Selected and rare materials, excerpts and observations from ancient, medieval and contemporary authors, travelers and researchers about Cyprus.
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regardant, beside a tree. 3-8ths inch long. Steatite. (See Plate xv, fig. 56.)
10. Cone pierced. Oval face, bearing a gazelle couchant to the right between two stars. Coarse work. 5-8ths inch high, 5-8ths inch face. Steatite.
11. A cone, bearing on its face an object, resembling a lizard. Rude work. Half-inch high. Calcined agate.
12. Pyramidal conoid, pierced. A star, and some uncertain emblems. 3-8ths inch. Steatite.
13. Conoid, pierced in two ways. An uncertain figure. Half-inch high. Dark stone.




ESIDES the cylinders and cones, which point so clearly to the influence of Babylonian, Assyrian, and Hittite domination of art and [feeling in Cyprus, the tombs and subterranean chambers of Salamis yielded, during my excavations, a number of engraved gems and stones, used as seals and rings. In this class, I include glass, paste, crystal, cornelian, agate, jasper, sard, and other precious stones, which bear devices more or less artistically engraved upon them. A considerable number are cut in the form of scarabǽi, and scarabǽoids. Some of these are obviously of Egyptian origin. From the old civilisation of the Egyptians, it may be taken that these scarabs represent one of the oldest forms of seal. Scarabǽi are generally, but not always, pierced through lengthwise for attaching to the wrist, or for setting in a bezel. They are made of talcose schist, or steatite— sometimes glazed by being exposed to the heat of a furnace, or have a blue, green, or red coloured frit placed on them before the firing—agate, cornelian, and other hard materials. On the oval and flat base, inscriptions and figures, or representations of deities, men, and animals, are engraved. These scarabǽi, according to Dr. Birch, are often found used as the bezels of signet rings, set either in a small frame of metal round the edge, or with a coiled wire as a spring on each sideto hold them. But they are sometimes mixed up with other beads or objects, as pendants for necklaces, or even strung in rows as bracelets. They are to be' distinguished from the scarabǽi of porcelain, which were used only for the outer beaded work, or decoration of mummies. The scarabaǽus cheper, or cheperu, was one of the most common of Egyptian emblems. It represented the self-existent male principle, and .the Sun, and as such it was introduced into many objects of Egyptian art. According to later authors, the military classes employed it as their device; but it is found inscribed with the names of priests, and members of other classes of society. An idea has prevailed amongst recent authors, writes the above authority, that the scarabǽus was used for the purpose of money; but this notion is not well supported, either by the monuments or texts, in which it is never mentioned as an unit of value, and all knoAvn Egyptian weights are of totally different form. Although, therefore, it is 'difficult to determine why it was so much in vogue for articles of attire, its shape on an oval pedestal was remarkably convenient for seals, and well adapted for general use. Among the numerous examples found in Salaminian tombs, I may specify the following scarabǽi in the Lawrence-Cesnola collection as being of interest.1. An important Egyptian pierced scarabǽus. On the face, winged urœi, with disks and horns, supporting between them a cartouche, in which is inscribed the name of Ba-men-ka,1 or Mycerinus, an Egyptian monarch of the Fourth Dynasty.

1 See The Egypt of the Past, by Sir Erasmus Wilson, F.R.S., pp. 65, 87. The third of the series of the great Pyramids of Gizeh was built by him. "

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