SAQQARA, Egypt - Archeologists unveiled Tuesday the tombs of a Pharaonic butler and scribe that had been buried in the sand for more than 3,000 years.
The tombs, along with the painted coffins of a priest and his girlfriend, were discovered early this year at Saqqara near the famous Step Pyramid of King Djoser — the oldest of Egypt's more than 90 pyramids.
Abscence is to love what wind is to fire; it extinguishes the small, it enkindles the great.
(L'abscence est a l'amour ce qu'est au feu le vent; it eteint le petit)
"My honour was not yielded, but conquered merely."
WORD OF THE WEEK:
Synthesis: /ˈsɪn θəsɪs/ Pronunciation Key - Show Spelled Pronunciation[sin-thuh-sis] noun
a. To put together parts or elements to get to the whole.
b. High stage of truth
c. Make connections among parts or among wholes
DEITY OF THE WEEK:
In the New Kingdom she was regarded as the "god's mother who bore Re," whereby she assumed the position of a primeval goddess who was neither male nor female. She was the first to "create the seed of gods and men." She is the mother of Egyptian rulers. Also she was a mortuary goddess who watched over Osiris' brier along with Isis, Nephthys and Serket. The deceased received her divine power by means of the mummy's wrappings, for the bandages and shrouds were considered gifts of Neith, who was regarded as the patroness of weaving. Possibly there was an earlier proposal that her symbol was the weaver's shuttle.
When depicted in human form she wears the red crown of Lower Egypt, and in ancient times her pre-anthropomorphic symbol was a shield bearing crosses because she also was a local war goddess. This goddess of war also blessed hunters' weapons. The practice of placing weapons around the coffin in ancient Egyptian times could be traced to the goddess' protective functions.
She was sometimes asked to give advice and judgment, as, for example, in the eight-year war of the gods between Seth and Horus, which she advised Re in favor of Horus. In other legends she was the consort of Seth and mother of the crocodile god Sobek, which explains the proximity of her cult center in the Delta.
Clever, fatalist, deep. Sympathetic, generous, loving and perseverant in proving their view point
Colors: male: sienna, female: crimson
Compatible Signs: Bastet, Isis
Dates: May 8 - May 27, Jun 29 - Jul 13
Role: God of death and mummification
Appearance: Jackal or a jackal-headed man
Sacred animals: jackal
Designed by CyberWarlock of Warlock's Quizzles and Quandaries
"All strange and terrible events are welcome, but comforts we despise."
Never play leapfrog with unicorn.
WORD OF THE WEEK:
Transcendent: [tran-sen-duh nt] adjective
a. Beyond comprehension
b. Exceeding usual limits, surpassing
c. Beyond all limits of knowledge
DEITY OF THE WEEK:
The oldest of the Horus gods is appropriately named Horus the Elder (Heru-ur), and was especially venerated in pre-Dynastic Upper Egypt along with Hathor. In this very ancient form, Horus is also a creator god, the falcon who flew up at the beginning of time. The pre-Pharaohnic rulers of Upper Egypt were considered "shemsu-Heru" or "followers of Horus", and the original Horus is himself considered in some myths to be the brother of Seth and Osiris, second-born of the five children of Geb and Nut (Osiris, Horus, Seth, Isis, Nephthys). Horus the Elder's city was Letopolis, and his eyes were thought to be the sun and moon. When these two heavenly bodies are invisible (as on the night of the new moon) he goes blind and takes the name Mekhenty-er-irty, "He who has no eyes". When he recovers them, he becomes Khenty-irty, "He who has eyes". A warrior-god armed with a sword, Horus could be especially dangerous to those around him in his vision-deprived state, and during one battle in particular he managed to not only knock off the heads of his enemies but of the other deities fighting alongside him, thus plunging the world into immediate confusion that was only relieved when his eyes returned.
Other notable Horus gods are the previously mentioned Harseisis, as well as Horus of Behdet (sometimes called simply Behdety) who was represented as a winged sun disk, Anhur (a form of Horus the Elder and Shu), Horakhety (Ra-Heru-akhety) who was a syncretism of Ra and Horus, and Harpokrates (Heru-pa-khered) or Horus the Child. In the form of Harpokrates, Horus is the danger-beset son of Isis with one finger to his lips, signifying his childish nature (also evident in his princely sidelock and naked status). Harpokrates represented not only the royal heir, but also the newborn sun.
Horus deities are frequently depicted as hawks or hawk-headed men, though some are represented as fully human. The pharaoh was considered to be the Living Horus, the temporal stand-in for Horus in the earthly domain. As the opponent of Seth (who, though initially an Upper Egyptian deity himself, later came to represent not only Lower Egypt but the desert surrounding Egypt), Horus is alternately a brother vying for the throne and unification of Egypt (Horus the Elder), or a royal heir come to reclaim his inheritance (Horus the Younger).
Horus can be seen at the top of the serekh of early kings, though in very rare cases his place was usurped by Set (Peribsen, Dynasty 2) or even shared with him (Khasekhemwy, Dynasty 2). Horus is also depicted on the famous Narmer palette along with Bat, an earlier form of Hathor.
A passage from the Coffin Texts (passage 148) sums up Horus in his own words:
"I am Horus, the great Falcon upon the ramparts of the house of him of the hidden name. My flight has reached the horizon. I have passed by the gods of Nut. I have gone further than the gods of old. Even the most ancient bird could not equal my very first flight. I have removed my place beyond the powers of Set, the foe of my father Osiris. No other god could do what I have done. I have brought the ways of eternity to the twilight of the morning. I am unique in my flight. My wrath will be turned against the enemy of my father Osiris and I will put him beneath my feet in my name of 'Red Cloak'."
"Be it known that we, the greatest, are misthought."
One owes respect to the living; but to the dead one owes nothing but the truth.
DEITY OF THE WEEK:
As with most Egyptian deities there were many different stories regarding the parentage of Thoth. Many sources call him the son of Re, but one tradition has him springing forth from the head of Seth. This latter story is reminiscent of the birth of the Greek goddess Athena, who like Thoth was the patron divinity of wisdom.
Myths concerning Thoth show him as a divinity whose counsel is always sought. His most significant role is during the battles of Horus and Seth. Thoth is a staunch supporter of Horus and his mother Isis, maintaining that Horus' claim to the throne is just and the murderous Seth has no right to the kingship of Egypt. Elsewhere Thoth is a reliable mediator and peacemaker. When the goddess Tefnut had a dispute with her father Re and absconded to Nubia, it was Thoth that the sun-god sent to reason with her and bring her home. Thoth was also present at the judgement of the dead. He would question the deceased before recording the result of the weighing of the deceased's heart. If the result was favorable Thoth would declare the deceased as a righteous individual who was worthy of a blessed afterlife.
Thoth was also a lunar deity, and whatever form he took he wore a lunar crescent on his head. Some Egyptologists think that the Egyptians identified the crescent moon with the curved beak of the ibis. It is also suggested that the Egyptians observed that baboon was a nocturnal (i.e. lunar) animal who would greet the sun with chattering noises each morning.
As he was messenger of the gods Thoth was identified by the Greeks with their own god Hermes . For this reason Thoth's center of worship is still known to us today as Hermopolis.
WORD OF THE WEEK:
--pontificate (pŏn-tĭfĭ-kĭt, -kāt′) noun to speak in a pompous and over bearing way; to express one's opinion with arrogance
"I will not be triumphed over."
One owes respect to the living; but to the dead one owes nothing but the truth.
WORD OF THE WEEK:
-- uxorious \uk-SOR-ee-us; ug-ZOR-\,
adjective: excessively fond of or submissive to a wife
DEITY OF THE WEEK:
Seth by Micha F. Lindemans
Despite his reputation, Seth has some good characteristics. He protects the sun barge of Re during its nightly journey through the underworld and he fights the snake-like monster Apep. On the other hand, he was a peril for ordinary Egyptians in the underworld, where he was said to seize the souls of the unwary.
Seth was portrayed as a man with the head of undeterminable origin, although some see in it the head of an aardvark. He had a curved snout, erect square-tipped ears and a long forked tail. He was sometimes entirely in animal form with the body similar to that of a greyhound. Animals sacred to this god where the dog, the jackal, the gazelle, the donkey, the crocodile, the hippopotamus, and the pig. There was an important sanctuary at Ombos in Upper Egypt, his reputed birthplace, and considered to be the home of his cult. This cult was also prominent in the north-eastern region of the Nile delta. The Greeks equated him with their Typhon.
The name of Seth in hieroglyphs.
Other names include Sutekh, Setech, and Sutech.
"A thought, even a possibility, can shatter and transform us."
"A divorcee is a woman who got married so she didn't have to work, but now works so she doesn't have to get married."
1. Not clearly or sharply delineated: an indistinct pattern; indistinct shapes in the gloom. 2. Faint; dim: indistinct stars 3.a. Hazy; vague: indistinct memory: an indistinct notion of how to proceed. b. Difficult to understand or make out: indistinct speech.
Seb: by Micha F. Lindemans
This will be a two part project as I will also be doing weekly quotes for my egypts_calendar group that I mod. It will be a little more challenging for that group as trying to find 52 + quotes that deal with Egypt might be a real challenge, but then again that's what I am looking for, a challenge. Atleast finding 52 Words and Deities won't be hard. Nothing to big that it will take away from my school work, but will also give my ideas for papers and such as I work my way through a 3rd term at PCC.
So here it the 1st weeks set of quotes, hope you all enjoy them and feel free to share some of your favorite quotes, words and deities with me. Please remember to add who the quote is from.
“Fool! Don't you see now that I could have poisoned you a hundred times had I been able to live without you.”
