240.



1. “The Guardian of the Storehouse, Kha-kau-ra-senb.” Amh.

2. “The Superintendent of the District and the Scribe of the Gate,[127] Ren-senb-Usertsen.” B.M. 28232.

3. “Merŷ-ra.” Petrie Coll. Found at Illahûn. (P. I. VIII, 40.)

4. “The Royal Sealer and Superintendent of the Sealers, Saubu-sa.” C.M. (M. Abydos, II, Pl. 40 j.) For the reading of the name, see B.M. Stela, 215, and cf. L.C. 43.

5. “The Guardian of the Treasury, Sa-hez-nefer.” M-G.

6. “The Scribe of the Secrets (?), Sa-hather.” L.

7. “The Lady, Zera.” B.M. 17228. For a lady of this name, see a stela in the Leyd. Mus. (V, 22).

8. “The Lady, Sat-sutekh.” Gr. This lady is named on a stela of the Thirteenth Dynasty in the Vienna Mus. (91).

1409. “The Priest, Dede-nub.” T. From the Palin Coll. (Klaproth, Palin Coll., 56.)

10. “The Doctor and ari Nekhen, Auqa.” P.

11. “The Royal Friend, Sebekhetep.” T. From the Palin Coll. (Klaproth, Palin Coll., 876.)

12. “The ser hayt, Theti.” Davis.

13. “The Superintendent of the Lake, Khnemsu.” L.

14. “The Mayor of Reshuu, Iu-bena.” L.

15. “The Royal Ornament, Mu-nu-ab.” P. For the reading of the name, see a Thirteenth Dynasty stela at Marseilles, No. 28.

16. “The Uartu of the Uresh, Akuu.” L. 6313.

17. “The Superintendent of the Weapons (?), Sper-nef.” P.

18. “The Registrar, Aa-khnem.” B.M. 30552.

19. “The Doctor, Erde-ne-ptah.” Murch.

20. “The Lady, Semi-nefer.” L.

21. “The Lady, Erdet-[en]-ptah.” Ashm.

22. “The Great One of the Southern Tens, Sa-aah.” Ashm.

23. “The Scribe of the Soldiers, Mehti (?).” Murch.

24. “The Attendant of the ... Ankh.” Murch.

25. “The ... (?) Khent-kheti.” Murch.

26. “The Attendant of the ... Keru.” L.



1. “The Uab-priest (?), Ŷu-senb.” M-G.

2. “The ahems ne dep, Amenemhat.” M-G.

3. “The Royal Sealer and Superintendent of the Seal, Amenhetep.” C.M. (M.D. pl. 48 f.) see also supra, Pl. XI, 10.

4. “The Regulator of the Palace, Sen-ankh.” Murch.

5. “The ser hayt, Mentuhetep.” Alnw.

6. “The Wakil of the Superintendent of the Seal, Neb-sunu.” Found at Nubt. (Petrie, Naqada, Pl. LXXX, 15.)

7. “The Chief of the Sledge (?), Setmes,” P.C. (A scarab of another person bearing this title is figured in Petrie’s Naqada, LVIII, q. 188.)

8. “The Scribe of the Superintendent of the Seal, Îu-senb.” Davis.

9. “The Guardian of the House of Offerings, Khu.” B.M. 17254.

10. “The Attendant of the ... Au-ab.” P.

11. “The ser hayt, Senb.” B.M. 17872.

14212. “The man of the Scribe of the Altars (?), Nefertûm.” P.

13. “The Mayor and Superintendent of the Temple, Amenŷ-senb.” B.M.

14. “The Superintendent of the District of the Temple, Ka.” B.M. 17254.

15. “The Lady, Neb-tefa.” B.M. 24095.

16. “The Superintendent of the Interior, Teta.” Berl.

17. “The Superintendent of the Department of Beer (?) Sa-hŷ.” C.M. 3042. M. Cat. Ab., p. 540. For the title, cf. supra, Pl. XIV, 9.

18. “The Superintendent of the Granary, Apa.” Ashm. A her ne shent of this name is mentioned on a stela of the Thirteenth Dynasty, published by Mariette (Cat. Ab., p. 879).

19. “The Scribe of the Council, Sebek-her-khenat (?).” Berl. 3620.

20. “The Attendant Senb.” Berl.

21. “The Chief of the Lake, Senba.” (Klaproth, Palin Coll., Pl. V, 249.)

22. “The Steward, Neb-pu.” C.M. 3753.

23. “The Chief Steward, Neb-kau.” Berl. 13818.

24. “The Superintendent of the Interior of the Dep, Ren-senb.”

25. “The Superintendent of the Interior of the Dep Bu-senba.” P.



1. “The Eldest Royal Daughter, Ptah-ur-bau.” Gr.

2. “The Priest and am-khent, Sebek-azer.” B.M. 17231.

3. “The man (read zau (?) of the Royal Harîm. Sehetep-ab.” Ashm.

4. “The enti em sert, Heru-hetep.” B.M. 29225.

5. “The Guardian of the House of Offerings, Neb-sunu.”

6. “The Brewer, making the favours of Sebek, Usertsen.” Davis.

7. “The Great One of the Southern Tens, Nehŷ.” Murch.

8. “The Royal Daughter, Ren-senb.” B.M. 28126.

9. “The Instructor of the Attendants, Anhur-ankh.” B.M. 24262.

10. “The Lady, Ana.” M-G.

11. “The Lady Sat-spedu.” Edws.

12. “The Superintendent of the Interior and the Superintendent of the North Land, Se-ankh.” Amh.

14413. “The Scribe of the Altar, Auf-er-senb.” v-B.

14. “The am-khet-apdu, Anu-enti (?).” v-B.

15. “The Lady, Dede-meti.” Murch.

16. “The Wakil of the Chief Steward, Khent-hetep.” B.M. 28254.

17. “The Guardian of the Treasury, Unnefer.” M-G.

18. “The Under Sealer, Aa-khnem.” Davis.

19. “The Royal Clothier, Neb-sunu.” From the Palin Coll. (Klaproth, Palin Coll. 814.)

20. “The Scribe of the Accounts, Khnems.” B.M. 12801.

21. “The Lector of the Beautiful House, Ankhu.” Murch.

22. “The Uartu of the Oxyrhynchite Oasis, Hetep.” C-M. (M.D. 52 h.)

23. “The Guardian of the Storehouse, Hetep.” M-G.

24. “The Superintendent of the Lake, Atef-ef.” Murch.

25. “The Scribe of the Surveyor of the District of Hetka, Ptah-ath.” M-G.

26. “The Scribe with the Seal of the Treasury, Senbef.” C.M. (M.D. 48 g.)

27. “The Superintendent of the Seal-Engravers, Amenŷ-ankh.” In the possession of Mr. Arthur Evans. (Cf. Louvre Stela, C. 85.)

28. “The Lady Nub-khusï, wife of the Mayor, Ren-senb.” v-B. (Fr. Sc. 78.)



1-18. Rope patterns. This series ranges in date from the Twelfth Dynasty onwards to the time of Thothmes III. The evolution of simple to complex forms is interesting. Scarabs of the types 5-7 and 10 are common.

1. Benson.
2. B.M.
3. Benson.
4. Benson.
5. H-P. 958.
6. Ashm.
7. Amh.
8. Alnw.
9. Ready.
10. Gr.
11. Amh.
12. Benson.
13. Evans.
14. Gr.
15. Benson.
16. Murch.
17. Newb.
18. P. I. VIII, 84.

19-35. Coil patterns. The variety of coil patterns found on Egyptian scarabs is almost infinite. This series ranges in date from the Twelfth onwards to the Eighteenth Dynasty. The type 24 is 146I believe, peculiar to the reigns of Thothmes I and Hatshepsut.

19. Evans.
20. B.M. 27013.
21. Newb.
22. P. I. VIII, 75.
23. B.M. 27194.
24. Murch.
25. Ashm.
26. Ashm.
27. Newb.
28. H-P. 994.
29. W. (W. S.B. XI, 44.)
30. Amh.
31. Ashm.
32. Ashm.
33. Ashm.
34. Benson.
35. M-G.



1-3. Rope patterns. Types 1 and 2 are very common, and all the specimens that I have seen of these two types are certainly of the Hyksos period.

1. Evans.
2. Hood.
3. B.M. 27782.

4-36. Coil and loop patterns. Types 4 and 5 belong to the Hyksos period; the other types range in date from the Twelfth Dynasty onwards to the Eighteenth.

4. Benson.
5. Ready.
6. B.M. 26598.
7. Ashm.
8. Alnw. 1232.
9. B.M.
10. Ashm.
11. B.M. 27321.
12. B.M. 3832.
13. Liv.
14. Ashm.
15. H-P.
16. P. I. VIII, 85.
17. P. Koptos X, 40.
18. Alnw. 1158.
19. Gr.
20. B.M. 3860.
21. Evans.
22. Ashm.
23. W. (W. S.B. XI, 38.)
14824. P. I. VIII, 68.
25. Leyd.
26. Ashm.
27. P. I. X, 168.
28. Benson.
29. P. I. X, 148.
30. Amh.
31. Murch.
32. W. (W. S.B. XI, 223.)
33. Ashm.
34. Ashm.
35. P. K. X, 27.
36. Benson.



1-36. Miscellaneous designs.

1 and 2. Evans.
3. Lord Northampton.
4. P.
5. Gibs.
6. B.M. 17547.
7. Ashm.
8. P. I. VIII, 63.
9. Luxor.
10. Gr.
11. Ashm.
12. Evans.
13. Gr.
14. C.M.
15. B.M. 28236.
16. Bol. A gold ring of the period of Akhenaten.
17. C.M. (de M. D. I.)
18. B.M. 28187.
19. Mr. Nahmann, Cairo.
20. Thomp.
21. C.M.
22. Gibs.
23. C.M.
24. Newb.
25. Gr.
26. Thomp.
27. Evans.
28. Newb.
29. Gdn.
30. C.M.
31. Newb.
32. C.M.
33. Murch.
34. M-G. This seal is of steatite, and has on the back a frog.
35. Newb.
36. Newb.



1-8. “The Good God, Maa-ab-ra.”

1. L.
2. Evans.
3. B.M. 32320.
4. M-G.
5. Murch.
6. M-G.
7. B.M. 24132.
8. Gr.

9-18. “The Son of Ra, Shesha.”

