Necklace of lizard amulets, beads and pendants


British Museum

British Museum

Hollow gold lizards alternate with cornelian barrel beads and hollow gold date-shaped pendants. The central gold drop is inlaid with lapis lazuli and a cornelian cornflower pendant is attached at one end of the string.As well as being decorative, it was believed that these necklaces endowed the wearer with the powers and qualities symbolized by the amulets. For example, the fly was seen as a symbol of persistence and the lizard as one of regeneration because of its ability to re-grow wounded limbs. Lizards, often seen basking in the sun, were also believed to be manifestations of the sun-god Atum.

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  • Title: Necklace of lizard amulets, beads and pendants
  • Date Created: -1470/-1350
  • Physical Dimensions: Length: 285.00mm; Depth: 22.00mm; Weight: 20.00g
  • External Link: British Museum collection online
  • Technique: inlaid; mould-made; soldered
  • Registration number: 1839,0921.937
  • Place: Found/Acquired Egypt
  • Period/culture: 18th Dynasty
  • Material: gold; lapis lazuli; cornelian
  • Copyright: Photo: © Trustees of the British Museum
  • Acquisition: Purchased from Anastasi, Giovanni