Origin: Lower Egypt
Circa: 1650 BC to 1085 BC
Style: New Kingdom
The sacred beetle of ancient Egypt, the scarab is an emblem of the creator, Khepera. The word kepher denotes Being, Existence, Creation, or Becoming, and the god Kephera is the self-existent maker of all things. The worship of the scarab, which is symbolic of resurrection and fertility, dates from the earliest period of civilization in Egypt. Carved scarabs served two major functions: as amulets with protective and religious powers, and as personal seals, which designated the property and authority of the individual whose name was placed upon them. In both cases, the power ascribed to the scarab was very great—in life they served as the signature of their owner and were thought to bring prosperity, and in the afterlife they ensured rebirth through eternity.
Inscribed with a pair of kheper beetles above a symbol for a basket, which can be read as the sign for “all” or “lord”. On the left is a tall palm frond, which symbolizes “millions of years”. Above the two beetles is a kneeling woman with a falcon perched on her hand. The woman probably represents the goddess Isis with her son, the falcon god Horus. The general meaning is that the god Horus has come forth and will come forth forever. - (S.077)