9. Gr.
10. M.G.
11. P.
12. Murch.
13. Murch.
14. P.
15. P.
16. Newb.
17. M-G.
18. Murch.

19-22. “The Good God, Se-kha-en-ra.”

19. Gr.
20. Gr.
21. M-G.
22. Gr.

23 and 24. “The Son of Ra, Qar.” Both examples are in the Grant Collection.

25-29. “The Good God, Kha-user-ra.”

25. P.
26. Gr.
27. P.
28. Gr.
29. Ashm.

30. “The Good God, Kha-mu-ra.” P.



1-3. “The Good God, Aa-hetep-ra.”

1. Davis.
2. P.
3. B.M. 28097.

4-6. “The Son of Ra, Ŷa-mu (?).”

4. B.M. 32441.
5. v-B. (Fr. Sc. 182.)
6. Ashm.

7-12. “The Son of Ra, Ŷ-keb.”

7. H-P.
8. P.
9. Gr.
10. Ashm.
11. Gr.
12. P.

13. Perhaps a blundered scarab of Ŷ-keb.

14-18. “The Son of Ra, Aa-mu.”

14. Evans.
15. M-G.
16. P.
17. Gibs.
18. Evans.

19. “The Good God, Nub-taui-ra.” B.M. 30512.

20-26. “The Good God, User-en-ra, Son of Ra, Khŷan.”

20. v-B.
21. Murch.
22. Fr. (see P. Hist. I, p. 119).
23-25. Murch.
26. C.M.

27-30. “The Good God, Mer-user-ra, Son of Ra. Ŷ-keb-her.”

27. Gr.
28. H-P.
29. B.M. 30500.
30. P.



1-3. “The Good God, Mer-user-ra, Son of Ra, Ŷ-keb-her”—continued.

1 and 2. Murch.
3. Found by Mr. Mace at Hû. (P., Diospolis Parva, XLI, 12.)

4. “The Eldest Royal Son, Nehesi.” M-G.

5 and 6. “The Son of Ra, Nehesi.”

5. P.
6. Amh.

7-9. “The Good God, Uazed.”

7. Gr. (Stolen, but figured in P. Sc., 348.)
8. B.M. 32319.
9. C.M. 3674.

10. “The Hek khaskhet, ‘Ruler of the Mountains,’ Sem-ken.” v-B. (Fr. Sc., 179.)

11. “The Hek khaskhet, ‘Ruler of the Mountains,’ Ant-her.” v-B. (Fr. Sc. 180.)

12. “The Royal Son (and son of Ra?) Seket.” Murch. (Cf. Pl. XLIV, 8.)

13 and 14. “The Eldest Royal Son, Apek.”

13. M-G.
14. Gr.

15315 and 16. “The Eldest Royal Son, Ku-pepen.”

15. P.
16. L.

17. “The Royal Wife, Tau-tha.” B.M. 20824. Another specimen is in the Davis Coll.

18. “The Royal Wife, Uazet.” P.

19. “The Royal Wife ... (?).” Gr.

20-22. “The Royal Sealer and Superintendent of the Seal, Har.”

20. Nash.
21. B.M. 24109.
22. Ashm.

23. “The Royal Son, Sa-ket.” B.M.

24-26. “The Superintendent of the Seal, Per-em-uah.”

24. P.
25. M-G.
26. M-G.

27. “The Superintendent of the Seal, Ra-ha.” B.M. 28228.

28. “Kethuna,” a personal name. Gr.

29. “The Royal Son, Apepa.” Ashm.

30-35. “Aa-user-ra (Apepŷ I).”

30. P.
31. Gibs.
32. P.
33. Murch.
34. Murch.
35. Gr.



1-29. Scarabs bearing unreadable hieroglyphic inscriptions.

1. Davis.
2. Ashm.
3. Gr.
4-7. M-G.
8. Ashm.
9. M-G.
10 and 11. Gr.
12. Ashm.
13 and 14. Gr.
15. M-G.
16. Gr.
17. Gdn.
18. M-G.
19 and 20. Gr.
21. M-G.
22. C.M.
23. L.
24. Gdn.
25-27. M-G.
28. Evans.
29. Gr.

30 and 31. “Aa-user-ra (Apepy I).”

30. Amh.
31. P.

32. A blundered scarab-seal of “the Royal Sealer and Superintendent of the Seal, Per-em-uah.” Gr. (Cf. Pl. XXIII, 24-26.)

33. “Sa-khet-sa,” a personal name. Gr.

34 and 35. “Aa-user-ra (Apepy I).” Amh.

36 and 37. “Nub-ka-ra.” Murch.



Nos. 1-30 are all, I believe, of the Hyksos period; Nos. 31 and 32 belong to the Early Eighteenth Dynasty; and the remaining four scarabs on this plate are of the Late Middle Kingdom or the Early Hyksos period.

1. Gr.
2. Edws.
3. B.M. 28077.
4. Leyd.
5. B.M. 24250.
6. Gr.
7. Gdn.
8 and 9. Gr.
10. Evans.
11. Benson.
12. Gr.
13. Evans.
14. M-G.
15 and 16. Green.
17. Evans.
18. Hood.
19. Evans.
20. Gdn.
21. Evans.
22. Green.
23. B.M. 17472.
24. M-G.
25. B.M. (P. I. IX, 151.)
26. Ashm.
27. Gr.
28. B.M. 3635.
29. B.M. 3681.
30. W.
31. Benson.
32. Gr.
33 and 34. Green.
35. Hood.
36. B.M. (Griffith, Tell el Yahudiyek, X, 8.)



1. “Uaz-kheper-ra (Kames).” P. This scarab is set in a gold funda, and was found at Thebes.

2. “Uaz-kheper-ra, Pa-hek-aa (Kames).” P. Found at Thebes.

3. “The Governor of the (Royal) City and Vezîr, Teta-nefer.” This is a hematite cowroid-shaped seal. P.

4. “The Royal Wife, Aah-hetepu.” B.M. 26981.

5. “Aah-hetep.” A gold ring in the Louvre.

6. “The Eldest Royal Son, Aah-mes.” C.M.

7-10. “Neb-pehti-ra” (Aah-mes).

7. Newb.
8. C.M. 3097.
9. Nash.
10. B.M. 28050.

11. “The Hek Taui, ‘Ruler of the Two Lands,’ Aah-mes.” T.

12. “The Divine Wife, Nefret-ari.” Gr.

13 and 14. “Aahmes-nefret-ari.”

13. Davis.
14. M-G.

15. “The Divine Wife, Nefret-ari.” B.M. 32371.

16. “The Royal Mother, Nefret-ari.” B.M. 32450.

15717. “Neb-pehti-ra (Aahmes I),” with the name of his daughter, “Sat-kames,” on the reverse. P. From Thebes.

18. “The Royal Daughter, Tursi.” Set in a gold funda, and found at Hu. (See Mace, Diospolis Parva, XLI, 17.)

19 and 20. “The Great Royal Wife, Merŷt-amen.”

19. W.
20. B.M.

21. “The Divine Wife, Merŷt-amen.” B.M.

22. “The domain of Merŷt-amen.” Amh. A carnelian scarab, from Thebes.

23-30. “Zeser-ka-ra (Amenhetep I).”

23. Alnw.
24. Murch.
25. Brocklehurst Coll.
26. Davis.
27. M-G.
28. L.
29. Murch.
30. Evans.

31. A scarab, with the names of Amenhetep I and his mother, “the Divine Wife, Nefret-ari.” B.M. 30561.

32. “The Royal Wife, Aah-hetep.” B.M. 28624. (Cf. B.M. 28592.)

33. “Zeser-ka-ra (Amenhetep I).” L.

34. “The Royal Son, Amen-mes.” P. (Cf. Petrie, Hist. II, fig. 23.)

35. “The Royal Son, Tu-re.” P.

36. “The Royal Daughter and Sister, Neb-ta.” Mather Coll. A scarab of Neb-ta is in the P. Coll. (figured by Petrie, Hist. II, fig. 24).



1-11. “Aa-kheper-ra (Thothmes I).”

1. Alnw.
2. B.M. 32418.
3. B.M. 32377.
4. B.M. 17774.
5. Luxor.
6. Amh.
7. B.M.
8. Alnw.
9. B.M. 16578.
10. B.M. 30568.
11. B.M. 30570.

12. “Aa-kheper-ra (Thothmes I) and Hatshepsut, the favoured of Amen.” L.

13. “The Great Royal Wife, Aahmes.” In the possession of Mr. F. C. Cole.

14. “The Divine Wife, Aahmes.” Liv.

15-17. “Aa-kheper-en-ra (Thothmes II).”

15. Brocklehurst Coll.
16. Alnw.
17. P.

18. “Usert-kau, nebt taui,” the ka-name of Hatshepsut. T.

19. “Uaz renpetu,” the nebti-name of Hatshepsut. L.

15920-30. “Maa-ka-ra,” the prenomen of Hatshepsut.

20. Gr.
21. Alnw.
22. Liv.
23. Gdn.
24. B.M.
25. B.M. 29230.
26. “The heiress of Ra.” B.M.
27. “Favoured with delicacies.” Berl. 1903.
28. “Rising in the Horizon.” Har.
29. “Sweet of scent to the nostrils of the Gods of Thebes.” In the possession of Mrs. Wright of Netley.
30. C.M.

31. “Maa-ka-ra, Hatshepsut, the favoured of Amen.” B.M.

32. “Hatshepsut, the favoured of Amen.” B.M. 30572.

33-35 “The Divine Wife, Hatshepsut.”

33. Alnw.
34. B.M. 28438.
35. Berl. 1904.



(Thothmes III and His Family.)

1. “Neferu-ra” (Daughter of Hatshepsut). P.

2. “Neferu-ra, the Divine Wife.” Scarab, set in a gold funda. Gr.

3. “The Royal Daughter and Royal Sister, Neferu-ra.” L.

4. “The Divine Wife, Neferu-ra.” L.

5-34. “Men-kheper-ra” (Thothmes III).

5. Gr.
6. L.
7. B.M. 28745.
8. Alnw. 999.
9. B.M. 16789.
10. B.M. 16838.
11. P.
12. Hood.
13. T.
14. Evans.
15. Alnw. 981.
16. Evans.
17. L.
18. Berl. 14427.
19. Gdn.
20. B.M.
21. P.
22. B.M. 16790.
23. In the possession of Mrs. Roller.
16124. C.M.
25. C.M.
26. Hood.
27. T.
28. Amh.
29. T.
30. L.
31. P.
32. Berl. 14929.
33. M-G.
34. B.M. 28492.