"Love is a canvas furnished by Nature and embroidered by imagination
1. An untidy woman; a slattern. 2. A scarecrow or a grotesque effigy. 3. A mop made of a bundle or rags fastened to a stick. 4. A cat. 5. A hare
Osiris by Katherine Fischer
Osiris was killed by his brother Seth, who shut his body in a chest and threw it into the Nile, where it washed up onto the shore and was trapped in a huge tree. The King Byblos turned it into a pillar in his palace. Isis (who had been searching for her husband) discovered the trunk, and retrieved the trunk and the body. While Isis was away, Seth found the body, and chopped it up into many pieces, and scattered them throughout Egypt. Isis and her sister, Nephthys, found the pieces and made wax models of them to give to priests to be worshipped. When they found all of his pieces, they were so sad they wailed loudly enough for Re, the father god, to have pity on them. He sent Anubis and Thoth to help. They mummified Osiris, and put his body in a lion headed pier. Isis changed into a kite and fanned breath into Osiris.
He was not allowed to stay in the land of the living, and was sent to the underworld to serve as king, and to judge the souls of the dead.
(currently in Portland Oregon until March 2007)
by Caroline Seawright
Set (Seth, Setekh, Sut, Sutekh, Suty) was one of ancient Egypt's earliest gods, a god of chaos, confusion, storms, wind, the desert and foreign lands. In the Osiris legends, he was a contender to the throne of Osiris and rival to Horus, but a companion to the sun god Ra. Originally worshiped and seen as an ambivalent being, during the Third Intermediate Period the people vilified him and turned him into a god of evil.
Depicted as a man with the head of a 'Sut animal' (or a 'Typhonian animal' because of the Greek identification with Typhon), or as a full 'Set animal' the god is unrecognizable as any one particular animal today. He was also identified with other animals, such as the hippopotamus, the pig and the donkey, which were often abhorred by the Egyptians. These animals were sacred to him. Set's followers took the form of these animals, as well as crocodiles, scorpions, turtles and other 'evil' or dangerous creatures. Some fish were sacred to Set, too - the Nile carp, the Oxyrynchus or the Phagrus fish - because they were thought to have eaten the phallus of Osiris after Set chopped him to pieces.
The 'Set animal' has long, squared ears and a long, down-turned snout, a canine-like body with an erect forked tail. He may have been a composite animal that was part aardvark (the aardvark that the ancient Egyptians would have seen was the nocturnal Orycteropus aethiopicus which was between 1.2-1.8 meters long and almost 1 meter tall, and was generally a reddish color because of the thin hair, allowing the skin to show through), part canine (perhaps the salawa, a desert dwelling creature) or even a camel or an okapi. The sign for his name, from the Middle Kingdom hieratic onwards, tended to replace the sign for 'donkey' and 'giraffe', so he was possibly linked to the giraffe, as well.
He was also believed to have white skin and red hair, with the Egyptians comparing his hair to the pelt of a donkey. Due to his association with red dshr - adding a t makes the word for desert, (dshrt), red animals and even people with red hair were thought to be his followers. These animals were sometimes sacrificed, while the link between Set and red-heads - usually foreigners - gave him godhood over foreign lands. With the relationship to foreign peoples, Set was also a god of overseas trade of oils, wood and metals from over the sea and through desert routes. He was given lordship over western Asia because of this.
As Set was a god of the desert and probably symbolized the destructive heat of the afternoon sun, and thus was thought to be infertile. The hieroglyph for Set was used in words such as 'turmoil', 'confusion', 'illness', 'storm' and 'rage'. Strange events such as eclipses, thunderstorms and earthquakes were all attributed to him.
“Horus has seized Set, he has put him beneath you so that he can lift you up. He will groan beneath you as an earthquake... “
-- Pyramid Texts, Spell 356
He was also thought to have rather odd sexual habits, another reason why the Egyptian believed that abnormalities were linked to Set. In a land where fatherhood makes the man, Set's lack of children, related to the tale where Horus tore off his testicles (while Set tore out Horus' eye) would have been on reason why he was looked down on. His favorite - some say only - food was the lettuce (which secreted a white, milky substance that the Egyptians linked to semen and was sacred to the fertility god Min), but even with this aphrodisiac, he was still thought to have been infertile.
His bisexuality (he was married and given concubines to appease him, yet he also assaulted Horus sexually starting with the come-on line "How lovely your backside is!") and his pursuit of Isis were reasons why Set could never have been a ruler of Egypt instead of Osiris, despite originally being a lord of Upper Egypt.
When Set saw Isis there, he transformed himself into a bull to be able to pursue her, but she made herself unrecognizable by taking the form of a bitch with a knife on her tail. Then she began to run away from him and Set was unable to catch up with her. Then he ejaculated on the ground, and she said, "It's disgusting to have ejaculated, you bull!" But his sperm grew in the desert and became the plants called bedded-kau.
-- Jumilhac Papyrus
In the Old and Middle Kingdoms there are depictions of these two gods together either leading the prisoners of the pharaoh or binding the plants of Upper and Lower Egypt together (as does the twin Hapi gods) to symbolize the union of Upper and Lower Egypt. He was regarded as an equal to the hawk god. This was Horus the Elder, a god of the day sky while Set was seen as a god of the night sky. When these two gods were linked, the two were said to be Horus-Set, a man with two heads - one of the hawk of Horus, the other of the Set animal. "Homage to thee, O divine Ladder! Homage to thee O Ladder of Set! Stand thou upright, O divine Ladder! Stand thou upright, O Ladder of Set! Stand thou upright, O Ladder of Horus, whereby Osiris came forth into heaven."
-- Pyramid Texts, Pepi I
In the Pyramid Texts he was believed to be a friend to the dead, and he helped Osiris ascend to heaven on a ladder. On one of Seti I's relief’s, it shows Set and Horus offering the symbol of life to the pharaoh, with Set saying "I establish the crown upon thy head, even like the Disk on the head of Amen-Ra, and I will give thee all life, strength and health." Thothmose III had a scene showing Set teaching him the use of the bow, while Horus taught him yet another weapon.
As for his role as a friend of the dead, it was believed that "Horus purifies and Set strengthens, and Set purifies and Horus strengthens" the deceased while the backbone of the deceased becomes the backbone of Set and Set has "joined together my neck and my back strongly, and they are even as they were in the time that is past; may nothing happen to break them apart."
Ramesses II, as did his father Seti I, both had red hair and so aligned themselves with the god of chaos. Both were famous warrior pharaohs, using Set's violent nature to help with their war efforts. In Ramesses II's campaign against the Hittites, he split his army into four divisions and named them after four gods. One was for Amen, one for Ra, one for Ptah and one for Set. But it was the pharaoh himself who won the battle:
Thereupon the forces of the Foe from Khatti surrounded the followers of his majesty who were by his side. When his majesty caught sight of them he rose quickly, enraged at them like his father Mont. Taking up weapons and donning his armor he was like Set in the moment of his power. He mounted 'Victory-in-Thebes,' his great horse, and started out quickly alone by himself. His majesty was mighty, his heart stout. one could not stand before him.
All his ground was ablaze with fire; he burned all the countries with his blast. His eyes were savage as he beheld them; his power flared like fire against them. He heeded not the foreign multitude; he regarded them as chaff. His majesty charged into the force of the Foe from Khatti and the many countries with him. His majesty was like Seth, great-of-strength, like Sekhmet in the moment of her rage. His majesty slew the entire force of the Foe from Khatti, together with his great chiefs and all his brothers, as well as all the chiefs of all the countries that had come with him, their infantry and their charioteers falling on their faces one upon the other. His majesty slaughtered them in their places; they sprawled before his horses; and his majesty was alone, none other with him.
-- The Account of the Battle of Qedesh, the Ramesseum
It is likely that the cult of Horus overtook the cult of Set in ancient times, and started to remove his positive sides to give the god Horus more status. The two gods, Horus the Elder and Horus the son of Osiris and Isis were confused, so Set changed from being an equal to his brother, Horus the Elder, to the enemy of Isis's son. It was only after the Hyksos took Set as their main god, after the Egyptians god rid of the foreigners, he stopped symbolizing Lower Egypt and his name was erased and his statues destroyed.
Set has been worshiped since predynastic times. The first representation of Set that has been found was on a carved ivory comb, an Amratian artifact. He was also shown on the Scorpion macehead. He was worshiped and placated through Egyptian history until the Third Intermediate Period where he was seen as an evil and undesirable force. From this time on, some of his statues were re-carved to become the statues of other gods, and it was said that he had actually been defeated by the god Horus.
In the original tale of the fight between Set and Horus, the Egyptians believed that the two would continue their battle until the end of time itself, when chaos overran ma'at and the waters of Nun would swallow up the world. It was only when Set was vilified that this changed, and the Egyptians began to believe that Horus won the battle, defeating Set as a version of good triumphing over evil.
In the tale of Osiris, Set was the third of the five children of Nut, thought to have been born in the Nubt (Naqada) area. Instead of being born in the normal manner, as his siblings were born, he tore himself violently from his mother's womb.
“You whom the pregnant goddess brought forth when you clove the night in twain - You are invested with the form of Set, who broke out in violence.”
-- Pyramid Texts
Jealous of his older brother Osiris - either because of the birth of his sister-wife's son, Anubis, or because of Osiris' ruler ship of Egypt - Set made a plan to murder his childless brother and take the throne. He made a great feast, supposedly in honor of Osiris, and with 72 accomplices ready, he tricked Osiris into laying down in a coffer - whoever fitted into the richly ornamented chest would win it - and considering that he'd measured it to fit his brother exactly, Osiris fit perfectly... and Set's accomplices nailed down the lid and threw it into the Nile. When Isis found out about this, she went on a search through the world to find her husband. Bringing him back, Set happened on the coffer, and tore it open and cut up his brother's corpse, spreading body parts through the land of Egypt. Isis and Set's wife Nephthys (who had left him to join her sister) went on a quest to restore Osiris. They succeeded enough so that Isis conceived Osiris' son and eventually bore the child Horus in the Delta region where he grew up.
