Djed Pillar Amulet

Third Intermediate Period–Ptolemaic Period

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 130

Amulets were thought to magically transfer their power to the wearer. Such power often derived from their shape, material, color, and/or the recitations spoken over them. This amulet depicts the so-called djed pillar that ensured permanence. From the New Kingdom on it was also closely connected to Osiris, the god revived after death. Several djed pillar amulets were often placed on the chest of a mummy. Green and blue shades were popular colors for amulets as they alluded to water and vegetation, which in a desert country bore the power of life and regeneration.

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