35. “The Great Royal Wife, Merŷt-ra Hatshepsut.” A lapis-lazuli scarab set in a gold funda. L.

36. “Hatshepsut Merŷt-amen-ra.” B.M. 29455.

37. “The Great Royal Wife, Sat-aah.” P.



1. “The Superintendent of the Royal Temple, Aahmes.” Murch.

2. “The Keeper of the Storehouse of Offerings, Sen-pu.” Murch. This scarab probably belongs to the end of the Twelfth Dynasty. (Cf. Pl. XIII, 19.)

3. “The Scribe of the Recruits, Ab-ka-user.” M-G.

4. “The Superintendent of the Workmen of Amen, Men-kheper-ra-senb.” Murch.

5. “The High Priest of Amen, Hapu-senb.” B.M. 29435. Hapu-senb lived under Thothmes II and Queen Hatshepsut. (For remarks on his life, see my note on him in P.S.B.A. XXII, pp. 31-36.)

6. “The Steward of the Queen, Pe-en-Thebu.” Murch.

7. “The uab-priest, Amen-em-heb.” Hood. Mounted in a gold funda.

1638. “The Eyes and Ears of the Lord of the Two Lands, the Mayor, Sen-nefer.” This Mayor (of Thebes) lived under Amenhetep II (see my notes on him in the P.S.B.A. XXII, pp. 52-61).

9. “The sedem ash of the Superintendent of the Seal, Min-nekht.” Davis.

10. “The Divine Father, beloved of the God (i.e., the King), the Vezîr, Ptahmes.” C.M.

11. “The Chantress of Amen, Maŷ.” Alnw.

12. “The Lady, Art.” B.M. 30639.

13. “The Royal Brother....” B.M. 27790.

14. “The Lady, Apu-ser.” Alnw.

15-46. Rings, etc., from the tomb of Maket at Gurob (temp. Thothmes III).

15, 17, 18, 20-28. Scarabs with ornamental devices.

16. “Ra,” a very common type of scarab, and specimens of it may generally be dated to the first half of the Eighteenth Dynasty.

19-32. “Amen-ra.” This is another very common type; it is nearly always of the date of Thothmes III.

29. “The Good God, Lord of the Two Lands, Men-kheper-ra (Thothmes III).”

30, 31, 33. “The Lady, Maket.”

16434. “Aa-kheper-ka-ra (Thothmes I),” chosen of Amen.

35-41. “Men-kheper-ra (Thothmes III).”

42. Plaque, with figures of the Gods Tahuti and Ptah.

43. A cylinder-seal, bearing the titles and names of Thothmes II.

44-45. Flat seals, with ornamental devices.

46. Frog in porcelain, with a beetle engraved upon the base.



(Amenhetep II to Amenhetep III.)

1-15. “Aa-kheperu-ra (Amenhetep II).”

1. “Born at Memphis.” P.
2. “Beloved of Tahuti.” Luxor.
3. “Firm of heart.” B.M. 4077. This rectangular plaque is a splendid specimen of the engraver’s art; it is of yellow jasper, and on the reverse is cut a representation of one of the horses of the king.
4. B.M.
5. B.M. 16915.
6. “Lord of Glory in the house of Amen.” W. (W., S.B. IV, 67.)
7. L.
8. L.
9. Alnw.
10. B.M. 4069.
11. P. I., VIII, 39.
12. “Prince of Thebes, Lord of Valiance, and beloved of Amen.” P. I. VIII.
13. Alnw. (plaque).
14. (W. S.B. IV, 400.)
15. B.M. 3944.

16616. A gold plaque, forming the bezel of a swivel ring, in the Liverpool Museum. The inscription reads:—“The Good God, son of Amen, Lord of Valiance, the Son of Ra, Amenhetep (II), the Divine Ruler of Heliopolis, fighting hundreds of thousands.”

17. “Aa-kheperu-ra, Son of Amen, whom he (Amen) created himself.” P. K. XXIII, 7.

18-25. “Men-kheperu-ra (Thothmes IV).”

18. Brock. A gold plaque, forming the bezel of a swivel-ring.
19 and 20. Gr.
21. “Lord of the sweet wind.” L.
22. “Beloved of Ptah.” B.M.
23. Gr.
24. Ready.
25. L.

26-32. “Neb-maa-ra (Amenhetep III).”

26 and 27. Newb.
28. “Neb-maa-ra (Amenhetep III)” and “the Royal Wife Thyi.” B.M.
29. “Beloved of Amen.” Luxor.
30. “Beloved of Ptah.” Amh.
31. “Lord of the festival, Amenhetep (III), Ruler of Thebes.” T.
32. Gr.



Amenhetep III (continued) TO Aŷ.

1-12, 14-18. Neb-maa-ra (Amenhetep III) and his Queen Thŷi.

1. Newb.
2. B.M. 28314.
3. “Neb-maa-ra and the Royal Wife, Thŷi.” B.M. 29454.
4. “The Great Royal Wife, Thŷi.” B.M. 32351.
5. “Pleasing with Victories.” B.M. 32433.
6. B.M. 28571.
7. B.M. 32304.
8. “The Royal Wife Thŷi.”
9. “Amenhetep (III), Ruler of Thebes.” Newb.
10. “Abounding in things.” B.M. 32405.
11. Newb.
12. B.M. 32348.
13. See below under Amenhetep IV.
14. Amh.
15. “Amenhetep (III), Ruler of Thebes.” B.M. 30446. A gold ring.
16816. “Neb-maa-ra and the Royal Wife, Thŷi.” P.
17. “The Royal Wife, Thŷi.” B.M. 30589.
18. “The Great Divine Wife, Thŷi, beloved
of Isis.”

13, 19-25, 27, 28. Nefer-kheperu-ra, ua-en-ra (Amenhetep IV), afterwards called Akhenaten.

13. “Ruler of Thebes.” B.M. 4097.
19. “Lord of the Sweet Wind.”
20. “Beloved of Hor-akhuti.”
21. “Beloved of Amen and Mut.” Gdn.
22. “Amenhetep (IV), the Divine Ruler of Thebes.” Newb.
23. “Chosen of Amen.” B.M. 29236.
24. A plaque in the Amherst Collection giving the two names of Amenhetep IV, and on the reverse, “beloved of Sebek-ra, Lord of Sunu.” Amh.
25. A silver ring in the M-G. Collection.
27. “Pacifying the Aten.” B.M. 30596.
28. “Beloved of the Aten.” B.M. 28417.

26, 29. Kheper-kheperu-ra, ar maat (Aŷ). See also No. 34.

26. “Beloved of Amen.” B.M. 4096.
29. “Beloved of Amen.” Newb.

30. “Nefer-neferu-aten Nefert-iti,” Queen of Akhenaten. Gold ring in the Louvre.

16931. A bronze ring of Ankh-kheperu-ra, in the M-G. Collection.

32. “Neb-kheperu-ra (Tût-ankh-amen), beloved of Ptah, Lord of Heaven.” P.

33. “Ankh-nes-pa-aten,” Queen of Tut-ankh-amen. P.

34. A gold ring of Kheper-kheperu-ra, ar maat (Aŷ). Leyd.



1. Kirgipa and Her Harîm.

Two specimens of this scarab are known, and it is perhaps the most interesting one of the series. One example is preserved in the Berl. Mus. (11002), the other was in the possession of Madame Hoffmann. An elaborate study of the text of the latter example has been published by Brugsch in the Ä.Z., XVIII, 81, and Maspero has given a drawing of the inscription (by Legrain, from a paper impression) in his Recueil des Travaux, XV, 200. The text given in the Plate is from the Berlin specimen, restored from Maspero’s published copy.

(a) Transliteration. (b) Translation.
1. Renpt X kher hen en 1. “The tenth year under the Majesty of
2-5. Ankh Heru. (Here follow the usual titles of Amen-hetep III and Thŷi.) 2-5. “the Living Horus.” (Here follow the full titles of Amenhetep III and Thŷi.)
6. ren en tef-ef Ŷuaa; ren-en 6. “The name of her father is Ŷuaa; the name of
7. met-es Thuaa. Baŷt: anen 7. “her mother, Thuaa. Wonders:—
8. ŷt hen-ef sat ur ne Neherina 8. “His Majesty brought the daughter of the Prince of Mesopotamia,
9. Sa-tha-ri-na Kir-gi-pa 9. “Sa-tha-ra-na (the Princess) Kir-gi-pa
10. tepu ne khenera-es 10. “(and) the head-women of her harîm
11. set, 317. 11. “Women, 317.”

2. The Lion Hunts of Amenhetep III.

Scarabs bearing an inscription recording the lion hunts of Amenhetep III are common, and about forty specimens are known. Of these, five are in the British Museum (4095, 12520, 16987, 24169, 29438); four are in the Louvre (Inv., 787, 788); four in the Berlin Museum (3481, 3482, 8443, 13274); three in the Leyden Museum (O. 83-85); and one each in the Cairo (M., Cat. Ab., 1388), Florence (840), and Bologna (2455) Museums. In the Cat. des Med., Paris (1021), and in the Amherst, Edwards, Fraser (Sc. 261), Grant, Hertz (Cat., p. 112), Kennard, Myers, Meux (1785), Palin, Petrie, Posno, H-Price (Cat. 284), and several smaller collections, are also one each. The example figured is in the possession of Mr. Nash. The hieroglyphic text of this scarab has been published, among others, by Mariette (Alb. de Boulaq, Pl. 36, 532), Maspero (Histoire, II, p. 315), Brugsch (Ä.Z., XVIII, 81), and Budge (Mummy, p. 241), and a translation of it has been given by Pierret (Cat. Salle Hist., Louvre, 1877, p. 138), by Birch (Records of the Past, XII, p. 40), and many others.

(a) Transliteration. (b) Translation.
1-5. (Full titles and names 1-5. (Full titles and names of Amenhetep III and of Amenhetep III and Thŷi.) 1-5. (Full titles and names 1-5. (Full titles and names of Amenhetep III and of Amenhetep III and Thŷi.)
5. ari-khet mau 5. “Number of the lions
6. anen hen-ef em satet-ef zes-ef shaa 6. “brought by his Majesty in his own shooting, beginning
7. em renpt I nefrŷt er renpt X mau7 . “from the year one ending at the year ten: lions
8. hesa, 102 8. “fierce, 102.”

