Heart Scarab of Nefer
Overall: 2.9 x 5.7 x 7.6 cm (1 1/8 x 2 1/4 x 3 in.)
The Charles W. Harkness Endowment Fund 1921.1030
Location: not on view
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DescriptionThe design features in these objects borrow various ancient Egyptian funerary elements. The scale illustrated on top of the Cartier vanity case refers to the scale used in Osiris’s final judgment of the deceased. Amulets like the heart scarab were essential to the mummification process. They were placed throughout the mummy’s wrappings to protect the deceased during their journey in the afterlife. These inspired the Dior brooch seen on the model here. The ancient Egyptians believed amulets carried spells and that some, like the heart scarab, could sway opinions during the final
judgement to help the deceased get to their version of heaven, called Iaru.