Scarab: @Alegandron and Others...

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by JoIke, Oct 4, 2021.

  1. JoIke

    JoIke Active Member

    Hi all,

    @Alegandron and others...

    Your thoughts on what appears to be a Heart Scarab given its large size and weight (2-3/4 x 2-1/8 inches & nearly 10 oz)? Not 100% sure what it's carved from, but feels like stone(?)

    It appears to my eye (not that I'm well versed in this field) to be a 19th C. forgery?

    Thanks in advance for your time!
    IMG_2380-001.jpg IMG_2381-001.jpg IMG_2382-001.jpg IMG_2383-001.jpg IMG_2384-001.jpg IMG_2385-001.jpg IMG_2386-001.jpg
     
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  3. robinjojo

    robinjojo Supporter! Supporter

    Interesting piece.

    I wonder what the purpose of the hole is, running through the length of the scarab, or tortoise or turtle?

    Apparently, the ancient Egyptians did create figurines of turtles. Here's one from the Middle Kingdom, carved out of amethyst and inlayed with precious stones, property of the Met:

    https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/544102
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2021
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  4. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    The holes are for a string to wear it around your neck.
     
  5. robinjojo

    robinjojo Supporter! Supporter

    I was thinking that was the purpose of the hole, can't think of any other use, but a 10 ounces that is a bit heavy, unless it was only used for ceremonial occasions.

    Is that a scarab? I've never seen one with what seems to be a head, or some kind of extension. I am really unfamiliar with ancient Egyptian forms.

    Based on the image, the material looks like marble or limestone.
     
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  6. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    It's not unprecedented. Here are photos of the top sides of two of the scarabs I own.

    Antilopid scarab top side 2.jpeg

    Antilopid scarab top side 1.jpeg

    Lion & sun disk scarab, top side 1.jpg

    Here are links to my old posts with photos of the other sides of these scarabs:

    https://www.cointalk.com/threads/some-antiquities-i-havent-previously-posted.374223/#post-5568761

    https://www.cointalk.com/threads/so...-previously-posted.374223/page-5#post-6477766

    And here's a link to the first of a number of pages about detecting fake scarabs, on a very useful website:

    http://www.collector-antiquities.com/real-or-fake/fake-egyptian/fake-scarabs.html
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2021
  7. Alegandron

    Alegandron "ΤΩΙ ΚΡΑΤΙΣΤΩΙ..." ΜΕΓΑΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ, June 323 BCE Supporter

    Unfortunately, I could not render an opinion. However, if I were asked to buy it, I would be skeptical.

    Thank you for calling me out, however @DonnaML provided a great website to start research.

    My heart scarab is much plainer, made of stone, and has no belly markings. It does not have the necklace hole like my other much smaller and traditional scarabae. I ensure my scarabs have good, solid provenance, as many can and are faked.

    [​IMG]
    Egyptian
    basalt heart scarab,
    Late Period, c. 664 - 332 BC,
    the body nicely carved with flattened base.
    Light deposits within the recesses.
    L: 1.9 cm.
    Ex Boston Museum of Fine Arts


    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    Egypt Amenhotep III stone scarab IN-HAND
    Egypt Amenhotep III
    Scarab 1390-1352 BCE
    cartouch Neb Maat Ra
    43.37g 45mm
    ex Gustave Mustake
    (This is a HUGE Scarab, but I understand that this is not a Heart Scarab... could have fooled me by its size!)
     
  8. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    I would be skeptical as well. Too elaborate and too perfect, especially for one that large. I think it would be expensive if real.

    You can easily find digitized copies online of various Flinders Petrie books with illustrations of a great many genuine scarabs.
     
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2021
  9. JoIke

    JoIke Active Member

    Thank you all so much for your replies, links and thoughts on this piece.

    @Alegandron, my apologies if I've offended you by placing your handle in the title field seeking your thoughts. I'm still new here and just thought you were/are well versed in this field given some former post on the subject/your scarab collection. Again, my apologies.

