Ancient Egypt for Kids
Jewelry and Perfume
Jewelry was used for adornment, social status, and protection. Everybody in ancient Egypt worn jewelry.
In the beginning, silver was the most popular metal. By the Middle Kingdom, gold had taken over first place. Gold was considered blessed by the gods. Some considered it the flesh of the gods because it never tarnished. Gold was used on everything religious from statues to temple art to funeral masks. It was also used to create fabulous jewelry for both the living and the dead. The combination of gold leaf, turquoise, and faience was very popular, and more affordable as only a small amount of gold was used.
Upper Class: Gorgeous jewelry of gold, silver, lapis and other gemstones, and faience.
Lower Class: Gorgeous jewelry of copper, colorful stones, and faience
Jewelry was worn as amulets. Jewelers had to follow strict rules and colors to make sure the magical property of the amulet was not destroyed. The ancient Egyptians truly believed that amulets had magical powers of protection and healing, and also brought good fortune.
Perfume was also popular. Egyptian women purchased perfume in the marketplace. Perfume came in oil based sauves. They also put perfume on a wax cone and then wore the cone on their head. It's very hot in Egypt. The heat melted the wax. The wax ran down their hair onto their skin, perfuming it. They believed perfume was good for their skin and appreciated by the gods.