Tutankhamun Pectoral with the Sky Goddess Nut
This pectoral was found in the chapel of Anubis within the Tomb of Tutankhamun (KV62); it shows the goddess Nut in human form with her wings and arms outstretched, protecting the cartouches of Tutankhamun. Below her wings can be seen eight rows of hieroglyphs, again related to protection by the gods.
The pectoral is surmounted by a cavetto cornice. It has been argued by some scholars that this piece was not originally made for Tutankhamun, as the cartouches show signs of having been altered.
Nut is usually depicted with stars covering her body, particularly her hands and feet, which were seen as the four cardinal points. She was the granddaughter of the great sun god Re, but also an important mother figure to him in many of the legends.
Sows are connected to the sky goddess Nut, who was thought to give birth to the stars each night and swallow them at dawn. Ancient Egyptians sometimes depicted her as a sow, based on the animal’s behavior to eat her own piglets.
In ancient Egyptian mythology, Nut (pronounced “newt”) is the goddess of the sky and heavens. She was the daughter of Shu, god of vital breath, and his wife Tefnut, goddess of heat. She was usually depicted as a woman bent over Earth with her head in the West and feet in the East.
New Kingdom, 18th Dynasty, reign of Tutankhamun, ca. 1332-1323 BC. Made out of gold, carnelian and colored glass. From the Tomb of Tutankhamun (KV62), Valley of the Kings, West Thebes. Now in the Egyptian Museum, Cairo. JE 61944