Drawing: Hildi Keel-Leu

Syrian-made scarabs found in Israel. Dating to the 17th and 16th centuries B.C., these scarabs (photos top and corresponding drawings bottom) differ from the better-known Egyptian variety; the decoration is not carved out in deep relief, Egyptian-style, but is executed instead in raised relief.

The omega-shaped symbol and the pubic triangle of the nude goddess may be related to one another. The discovery of such scarabs at at least three sites—Tell el-Far‘ah (North), Tel Jerishe, and Jericho—indicates that these symbols may have been a basic theme on these scarabs.