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Amulet of Two Fingers

A work made of obsidian.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of obsidian.


Late Period (664–332 BCE)



About this artwork

This amulet depicts the index and middle fingers of a right hand. The fingernails and joints are carefully rendered using incised lines. Amulets in this form were always made from dark-colored glass or stone (as in this example) and may represent the embalmer’s fingers. They were usually placed on the left side of a mummified body’s torso, near the incision that had been made to remove the internal organs. Here the amulet could heal the wound created during the mummification process so that its owner’s body would once again be whole in the afterlife. Ancient Egyptians produced amulets in a variety of forms and from many different materials in order to provide protection in life, death, or both. Two-finger amulets like this example were used exclusively in a funerary context.


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Arts of Africa


Ancient Egyptian


Amulet of Two Fingers


Egypt (Object made in)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

664 BCE–332 BCE




7.2 × 2.6 × 1.1 cm (2 7/8 × 1 1/16 × 7/16 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Henry H. Getty, Charles L. Hutchinson, and Robert H. Fleming

Reference Number


IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

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Extended information about this artwork

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