3. The Parents of Queen Thŷi and the Limits of the Egyptian Empire.

Many specimens are known of this historical scarab. In the Louvre there are two examples (Inv. 787); in the British Museum are three (4096, 16988, 29437, the latter specimen of fine blue-glazed steatite); in the Cairo Museum, one (3817, figured in Mariette’s Album de Boulaq, XXXVI, 541; Maspero, Struggles of the Nations, p. 315); in the Bologna Museum, one (2454); in the Edwards, Petrie, Fraser (Fr., Sc. X, 262), Nash, Hilton-Price (Cat. 283), Dattari and Myers’ Collections, one each; as well as several others in private hands. The example figured here is from the Amherst Collection. Birch (Records of the Past, XII, 39); Budge (Mummy, 242), and Fraser (Fr. Sc., X, 56), have published translations of the text.

(a) Transliteration. (b) Translation.
1. Ankh Heru. (Here follow the full titles of Amenhetep III and his Queen Thŷi) 1. “The Living Horus.” (Here follow the titles of Amenhetep III and his Queen Thŷi.)
5. “ren en tef-es 5. “The name of her father is
6. Ŷuaa, ren en met-es Thuaa 6. “Ŷuaa, the name of her mother is Thuaa;
7. hemt pu ent seten nekht 7. “she is the wife of the victorious king;
8. tash ef res er Karŷ 8. “his southern boundary is Karŷ,[129]
9. mehti er Neha- 9. “(and) his northern boundary is Meso-
10. rina. 10. “potamia.”



1. The Wild Cattle Hunt.

Two specimens of this scarab are known, and both are in the MacGregor Collection at Tamworth. The text of one of these, together with a rough translation, has been published by Fraser in the P.S.B.A., XXI, 156, and a good photographic facsimile of it has been given by the same collector in the Catalogue of his Scarab Collection (Frontispiece, and p. 56). The text given in Pl. #XXXIII"pl-XXXIII#, 1, is from a copy made by the writer at Tamworth of the example published by Fraser, and some restorations have been added from the inscription on the second specimen.

(a) Transliteration.

1. Renpt II kher hen ne

2-4. Ankh Heru (here follow the full titles of Amenhetep III and Thŷi),

4. Baat khepert

5. ne hen-ef: ŷu-tu er zed ne hen-ef, an un semau her khaset

6. ne u ne Shetep (or Shetau): nat hen-ef em khed em seten uaa “Kha-em-maāt”

7. her tra ne khaui, shep uat nefert, sper em hetep er u ne Shetep (or Shetau)

8. her tra ne dua. Khat hen-ef er sesemet meshau-ef tem em khet-ef

9. sehent seru ankhu ne meshau er zer-ef ma qed-ef, nekhenu

17410. ne a (?) er art resu her nan semau. Ast uzu ne hen-ef erdet aŧ-

11. h-tu nen semau em sebti hena shedŷ, uzu

12. ŷ ne hen-ef er [heseb ?] nen semau er fu sen, ari khet ne ari semau 190 ari khet

13. anen hen-ef em behes em heru pen semau 56: uah an hen-ef heru 4,

14. em ush erdet seref ne sesemet-ef: khat hen-ef her sesemet

15. ari khet nen semau anenef en behes semau 20 +

16. 20, demd semau 96.

(b) Translation.

1. “The second year under the Majesty of

2-4. “the Living Horus.” (Here follow the full titles of Amenhetep III and Queen Thŷi.) ”A wonderful thing happened

5. “to His Majesty. A messenger (lit. ‘one’) came to tell His Majesty that there were wild cattle upon the desert

6. “of the district of Shetep[130] (or Shetau); His Majesty thereupon floated down the river in the Royal dahabiyeh, “Kha-em-maat” (i.e., “Shining-in-Truth”),

1757. “at the time of evening, and (after) having had a good journey, arrived in safety at the district of Shetep (or Shetau)

8. “at the time of morning. His Majesty mounted upon a horse, and his whole army followed him.

9. “The nobles and the ankhu[131]-officers of the entire army were marshalled, and the children

10. “of the quarter (district?) were ordered to keep watch upon these wild cattle. His Majesty thereupon ordered that they (lit. one) should surround

11. “these wild cattle with a net(?)[132] and a dyke[133] and

17612. “His Majesty then ordered that these wild cattle should be counted(?) in their entirety, and the number of them amounted to, wild cattle 190. The number

13. “of wild cattle which His Majesty brought in [his own?] hunting in this day (was) 56: His Majesty rested four days

14. “in order to give spirit (lit. ‘fire’) to his horses; then His Majesty mounted (again) upon a horse

15. “and the number of these wild cattle which were brought to him in hunting (was) wild cattle 20 +

16. “20 (i.e., 40): (making) the total number of wild cattle (captured) 96.”

2. The Lake at Zarukha.

Three specimens of this scarab are known; one is in the Egyptian Museum of the Vatican at Rome; another is in the Golenischeff Collection, and the third is in the possesion of the Duke of Northumberland at Alnwick Castle. A fragment of a fourth example is in the Petrie Collection. The Vatican scarab was first published by Rosellini (Mon. St., Pl. 44, 2, cf. Vol. III, pt. 1, pp. 263-268), and again by Stern in 1878 (Ä.Z., 1877, p. 87). A translation of this text was made by Birch, and published by him in the Records of the Past (Vol. XII, p. 41). The text given here is that on the Alnwick Museum specimen.[134]

(a) Transliteration. (b) Translation.
1. Renpet XI, abd III, shat, heru I, kher 1. “The eleventh year, the third month of the harvest season, the day 1, under
2-5. (ankh) Heru.[135] (Here follow the full titles of Amenhetep and Thŷi.) 2-5. the (living) Horus. “(Here follow the usual titles of Amenhetep and Thŷi.)
6. uzu hen-ef art mert[136] ne hemt seten urt 6. “His Majesty ordered that there should be made a lake for the great Royal Wife
7. Thŷi, ankh tha, em demaes en Zaru- 7. Thŷi, living, in her town of Zaru-
8. kha[137]; fu-ef meh em 3700, usekh-ef meh[138] 8. kha; its length to be 3,700 cubits, its breadth cubits
9. 700. ar ne hen-ef heb uba mert 9. 700. His Majesty made the festival of the opening of the lake
17810. em abd III shat, heru 16, khent hen-ef 10. in the third month of the harvest season, on the sixteenth day (when) His Majesty sailed
11. em seten uaa “Aten- 11. in the Royal dahabiyeh (named) ”Aten-
12. tahen[139]” em khenu-ef. 12. tahen, “in its cabin.”



1-6. Zezer-kheperu-ra (Horemheb).

1. Luxor.
2. “Ruler of Heliopolis. Chosen of Ra.” Bol. 2528.
3. Newb.
4. Hood.
5. “Ruler of Thebes.” Dattari.
6. “Beloved of Amen. Hor-em-heb.” Alnw.

7 and 8. Mut-nezemt, Queen of Horemheb.

7. Ring, P.
8. “The Great Royal Wife.” A frog on back. Mar. Abyd., II, 40 m.

9-13. Men-pehti-ra (Rameses I).

9. B.M. 32474.
10. B.M. 24187.
11. B.M. 32445.
12. v-B. (Fr. Sc. 225.)
13. Gr.

18014-21. Men-maat-ra (Setŷ I).

14. Newb.
15. B.M. 17157.
16. B.M. 32406.
17. B.M. 32373.
18. B.M. 30601.
19. “Prince of Truth.” C.M.
20. B.M. 17142.
21. “Beloved of Ptah.” B.M. (Loftie.)

22-36. User-maat-ra setep-en-ra (Rameses II).

22. Luxor.
23. Newb.
24. P.
25. Luxor.
26. P.
27. B.M. 29239.
28. B.M. 30613.
29. B.M. 30614.
30. Amh.
31. B.M. 30615.
32. B.M. 32303.
33. Amh.
34. T.
35. Amh.
36. Amh.



1-6. User-maat-ra setep-en-ra (Rameses II).

1. Liv.
2. Ramesseum.
3. Amh.
4. “Ramessu, beloved of Amen.” Amh.
5. Cairo.
6. “The Great Noble.” L.

7. “Nefret-ari, beloved of Mut,” Queen of Rameses II. L.

8-14. User-maat-ra setep-en-ra (Rameses II).

8. B.M. 20826.
9. Gurob.
10. Alnw.
11. Alnw.
12. B.M. 29443.
13. “Glorious in the House of Amen-ra.” B.M. 32328.
14. L.

15. Plaque. Obverse, the cartouches of Rameses II; reverse, “The Royal Wife, Ur-maat-neferu-ra, daughter of the Great Chief of the Kheta.” Found at Tell el Yahudîyeh, and now in the B.M.

16. Plaque. Obverse, the prenomen of Rameses II; reverse, “The Hereditary Mayor and Priest, the Governor of the (Royal) City, the Vezîr, Paser.” W. On Paser, see my notice of him in P.S.B.A., Vol. XXII, pp. 62, 63, and cf. No. 17.

18217. Plaque. “The Judge, the Doctor and arï Nekhen, the priest of Maat, the Governor of the (Royal) City, the Vezîr, Paser.” L. Cf. No. 16.

18. Plaque. “User-maat-ra setep-en-ra (Rameses II), The Chieftain of the Harîm of Isis, Min.” C.M.

19. Plaque. Obverse, Prenomen of Rameses II; reverse, “The Royal son of his body, his beloved one, Ramessu-user-pehti.” v-B.

20. Plaque, with scarab on back. “The Royal son, born of the Great Royal Wife, the Chief of the Bowmen, Pa-ra-her-amen-ef.” M-G.

21. Plaque. Obverse, “The High Priest of Amen, Bak-en-khensu; reverse, Son of the Superintendent of the Recruits of the Temple of Amen, Amen-em-apt.” Murch. On this celebrated person, see my life of him in Benson and Gourley’s The Temple of Mut, p. 343-347.

22. Plaque. Obverse, Prenomen of Rameses II; reverse, ”Scribe of the memory of the Lord of the Two Lands, User-maat-ra-nekht.” v-B.

23. Plaque. Obverse, Prenomen of Rameses II; reverse, “The Sem-priest of Ptah, the Governor of the (Royal) City, the Vezîr, Nefer-renpet.” Amh.

