Chnoubis (Xnoubis, Chnoumis, Chnuphis)
Chnoubis is an Egyptian Gnostic solar icon, found most often on gnostic gems, and amulets for protection against poison and disease. It is a composite figure with the head of a lion and the body of a serpent, usually with seven rays emanating from the head, sometimes, with the twelve zodiacal signs. Chnoubis is an aspect of the Gnostic Demiurge, Yaldabaoth, and is associated with Abraxas. Images of Chnoubis are most often found inscribed on gnostic gems, small talismans made from semi-precious stone, that date from the first century onward.
The lion’s head represents the solar forces, enlightenment; the serpent, the lower impulses, earth. The rays represent the seven planets, the seven Greek vowels,* and the seven colors of the visible spectrum.
*An important part of ritual formulas