“By this time Horus had reached manhood .. Horus thereupon did battle with Set, the victory falling now to one, now to the other .. Horus and Set, it is said, still do battle with one another, yet victory has fallen to neither. “
-- Egypt - Myths and Legends, Lewis Spence
Yet Set was thought to be a follower of Ra. It was he who defended the Solar Barque each night as it traveled through the underworld, the only Egyptian deity who could kill the serpent Apep - Ra's most dangerous enemy - each night as it threatened to swallow the Barque.
Then Set, the strong one, the son of Nut, said "As for me, I am Set, the strongest of the Divine Company. Every day I slay the enemy of Ra when I stand at the helm of the Barque of Millions of Years, which no other god dare do."
Even here, though, Set was thought to be a braggart, taunting Ra and threatening that if he wasn't treated well, that he would bring storms and thunder against the sun god. At this point in The Book of the Dead, Ra drives Set away from the Barque for his insolence, and proceeds on course without the god of storms.
Other than Nephthys, Set had other wives/concubines. He was believed to live in the northern sky by the constellation of the Great Bear. To the Egyptians, the north symbolized darkness, cold and death. It was there that his wife Taweret, the hippo goddess of childbirth, was believed to keep him chained. He seemed to have bad luck with women - as with Nephthys, Taweret followed Osiris.
At one part in the tale of Set's argument with Horus over rulership, the company of the gods asked the goddess Neith, rather than Ra - who sided with Set - who should be given the throne of Osiris. Her reply was this:
"Give the office of Osiris to his son Horus! Do not go on committing these great wrongs, which are not in place, or I will get angry and the sky will topple to the ground. But also tell the Lord of All, the Bull who lives in Heliopolis, to double Set's property. Give him Anat and Astarte, your two daughters, and put Horus in the place of his father."
-- Myth and Symbol in Ancient Egypt, RT Rundle Clark
So he was given the two foreign goddesses Anat and Astarte, both war goddesses from the Syria-Palestine area and daughters of Ra. The two were often interchangeable, yet they had their own distinct cults. Anat and Taweret, though they were fertility goddesses, never bore Set any children.
Despite his wicked side, Set was still a god of Egypt, and worshiped - and feared - as such. His image changed through time, due to politics, yet he was still a powerful god, the only one who could slay Ra's worst enemy. To the Egyptians he was the god who 'ate' the moon each month - the black boar who swallowed its light - and the god who created earthquakes and heavy, thunderous rain storms. He was a friend of the dead, helping them to ascend to heaven on his ladder, and the crowner of pharaohs and leader of warriors.
Despite his bad reputation, he was still a divine being - an equal of Horus, no less - who could be invoked by his followers or warded off by those who were afraid of him. Yet without chaos and confusion there would be no order; without the heavy, thunderous storms there would be no good weather; without the desert and foreign lands there would be no Egypt. Set was a counterbalance to the 'good' side of the Egyptian universe, helping to keep everything in balance.
Set (Seth, Seti, Sutekh, Setekh, Setesh, Suty)
God of darkness or evil; brother and enemy of Osiris. God of thunder and storm; the personification of evil in the battle against good. God of chaotic forces who commands both veneration and hostility. The complicated character of Seth is not solved by an acceptable etymology of his name, rendered in hieroglyphs as 'Setekh', 'Setesh', 'Suty' or 'Sutekh'.
The creature of Seth, probably an heraldic composite animal, is a quadruped with a gently curving muzzle, two appendages jutting out from the top of its head and an erect tail terminating in a short bifurcation. it appears on the mace head of King Scorpion at the end of the Predynasty era. The god himself can take on the complete form of this creature or be shown in human form but with the animal's head. An early tradition of the violence associated with Seth is in the emphasis that at his birth in Upper Egypt he tore himself savagely frmo his mother Nut. The site of his birth was the Ombos-Naqada region where his major southern sanctuary was built.
In the Pyramid Texts the strength of the pharaoh is called 'Seth of Nubet' the ancient name for he site of his Upper Egyptian temple. The similarity of this name to the Egyptian word for 'gold' led to the reinterpretation of part of the pharaoh's titulary from 'golden Horus' into 'Horus over the one of Nubet', i.e. Seth. His birthday was always regarded as an ominous event and unlucky day in the Egyptian calendar. As a god associated with foreign countries, he has consorts coming from the Semitic pantheon- Astarte and Anat. The Egyptian goddess linked with him is his sister Nephthys.
Set was one of the earliest Egyptian deities, a god of the night identified with the northern stars. In the earliest ages of Egypt this Prince of Darkness was well regarded. One persistant token of this regard is the Tcham scepter, having the stylized head and tail of Set. The Tcham scepter is frequently found in portraits of other other gods as a symbol of magical power. In some texts he is hailed as a source of strength, and in early paintings he is portrayed as bearer of a harpoon at the prow of the boat of Ra, warding off the serpent Apep. Yet the warlike and resolute nature of Set seems to have been regarded with ambivalence in Egyptian theology, and the portrayal of this Neter went through many changes over a period of nearly three thousand years. Pictures of a god bearing two heads, that of Set and his daylight brother Horus the Elder, may be compared to the oriental Yin/Yang symbol as a representation of the union of polarities.
In time, the conflict between these two abstract principles came to be emphasized rather than their primal union. Set's battle with Horus the Elder grew from being a statement of the duality of day and night into an expression of the political conflict among the polytheistic priesthoods for control of the Egyptian theocracy. This was rewritten as a battle between Good and Evil after Egypt expelled the Hyskos in the 18th Dynasty. Some say the Hyskos were Asiatic invaders, and others say they were an indigenous minority that seized control of the nation. This tribe ruled Egypt for a time and happened to favor the Set cult, seeing a resemblence to a storm-god of their own pantheon The Set cult never recovered from this identification with the Hyskos.
Mages of Set were destroyed or defaced. By the time Greek historians visited Egypt, wild asses, pigs, and other beasts identified with the Set cult were driven off cliffs, hacked into pieces or otherwise slaughtered at annual celebrations in a spirit akin to the driving out of the Biblical scapegoat.
The report of these historians is often thought to be a valid account of a timeless and immutable theocracy, but just looking at the frequency with which the ruling capital moved to different cities (each being a cult-center) is enough to dispel this idea. One controversial Egyptologist has suggested that the worship of Set might have predated the concept of paternity. Later cults incorporating a father god would reject this fatherless son. This introduces another bizarre factor in the transformation of the Night/Day battle between brothers into an inheritance dispute between Set and Horus the Younger. Any book on Egyptian myth you pick up contains the gory details of this cosmic lawsuit, which includes things that make DYNASTY look like a prayer breakfast.
I have always been intrigued, though, that while all books affirm that Set tore Osiris to pieces, everybody knows about Osiris, and it is quite hard to collect the pieces of the puzzle that is Set. Egyptologists have never agreed what the animal used to symbolize Set actually is. Since the sages of ancient Egypt did not use an unrecognizable creature to represent any other major deity, we may guess that this is intentional, and points, like the Tcham sceptre, to an esoteric meaning.
Child of Geb and Nut, Set was a premature birth; he tore himself out of the womb as if eager to be born. To the Egyptians he was a disgusting sight, for his skin was white and his hair red; a horrible unnatural colouring for a civilized human being. The Greeks identified him with their Typhon, a monstrous creature. Set's misdeeds have been recounted in the entries of Osiris, Horus, and Isis. He came to be identified with evil, drought, dryness, destruction, and all the other terrible things that the desert can inflict on mankind. He was responsible for heat, suffering, hunger and thirst. Worshipped at Kus and Ombos, Set became identified with Sutekh, god of the hated Hyksos invaders, who about 1650 B.C. drove the Egyptians southward and formed themselves a kingdom in the Nile Delta. The Hyksos peoples. The Egyptians drove out the Hyksos but Set's reputation, never very good, was not utterly lost. His statues were smashed, his name forbidden in both writing and speech, his memory reviled. Set was represented as an ugly pig-like creature with erect tail. Archaeologists call this concoction of evil the 'Typhonian animal'. Every month Set, in the shape of this creature, attacked and consumed the moon, which was the hiding place of Osiris, and also the spot where souls gathered together after death.
During the pharoanic period Set was god of male homosexuality as well as of individuality. He was depicted in different forms - sometimes as a gender-variant male and sometimes as a red or white-skinned man with the head of a dog, the body of a greyhound and a long forked tail. His birthday was celebrated on 16 July.
Originally he was, according to legend, given Upper Egypt to rule while his handsome brother [ or sometimes it's said his nephew ] Horus ruled over Lower Egypt. After the reunification the two gods were frequently depicted as a couple with the symbol of unity between them. There is also a clear implication of a homosexual relationship and in one myth Set gives birth to Horus' child.
According to one myth Set attempts to disgrace Horus by being the active partner in sex with him but on his mother's advice Horus catches Set's semen in his hand and takes it to his mother who puts it on Set's favourite food - lettuce which Set then unknowlingly eats. Set, thinking his semen is inside Horus calls the judges and askes them to determine who it is who has been impregnated. Much to his surprise when the judges call forth the semen it responds from his own stomach disgracing himself and exonerating Horus.
Another legend has it that Set tried to rape Horus, and that for several days that two battled, transformed into hippopotami in the Nile. Set tore out Horus' eye but Horus ripped off Set's penis. Eventually, however, after the intervention of Thoth, the monkey-like god of wisdom, the two god's were reconciled.
The legendary sexual struggle and eventual reconciliation between the two gods are viewed by historians as allegories for the fighting between upper and lower Egypt which finally led to the country unifying around 3000BC.
Learn some Arabic sex slang - click here! io Read more gay history -
Egyptian god creates the Universe after swallowing his own semen. Click here.
Twelth Century - Salah El-Din - Egypt's gay hero. Click here
Fifteenth Century - Cairo Slave Boy Market. Click here.
Twentieth Century - Terrorists threaten penis shaped Cairo Tower - Click here.
More Gay History - Click here !
In earliest times, Set was the patron deity of Lower (Northern) Egypt, and represented the fierce storms of the desert whom the Lower Egyptians sought to appease. However, when Upper Egypt conquered Lower Egypt and ushered in the First Dynasty, Set became known as the evil enemy of Horus (Upper Egypt's dynastic god).
