Thebes with Lotus Petal Earrings - Egyptian, c. 960 B.C.
This combination of ancient blue ceramic beads, carnelian and gold plated spacers is similar to that found in a bracelet of the High Priest Pi-nudjem II from Thebes, virtual ruler of Upper Egypt during the latter part of the 21st Dynasty. The original bracelet combined gold, lapis and carnelian beads. In ancient Egypt, gold was regarded as a divine metal related to the shining sun god, Re. Lapis was considered a sacred stone with powers of celestial origin. Carnelian was believed to be the stone of courage and physical power.