Magical Gem depicting Chnoubis, Getty Museum, 83.AN.437.54



Engraved Gem with Chnoubis, The J. Paul Getty Museum, Villa Collection, Malibu, California

Gemme_Getty-Museum_83.AN.437.54 Getty-83.AN.437.54 Getty-83.AN.437.54


Place of storage: The J. Paul Getty Museum, Villa Collection, Malibu, California
Inventory number: 83.AN.437.54
Medium: Green chalcedony
Date: 2nd – 3rd century AD
Provenance: unknown
Dimensions: 1.5 × 1.2 cm (9/16 × 1/2 in.)

Depiction of the lion-headed snake deity Chnoumis crowned with twelve rays.
Inscription: ΧΝΟΥΜΙС (Chnoumis)

The sign of Chnoubis: Three SSS with a cross-line

Chnoubis / Chnoumis is one of the most frequently depicted deities on ancient magical gems during the Roman imperial period. He is associated, for example, with the healing of stomach ailments and the protection of the uterus.

The names Chnoumis and Chnoubis both occur in inscriptions and refer to the same deity.

Image source:
© The J. Paul Getty Museum, Malibu, California


Veronique Dasen, Arpad M. Nagy, Le serpent léontocéphale Chnoubis et la magie de l’époque romaine impériale, in: Anthropozoologica, vol. 47.1, 291-314.

Michel, Simone. Die Magischen Gemmen. Zu Bildern und Zauberformeln auf geschnittenen Steinen der Antike und Neuzeit. (Berlin: Akademie Verlag, 2004), p. 256, 11.2.b (GET 9).

Thank you for sharing this post with your friends and community!