24. Plaque. Obverse, Prenomen of Rameses II; reverse, “Khensu-in-Thebes Nefer-hetep.” On sides, “The Sem-priest of Ptah, Nefer-renpet,” and “the Governor of the (Royal) Cities, the Vezîr, Nefer-renpet.” B.M. 4104.



1 and 2. “Ne-ba-ra mery-Amen, Hetep-her-māat” (Merenptah I).

1. Leyd.
2. T.

3-7. “User-kheperu-ra mery-Amen Setŷ-mer-en-Ptah” (Setŷ II).

3. Gr.
4. Alnw.
5. M-G.
6. M-G.
7. Luxor.

8 and 9. Akh-en-ra Setep-en-ra Mer-en-ptah Sa-ptah (Siptah).

8. P.
9. Alnw.

10. Ta-usert Setep-en-Mut (Queen of Siptah). Newb.

11. Ta-usert akh-en-Mut (Queen of Siptah). v-B.

12. “The Royal Wife Ta-usert (Queen of Siptah). M-G.

13. “Sat-ra mer-en-Amen (Queen Tausert).” Newb.

14. “The Chancellor, Baŷ.” Chancellor of Siptah. Luxor.

15. “User-khau-ra mery-Amen” (Setnekht). Cairo.

16. Setnekht mery-ra. Luxor.

17. User-maat-ra mery-Amen, Rameses, “Ruler of Heliopolis” (Rameses III). Luxor.

18418. “User-maat-ra mery-Amen, the strong lion.” B.M. 17803.

19. B.M. 17130.
20. B.M. 17123.
21. Nash.

22. “User-maat-ra Setep-en-Amen” (Rameses IV). M-G.

23. “Heq-maat-ra sa Amen” (Rameses IV). B.M. 17,147.

24. “Rameses, Prince of Truth” (Rameses IV). B.M. 29241.

25. “User-maat-ra Set kheper-en-ra” (Rameses V), Edw.

26. “Neb-maat-ra mery-Amen” (Rameses VI). Luxor.

27. “User-ra mery-Amen Setep-en-ra” (Rameses VII). B.M. 17134.

28. “Rameses the Divine Prince of Heliopolis” (Rameses VI). Gr.

29. “Rameses mery-Amen, akh-en-ra” (Rameses VIII). Amh.

30. “The great Noble” (Rameses VIII). Amh.

31. “Nefer-ka-ra Setep-en-ra” (Rameses IX). Gr.

32. “User-maat-ra Setep-en-Neith” (Rameses X). M.D. 32.

33. “Sa-Amen.” M-G.

34. “Neter-kheper-ra setep-en-ra” (Smendes). Gr.



1-8. “Hez-kheper-ra setep-en-ra” (Shashanq I).

1. M-G.
2. M-G.
3. M-G.
4. Nash.
5. Amh.
6. M-G.
7. Luxor.
8. Gr.

9. “The Royal Wife, Ka-ra-ma-ma” Ready.

10. “Se-her-ab-ra Pe-de-se-Bast” (Petsubastis). Luxor.

11-13. “Sekhem-kheper-ra setep-en-ra, Osorkon” (Osorkon I).

11. Leyd.
12. Newb.
13. T.

14. “Hez-kheper-ra setep-en-ra, The Divine Ruler of Thebes, Takelethi” (Takelotis I). Newb.

15. “Mery Amen Se Bast Shashanq” (Shashanq II). L.

16. “User-maat-ra Mery Amen Shashanq” (Shashanq III). Cairo.

17-19. “Aa-kheper-ra” (Shashanq IV).

17. Amh. (ivory).
18. Gr.
19. Gr.

18620. Kash-ta and Amenardes. Luxor.

21. Amenardes. B.M. 20855.

22 and 23. Uah-ka-ra (Bokkheris).

22. P.
23. Davis.

24. Shep-en-upt. Hood.

25. “The Governor of the City and Vezîr, Zed-auf-Tahuti” (?).

26 and 27. “The Divine Wife Amenardes.

26. Alnw.
27. Alnw.

28. Pe-ankhy and Taharqa. W.

29 and 30. Nefer-ka-ra (Shabaka).

29. Bologna 2533.
30. Alnw.



1. “The Priest of Ra, the Governor of the Two Cities, the Vezîr, Hor-sa-ast.” P.

2. Ta-har-qa. Hood.

3. Ded-ka-ra. M-G.

4. Ta-har-qa. P.

5. Nefer-ka-ra. M-G.

6. Nefer-ka-ra Shabaka. B.M. 17168.

7. Shabaka. B.M. Found at Nineveh. (Layard, Nineveh and Babylon, p. 156.)

8. Ka-ankh-ra. M-G.

9. Psamtek. C.M.

10. Uah-ab-ra. Bologna.

11. Uah-ab-ra. Gr.

12. Ta-har-qa. L.

13. Psamtek. P.

14. Uah-ab-ra. Alnw.

15. Nefer-ab-ra. M-G.

16. “The Priest of Anhur and Shu, son of Ra, Ankh sha-ba-min.” Gold ring. L.

17. Aahmes sa-Neith. T.

18. Men-nefer-ra. M-G.

18819. Haa-ab-ra. Uah-ab-ra. C.M.

20. Heru Aa-ab. Newb.

21. Khnem-ab-ra. C.M. (M. M.D. 32.)

22. “Psamtek, beloved of Ptah-anb-res-ef.” C.M. (M. M.D. 32.)

23. “The Priest of Hor-pa-khred ... Regulator of the Temples of Sekhet-hetep, Psamtek-senb.” (Griffith, Tell el Yahudiyeh, Pl. XVIII, 14.)

24. “The Priest ... Hor, son of Horuza.” L.

25. “The Hereditary Mayor, the Priest of Osiris, Lord of Dedu, the Great Chief, Pa-ma.” M-G.

26. “... The Chief of the Mayors, Nefer.” B.M.; from Naucratis.

27. “The Priest of Her-she-ef.” Gold ring. L.

28. “The Priest of Hather, Lady of the Sycomore ...” Gold ring. L.

29. “The nomarch of the Hermonthite nome, Divine Father of Amen-Ra, King of the gods (?), Priest, Opener to the Holder of the ..., the abh-priest, Yerhararu.” Gold ring. Luxor.



The inscriptions on these scarabs are generally extremely difficult to interpret, but a few will be found translated on p. 78. I give here, therefore, only references to the collections from which the examples have been figured.

1 and 2, v-B.

3. M-G. (Common.)

4. B.M. (Common.)

5. B.M.

6. Ashm.

7. Thomp.

8. B.M. 17189.

9. Thomp.

10. Alnw.

11-13. M-G.

14. Gr.

15. Hood.

16 and 17. Gr.

18. M-G.

19. Gr.

20. Hood.

21. Evans. (This plaque is dated by the name of Thothmes III engraved on its side.)

22. B.M. 4267.

23. B.M. 27219.

24. Alnw.

25. Gr.

26. B.M. 3631.

27. M-G. (Common.)

28. B.M. 3912.

29. Alnw.

30. Alnw. (Very common.)

31. Hood.

32. Ashm.

33. M-G.

34. Hood.

35. Ashm.

36. Gr. (This example has the name of Rameses II cut on the back.)

37. M-G. (Common.)

38. B.M. 29245.



References are only given here to the collections from which the specimens have been figured. A few of the inscriptions will be found translated on p. 78.

1. B.M. 3702.

2. Alnw.

3. In the possession of Arthur Evans, Esq.

4. Gr.

5. Hood.

6. B.M. 17270.

7. Bol., 2641.

8. P.

9. B.M. 26596.

10. Ashm.

11. Gr.

12. Luxor.

13 and 14. Amh.

15 and 16. Hood.

17. Luxor.

18. H-P. 4603; cf. Pl. XXXIX, 21 and 27.

19. Fitzw. (Common.)

20. B.M. 26618.

21. Hood.

22. Amh.

23. Luxor. (Very common.)

24. Fitzw. (Very common.)

25. Bol. 2770. (Not rare.)

26. Luxor.

27. H-P.

28. Newb.

29 and 30. Amh.

31. In the possession of Mrs. Cox.

32. B.M.



1. “Isis, Lady of Heaven and Mistress of the Gods.” T.

2. Ŷm-hetep. H.P.

3. “Amen-ra, Lord of the Breath of Life.” Alnw.

4. “Amen-ra, abundant in things.” Newb.

5. Head of Hathor. T.

6. Her-she-ef. M-G.

7. “Ra-nefer, Son of Amen.” Gr.

8. Ptah. Cairo.

9. “Shu, Son of Ra.” Amh.

10. Horus and Uraeus. Vat.

11. Horus and Uraeus. T.

12. A king adoring Thoth. C.M.

13. Ptah standing in front of two altars. Alnw.

14. Mentu. C.M.

15. Set. C.M.

16. Bes. Amh.

17. Amen supported by Ra and Pacht. Amh.

18. Amen-ra. Cairo.

19. Maat. Newb.

20. The title “Courtier.” C.M.

19221. The title “Hereditary Prince.” Gr.

22. The title “Governor of the City.” C.M.

23. The royal title, “Son of Ra.” Luxor.

24. The royal titles, “The Good God, Lord of the Two Lands.” Luxor.

25. The royal titles, “King of Upper and Lower Egypt.” Newb.

26. A common inscription of doubtful meaning. B.M.

27. Hieroglyphic signs symmetrically arranged. Luxor.

28. M-G.

29. Luxor.

30. Amen-ra. Cairo.

31. B.M.

32. B.M. (A very common inscription.)

33. Luxor.

34. Luxor.

35. Naucratis.

36. Luxor.



1. Ankh, “Life.” Newb.

2. Ankh nefer, “Life and beauty.” Newb.

3. Nefer maa, “Beauty and truth.” Newb.

4. Do. do. do.

5. Hieroglyphic signs. Luxor.

6. Two nefer signs. Cairo.

7. Ankh nefer, “Life and beauty.” Newb.

8-11. Hieroglyphic signs. C.M.