    @DonnaML, I most appreciate your thoughts and the links you so kindly provided.

    I'll treat this piece for the time being as an antique repro until I can place it in the hands of an expert within the field. Once again, thank you all so much for your time!
     
  10. paschka

    paschka Well-Known Member

  11. Alegandron

    Alegandron "ΤΩΙ ΚΡΑΤΙΣΤΩΙ..." ΜΕΓΑΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ, June 323 BCE Supporter

    No offense taken! Rather, I felt honored!

    I am not an expert, but thank you for your thoughts!

    I hope I helped...
     
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  12. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

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  13. romismatist

    romismatist Well-Known Member

    @paschka's piece looks like a modern repro typical of what is sold in today's Egyptian bazaars.

    OP's piece reminds me of the scarabs that were sold at the museum when I went to see Tutankhamon's death mask and other parts of that collection that were part of a travelling North American exhibit when I was a kid...
     
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  14. PeteB

    PeteB Well-Known Member

    I am told (not) that an Egyptian collector of these, who frequented the shops in Cairo said authenticity of scarabs was easily determined: Squeeze some lemon juice on it and if it scurries away, it is authentic.
     
  15. Alegandron

    Alegandron "ΤΩΙ ΚΡΑΤΙΣΤΩΙ..." ΜΕΓΑΣ ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΣ, June 323 BCE Supporter

    I do all the time, and they are yummy!
     
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  16. lordmarcovan

    lordmarcovan Eclectic & Eccentric Moderator

    I get an "old repro" vibe here, but it's cool looking.

    Not that I know the very first thing about scarabs.

    In the "old repro" department, I bought this piece, described as "Egyptian Revival" from the late 19th to early 20th century. I think it was faience. The mount was Sterling silver.

    I bought it as a gift for my sister. It only cost $7.50, and was quite a lovely little trinket for the money. She liked it.

    Alas, I didn't save pictures of it. This is the archived thumbnail from eBay. There were hieroglyphs on the bottom, as I recall, and a little hallmark or stamp on the silver.

    [​IMG]

    Kinda looks like a turquoise-colored computer mouse, dunnit? :p
     
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  17. paschka

    paschka Well-Known Member

    «@paschka's piece looks like a modern repro typical of what is sold in today's Egyptian bazaars.

    OP's piece reminds me of the scarabs that were sold at the museum when I went to see Tutankhamon's death mask and other parts of that collection that were part of a travelling North American exhibit when I was a kid...»


    https://www.dreamstime.com/exhibiti...te-italy-march-egyptian-museum-image144021890

    Are these from the Turin museum also souvenirs? You are wrong. My scarab, authentic and ancient, was presented in 1942 to a junior officer from Romel's army in Libya, then he became a professor and died at the age of 95 and I bought from things that remained after his death. Such large copper scarabs were not seals, but they were thrown into the grave, as an object that accompanied the deceased to the kingdom of the dead. They brought good luck and were found in desert tombs in very good condition. And a similar bronze garbage can be found in the collection of the University Museum in Bonn.

    https://sadighgallery.wordpress.com/2012/06/22/ancient-egyptian-scarabs/


    https://medusa-art.com/egyptian-blue-and-gold-scarab.html
     
    Last edited: Oct 6, 2021
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  18. DonnaML

    DonnaML Supporter! Supporter

    I asked you what yours was made of. So it's copper?

    A word to the wise: find a better source than the Sadigh Gallery!
     
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  19. paschka

    paschka Well-Known Member

  20. paschka

    paschka Well-Known Member

    yes, mine is made of bronze and there are 100% similar ones in museums
     
  21. paschka

    paschka Well-Known Member

    I can also tell you some wise advice: find yourself the best source if you want to say that my scarab is not real and there were no such similar bronze scarabs at all.))))
     
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