Scarab Symbolism in Ancient Egypt
The scarab symbolized self-creation. This potent symbolism appears in tomb paintings, manuscripts, hieroglyphic inscriptions on buildings and carvings.
In addition to its use as an amulet for the living and the dead, scarabs adorned jewelry including necklaces, bracelets, wrist cuffs and wide decorative collars. A bracelet from the tomb of Tutankhamun featured a bright blue scarab holding a cartouche between its front legs. A cartouche is an oval frame that encloses a name.
The ancient Egyptians sometimes painted or carved scarabs on a deceased person's sarcophagus, the human-shaped coffin that held the mummy. Scarabs often hold a sun disk over their heads.
The photo: "A detail of the painting inside the tomb of Petosiris, featuring several images: Isis purifying a ba (winged creature with a human head representing the spirit), a humanoid ankh, a scarab holding a sun disk (an image associated with the sunrise), and two figures in a scene of plenty, one of whom (likely a fecundity figure) is noticeably corpulent. by NYU Excavations at Amheida Staff (2004)
copyright: 2004 NYU Excavations at Amheida (used with permission)
photographed place: (Gebel el-Muzawaka)"
Photo credit: Paintings from the tomb of Petosiris at Muzawaka (V) By isawnyu
Institute for the Study of the Ancient World via Flickr, CC, some rights reserved. http://www.flickr.com/photos/isawnyu/4546286630/