5: A Fine Egyptian Djed Pillar Amulet
cf: D Auria, Lacovara and Roehrig, 'Mummies and Magic,' p.181 for a discussion of djed-pillars. The author writes that this form of amulet 'has been variously explained as a column of papyrus stems, a tree-trunk with looped branches and a sheaf of bound cornstalks... Though not originally associated with Osiris, by the New Kingdom the djed-pillar had come to be closely linked with the god, and its shape was reinterpreted as a representation of his backbone. The image also has connotations of stability and endurance and it was primarily to confer these qualities on the deceased that [they were] placed within the mummy wrappings.'
Dimensions: height, 1-1/2" (3.8 centimeters)
Provenance: Private FL collection, acquired in Chicago in the 1960's and previously in the Robert L. McLaughlin Collection.