12. Nefer, “Beauty,” surrounded by a coil pattern. C.M.

13. Two feet and an ox’s head (?). M-G.

14. Lotus buds. C.M.

15. Lotus flower and buds. C.M.

16. Papyrus flowers. Newb.

17. A cat, fish, and eye. C.M.

18. An eye. L.

19. A fly. Hood.

20. A beetle, two uraei, and a crocodile. Newb.

19421. A cat and fish in an eye. C.M. (see above, No. 17.)

22. A hawk, two uraei, and a crocodile. Newb.

23. A hand. Gr.

24. A King (?) seated. Very common.

25. A fish and a scorpion. Gr.

26. Three uraei. Liv.

27. A man holding two crocodiles. Hood.

28. Two monkeys climbing a palm-tree. Gr.

29. A palm-tree and two crocodiles. Dattari.

30. Two fish. Cairo.

31. Two scorpions. Gr.

32. A gazelle. Newb.

33-39. Hunting scenes. B.M., Newb., and H-P. Colls.



1. “The Royal Sealer and Divine Father, Ha-ankh-ef.” P.

2. “The Steward, Khnems.” Dat. Thirteenth Dynasty.

3. “The son of Ra, Amenemhat-Sebekhetep, beloved of Sebek-ra. Lord of Shŷteru” (?). Davis. Thirteenth Dynasty. (See P.S.B.A., XXIV, p. 250.)

4. “The Steward, Amenŷ.” P. Late Twelfth Dynasty.

5. “The Scribe of the Army, Nehŷ, born of the Lady Kesen.” C.M. Thirteenth Dynasty.

6. “Neferui-uah-ra.” Fitzw.

7. “The Royal Friend, Doctor and Scribe, Sa-hather.” C.M. Thirteenth Dynasty.

8. “The Chief Superintendent of the Office of the Treasury, Nen-semkhut-ef.” Davis. Thirteenth Dynasty.

9. “The Doctor and ari Nekhen, Antef.” Davis. Thirteenth Dynasty.

19610. “The Royal Sealer, Royal Friend, and Superintendent of the Seal, Ab-tau.” Davis. Hyksos period.

11. “Ankhes-en-pa-aten.” Davis. Eighteenth Dynasty (Akhenaten).

12. “The Superintendent of the Cattle of Amen; Sen-nefer.” P. Early Eighteenth Dynasty.

13. “The Vezîr, Ym-hetep.” Davis. This Vezîr lived under Amenhetep I. (See P.S.B.A., XXIII, p. 250.)

14. “Apepa.” Davis. Hyksos period.

15. “The Mayor and Superintendent of the Granary of Amen, Aahmes.” Davis. Time of Hatshepsût or early Thothmes III.

16. “The Chantress of Amen, Nefret-ari.” Dat. End of the Eighteenth or beginning of the Nineteenth Dynasty.

17 and 18. “Shesha.” Mr. Nahmann, Cairo. Hyksos period. (Cf. Pl. XXI, 9-18.)

19. “The Son of Ra, Ambu.” C.M. Hyksos period.

20. A blundered scarab of Se-kha-en-ra. Davis. (Cf. Pl. XXI, 19-22.) Hyksos period.

21. “The Son of Ra, Ŷ-keb.” Davis. Hyksos period. (Cf. Pl. XXII, 7-13.)

22. “The Royal Son, Ŷ-kebu.” v-B. Hyksos period. (See supra, No. 21.)

19723. “The Superintendent of the Unguents, Kheper-ka.” P. Twelfth Dynasty.

24. “The Superintendent of the Office, Atef.” C.M. Thirteenth or Fourteenth Dynasty.

25. “The Scribe Teta.” Davis. Middle Eighteenth Dynasty.

26. “The Steward of the House of Prayer, Mesu.” B.M.

27. “The Mayor of Heliopolis, Ben, son of Ma.” v-B. Thothmes III. (Fr. Sc. 81.)

28. “The Guardian of the Storehouse, Aŷ.” T. Thirteenth Dynasty.

29. “The Guardian of the Storehouse, Senb.” C.M. Thirteenth Dynasty.

30. “The Overseer of the Surveyors, Thati.” C.M. Thirteenth Dynasty.

31. “The Chief over the Secrets of the Royal Palace, the Royal Sealer, and Superintendent of the Seal, Hor.” Philadelphia Museum. (See my note in Garstang’s El Arabeh, p. 32.)

32. “The Guardian of the Unguents, Nub-user.” C.M. Thirteenth Dynasty.

33. “The Superintendent of the (Cattle ?) stalls, Benera.” C.M. Thirteenth Dynasty.



1. “The Superintendent of the Interior, Kenem. Timmins’ Coll.

2. “The Em-a-ast, Sebeknekht.” Cairo.

3. “The Steward of the Accounts of Cattle, Hora-khent-khetï-hetep.” Timmins’ Coll.

4. “The Lady Sent.” Timmins’ Coll.

5. “The Scribe Hu-ma-thu.” Timmins’ Coll.

6. “The Son of Ra, Khŷan.” Timmins’ Coll.

7. “The Good God, Kha-user-Ra, giving life.” Piers’ Coll.

8. “The Son of Ra, Seket.” Piers’ Coll.

9. “The King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Se-baq-ka-Ra.” Cairo.

10. “The Superintendent of ...? Anna.” Timmins’ Coll.

11. “The Superintendent of the Gold Workers, Haaïu.” Timmins’ Coll.

12. “The Court Under-sealer, Ab-ref.”

19913. “The Great (?) Royal Wife, Nub-hetep-tha.” Murch.

14. “The Lady, Y-ȧb.” Cairo.

15. “The Great One of the Southern Tens, Sebek-her-heb.” Timmins’ Coll.

16. “The Chief Steward, Mentu-hetep Zeszes.” Timmins’ Coll.

17. “The Scribe of the Great Prison, Dehenti.” Timmins’ Coll.

18. “The abu ne at ... Sebek-aa.” Cairo.

19. “May the King give an offering to Ptah-seker-Osiris Neb ankh tauï for the ka of the Great one of the Southern Tens, Sebek-em-heb, Son of H ... hufi.” Cairo.

20. “The Governor of the city, Ptah (?).” Cairo.

21. “Ari-at of the followers, Yu-senbu.” Cairo.

22. “Royal Sealer. Superintendent of the Peasantmen, Nefer-hetep.” Cairo.

23. “Royal Sealer. Superintendent of the prison, Senb.” Murch.

24. “The judge and arï Nekhen, Ren-ef-res.” Cairo.

25. “Royal daughter, Nebt-tep-ahu.” Murch.

26. “Royal Sealer, Chief Steward, Neb-ankh.” Murch.







(a) KINGS.





Egyptian Antiquities. Plate II.
Tût-Ankh-Amen’s Chancellor presents Huŷ with the
Signet-Ring of his Office.
(From the Tomb of Huŷ at Thebes.)


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate III.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Pre-dynastic Cylinder-Seals.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate IV.
Scale 1:2. P.E.N.
Early Cylinder-Seals.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate V.
Scale 1:2. P.E.N.
Cylinder-Seals: Fourth to Sixth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate VI.
Scale 1:2 P.E.N.
Cylinder-Seals: Twelfth Dynasty.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate VII.
Scale 1:2. P.E.N.
Cylinder-Seals: Twelfth to Seventeenth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate VIII.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Miscellaneous Cylinder-Seals.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate IX.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs with Royal Names: Fourth to Twelfth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate X.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of Kings of the Thirteenth and following Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XI.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of Officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XII.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of Royal Personages and Officials of the
Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XIII.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of Officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XIV.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of Officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XV.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of Officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XVI.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of Officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XVII.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of Officials of the Twelfth to Fourteenth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XVIII.
Scale 1:1 P.E.N.
Decorative Scarabs: Twelfth to Eighteenth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XIX.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Decorative Scarabs: Twelfth to Eighteenth Dynasties


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XX.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Decorative Scarabs: Twelfth to Eighteenth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXI.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Hyksos Kings (1).


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXII.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Hyksos Kings (1).


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXIII.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Royal Persons and Officials of the Hyksos Period.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXIV.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Hyksos Period.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXV.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Figures of Men, Animals, &c., mostly of the Hyksos Period.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXVI.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of Kings, &c., of the Seventeenth and early Eighteenth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXVII.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of the Eighteenth Dynasty.
(Thothmes I. to Hatshepsût.)


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXVIII.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of the Eighteenth Dynasty.
(Thothmes III. and Family.)


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXIX.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
(1-14) Officials of the Eighteenth Dynasty, and (15-46) Rings, &c.,
from the Tomb of Maket at Gurob (Thothmes III.).


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXX.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of the Eighteenth Dynasty.
(Amenhetep II.—Amenhetep III.).


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXXI.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs of the Eighteenth Dynasty.
(Amenhetep III. (etd.)—Ay.)


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXXII.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
1. Kirgipa and her Karêm.
2. The Lion Hunt.
3. The Limits of the Egyptian Empire.
Historical Scarabs of Amenhetep III.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXXIII.
1. The Wild Cattle Hunt.
2. The Lake at Zarukha.
Historical Scarabs of Amenhetep III.—(ctd.)


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXXIV.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs with Royal Names.
(Hor-em-heb to Rameses II.)


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXXV.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Plaques and Scarabs of Rameses II


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXXVI.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs with Royal Names: Mer-en-ptah I. to Sa-amen.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXXVII.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs with Royal Names: Twenty-second to Twenty-fifth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXXVIII.
Scarabs bearing Royal and other Names: Twenty-fifth to
Twenty-eighth Dynasties.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XXXIX.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs bearing Mottoes, Good Wishes, &c.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XL.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs bearing Mottoes, Good Wishes, &c.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XLI.
Scarabs bearing Names and Figures of Gods, &c.]


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XLII.
Hieroglyphs, Flowers, &c.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XLIII.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs bearing Royal and Private Names.


Egyptian Antiquities. Plate XLIV.
Scale 1:1. P.E.N.
Scarabs bearing Royal and Private Names.



1.  The reader must understand, however, that not all Egyptian scarabs were used as seals. Some, but a very small number compared to the seal class, were used as amulets, and a few, like medals, were cut to commemorate historical events. The amulet class will be dealt with in another volume; the medal-like series is included in the present work (see pp. 170-178.)

2.   khetem, “a seal,” khetem, “to close,” or “to seal up.” In Hebrew the word is חֹתָם, which survives in the Arabic, خَاتِمٌ, khatim, “a signet,” or “signet ring.” The determinatives and represent a cylinder-seal, with string for suspension; Petrie, Medûm, p. 33; cf. p. 45, figs. 18, 19, of this volume, and Griffith, Beni Hasan, III, p. 15. The intermediate form between these two signs is found in sculptures in the tomb of Tahutihetep at Bersheh (Newberry, El Bersheh, I, Pl. XX).

