The CBd
 
 
Magical gem: Scarab-baboon in Ouroboros (A) invocation (B)
CBd-Number:
CBd-1008
ID-Number:
GB-BM-MMEu_G 455, EA 56455
Collection:
GB_London, The British Museum
Inventory:
G 455 (EA 56455)
References:
Bonner 1951, no. 47; Michel, BM, no. 649
Former Collections:
Blacas Collection
Material:
heliotrope
Dimensions:
46 x 35 x 5 mm
Dating:
18th–19th c. AD (Michel)
Iconography:
scarab; Ouroboros; figure, dimorph; animal: cynocephalus
A: Ouroboros, head to left, enclosing the composite figure of a scarab and a baboon. The scarab is represented vertically, with head towards the top, its upper and lower legs serving as the hairy paws of the baboon. The baboon is viewed from behind, squatting on its hindlegs and raising its arms in a greeting gesture.
B: Inscription in nine lines: επεκαλομ|εσεμεγαλοδ|οξεοουαματαε|θηκαιεσαρκοω|δλοκαιπυηεομ||εθπιτυχενοπυ|ονυοννθσισο|
ιμσαονομαστ|οεθουκεμ → ἐπικαλοῦμαί σε, μεγαλόδοξε, οὗ ὀνόματα ἔθηκα τῇ σορῷ... καὶ ποίει με ἐπιτυχεῖν ὁποίων ἂν οὖν θελήσω... μέγα ὄνομα... (Bonner). 'I conjure you, oh, Great of Fame, whose names I have placed on/in the tomb… and make that I be successful in everything I want… Great Name…'
The present interpretation is the reconstruction of C. Bonner. According to Bonner the engraving contains a meaningful text in a garbled form. The reading of the word ’soros’ is uncertain. If this is the right reading, the text refers to a well-known praxis connected with tombs, and the piece is thus an extreme example for an intelligent text becoming mangled by an illiterate engraver.

Bibliography
Bonner 1951 on CBd-1008
Michel, BM on CBd-1008
http://www.britishmuseum.org/research/search_the_collection_database/search_object_details.aspx?objectid=59116&partid=1&searchText=56455&fromADBC=ad&toADBC=ad&numpages=10&orig=%2fresearch%2fsearch_the_collection_database.aspx&currentPage=1" target="_blank">The British Museum Collection database on CBd-1008
Last modified: 2015-01-09 14:14:32
Link:cbd.mfab.hu/cbd/1008
CITE THIS PAGE
CBd-1008. The Campbell Bonner Magical Gems Database (2010-), developed at the Museum of Fine Arts, Budapest, editor-in-chief: Á. M. Nagy. Retrieved from: cbd.mfab.hu/cbd/1008 on 04-10-2022.

Image-ID 9229

Credits Photo: Christopher A. Faraone

Rights © Trustees of the British Museum

Image-ID 9230

Credits Photo: Christopher A. Faraone

Rights © Trustees of the British Museum

Image-ID 9231

Credits Photo: Christopher A. Faraone

Rights © Trustees of the British Museum

Image-ID 1550

Credits From Michel, BM

Rights © Trustees of the British Museum

Image-ID 1681

Rights © Trustees of the British Museum

Image-ID 1551

Credits From Michel, BM

Rights © Trustees of the British Museum

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