Set was the brother of Osiris, Isis, and Nephthys, and husband of the latter; according to some versions of the myths he is also father of Anubis.
Set is best known for murdering his brother and attempting to kill his nephew Horus; Horus, however, managed to survive and grew up to avenge his father's death by establishing his rule over all Egypt, castrating Set, and casting him out into the lonely desert for all time.
In the 19th Dynasty there began a resurgence of respect for Set, and he was seen as a great god once more, the god who benevolently restrained the forces of the desert and protected Egypt from foreigners.
I hope no one takes offense at this. :) I'd just like to share a little project I've been working on. It's a day planner type calendar for 2007, with an interfaith theme.
The calendar contains roughly 900+ feasts and holidays from nearly 30 different religions - these include Asatru, Kemetism, Gnosticism, Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism, Baha'i, Rastafari, Sikhism, Voudun, Paganism, Wicca, Shintoism, Celticism, Thiodisk Gelôbo, Taoism, Religio Romana, Canaanite & Slavic Religion, Judaism, Hellenismos, Islam, Zoroastrianism, Santeria, WoT Paganism, and Middle Eastern Paganism. ^^ All of them are explained, including the Egyptian/Kemetic ones that I think will interest you guys the most, and there are plenty of other goodies thrown in.
You can find buy the day planner calendars here. :) Enjoy!
How to Behave in an Egyptian Temple
Temple life part III
One very important thing to remember about the ancient Egyptian religion, is that people never used the word "religion". That word simply did not exist. To them every day of life and every phenomena in the world around them had a symbolical connection to the gods. For them it was inconceiveable to live without their gods and their myths, they were completely interwoven with the fabric of life. Man´s task was to live according to Ma´at and to care for the gods.
Home of God
The temple was the House of the god, not the house of the priesthood. It was considered the god´s very home and as long as it was kept immaculate and everything was in order according to Ma´at, the god was happy and was content to stay in his house. If he didn´t, he would leave and there would be great unhappiness and trouble for Egypt.
The highest priest for any and all gods was of course Pharao, who in his turn appointed high priests and other priests to perform his duties to the gods. And it was only Pharao or the priest on duty who was allowed into the innermost chamber of the temple, where the naos was kept (the shrine built of wood), where the statue of the god was situated. This they did only at the morning ceremony, the midday and evening ceremony. At all other times noone entered that part of the temple and the cult statue rested peacefully in the naos behind closed and locked doors.
The rest of the priesthood were the only ones who were allowed beyond the outer court. The worshippers (the Shemsu) were not allowed further than the outer court, where they could leave their offerings to priests who brought them into the temple. So the temple did not function like the temples of other cultures, where people come and go more or less as they please. These temple precincts were the domains of the god, who was believed to be resident in actual fact.
The most important task of the priesthood was to see to it that the god was well cared for and got everything that he could need. They were indeed "servants of the god". They had the duty to ensure that the god remained in his home and in Egypt for the wellbeing of the land and its citizens. If he were to be discontent he would no longer give his protection. Therefore one of the most important duties was to at all times give the gods their due respect and observation, and this fell mainly on the priesthood.
Everyday Worship and Festivals
But the relationship between the everyday Egyptian and his god was nevertheless an intense one. Those who lived near an important cult center or even a smaller temple could always go to the outer court and leave their offerings. There was also a backdoor behind the main building where they could hand in their ostraca on which they had scribbled prayers and questions, or they could whisper their questions to an attending priest. The priests took care of it and usually provided the questioner with an answer of sorts.
Then there were the festival days when the god was carried on his bargue in procession through the city. At those occasions the processional route was lined with worshippers and residents who came to get a glimpse of the statue, even though it was usually hidden with hangings and shaded with great ostrich feathers. These festive occasions were much cherished and longed for, and then it was probably allowed for the commoner to enter the temples and, after having made a suitable offering he could perhaps wander across the holy courtyards and maybe visit the place where the sacred animals were kept.
Shrines with statues of the gods were also frequent and in front of these the commoner could raise a stelae on which they would carve eyes and an ear or several in an attempt to make the god listen to their prayers. No Egyptian home was probably without amulets or small statues of Bes, Taweret,Hathor or Heket.
Other articles in this series:
Part I: Symbolism of an Egyptian Temple
Part II: Foundation of an Egyptian Temple
Copyright 1998 - 2004. All Rights Reserved.
These pages are for education only.
Conceptions of God; the One and the Many; Erik Hornung, 1996.
Symbol & Magic in Egyptian Art; Richard H. Wilkinson, 1994.
Daily Life of the Egyptian Gods; Dimitri Meeks & Christine Favard-Meeks.
AE information in general and specifics: http://www.osirisweb.com/egypt/
I'll have to ask which Link offers free downloadable Hieroglyphs
Daily, Weekly and monthly lessons!
Lord of Creation! God of the dead! God of the living! God of resurrection!
“Turn your face, gentle upon us, Osiris, Lord of Life eternal, king of the Gods, Heart of inexpressible Mystery, power that raises the Sun. Lord of Forever, belonging to al mankind.”
He Who is the Sun after Sunset! Bringer of Peace! Bringer of knowledge of civilization and worship of the Gods! Green God of vegetation and regeneration, and lush growth! God of rebirth of nature and of man! He who taught the hunting tribes the skills and wisdom of civilization, the arts of agriculture, and the tools to grow and grind grains for baking, how to cultivate the grape vines and hops for beer where the vines would not grow!
He who founded temples and taught the ways of honoring the Gods, encouraging nobility and just living within constructed town and villages for people to live contented meaningful lives!
As He traveled with an army of supporters to other lands, they sang joyful songs and marched to sweet music, bringing many lands under His rule with gentleness and persuasion!
His birth and death reflect the Lunar cycle, having gestated within His mother Nuts womb for 28 years, and ruled for 28 years until being cut up by His twin brother Set into 14 pieces, with only 13 pieces were recovered!
His double death and glorious resurrection are the cornerstone of the funerary text, coming forth by day. After suitable lamentation, He rescues the living from eternal mourning and empty sadness. Pharaohs perceive themselves as Osiris after death. He instills the belief it is the heart that holds and rules our true nature and judges the newly dead, as He holds court over the measure of the weight of each heart with crook and flail of leadership and kingship and the ability to judge and rule, even after death.
After His death, He becomes ithyphallic and His barren wife, Isis becomes pregnant!
The final process for transcendence, the world tree, becomes the coffin, our Last vehicle, which assists the djed pillar, the strengthening and straightening and raising of the Kundalini, the sacred serpent, that elevates our spirit to transcend into other extended realities!
Adoration rises unto Thee!
All beings hail Thee!
Holy is thy name!
~~~ Do nothing mundane on this day ~~~
so may it be now!
O Lady of divine Wisdom, Aset!
I beseech Thee hear us!
Goddess rich in names!
Come to us!
Goddess rich in spells of Magic! Goddess rich in magic! Most powerful Magician of all the Gods! Holy Isis! Myriad of names and many, many forms! She of the green wings! She Who heals the world! She Who commands snakes and scorpions! She Who must be adored! She Who protects sailors and ships! She Who would not be hidden long from humanity! Lady of Friendship!
Mighty One! Divine One! Shape shifter! Protectress! Savior! Mother! Bringer of comfort! Healer of broken dreams! She skilled in the Harvest!
Mistress of All things forever! Skilled in all things! Queen of all Gods! Lady of Heaven!
Mistress of enchantments! Skilled in the knowledge of all things! Queen of Peace! Lady of Life!
Mistress of Eternity! Skilled in Literature and writing! Queen of The Earth! Lady of Love!
Mistress of the Earth! Skilled in nurturing and Healing! Queen of the Crescent Moon! Lady of Light!
Mistress of the Elements! Skilled in Civilization! Queen of the great house! Lady of beauty!
Mistress of the Sea! Bringer of completion! Inventor of all things! Lady of abundance!
She established a religious tradition for an entire culture, providing creative equality for womyn, and where love is defined erotically and spiritually, proving us with joy for every new day!
If you prepare a place in your heart for Her, She will be living with you!
“Thou turnest the Earth, givest Light to the Sun! To Thee the stars are responsive! By Thee, the seasons turn! Thou unravelest even the most inextricably tangled web of fate!”
O Isis, daughter of Nut, the eldest mistress of Magic, provider of the book, Thy face is glorious! You are the divine power in the womb of my mother, Nut!
~~~~~~~~~ Give Blessings to others and all things, today! ~~~~~~~~~
Becoming the Snake...
...the story goes that change is inevitable. So it it must be that after having eaten dust and rotting flesh, the snake comes to know in his own skin the secrets of change.
Through deceit of death i grow wise in the illusions of time. I change i grow beyond myself, leaving the papery thin sheath that once was what i was.
I live alone and make changes in secret. I know the smell of ear, of death, of innocence.
I float among the lilies. I rest in shadow. I lick the wisdom of air and dust. I know the earth, sky, and men. I wrap myself around the legs of life.
By the enmity of others i learn empathy for all creatures.
I lie down in darkness and learn the art of subtley. I rear and strike in surprise. I know the limits of earth. In my belly i know this is all one place. i leave but a meandering trail in the dust, a graceful passage like the tracings of time.
I lie down and change and rise and grow and grow old and lie down and change and rise.
I demand neither fear nor pity.
I know what you cannot see. It is not pride that keeps me solitary.
In your hands, the honey of my mouth turns to poison. It is mere survival- yours and mine.
Change is eternity.
Bes gives me joy,
gives me power!
Bes gives me strength,
gives me laughter.
Called a dwarf by those who have not learned
Bes is a giant to me.
Bes teaches joy as a power!
Called a dwarf by those who have not learned
Bess is a giant to me.
