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HOME : Egyptian Antiquities : Egyptian Jewelry : Bezel from a Finger-Ring
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Bezel from a Finger-Ring - LO.1145
Origin: Egypt
Dimensions: 1" (2.5cm) wide
Collection: Egyptian Antiquities
Style: New Kingdom, Dyn. XVIII


Additional Information: SOLD

Location: Great Britain
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Description
This object once formed the bezel of a stirrup- shaped signet ring, which enjoyed great popularity during the course of the New Kingdom. The motto engraved into its top contains a single column of well-formed hieroglyphs which can be translated into English as, “The Aton [is the one who is] great of power!”

The Aton is sun disc itself, the cult of which was promoted to the status of a sole god during the religious revolution formulated by the so- called renegade pharaoh, Akhenaten, and his beautiful wife, Nefertiti at the end of Dynasty XVIII. Because of his repudiation of the traditional deities of Egypt and his transference of the capital from Thebes to Tell el-Amarna, Akhenaten has been called one of history’s first true individualists. His religious reforms and hymns, which he himself composed to the Aton, resonate with sentiments expressed in certain Old Testament verses and express a universalism which transcends time and place. As a result, Akhenaten and Nefertiti occupy a special place in the hearts of those who love Egyptology. Our ring is, therefore, a fitting reminder of these pioneering thinkers.

References: For the development of such stirrup-shaped signet rings, see, Carol Andrews, Ancient Egyptian Jewellery (London 1990), pages 164-165; and for a sympathetic view of Akhenaten and his reforms, see, Cyril Aldred, Akhenaten. King of Egypt (London 1988).

Translation and interpretation kindly provided by Prof. Robert S. Bianchi. - (LO.1145)

 

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