Homepage Timeline Maps A-Z index Learning

Amulets

The Petrie typology of amulets in detail

Petrie 1914

Summary of the five classes:

  1. homopoeic or 'similars', or sympathetic magic (the principle that an object enable a wearer to have power over the property of the object depicted, for example an eye amulet gives the power of sight, a hare gives the power of speed)
  2. dynatic or 'amulets of powers' (giving the powers of qualities, conditions or authority)
  3. ktematic or 'amulets of property' (objects deposited in the tomb, as offerings of food and drink, and furniture)
  4. phylactic or 'protection' (amulets evoking general superhuman powers)
  5. theophoric, amulets of gods (amulets evoking the power of a specific deity)

Categories (as given by Petrie, with some names updated, but without comment on the interpretation of the object type as an amulet category):

Class 1. Amulets of similars

1. head, bearded

2. face

3. wedjat eye

4. eye

5. ear

6. tongue

7. heart

8. breast

9. arm

10. two arms

11. hand open

12. fist clenched

13. fist, thumb between first and second fingers

14. two hands side by side

15. leg

16. phallus

17. sema-hieroglyph ('unite')

18. frog and toad

19. fly

20. papyrus sceptre

21. papyrus on a plaque

22. jackal head

23. leopard head

24. claw

25. tooth

26. locust

Class 2. Amulets of powers

27. wagtail

28. human-headed bird

29. duckling

30. man's girdle tie (Petrie interpretation of the ankh hieroglyph)

31. nefer hieroglyph

32. sistrum

33. collar counterpoise

34. headrest

35. djed-pillar

36. carpentry square

37. plummet

38. forked knife

39. plumes (double and single)

40. double plume, disk and horns

41. double feather

42. rising sun

43. sun disk

44. crowned sun

45. moon boat

46. stairs

47. hornet

48. white crown

49. red crown

50. double crown on neb-hieroglyph

51. vulture and cobra

52. crook

53. flail

54. staff

55. disk mace-head

56. pear mace-head

57. ames-sceptre

58. cobra

59. man kneeling with palm branches ('million' in hieroglyphs; image of gods Shu and Heh)

60. bound captive

61. figure with necklaces

Class 2. Amulets of property

62. ox head

63. trussed ox

64. gazelle

65. haunch of meat

66. goose or duck

67. offering-loaf on mat

68. offering-table with loaves

69. date

70. vase

71. collar

72. hieroglyphs menekh and aper

73. headcloth of king

74. comb

75. spear head

76. writing tablet

77. name-bead

78. cartouche

79. seal

80. seal ring

81. cord circle (shen-ring)

82. shabti (figure to do work for deceased in afterlife)

Class 2. Amulets of protection

83. sun and wings

84. sun and cobras

85. crescent

86. mummiform figure

87. mummy on embalming bed

88. Isis knot (tiyet)

89. scarab, flat base

90. scarab, inscribed base

91. pectoral (for heart scarab)

92. scarab with undercut legs

93. winged scarab

94. vulture

95. vulture with wings spread

96. serpent

97. serpent head or forepart

98. cobra on case

99. two eels on case (Petrie 'amphisboena')

100. eel on case (Petrie 'phagrus eel')

101. lizard on case

102. Taweret on case

103. shrewmouse on case

104. horn

105. bone

106. coral

107. cypraea shell

108. nerita shell

109. mitra shell

110. conus shell

111. cardium edule shell

112. meleagrina margaritafera shell (Red Sea Pearl)

113. celopatra shell

114. pectunculus violascens shell

115. polinices shell

116. cassis nodulosa shell

117. murex shell

118. helix desertorum shell

119. clanculus pharaonis shell

120. turbo, operculum

121. oliva shell

122. terebra consobrina shell

123. stone tool

124. bell

125. door bolt

126. seated prince

127. princess

128. Medusa head

129. bulla

130. forehead pendant

131. knotted cord

132. woven charm

133. charm case

134. hypocephalus

135. inscribed stone charms, Roman Period ('gnostic gems'), Greek

136. as no.135 but not Greek

137. cross

Class 2. Amuletic figurines of deities

138. wedjat eye

139. wedjat eye (unusual types)

140. wedjat eye, multiple

141. wedjat eye, with deities

142. wedjat eye, inscribed

143. Horus the hunter

144. Horus on the crocodiles ('Horus stelae')

145. Horus the child

146. Horus on lotus

147. head of Horus

148. Isis and Horus

149. Isis

150. Isis mourning

151. Isis Pharia (of the Pharos, the lighthouse at Alexandria)

152. Isis, Nephthys and Horus

153. groups of goddesses

154. Nephthys

155. Nephthys mourning

156. Osiris, Isis and Horus

157. Osiris

158. heart of Osiris

159. oracular bust

160. Horus and Min

161. Min

162. Amun

163. Amun, Mut, Khons

164. Mut

165. Khons

166. Inheret (Onuris)

167. Shu

168. Neit

169. unidentified deities, Ptolemaic and Roman Periods

170. Hathor

171. head of Hathor

172. Maat

173. Hatmehyt

174. Serqet (Selkis)

175. Nefertem

176. Ptah-Sokar

177. Ptah

178. dwarf

179. saints

180-203 animal-headed deities:

180. Horus

181. Ra

182. four children of Horus

183. Seth

184. male sphinx

185. female sphinx

186. cow-headed Hathor

187. Khnum

188. Bes

189. Bes, unusual forms

190. Bes head

191. Thoth of Panebs

192. Maihesa

193. Inheret-Shu and Tefnet

194. Sekhmet or Bast

195. Bast aegis

196. Shu and Tefnet

197. Anubis

198. Wepwawet

199. jackal-headed archer

200. shrewmouse-headed figure

201. Sobek

202. Thoth

203. serpent-headed god

deities in animal form 204-261

204. standing ape

205. seated ape

206. baboon

207. Apis bull

208. Hathor cow

209. Hathor cow on square

210. Hathor cow head

211. ram

212. ram head

213. hare

214. ibex

215. Barbary sheep

216. Klipspringer

217. camel

218. hawl-headed sphinx

219. lion

220. two lions

222. lion head

223. lion and bull foreparts

224. two bulls foreparts

225. cat in shrine

226. two cats on column

227. cat and kittens

228. Seth animal

229. jackal standing

230. two jackal heads

231. jackal recumbent

232. shrewmouse

233. dog

234. pig

235. hippopotamus

236. Taweret

237. hippopotamus head

238. hedgehog

239. turtle

240. crocodile

241. waran

242. lizard

243. Mont standard/ harpoon of Horus of Mesen

244. hawl-headed sphinx

245. hawk, falcon

246. ostrich

247. ibis

248. vulture

249. vulture flying

250. goat sucker

251. bird heads

252. Coptic bird amulets

253. bird foot

254. serpent with arms (Nehebkau)

255. fish of Mendes (shilba-fish)

256. mormyrus fish (oxyrhynchus fish)

257. bulti fish (tilapia)

258. electric fish

259. lepidotus fish

260. scorpion

261. green beetle

Amulets of deities, miscellaneous forms, 262-275

262. shuttle or winding frame (?)

263. woman with offerings

264. figure in tall headdress

265. figure in long robe

266. figure in pointed cap

267. flower

268. palm column

269. bunch of grapes

270. flowering reed

271. seed vessel

272. unidentified object

273. two fingers

274. pendants, motif unidentified, Roman Period

275. star



 

Copyright 2002 University College London. All rights reserved.