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Blue ear amulet, from Deir el-Bahri, Thebes, Egypt, New Kingdom, around 1550–1069 BCE

This blue ear was a ‘votive offering’ – a model of a human body part that was left at a temple. An amulet such as an ear was left in the hope that the gods, or a god-like king represented by statues in the temple, would hear the worshipper’s prayers. Many artificial ears have been found, especially at the temples in Qantir, Memphis and Thebes.

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