Gold Head Amulet of Osiris

Amulet showing the head of the god Osiris, on his head he wears the White Hedjet Crown of Upper Egypt on which the uraeus stands out. The cult and images of the god have undergone profound changes over time.

For example, Osiris, lord of the underworld, is also included in the solar cycle: it is the dead, nocturnal sun that encloses the regenerating principle of life.‬ His sacred city was Abydos, in Upper Egypt, yet there are no traces of his cult in the earliest phases (predynastic and protodynastic): then, the divinity of the place was the jackal god Khenti-Amentiu, which Osiris absorbed over time.

Head of the god Osiris
Golden Head of the God Osiris

Gold in ancient Egypt

In ancient Egypt, gold, silver and electrum were the metals of choice for making jewelry. Due to its brilliance and incorruptibility, gold was associated with the Sun and the concept of immortality (hence the decision to make the bodies of gods from gold).

Gold was highly valued and considered a divine metal associated with the sun god Re. It represented eternal life, the sun’s radiant power, and the king’s divine authority.

Gold was used extensively in religious rituals, temple decorations, and the adornment of statues, jewelry, and grave goods. It symbolized wealth, luxury, and the divine nature of the king.

Silver, known as “hedj” in ancient Egyptian, was also highly prized but to a lesser extent than gold. It was associated with the moon and had symbolic connections to femininity and fertility.

Silver was used for jewelry, amulets, and decorative objects. It was not as prevalent as gold in ancient Egypt, but it still held value and was used as a medium of exchange in trade.

Golden Head of the God Osiris
Amulet showing the head of the god Osiris

Both gold and silver were considered precious metals and played important roles in the religious, social, and economic aspects of ancient Egyptian society.

Late Period, 26th to 30th Dynasty, ca. 664-332 BC. Now in the Egyptian Museum of Barcelona. E 506JA