Description: An Egyptian grey stone Menkhet counterpoise amulet, with flat back and an incised cross design on the upper rounded surface and with a crenulated lower edge, perhaps representing an apron. A dummy suspension loop on top, not pierced. Some minor surface wear, but complete and a nice example of the type.
Size: 21 mm/0.8 in. in length
Date: Late Period, c. 600-300 B.C.
Provenance: From the collection of Julian Bird (1959-2014) and acquired from dealer Clive Sawyer at a London Coin Fair in 2008.
Background: Julian Bird was a passionate collector of Egyptian antiquities, who built up a fine and extensive collection from the 1970s onwards. He sourced his items mainly from the UK market, from specialist dealers, fairs, markets and auctioneers. He was a model collector, carefully documenting his collection, and his notes on this particular item will be supplied to the buyer.
Notes: The word menkhet means clothing and such amulets were for funerary use, being placed within mummy wrappings to guarantee clothing for the deceased.
References: Compare no. 97h, p. 96, in Andrews, C. 1994. Amulets of Ancient Egypt, British Museum Press, London, for a similar example.