Loading

Faience wedjat eye

British Museum

British Museum

The wedjat is associated with Horus, the god of the sky, who was depicted as a falcon or as a man with a falcon head. In a battle with Seth, the god of chaos and confusion, Horus lost his left eye. The wound was healed by the god Thot and the wedjat came to symbolise the process of 'making whole' and healing. The word wedjat literally translates as meaning sound. Both eyes of Horus also represent the sun and the moon. The waxing and waning in the lunar cycle therefore reflected Horus losing and regaining his sight.
The shape of the amulet (a kind of good luck charm) represents a human eye with a brow at the top. The elements which can appear below the eye are supposed to imitate the markings on the head of the falcon.
The wedjat eye has some great healing and regenerative properties. Such amulets were probably most common and placed at different locations inside the mummy wrappings. Faience (a type of ceramic) was commonly used. A plaque made of metal or wax was sometimes placed on top of the incision made by the embalmers on the left side of the abdomen. The presence of the eye was supposed to magically heal the wound.

Show lessRead more

Details

  • Title: Faience wedjat eye
  • Physical Dimensions: Length: 8.85cm; Width: 7.27cm; Thickness: 1.00cm
  • External Link: British Museum collection online
  • Technique: pierced; glazed
  • Subject: cat; eye of horus
  • Registration number: 1895,1114.6
  • Place: Found/Acquired Egypt
  • Period/culture: Third Intermediate
  • Material: glazed composition
  • Copyright: Photo: © Trustees of the British Museum
  • Acquisition: Purchased from Murch, Chauncey

Recommended

Home
Explore
Nearby
Profile