Last night while studying with my fellow sisters in spirit we came upon Bes. I find him to be very cute a very cool God. When I think about him, he makes me smile!! And let's face it, smiling is such a wonderful thing and we can all use it!! He is linked with humor, childbirth, joy, jokes, laughter, keeping evil spirits away, and encourages children to be born. He can be found on bed post, cosmetic pots, hair brushes and mirrors. He is very interesting to me and I hope to find out more about him. The invocation/song/prayer above is from: "Circle of Isis, by Ellen Cannon Reed. I find that book to be a great source/font of info and recommend it highly!! So let's see what else I can dig up on this little man!!
More info on BES:
-Bes was an imported Egyptian god, possibly of Nubian origin. Bes is depicted as a dwarf sticking out his tongue, in full frontal view instead of the profile view of most of the other Egyptian gods. Bes was a protector god who helped in childbirth and promoted fertility. He was a guardian against snakes and misfortune.
- The dwarf Bes was a demigod from Babylonia and was imported to Egypt during the 18th dynasty (1550-1300 BC.). From being a war god in his homeland. In Egypt he became a protector against evil spirits and misfortune. He was depicted in a sometimes androgyne way full face with a bearded large head, bow legs and sometimes a bushy tail. He scared off the destructive powers and his tools to accomplish that were various musical instruments like rattles to make a din, swords and knives.
He aided Taueret as a midwife. When a child was born he would stay by the cradle and entertain it. As protector of the royal house, he became a very popular household deity for all Egyptians. He had a plumed crown and wore the skin of a lion or panther and was also the patron of fashion.
Sometimes he wore the mane of a lion and in a few pictures he is looking rather female possibly by the (probably misread) name Beset.
Bes was often depicted as a bowed legged dwarf with a very large
head and flat nose. He is usually bearded, with lond shaggy hair and
eyebrows and is shown with his tongue sticking out.
He was normally represented full face whereas almost all other gods
were drawn in profile only. Egyptologists believe that Bes was originally
a foreign god adopted at some point by the Egyptian people, but is origin
He was very popular with the common folk of Ancient Egypt and is
sometimes called a household deity to reflect this. He is a god of amusement
, pleasure, music, dance and a protector of children. In some depictions
he plays a harp A relief in the tomb of Hatshepsut illustrates Bes being
present at her birth, so he was probably in some way connected with
His likeness was carved into mirror handles, make-up containers and
the headboards of beds. The latter depiction was to provide the sleeper
with protection from nightmares. His figure was sometimes drawn on a
person's left hand in order to invite Besinto the person's dreams that
Like most Egyptian gods, Bes has a dual nature. He is very kind and
beneficial to good people, but can be terrifying and destructive to those
who are wicked. Not much information is available concerning his negative
Isis Asparagus for abundance and fertility!
1 1/2 pounds aspargus spears
3/4 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup sliced green onions
1 tsp dried tarragon
12 bibb lettuce leaves
2 tsp crumbled blue cheese
1 1/2 Tbs sliced toasted almonds
snap off tough ends, remove scales
bring broth to boil and add spears, onions and tarragon.
Simmer uncovered 6-8 minutes.
remove spears, discard liquid
arrange spears on lettuce, sprinkle with blue cheeseand almonds
If they had asparagus in AE, it would have been associated with Min and Osiris for it shape, Hathor and Isis for its fecundity. It is best in Spring when new and fresh.
And offers prosperity and fruitfulness!
Lettuce in AE is considered aphrodisiac. Lettuce is very calming (somniferous!)
Onions are astaple gift offered to the gods and the dead, the skins were never tossed away but burned as offerings and to attract wealth.
Tarragon is the "little dragon" and sacred to Isis, It relives fatigue. Carry in your shoe for a speedy journey!
Almonds bring luck and wisdom. (carry in your pocket!)
Cheese is sacred to Gods associated with Milk: Hathor, Isis, Nuit....
I want ed to let everyone know that I have found a very wonderful woman to help me with our little group. Please send out a wonderful and warm welcome to: sorornil She is a very wonderful woman and Sekhmet is her Goddess. I am sure she will be a wonderful addition to our little group!!
I also want to say thank you to all the wonderful people that keep joining us. You guys have been great and I thank you all!!
If you all didn't know, anyone can post to this group, by the way. If you wish to share a site, comment, idea or even have a question, anyone is welcome to post. Of course follow the group rules and all is good. Just wanted to re-mention that since we have had a lot of new members since the last time I posted that statement.
So, that's what I have for now. I will have a few new topics soon to post. I believe the next God/dess of the week will be Nut and I am looking for a very good word for the word of the week. Or better yet, our lovely new maintainer, sorornil might wish to post a new word of the week!! At any rate one will be posted and soon!!
circled the stars.
AKH. . The akh was the aspect of a person that would join the gods in the underworld being immortal and unchangeable. It was created after death by the use of funerary text and spells, designed to bring forth an
akh . Once this was achieved that individual was assured of not "dying a second time" a death that would mean the end of one's existence.
And finally an "Akh"
The "AKH" is the fully resurrected and glorified form of the deceased in the Afterlife. Often translated as "spirit" or "spirit form", the "akh" is represented in hieroglyphs by the symbol of the crested ibis. A fully fledged "akh" comes close to our concept of a ghost or spirit, as it was believed that the "akh" could reach beyond the limits of the tomb to have both positive and negative effects on the realm of earthly life.
As a member of the starry sky, known as the "akh-akh", the deceased is now free to roam on and over the earth. After the successful union of the "ba" with its "ka", the "akh" was considered enduring and unchanged for eternity.
The akh ( Ax )
According to the Pyramid Text #474 The akh belongs to the heaven, the corpse to the earth. The body is buried while the akh, the Shining One, ascends to the sky, becoming a star. It is the part of the body least bound to the others, but just as important as the others for assuring the immortality of the deceased. Rising to the heavens king Unas joined the stars:
This Unas comes to you, O Nut,
This Unas comes to you, O Nut,
He has consigned his father to the earth,
He has left Horus behind him.
Grown are his falcon wings,
Plumes of the holy hawk;
His power has brought him,
His magic has equipped him!
The sky-goddess replies
Make your seat in heaven,
Among the stars of heaven,
For you are the Lone Star, the comrade of Hu!
You shall look down on Osiris,
As he commands the spirits,
While you stand far from him;
You are not among them,
You shall not be among them!M. Lichtheim. Ancient Egyptian Literature: A Book of Readings. Vol. 1 - Pyramid Texts, Utterance 245
The gods would best be described as akhu. The pharaoh, having a divine nature, had always become an akh and joined the stars after the demise of his mortal shell, but later ordinary mortals too attained this status when they became transfigured dead.
Shining Ra, in your celestial aspect, as an akh,
you are Atum within the sky,
an old man as you set on the horizon,
a judge within your palace - which is the heavens,
a king enthroned in the sunset,
and when you've sunk west into the underworld, a king down there as well.
Atum, ancient one, who first dawned from Nun, from the black deep of her primordial night.Book of the Dead, chapter 15a (tr. Jacob Rabinowitz)
Akh has been translated as spirit, ghost or as transfiguration. In the Debate between a man tired of life and his soul the protagonist quarrel with his akh, which is rendered in this context as 'soul'.
Lord of Stroms, Set the Distroyer, Murderer, Kinslayer and many other names along with EVIL have found there way to the altar of Set. Yet is he evil, bad, forsaken?? A very wise man once told me that Set had his place in the balance of life and death. The whole good and evil question. Can you have one with out the other? It's so much more deeper than that and I will cover my thoughts and feeling on that at a later date. It is a very deep topic and much soul searching went into finding the answer I will share. So back to the subject at hand. I have collected some of the more well know stories behind Set to share with you all. As with most of the other God and Goddesses I will talk about and share with you, Set could cover many, many different entries. Soenjoy this one as there will be more to come. As all ways please ask me any questions and I will answer them or find someone who can!!
(Seth, Setekh, Setesh, Seti, Sutekh, Setech, Sutech)
Egyptian god of chaos who embodied the principle of hostility if not of outright evil. He was associated with foreign lands and was the adversary of the god Osiris. Seth was usually depicted in human form with a head of indeterminate origin, though said to resemble that of an aardvark. He had a curved snout, erect square- tipped ears and a long forked tail. Sometimes he was represented in entirely animal form with a body similar to that of a greyhound. He was said to be the son either of Nut and Geb or of Nut and Ra, and the brother of Isis, Osiris and Nephthys. Nephthys was sometimes given as his consort, although he is more commonly associated with the foreign, Semitic goddesses Astarte and Anat. Despite his reputation, he had an important sanctuary at Ombos in Upper Egypt, his reputed birthplace, and had his cult was also prominent in the north-eastern region of the Nile delta.
For a time during the third millenium BC, Seth replaced Horus as the tutelary deity of the pharaohs. However, the story of Seth's murder of Osiris and subsequent war with Horus gained currency and Horus was restored to his original status. The war with Horus lasted eighty years, during which Seth tore out the left eye his adversary and Horus tore out Seth's foreleg and testicles. Horus eventually emerged victorious, or was deemed the victor by a council of the gods, and thus became the rightful ruler of the kingdoms of both Upper and Lower Egypt. Seth was forced to return the eye of Horus and was himself either castrated or, in some versions, killed. In some versions Seth then went to live with the sun god Re, where he became the voice of the thunder. In the Book of the Dead Seth was referred to as the "lord of the northern sky" and held responsible for storms and cloudy weather. Seth protected Re during his night voyage through the underworld against the Apophis-snake. On the other hand, Seth was a peril for ordinary Egyptians in the underworld, where he was said seize the souls of the unwary. Among the animals sacred to Seth were the desert oryx, crocodile, boar, and the hippopotamus in its aspect as a destroyer of boats and of planted fields. The pig was a taboo in Seth's cult. The Greeks later equated Seth with their demon-god Typhon.
- Cult Center: Ombos.
- Attributes: Early in Egyptian history, Seth is spoken of in terms of reverence as the god of wind and storms. He was even known as the Lord of Upper Egypt. Horus being the Lord of Lower Egypt. It was Seth who stood in the front of the solar barque to defended the sun god Ra from his most dangerous foe, the serpent Apep. At this time, he seems to have had no conflicts with the cults of Isis or Osiris. In fact, he was part of the same family of gods, and married to his twin sister, Nephthys.
