ROMAN. Imperial. Quartz Abraxas Stone.
|Sale: CNG 75, Lot: 1521. Estimate $1500.
Closing Date: Wednesday, 23 May 2007.
Sold For $1000. This amount does not include the buyer’s fee.
1st-3rd century AD. Quartz scarab-shaped sealstone, engraved with intaglio of Abraxas standing facing, head left, holding shield inscribed AIN/NEHI/WN, and goad; pseudo-inscription around. Holed lengthwise for wearing. Overall length 33mm. Choice condition.
The name Abraxas is found in the Greek Magical Papyrii as well as Gnostic texts such as the Gospel of the Egyptians. Variously claimed as an Egyptian god, or a demonic associate of Satan, Abraxas was a composite figure with the head of a rooster, the body of a man, and serpents for legs. Since the letters of Abraxas’ name numerically total 365, the Gnostic Basilideans assigned his to the 365 orders of spirits which derived from the Supreme Being. Because of his great power the image of the god, as well as his name were engraved stones, commonly known as Abraxas Stones, which were used as amulets or protective charms.