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Amulet of a Menat Counterpoise with Lion-headed Goddess

A work made of faience.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of faience.


Third Intermediate Period, Dynasty 25–Late Period, Dynasty 26, about 747–525 BCE



About this artwork

Ancient Egyptians, both living and dead, wore amulets of gods and goddesses— depictions of deities in their human, animal, or mixed forms—to bring protection and health. This example shows a small, lion-headed goddess atop a menat counterpoise, a beaded necklace with a counterweight attached to the back to hold it in place. Ancient Egyptians used the menat in religious ceremonies, where it could simply be worn or could serve as a percussion instrument, since shaking it created noise that calmed deities. While the identity of the goddess is uncertain, she wears a sun disc and the uraeus (a hooded cobra affixed to the crowns of royalty and deities), both symbols for the Eye of Re. The goddesses who acted as the Eye of Re were the daughters and protectors of the sun god, Re.


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Arts of Africa


Ancient Egyptian


Amulet of a Menat Counterpoise with Lion-headed Goddess


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.

747 BCE–525 BCE




3.7 × 1.2 × 0.5 cm (1 1/2 × 1/2 × 1/4 in.)

Credit Line

The Art Institute of Chicago

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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