. . . . .However, it appears the followers of Seth may have resisted the followers of Horus and the First Dynasty pharaoh, Menes, when he united Upper and Lower Egypt. This struggle for control of Egypt seems to be reflected in the mythology. At this point, Seth is portrayed as questioning the authority of his brother, Osiris. The Osiris cults took this opportunity to discredit the followers of Seth; he was now considered to be Osiris' evil brother. And the story was told that Seth was evil since birth, because he ripped himself from his mother's womb by tearing through her side. In the Osiris legends, it is Seth who tricks and murders Osiris. He is also the antagonist of Horus. By the Twenty-sixth Dynasty, Seth was the embodiment of evil. He was depicted with red eyes and hair. The ancient Egyptians beleived red represented evil.
- Representation: Man with the head of an unknown animal. Some times he takes the form of a crocodile. He is represented as a hippopotamus or a black pig in his battles with Horus.
- Relations: Son of Geb and Nut. Brother of Isis, Nephthys, and Osiris. The husband of Nephthys or sometimes the husband of Taurt.
- Other Names: Set, Suetekh.
I am sorry I have not updated in a while, over a month now. I have not forgotten my Egyptian Community. So with out further ado, I will have a few post for you all shortly!! A Egyptian word of the Week and a Egyptian God/desses of the Week!!
Cult Center: Memphis
Myths: "the Story of Re"
Sekhmet was the lioness-headed goddess of war and destruction. She was the sister and wife of Ptah. She was created by the fire of Re's eye. Re created her as a weapon of vengence to destroy men for their wicked ways and disobedience to him (see The Story of Re).
Having once unleashed her powers for the destruction of mankind, the Egyptians feared a repeat performance by Sekhmet. The Egyptian people developed an elaborate ritual in hopes she could be appeased. This ritual revolved around more than 700 statues of the goddess (such as the one to the left). The ancient Egyptian priests were required to perform a ritual before a different one of these statues each morning and each afternoon of every single day of every single year. Only by the strictest adherence to this never-ending ritual could the ancient Egyptians be assured of their ability to placate Sekhmet.She is generally portrayed as a woman with the head of a lioness surmounted by the solar disk and the uraeus. The name "Sekhmet" comes from the root sekhem which means "to be strong, mighty, violent".
She was identified with the goddess Bastet, and they were called the Goddesses of the West (Sekhmet) and the East ( Bastet). Both were shown with the heads of lionesses although Bastet was said to wear green, while Sekhmet wore red.
"The good god, the lord of action, Neb-Ma'at-Ra [Amenhotep III], Beloved of Sekhmet, the Mistress of Dread, who gives life eternally. The son of the God Ra of His own body, Amenhotep, ruler of Waset (Thebes), Beloved of Sekhmet, the Mistress of Dread, Who gives life eternally."
-- Inscription on a statue of Sekhmet
The lion-headed goddess Sekhmet (Sakhmet, Sekhet) was a member of the Memphite Triad, thought to be the wife of Ptah and mother of Nefertem (though the motherhood of Nefertem was in dispute - Bast and Wadjet (Edjo) were touted as his mother in their respective cities). Associated with war and retribution, she was said to use arrows to pierce her enemies with fire, her breath being the hot desert wind as her body took on the glare of the midday sun. She represented the destructive force of the sun.According to the legends, she came into being when Hathorwas sent to earth by Ra to take vengeance on man. She was the one who slaughtered mankind and drank their blood, only being stopped by trickery (this story can be found under Hathor's story). She was, thus, the destructive side of the sun, and a solar goddess and given the title Eye of Ra.
Image © Paul Biesta
Hundreds of Amenhotep's Sekhmet statues were found in the Theban temple precinct of the goddess Mut at South Ipet-Isut (Karnak). The statues may have been made for the king's funerary temple on the West Bank of the Nile and may have been dispersed to other sites at Waset and elsewhere beginning with the reign of Rameses II.
Sekhmet was depicted as a lion-headed woman with the sun disk and uraeus serpent headdress. Although she is connected with Bast, she has no family relationship with the cat goddess. They are two distinct goddesses in their own rights - the Egyptians did not claim they were siblings of any kind. Bast and Sekhmet were an example of Egyptian duality - Sekhmet was a goddess of Upper Egypt, Bast of Lower Egypt (just like the pharaoh was of Upper and/or Lower Egypt!)... and they were linked together by geography, not by myth or legend.
Sekhmet was mentioned a number of times in the spells of The Book of the Dead:
The Chapter of Driving Back the Slaughters Which are Performed in Hensu
My belly and back are the belly and back of Sekhmet. My buttocks are the buttocks of the Eye of Horus.
May the goddess Sekhmet raise me, and lift me up. Let me ascend into heaven, let that which I command be performed in Hikuptah. I know how to use my heart. I am master of my heart-case. I am master of my hands and arms. I am master of my legs. I have the power to do that which my KA desireth to do. My Heart-soul shall not be kept a prisoner in my body at the gates of Amenty when I would go in in peace and come forth in peace.
The Osiris Whose Word is Truth
I have made supplication to the Khati gods and to Sekhmet in the temple of Nit, or the Aged Ones ... I have approached with worship the two Khati gods and Sekhmet, who are in the temple of the Aged One [in Anu].
The Chapter of Opening the Mouth
I am the goddess Sekhmet, and I take my seat upon the place by the side of Amt-ur the great wind of heaven.
Her cult centre was in Mennefer (Hikuptah, Memphis), but during the New Kingdom when the seat of power shifted to Waset, Sekhmet's powers were absorbed by Mut. Sekhmet was soon represented as Mut's aggressive side, rather than a goddess in her own right. She was, in later times, thought to preside over the fourth month of the Egyptian calendar, known as Koiak in Greek times.
In Egyptian mythology, Sekhmet (also spelt Sachmet, Sakhet, and Sakhmet), was originally the war goddess of Upper Egypt, although when the first Pharaoh of the 12th dynasty moved the capital of Egypt to Memphis, her cult centre moved as well. As Lower Egypt had been conquered by Upper Egypt, Sekhmet was seen as the more vicious of the two war goddesses, the other, Bast, being the war goddess of Lower Egypt. Consequently it was Sekhmet who was seen as the Avenger of Wrongs, and Scarlet Lady , a reference to blood. As the one with bloodlust, she was also seen as ruling over menstruation.
Her name suits her function, and means (one who is) powerful, and she was also given titles such as (One) Before Whom Evil Trembles, and Lady of Slaughter . Sekhmet was believed to protect the pharaoh in battle, stalking the land, and destroying his enemies with arrows of fire, her body being said to take on the bright glare of the midday sun, gaining her the title Lady of Flame. Indeed it was said that death and destruction were balsam for her heart, and hot desert winds were believed to be her breath.
In order to placate Sekhmet's wrath, her priesthood felt compelled to perform a ritual before a different statue of her on each day of the year, leading to it being estimated that over seven hundred statues of Sekhmet once stood in the funerary temple of Amenhotep III, on the west bank of the Nile. It was said that her priests protected her statues from theft or vandalism by coating them with anthrax, and so Sekhmet was also seen as a bringer of disease, to be prayed to so as to cure such ills by placating her. The name "Sekhmet" literally became synonymous with doctors and surgeons during the Middle Kingdom. In antiquity, many of Sekhmet's priests were often considered to be on the same level as physicians.
She was envisioned as a fierce lioness, and in art, was depicted as such, or as a woman with the head of a lioness, dressed in red, the colour of blood. Sometimes the dress she wears exhibits a rosetta pattern over each nipple, an ancient leonine motif, which can be traced to observation of the shoulder-knot hairs on lions. Tame lions were kept in temples dedicated to Sekhmet at Leontopolis.
To pacify Sekhmet, festivals were celebrated at the end of battle, so that there would be no more destruction. On such occasions, people danced and played music to soothe the wildness of the goddess, and drank great quantities of beer. For a time, a myth developed around this in which Ra, the sun God (of Upper Egypt), created her from his fiery eye, to destroy mortals which conspired against him (Lower Egypt). In the myth, however, Sekhmet's blood-lust lead to her destroying almost all of humanity, so Ra tricked her into drinking beer coloured with red ochre so that it resembled blood, making her so drunk that she gave up slaughter and became the gentle Hathor once more.
After Sekhmet's worship moved to Memphis, as Horus and Ra had been identified as one another, under the name Ra-Herakhty, when the two religious systems were merged, and Ra became seen as a form of Atum, known as Atum-Ra, so Sekhmet, as a form of Hathor, was seen as Atum's mother. In particular, she was seen as the mother of Nefertum, the youthful form of Atum, and so was said to have Ptah, Nefertum's father, as a husband.
Though Sekhmet was originally identified with Hathor, over time both evolved into separate deities because the character of both goddess were so vastly different. Later, Sekhmet was syncretized with the goddess Mut, the great mother, became significant, and gradually absorbed the identities of the patron goddesses, merging with Sekhmet, and also sometimes with Bast.
A Hymn of Sekhmet says:
- Mine is a heart of carnelian, crimson as murder on a holy day.
- Mine is a heart of corneal, the gnarled roots of a dogwood and the bursting of flowers.
- I am the broken wax seal on my lover's letters .
- I am the phoenix, the fiery sun, consuming and resuming myself.
- I will what I will.
- Mine is a heart of carnelian, blood red as the crest of a phoenix.
Her very Name means "She Who Is Powerful". Sekhmet personifies the aggressive aspects of the female forms of Netjer and acted as the consort to Ptah. However, it is believed that Sekhmet's worship pre-dates that of Ptah by at least several hundred years.
Sekhmet is usually portrayed as a woman with the head of a lioness, but as the Daughter of the Netjer of the Sun, Ra. Sekhmet is closely linked to the Uraeus (Buto or Wadjyt) in Her role as the fire-breathing, 'Eye of Ra'. The pyramid texts themselves mention that the King or Pharaoh was conceived by Sekhmet, Herself.