3.  American Law Review, Vol. XXVIII, p. 25.

4.  C. W. King. Hand-book of Engraved Gems, pp. 4 and 5.

5.  American Law Review, Vol. XXV, p. 25.

6.  De Morgan, Le tombeau royal de Négadah, p. 172.

7.  Petrie, Royal Tombs, I, p. 26.

8.  E.g., Boulac Papyrus, No. 18. A mer khetemu, “Superintendent of the storehouse,” in the land of Zaru is mentioned in the Bologna Papyrus, No. 1086, l. 11.

9.  Newberry, Rekhmara, Pl. XII.

10.  Rekhmara, Pl. VII, l. 3.

11.  See, for instance, Griffith, Kahun Papyri, Pl. XXXVII, “Drawn out by the servant there and sealed with the seal of the servant there,” and cf. numerous entries in Boulac Papyrus, No. 18.

12.  Mace, in Petrie’s Diospolis Parva, p. 51; and this has been my own experience in the graves that I have opened at Thebes.

13.  See the description of the sealing up of the sarcophagus chamber of the tomb of Thothmes IV, in Carter and Newberry, The Tomb of Thoutmosis IV, p. xxx, and cf. Wilkinson’s Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians (ed. Birch), Vol. III, p. 436; Herodotus, II, 121; Matthew xxvii, 66.

14.  For a copy of a sealed decree of the Fifth Dynasty, see Petrie’s Abydos, II, Pl. XVIII. On the walls of two tombs at Siut (one unpublished) are inscribed a number of contracts that were concluded by the nomarchs in order to ensure certain revenues for religious services after death (see Griffith, Siut, Pls. 7 and 8, and cf. Mariette’s Abydos, II, 25, and Jeremiah xxxii, 11.

15.  Cf. Isaiah xxix, 11; Daniel ix, 24, xii, 49. “Written evidence sealed,” Jeremiah xii, 10, xxxii, 11, 14, 44.

16.  See Professor Sayce, in Petrie’s Hawara, Biahmu and Arsinoe, p. 29.

17.  See above, p. 22, note 1.

18.  Compare 1 Kings xxi, 8, and Esther iii, 10-12.

19.  P.S.B.A., XIV, 436, and XV, 307.

20.  Gurob Papyri, in Griffith’s Kahun Papyri, XXXIX, 1, 6.

21.  Ridgeway, Journal of Hellenic Studies, Vol. VIII, p. 158, and Vol. IX, p. 30 et seq.

22.  Cf. Mommsen, Hist. of Rome (English edition), Vol. I, p. 203.

23.  The ox being par excellence the pecus of Italy.

24.  Rhind Mathematical Papyrus, entry No. 67.

25.  Cf. “Sealing with the Signet of the King,” Daniel vi, 17; Esther iii, 12; viii, 8, 10; 1 Kings, xxi, 8.

26.  Our own sovereigns, as well as those of most other European States, have been from very early times invested with a ring at their Coronation (see Archaeologia, Vol. III, p. 393), cf. The Coronation Book of Charles V of France, edited by E. S. Dewick, pp. 6, 22 and 33.

27.  Compare Naville’s Deir El Bahari, III, 60.

28.  In the Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris, line 7.

29.  Book of the Dead, 255.

30.  Palette of Ptahmes in the Louvre (No. 3026); cf. Pierret, Rec. d’inscriptions inédite, I, p. 93.

31.  On the reading, see supra, p. 5.

32.  We find, for instance, those of the per seten, or “Royal domain,” A.Z., 1888, p. 90; of the per zet, or wakf, Petrie, Medûm, Pl. XIII; of the at af, “department of meat,” Mariette, Mon. Abyd., 290, 308; and many others.

33.  See L., D., II, 4, where he carries a box of linen; cf. my Beni Hasan, I, Pl. IV, and II, Pl. XIII, where there is a khetemu ne ḥenket, “Seals of the linen.” In Beni Hasan, I, Pl. XXIX, we find the corresponding feminine title , a woman who apparently had charge of the harîm, or perhaps was a confidential female servant. A title also occurs very frequently on Egyptian monuments (Griffith, Kahun Papyri, Pl. XII, l. 1; Mariette, Mon. Abyd., 182, 183, 187; Newberry, El Bersheh, I, Pls. XX, XXIX, etc.). It seems to mean a kind of “confidential seal,” or “privy purse.”

34.  L., D., II, 96.

35.  L., D., II, 103 a.

36.  Mariette, Cat. Abyd., 855; The Story of Sanehat, l. 300; L., D., II, El Assassif, Grab 25, c.d.

37.  This title was formerly believed to signify “Treasurer of the King of Lower Egypt,” but it must be pointed out that byty, in the royal title, meant “He that belongs to the bee,” or perhaps, “the Bee-keeper.” Bees were the producers of the chief of primitive luxuries, and the use of honey and the offering of it instead of wine ought probably to be considered as a survival from a prehistoric state of society in which wine was unknown (cf. Journal of Hellenic Studies, Vol. XV, p. 21). If this meant “Treasurer of the King of Lower Egypt,” we should expect to find a corresponding “Treasurer of the King of Upper Egypt,” but this title, so far as I know, never occurs.

38.  In the Twelfth Dynasty and later is found the frequently recurring variant . See A.Z., 1890, p. 91.

39.  Stele of Kuban, l. 11.

40.  Thus we read of a “Divine Sealer of Amen” under Alexander (Rec. de travaux, XIV, p. 33); and Plutarch (II, 363 B) speaks of an Egyptian priest, [Greek: sphragistês], who seems to have been identical with this old Egyptian official. Cf. further on this title, Revillout, in A.Z., 1880, p. 71-3.

41.  Rec. de travaux, XIV, p. 33 and 57.

42.  Louvre, C. 13.

43.  Rec. de travaux, VII, 115.

44.  L., D., II, 18, 114, etc.

45.  L., D., II, 115 b, 144 q, etc.

46.  L., D., II, 18, 97 a, etc.

47.  The earliest instance of this title that I know of occurs at Shût er Rigal, in the scene of King Antef (Eleventh Dynasty) before Neb-kheru-Ra Mentu-hetep: here the mer khetem stands immediately behind his sovereign Antef. The title also occurs in a tomb at Kasr es Sayyad, the date of which may be perhaps a little earlier than the Shût er Rigal graffito.

48.  This title should not be confounded with the somewhat similar one , “Superintendent of the Sealers,” Beni Hasan, I, xxx. Nor is it, of course, the same as the “Superintendent Storehouses” or “depôts” (Pap. Bologna, 1086, I, 2). It ought also perhaps to be differentiated from “Superintendent” or “Keeper of Contracts” or “Records?” although there appear to be several instances where equals .

49.  Cf. the title mer net, “Governor of the (Royal) City” (see my Rekhmara, p. 18, and cf. my note in Garstang’s El Arabah, p. 32); khetem is here probably to be understood as signifying the seal par excellence, i.e., the Royal Seal.

50.  For a mer khetem in (1) the Oryx nome, see Newberry, Beni Hasan, I, Pl. XXX, etc.; (2) the Hare nome, see Newberry, El Bersheh, I, Pl. XXVII; (3) the Siut nome there is a mer khetem em Saut mentioned in an unpublished tomb; (4) the Antaeopolite nome, on an unpublished fragment from the tomb of Uah-ka at Gau.

51.  See Newberry, Beni Hasan, I, Pl. XXVI.

52.  Ibid., Pl. XXX, cf. Pl. XIII.

53.  Ibid., Pl. XXXIII.

54.  Ibid., Pl. XXIX.

55.  On the word kha, see the paper in the Proceedings of the Society of Biblical Archæology, XXII, pp. 99-105.

56.  See Newberry, Life of Rekhmara, Pl. IV, and p. 23, where will be found a plan of the office.

57.  It is probable that already at the time of the Eleventh Dynasty there was a Chief Keeper of the (Royal) Seal, for Mariette found at Karnak a monument of a certain Khetŷ, who is described as mer khetem em ta er zer-ef, “Keeper of the (Royal) Seal in the whole land.” Mariette, Karnak, pl. 8 j.) Of this Khetŷ there is a statuette in the Leyden Museum, and he is certainly the same individual as we see represented behind King Antef on one of the rocks of the Shût er Rigal. Under the New Empire we find mentioned once a “Chief Keeper of the Seal of the Great Green Sea,” i.e., of the Mediterranean. (Capart, in Rec. de travaux, XXII, p. 106.)

58.  This is seen from many inscriptions: Notably from the rock inscription of Mentu-hetep in the Shût er Rigal; the inscription of Nefer-hetep at Aswan (De Morgan, Cat., I, p. 17); the inscriptions of Rekhmara (Newberry, Rekhmara, Pl. III, l. 5, etc.); the scene on a slab from the tomb of a High Priest of Memphis, where the Chancellor is represented standing immediately behind the Vezîrs; and from the very powerful position of the Chancellor Baŷ under Ta-usert and Sa-ptah. The position of the Chancellors during the Hyksos period was also of very great importance.

59.  He has been described as a kind of “Keeper of the Signet;” but his rank in the Egyptian State was much higher than that of the Scottish official. It is a position that appears to have been even greater than that of the Roman cura anulis, or “Keeper of the Imperial Seal” (Just., Hist., XLIII, 5).

60.  Rekhmara, Pl. II and III.

61.  Ibid., Pl. II, lines 5 and 6.

62.  Stela of Sa-satet at Geneva. (Mélanges Arch., 1875, p. 218.)

63.  Griffith and Tylor, The Tomb of Paheri, Pl. IX, l. 44. For earlier tours of these officials, see several graffiti on the rocks at Aswân, published in De Morgan’s Cat., I.

64.  Stela of Pïankhŷ, l. 81.

65.  Louvre, C. 30; Mariette, Mon. Abydos, 262, 326, etc. Cf. for the high position of the Adenu, Boulac Papyri, No. 18, Pl. XIX, 5.

66.  Mariette, Mon. Abydos, 125, and De Rouge, Et. Egypt, LIII.

67.  Rec. de travaux, XII, p. 50.

68.  Louvre, C. 5; Mariette, Mon. Abydos, 229.

69.  Lepsius, D., II, 135 h, etc.

70.  Schiaparelli, Cat. Flor., 282; cf. also Pl. XIV, 2, of the present work.

71.  Schiaparelli, Cat. Flor., 279.

72.  For instance, in Griffith, Kahun Papyri, XIII, 21, is named a “scribe in charge of the Seal of Qesab,” a town in the Delta; cf. also Pl. XIII, 20, of this work.

