The CBd
Bonner, SMA, 140.



If the cock-headed anguipede is a deliberate creation of some special group of theosophists, there are various other amulet types with solar connections which have arisen naturally from the old religion of Egypt. Foremost among these is the figure of Harpocrates, the child Horus, who in the later age succeeded the older sun-god and, like him, is represented seated on a lotus flower or in a boat, or even, and in fact very often, enthroned upon a lotus which springs from the middle of the boat.1 So numerous are the amulets that bear the figure of Harpocrates that it becomes necessary to describe some of the types in detail.

The most elaborate type shows the young god as a naked child seated in a boat, or on a lotus flower springing from the middle of the boat, while all around him there are groups of animals arranged in threes, most of them facing him as if in adoration (D. 203–210). When the type is complete, the arrangement is as follows: above, three scarabaeus beetles, at the sides, three goats and three birds, usually recognizable as hawks, and below the boat, three crocodiles and three cobras. The god's head is generally crowned with the sun disk. Some of the specimens, probably the older ones, represent his head as shaved except for the long single lock worn by Egyptian children; in others his hair grows naturally. He is sometimes seated on the lotus with his knees drawn up, sometimes kneeling on the flower with one knee, while the other leg hangs over the edge as if he were about to draw it in; much more rarely he sits on the flower as if it were a chair, with his legs hanging down. He holds the flail over his left shoulder, and his right hand is raised towards his mouth.2 In the field are a star and a crescent moon.

This type of the infant god with the triads of animals is reproduced somewhat mechanically on a considerable number of specimens, with occasional interesting variations. Thus on the finest specimen of this type that is known to me, a haematite in the museum of the University of Michigan, the group of goats is divided, and two of the hawks are perched on the ends of the boat.3 Harpocrates is attended by two divinities who stand one on each side facing towards him, each holding one hand a tall scepter topped with a lotus capsule, in the other the ankh. The god at the left, in front of Har-

1 Erman, p. 392.

2 The hand is occasionally extended in a gesture like that of benediction, which in the case of solar deities may be a command to the sun to rise. An interesting heliotrope in the British Museum represents the young god as playing the flute (56283). lt is a love amulet (see p. 48 above); compare also the scarab from Tharros described by Walters, B. M. Cat. Gems, 358.

Last modified: 2012-10-29 15:42:03