Sekhmet is one of the oldest known forms of Netjer in Egyptian history. She the 'patron' of the Physicians, Physician-Priests and Healers. Because She is one of the most powerful of all the Names of Netjer, (Her name literally translated means "Mighty One", or "Powerful One"). Her Name is derived from the Egyptian word 'Sekhem', which means "power" or "might". The word sekhem' is literally inseperable from Sekhmet and Her worship. Because of these facts, She is often times misunderstood and portrayed only in a negative way This is probably because of legends of how Sekhmet, as the destructive Eye of Ra was sent forth to punish humanity for its mockery of Her Father, Ra. The myth of Sekhmet's Creation explains how Sekhmet came into being from Het-Hert (Hathor).
But in spite of the fact that She is sometimes 'destructive', Her qualities as Healer, Mother and Protector are often overlooked. In the realm of Ancient Egyptian Medicine, almost all healers and surgeons of Ancient Kemet would most certainly have fallen under Sekhmet's jurisdiction.
Sekhmet was worshiped throughout Egypt, particularly wherever a wadi opened out at the desert edges. This is the type of terrain that lions are often found. Many of them having come from the desert in order to drink and to prey upon cattle in the area. It is said that Her worship was possibly introduced into Egypt from the Sudan, because lions are more plentiful there. Sekhmet's main cult center was located in Memphis (Men-nefer)and was part of the Divine Triad there, which was made up of Ptah, Sekhmet and Nefertum. Sekhmet is the wife ofPtah, the 'Creator' Netjer of the Ancient Egyptians and their son is called Nefertum, who is also closely associated with healers and healing. Because of the shift in power from Memphis to Thebes during the New Kingdom (1550- 1069 BC) the Theban Triad, made up of Amun, Mut (Amaunet), and Khons, Sekhmet's attributes were absorbed into that ofMut.
Sekhmet's action is always the right, or 'appropriate action'. When She destroys it is an appropriate destruction or vengence. It is never chaotic or random. It is always what is needed at the time. Even though Sekhmet is not intimately linked with the aspect of destruction, as Netjer Set is, She removes threats and punishes those who do wrong against Ma'at.
The double lion god, gaurdian of the sunrise and sunset. Gaurdian of the peaks that supported the sky. The western peak was called Manu, while the eastern peak was called Bakhu.
Aker is an earth god who also presided over the western and eastern boarders of the Underworld.
In early representations, Aker is shown as a narrow strip of land with a human or lion head at both ends But later he was shown as the foreparts of two opposing lions, sometimes with human heads, facing away from each other. One lion faces west while the other faces east. In between them is the sign of the horizon. In the later period of Egyptian theology the two lions making up the Akeru were named Sef and Tuau - 'yesterday' and 'today' respectively.
Ancient Egyptian mythologists believed that during the night the sun journeyed through a tunnel that existed in the earth - its entry into the tunnel caused the night, its emergence again bringing the day once more. Each end of this tunnel was guarded by a lion god.
It was Aker who opened the earth's gate for the king to pass into the Underworld. He was also known to absorb the poison from the body of anyone bitten by a snake and he neutralizes the venom in the belly of a person who has swallowed an obnoxious fly.
More importantly, he imprisons the coils of the snake, Apophis, after it is hacked to pieces by Isis, and Aker could, along his back, provide a secure passage for the sun-god's boat as it traveled from west to east during the hours of the night.
From the tomb of Ramesses VI in the Valley of the Kings on the West Bank of Luxor (ancient Thebes), the tomb of Pedamenopet ( 26th Dynasty) at el-Asasif, also on the West bank at Luxor, and mythological papyri of the priesthood of Amun in the 21st Dynasty, it is even possible to reconstruct a "Book of Aker", concerned with the solar journey.
There was also a more threatening side to Aker that can be seen when he is pluralized as Akeru in the form of multiple earth gods. In passages from the Pyramid Texts, the Akeru are said not to seize the monarch, but later there is a general hope for everyone to escape the grasp of the earth gods. The Akeru appear to be primeval deities more ancient then Geb
Statues of war goddess found in southern Egyptian temple
Mar 6, 2006, 19:00 GMT
Cairo - Six statues of the Egyptian goddess of war, Sekhmet, have been discovered at the Amenhotep III Temple on the West bank of Luxor, 700 kilometres south of Cairo, Egyptian experts said Monday.
Head of the Supreme Council for Antiquities, Zahi Hawas, said that the statues, sculpted in dark granite, portray Sekhmet seated on a throne and holding the symbol of life. The statues, which were found in good condition, were discovered by a German excavation team.
Hawas said three of the statues were found intact and were crowned with the sun disc, while the upper part of the fourth Sekhmet statue is still covered. The fifth and sixth statues are partly conserved up to the waist raising speculation that a bust found by the mission last season would fit onto one of them.
The parts that Hawas vowed would be reassembled will be put on display in the future museum in planning.
Head of the mission Hourig Sourouzian said that this cache is the seventh to be found by their team during excavation efforts in the Peristyle Court. The six statues were spread in the northern half of the east portico of the court, where they had been buried underneath the temple ground.
The German mission had uncovered during their excavation work in the same temple 30 statues for the goddess Sekhmet, who is mainly known as the goddess of war.
Sekhmet symbolizes power, glory and aggressiveness and at the same time, she signifies the tender mother of the king.
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Other Names: Bastet, Ailuros
Patron of: the sun (originally), the moon (after the Greeks), cats, women, and secrets.
Appearance: A desert cat, or a woman with the head of a cat (this form possibly dates after the domestication of the Egyptian wild cat).
Description: Probably the most famous Egyptian goddess after Isis, Bast was said to be the daughter of Ra, though long after he created the primal gods. She was originally a sun goddess, but after contact with the Greeks, she changed to a moon goddess, probably due to the Greeks associating her with Artemis.
Like Artemis, Bast was a wild goddess. To those who were in her favor, she gave great blessings, but her wrath was legendary and she was sometimes listed as one of Ra's avenging deities who punish the sinful and the enemies of Egypt. This is of course in keeping with her totem animal, the cat. Cats were sacred to Bast, and to harm one was deemed a great transgression. Bast's importance in the Egyptian pantheon might be due to the great value placed on the domesticated cat by the Egyptians. Cats curtailed the spread of disease by killing vermin, and though the idea of microbes was unknown to the ancient Egyptians, they must have noticed the connection between rats and disease.
Her worship was widespread, and her cult apparently had a great deal of power. Bubastis was even the capital of Egypt for a time during the Late Period, and some pharaohs took her name in their king-names. Herodotus' description of her temple at Bubastis is that of a place of great splendor and beauty, rivaled only by the temples to Ra and Horus.
Worship: Worshipped widely throughout Egypt, her cult center was at Bubastis.
Bast, Perfumed Protector, Cat Goddess...
by Caroline Seawright
In early times Bast (written as 'Bastet' by scribes in later times to emphasise that the 't' was to be pronounced) was a goddess with the head of a lion or a desert sand-cat and was regarded as mother of Mahes, a lion-headed god. She was usually depicted as a cat, or as a woman with the head of a cat or lion. She was also connected to Hathor, Sekhmet, Tefnut, Atum (her father) and Mut. It was only in the New Kingdom that she gained the head of a house cat and became a much more 'friendly' goddess, though she was still depicted as a lion-headed woman to show her war-like side. As with Hathor, Bast is often seen carrying a sistrum.
Her name has the hieroglyph of a 'bas'-jar with the feminine ending of 't'. These jars were heavy perfume jars, often filled with expensive perfumes - they were very valuable in Egypt, considering the Egyptian need (with the hot weather) of makeup, bathing, hygiene and (of course) perfume. Bast, by her name, seems to be related to perfumes in some way. Her son Nefertem, a solar god, was a god of perfumes and alchemy, which supports the theory.
Now there is some confusion over Bast and Sekhmet. She was also considered to be the mother of Nefertem, as were a few other goddesses! Sekhmet was given the title the 'Eye of Ra' when she was in her protector form... but Bast and Sekhmet are not the same goddess (unlike Hathor who becomes Sekhmet as the 'Eye of Ra'). This all gives rise to a lot of confusion about these goddesses. Bast and Sekhmet were another example of Egyptian duality - Sekhmet was a goddess of Upper Egypt, Bast of Lower Egypt (just like the pharaoh was of Upper and/or Lower Egypt!)... and they were linked together by geography, not by myth or legend. These two feline goddesses were not related by family, they were both very distinct goddesses in their own rights.
She was one of the older goddesses, mentioned in the Book of the Dead (this was a selection of spells, rather than an actual book):
- The Chapter of the Deification of the Members (From the Pyramid of Pepi I)
The breast of this Meri-Ra is the breast of Bast; he cometh forth therefore and ascendeth into heaven
If this Chapter be known by the deceased upon earth, he shall become like unto Thoth, and he shall be adored by those who live. He shall not fall headlong at the moment of the intensity of the royal flame of the goddess Bast, and the Great Prince shall make him to advance happily.
Some of Bast's festivals included the 'Procession of Bast', 'Bast appears to Ra', the 'Festival of Bast', 'Bast Goes Forth from Bubastis' and 'Bast guards the Two Lands'. There was even a 'Festival of Hathor and Bast', showing the connection between the two goddesses.
Herodotus describes the 'Festival of Bast' where thousands of men and women travelled on boats, partying like crazy. They had music, singing, clapping and dancing. When they passed towns, the women would call out dirty jokes to the shore-bound, often flashing the townsfolk by lifting up their skirts over their heads! When they reached Bubastis, they made their sacrificies of various animals, and drank as much wine as they could stomach. No wonder it was such a popular festival!!
