Amulet of the god Amun

Late Napatan-Early Meroitic, ca. 600-250 BC
Gilded silver
Egyptian Purchase Fund

The Egyptian God Amun also became the state god of the later Nubian kingdoms of the Sudan. This amulet is made of silver and overlain with gold. According to Egyptian mythology, the bones of the gods were silver and the flesh was gold. Its distinctive features, the long kilt and broad hips, and the image of the sun on the horizon, mark it as a Nubian, rather than Egyptian piece.

On the back of the neck of this figure is a loop so that it could be worn on a chain. Depictions of Nubian kings and queens show them wearing such large amuletic pendants around their necks along with other items of jewelry. Similar pendants have been recovered from some of the royal tombs at Kurru and Nuri in the Sudan.