Caroline's Jewelry with a Past is offering a sterling silver Victorian era Egyptian Revival stick pin circa 1880. This stick pin features a central Faience ceramic antique scarab in a framework of sterling silver. Scarabs were widely used in jewelry during the 1860-1900's. The scarab is 9/16" tall X 7/16" wide (maximum dimensions). The entire length is 2-1/2" overall. The reverse of the scarab has hieroglyphs.
Faience ceramic was first made about 2000BC. The scarab is characterized by a turquoise blue to dark green glaze over a body largely made of powdered quartz. The Egyptian artisans who made this Faience ceramic were skilled in making beads and jewelry, cups, scarabs, and ushabti (small figures buried with the dead who served as servants). Scarabs symbolized eternal life and rebirth. They had religious power and protective abilities. Kephri, who was the scarab-headed god, rolled the sun across the sky each day. The sun died at night and was reborn in the morning. Scarabs also embodied the cycle of creation. Scarab amulets lend the power of the sacred beetle to the wearer and offered a magical protection against the dangers of this world, as well as, the dangers of the next world. In Egypt, during the New Kingdom, scarab amulets were often placed over the heart of the mummified deceased. These scarabs were meant to be weighed in the balance against the feather of truth during the afterlife. The amulets were often inscribed with a spell from the Book of the Dead which entreated the heart , "not stand as a witness against me."
The silver content of this piece has been tested using standard accepted testing methods, such as acid testing. This piece has been polished.
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Caroline's Jewelry with a Past has been on the web since 1995