73.  Griffith, K.P., Pl. XIII, ll. 9-12.

74.  In order to make the list complete, we must notice an am-sa ne mer khetem (Liebl., N.P., 1707), and an ari at ne sa ne per me khetem (Brit. Mus. Stela, 215).

75.  Papyrus of Nu, in the Brit. Mus., No. 10477. A variant

of this title occurs in the tomb of Sebekhetep (temp. Thothmes IV), at Thebes.

76.  Brit. Mus. Stela, 1012.

77.  Tomb of Sebekhetep, at Thebes.

78.  Rec. de travaux, XII, p. 13.

79.  The work of seal engraving is mentioned as a distinct occupation in Eccles. xxxviii, 27. In Egyptian there is a verb meaning “to engrave,” “to carve.”

80.  See a specimen in the Edward’s Collection at University College, London.

81.  VII, 69.

82.  See p. 50.

83.  “On some impressions is a raised line running from top to bottom across the sign, and therefore accidental. This could only be produced by a split in the seal, and such is very likely to occur in wood.” Petrie, R.T., I, p. 24.

84.  Of King Qa. Petrie, R.T., II, Pl. XII, 5.

85.  See p. 59.

86.  See p. 59, fig. 42.

87.  Journal of Hellenic Studies, 1897, pp. 366-372.

88.  Journal of Hellenic Studies, 1897, vide p. 366-372.

89.  “Allied or perhaps derivative figures may be seen in the pigmy or embryonic form of Ptah-Sokar-Osiris and its offshoots, and the Phoenician Pataecus (a parallel but variant type is seen in Bes), but there can be no question that the type seen on these early cylinders is the direct reflection of that which appears at a very early date upon those of Chaldea.” A. J. Evans, Journal of Hellenic Studies, 1897, p. 369.

90.  See Pl. V, fig. 3.

91.  See Pl. VI, figs. 1, 2, etc.

92.  See Pl. VI, fig. 13.

93.  See Pl. VI, figs. 2, 3, 4, etc.

94.  See Pl. VI, figs. 1, 10, etc.

95.  See Pl. VII, fig. 7.

96.  See Pl. VIII, fig. 10.

97.  See Pl. VIII, figs. 2, 3, etc.

98.  See Pl. VIII, figs. 5, 6, etc.

99.  See Pl. VII, figs. 8 and 9.

100.  Garstang’s Mahâsna, p. 33.

101.  Perhaps even earlier.

102.  See Mace, in Petrie’s Diospolis Parva, p. 39, and cf. Garstang, El Mahâsna, pp. 33 and 34.

103.  For specimens beyond those figured here, see Petrie, in the Antiquary, XXXII, p. 136, and Garstang, El Mahâsna, Pl. XXXIX.

104.  See Arthur Evans, in the Annual of the British School at Athens, No. VIII, p. 104.

105.  The Antiquary, XXXII, p. 37.

106.  “These stone buttons may eventually prove to have quite an exceptional interest in the history of Aegean art, as the direct progenitors of the lentoid beads so much affected by the Mycenaean engravers.” A. Evans, in Journal of Hellenic Studies, XIV, p. 335.

107.  Journal of Hellenic Studies, XIV, p. 336.

108.  The beetle, called in Egyptian Kheper, was the sacred emblem of the god who made all things out of clay.

109.  Erman, Zaubersprüche für Mutter und Kind, p. 38.

110.  P. 25.

111.  This interpretation of the scarab was first given by Dr. Birch more than half a century ago, but has generally been lost sight of by archaeologists.

112.  See later, p. 70, fig. 59.

113.  Prof. Flinders Petrie believes that he can recognize, besides the true scarab, four other varieties of beetle: the Artharsius, Copris, Gymnoplearus and Hypselogenia.

114.  Egyptian Decorative Art, pp. 18 and 19. The spiral, it should be noted, is found on certain upright and squat prehistoric pots of the sequence dating 39-64, but these are always single, not conjoined or returning spirals.

115.  Proceedings of the Society of Biblical Archaeology, Vol. XXI, p. 148.

116.  Ibid., Vol. XIX, p. 294.

117.  A small detail of this ceiling (with wrong colouring) is published in Wilkinson’s Manners and Customs of the Ancient Egyptians, Vol. I, Pl. VIII, fig. 7. Identically the same pattern occurs in a Twenty-sixth Dynasty tomb at Thebes.

118.  Milchhöfer, Die Anfänge der Kunst, p. 16 et seqq.; Petrie, Egyptian Decorative Art, p. 29.; Much, Die Kupferzeit, p. 55; Hall, The Oldest Civilization of Greece, p. 157; A. C. Haddon, Evolution in Art, p. 141. Dr. Arthur Evans, on the contrary, believes that the spiral was first used in stonework, and only at a later date transferred to metal and other materials (Journal of Hellenic Studies, Vol. XIII, p. 329).

119.  Petrie, Egyptian Decorative Art, p. 22.

120.  Among the jewellry discovered by M. de Morgan at Dahshûr (temp. Usertsen II) was an exquisite gold ring (certainly not of Egyptian manufacture), with two spirals worked on its bezel in gold wire-work. (See De Morgan, Dahchour, I, p. 68, fig. 145.) In the Ashmolean Museum is a black ware vase from Egypt of the style characteristic of the late Twelfth Dynasty deposits, which has a punctuated returning spiral ornament round the upper part of its body.

121.  A. J. Evans, Primitive Pictographs, in Journal of Hellenic Studies, Vol. XIV, p. 328. Cf. G. Coffey, The Origins of Prehistoric Ornament in Ireland, in Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, 1894, 1895; and A. C. Haddon, Evolution in Art, p. 142. J. Romilly Allen, Celtic Art in Pagan and Christian Times, pp. 51-54.

122.  On this place-name, see p. 172, note 1.

123.  An asterisk prefixed to these descriptions means an ancient clay-impression or “sealing,” not an actual cylinder.

124.  A cylinder-seal of “Amenemhat, beloved of Sebek, Lord of Anu,” is in the H.-P. Collection (Cat. 3813).

125.  Nub-hetep-tha-Khred was a daughter of Amenemhat III. (De Morgan, Dahchour, I, p. 128.)

126.  On this title, see Newberry, El Bersheh, I, p. 8, note 3.

127.  I.e., the Judge or Chief Justice. See my Life of Rekhmara, p. 18.

128.  The rings, scarabs, etc., figured from the tomb of Maket have been drawn from Prof. Petrie’s Illahun, pl. XXVI.

129.  This is probably the same place-name as the Kerŷ mentioned in the tomb of Hûŷ at Thebes as the southern boundary of Kush (Ethiopia) at the time of King Tût-ankh-amen (see Pl. II). It was almost certainly the modern Gebel Barkal.

130.  The position of the “district of Shetau or (Shetep)” is uncertain. The inscription merely says that the king went down stream, and that the journey took him a night to accomplish, but the name of the place from whence Amenhetep and his officers started is not recorded. Mr. Fraser (P.S.B.A., XXI, p. 157) suggests Memphis as the starting place, and the Wadŷ Tumilât as the scene of the hunt, and he further remarks that “except the Fayûm, there is no place that I can think of in Upper Egypt where one can imagine there were ever wild cattle.” I suspect, however, that it was from Thebes that the royal hunter set out, and that the district of Shetau (or Shetep) was one of those wadŷs near Keneh (just a night’s journey from Thebes down stream) which at certain times of the year contain low, but luxuriant vegetation. I have visited this district several times (in February 1896, again in December 1901, and for a third time in March 1904), and was much struck by the great quantity of vegetation which is to be seen in the desert to the east of Kuft and Keneh. There is one wadŷ in particular which extends for some miles in a northerly direction between Legêta and Keneh that literally abounds in low shrubs and other vegetation, far more than enough to support vast herds of wild cattle. It may here be pointed out that the ancient fauna of Egypt differed very greatly from its present fauna. Before the advent of the camel into Egypt, all the wadŷs of the Arabian chain of hills were plentifully stocked with game of all kinds. At Beni Hasan, El Bersheh, and many other places are represented scenes of hunting wild animals, including the lion, bubalis, etc.; and the wadŷs east of Keneh were celebrated as hunting grounds at the time of Thothmes III and Amenhetep II. In more than one private tomb at Thebes we have scenes of hunting which are expressly stated to have taken place “in the Ant,” i.e., the desert to the east of Kuft, and in the tomb of Men-kheper-ra-senb the superintendent of the hunting at Kuft is mentioned.

131.  On this title, see my note in Garstang’s El Arabeh, p. 33.

132.  Driving the animals into nets was a favourite method of hunting in ancient times (cf., among many other instances, my El Bersheh, I, pl. VII, and the Vaphio Vase at Athens). Nets are still used for this purpose in some parts of Africa (Baker’s Ismailia, pp. 435-438).

133.  Dr. Budge has suggested to me that this dyke may have been a series of covered pits into which the animals would fall, thus enabling the huntsmen to capture them easily. He would also identify the semau of the Egyptians with the rimi of the Assyrian inscriptions, an animal hunted by Tiglath Pileser and other monarchs.

134.  Since this was written, a study of the inscription on this scarab has been published by Steindorff, from my copy of the Alnwick specimen, in Ä.Z., XXXIX, 62.

135.  The Vatican specimen gives kher hen ne Heru for the abbreviated kher Heru on the Alnwick example.

136.  The Vatican scarab gives the determinative of land (the triangle) in the place of the t on the Alnwick specimen.

137.  A mis-reading (Zaru) of this place-name has led to the identification of the city with Zaru or Zal (perhaps the modern Sele), the eastern frontier fort of Egypt. Prof. Breasted, Prof. Steindorff, and the writer, however, all came independently to the conclusion that Zarukha must be the name of the palace-town of Amenophis III and Thŷi, which is situated a little to the south of Medinet Habu; the lake mentioned on this scarab is therefore to be identified with the modern Birket Habu.

138.  The numerals given on the Vatican scarab are blundered, and consequently difficult to read.

139.  Read tahen, not neferu; this is clear on the Vatican specimen. An officer of this boat is mentioned on a stela in the Egyptian Museum of the Louvre (C. 207).