- When the people are on their way to Bubastis, they go by river, a great number in every boat, men and women together. Some of the women make a noise with rattles, others play flutes all the way, while the rest of the women, and the men, sing and clap their hands. As they travel by river to Bubastis, whenever they come near any other town they bring their boat near the bank; then some of the women do as I have said, while some shout mockery of the women of the town; others dance, and others stand up and lift their skirts. They do this whenever they come alongside any riverside town. But when they have reached Bubastis, they make a festival with great sacrifices, and more wine is drunk at this feast than in the whole year besides. It is customary for men and women (but not children) to assemble there to the number of seven hundred thousand, as the people of the place say.
-- Herodotus, Histories Book II Chap 60
Bast (Bastet, Pasch, Ubasti, Ba en Aset) is the Kemetic (ancient Egyptian) Goddess of cats, dawn, civilization, home, bounty, plenty, enlightenment, art, music, dance, creation, birth, fertility, sex, physical pleasure, lesbians, truth, hemp, marijuana, drugs, the Moon, and the rising Sun.
names:Kemetic names: Bast, Bastet, Pasch, Ubasti, Ba en Aset (N.B. In addition to native variations by locality or over time, there are often several possible transliterations into the Roman alphabet used for English.)
Greek names: Artemis, Kore Artemis
Bast is a Kemetic (ancient Egyptian) Goddess.
Although Bast originated in ancient Egypt, this goddess was worshipped in a lot of other cultures, including the Greek, Roman (where she was the second most popular goddess among women, after Isis), Germanic, and others.
In ancient artwork, Bast is typically shown as a beautiful girl with the head of a cat. She is commonly shown with black, white, yellow, or glowing skin. Sometimes She is shown as a light-skinned European girl with long blonde hair and bright blue eyes. She is often shown as fully cat.
Bastet is the name of Bast when She is in fully cat formPasch is recorded in extremely ancient documen as being an older version of Her name. We get the modern English word “passion” from Pasch.
Bast is an extremely ancient Goddess, long predating writing. She had many, sometimes contradictory, roles. NB: not all of the following was believed simultaneously. Beliefs about Bast evolved over thousands of years and the views under the Old Kingdom were significantly different than the Greco-Roman views, not to mention a wide variety of modern variations.
Bast is the Goddess of cats
Bast is the Goddess of the rising sun.
Bast is the Goddess of enlightenment.
Bast is the Goddess of truth.
Bast is the Goddess of lesbians.
Bast is the Goddess of civilization, bounty, and plenty
Bast is the Goddess of the household and protector of the home.
Bast is the enlightened Maiden of the Triple Goddess.
Bast is the Goddess of Goddess of creation.
Bast is the Goddess of sex, fertility, and birth.
Bast is the Goddess of physical pleasures.
Bast is the Goddess of bountiful positive energy.
Bast is the Goddess of music, dance, and the arts. The priestesses of Bast were known for their erotic dance ritual, the forerunner of modern erotic dance and stripping.
Bast is the Goddess of hemp and marijuana.
Bast is the Goddess of the moon and possessor of the Utchat, the Eye of Her twin brother Heru Sa Aset [Horus].
Daughter of Mwt [also Mut] and Amun [also Amon or Amen].
Daughter of Asar [Osiris] and Aset [Isis] and twin sister of Heru Sa Aset [Horus].
Daughter of Ra [also Re] and sister of Djehuti [Thoth], Sekhmet, Seshat, Het Heret [Hathor], and Ma'at.
Twin sister of Sekhmet and creators/destroyers of time and space.
Sexual partner of every God and Goddess.
Wife of Ptah.
Wife of Ra [also Re].
Wife of Heru [Horus].
Associated by the Greeks with Artemis, that is, the Greeks believed that Bast and Artemis were the same Goddess
Considered by the Greeks to be the same Goddess as the Roman Diana.
Bast — Her holy city Bubastis possessed Egypt’s greatest temple. She is depicted enthroned as the cat-headed incarnation of Isis, or alternately as the seated Sacred Cat. Related to Neith, the Night Goddess, Bast symbolized the moon in its function of making a woman fruitful, with swelling womb. She was also the Egyptian goddess of pleasure, music, dancing and joy.
Monday: Bast is associated with Monday.
March: Bast is associated with March.
Ostara: Wiccan holy day. Ostara is one of the eight Sabbats of the Wiccan religions. Ostara is the Germanic version of Bast. Celebrated on March 21.
April: Bast is associated with April.
Sagittarius Festival: Greek holy day. Sagittarius Festival, dedicated to Artemis/Diana, whom the Greeks considered to be the same Goddess as Bast. Celebrated on November 22.
Feast of Sekhmet and Bast: Dedicated to Sekhmet and Bast. Forerunner of Halloween. Celebrated on October 31.
The Greeks called this place Abydos. It was the seat of worship of Osiris. It was also called Busiris, "the house of Osiris". Egyptian tradition says that the sun ended his daily journey at Abydos, and entered into the underworld here, through a gap in the mountains called "peq". In the 12th dynasty it was believed that the souls of the dead entered into the afterlife here.
The city of Abydos (ancient name: "Abdjw" ) flourished from the predynastic period (4000 BCE) of Egypt's history down through Christian times (about 641 CE). The site of many tombs of predynastic rulers of ancient Egypt, the area soon grew in religious importance as a cult center for Osiris, first during the Middle Kingdom,when such a tomb of a First Dynasty king, Djer, was identified as the "burial site of Osiris", the mythological god-king of the predynastic Egyptians (referred to as "Osirieon"). This emphasis upon Osiris caused the city to become a pilgrimage site, as well as a desired place for either direct burial or for the erection of cenotaphs (monument erected in honor of a dead person whose remains lie elsewhere). Festivals and the passion plays of Osiris' life and death were performed here from about the 12th Dynasty (1985-1795 BCE) until the Christian era.
One of the most significant monuments on the area is that of the Temple of Seti I, which is built to honor Osiris. It is believed that Seti's architects had planned a classic Egyptian temple of straight proportions, but had to change directions when foundation work accidentally uncovered the site of the Djer tomb, and its Middle Kingdom references as the site of Osiris' burial.* Possibly out of piety, the house of Seti I and Rameses II expanded and enhanced the Osirieon site, and the passion plays of the Osiris cult were tied into the Seti I temple thereafter. * This issue has been challenged in recent years, and thought now indicates that additions of chapels may have caused the temple plan change.
Abydos, or Abjdu, lies in the eight nome of Upper Egypt, about 300 miles south of Cairo, on the western side of the Nile and about 9.5 miles from the river. It spreads over 5 square miles Map of Abydos, Egypt and contains archaeological remains from all periods of ancient Egyptian history. It was significant in historical times as the main cult center of Osiris, the lord of the netherworld. At the mouth of the canyon at Abydos, which the Egyptians believed to be the entrance to the underworld, one of the tombs of the1st dynasty kings was mistaken for the tomb of Osiris, a thousand years later, and pilgrims would leave offerings to the god for another thousand years. The area is thus now called Umm el Qa’ab, "Mother of Pots."
Abydos was the burial place for the first kings of a unified Egypt. But it contains remains from earlier, in the Predynastic period. In 1900 the Predynastic cemetery of el-Amra was excavated with hundreds of graves from all Predynastic phases. Other important cemeteries were found at Naga ed-Deir, el-Mahasna, Mesheikh, Beit Allam and the various cemeteries at Abydos itself. In addition, settlements have been found, most representing small farming villages. El-Mahasna had beer-brewing facilities.
The Predynasty/Early Dynastic cemetery is located in the low desert. It consists of three parts: predynastic Cemetery U in the north, Cemetery B in th e middle with royal tombs from Dynasty Tomb at Abydos 0 and the early 1st Dynasty, and in the south the tomb complexes of six kings and one queen from the 1st dynasty and two kings from the 2nd dynasty. Most of the 1st dynasty tombs show traces of immense fires. Many had also been plundered many times.
In 1977 a tiny ivory label was discovered bearing the "nar" name of Narmer, and the king is seen smiting an enemy in the Delta.
Cemetery U contains several hundred graves and offering pits. Ceramics are from the Naqada culture. Of particular importance is the tomb named U-j, uncovered in 1988. It is dated to 150 years before Aha and the beginning of the 1st dynasty.
The tomb is elaborate, brick-lined, with doors and windows. It has twelve chambers and measures about 27 feet x 24 feet. It still contained much funerary equipment. There were large Clay seals from Abydos, Egypt amounts of different kinds of Egyptian pottery, and more than 200 wine jars imported probably from Palestine. There were also about 150 labels of ivory or bone, many of which were apparently attached to linen bolts.
Many of the inscriptions on the labels are readable with clear glyphs and signs. The most frequent sign was a scorpion, sometimes together with a plant. It is speculated that either King Scorpion was buried here or that he was a known figure. Hundreds of wine jars imported from Canaan were also unearthed in one of the tomb’s store-rooms.
There were traces of a wooden shrine on the floor in the burial chamber, and in the northeastern corner a complete crook-shaped scepter of ivory.
An ancient enclosure wall at AbydosMany of the earliest tombs are in the location known as Umm el Ga'ab. Ten royal enclosures in total must have been built; but only eight have been located. Some of the royal owners have been identified: Djer, Djet, Djet (Tomb), Queen-mother Merneith (Tomb), of the 1st Dynasty, Dentomb) and Peribsen (Tomb) and KhasekhemwyTomb)of the 2nd Dynasty. At least some of these burials were surrounded by subsidiary graves for attendants killed and buried along with the royal funeral. ( (
Cemetery B contains three double-chamber tombs, currently attributed to King Aha (Tomb), and his Dynasty 0 predecessors of Narmer (tomb), Ka (tomb) and possibly another King named Iry-Hor (tomb). Pottery shards have been found here which are inscribed with the name-signs of these kings.
Royal graves at Abydos became more elaborate, until the last and largest royal tomb built there for Khasekhemwy, last king of the 2nd Dynasty. His tomb, called Shunet es-Zebib, the Storehouse of the Flies, measures about 230 feet long and varying between 56 and 33 feet in Tombs at Umm el Ga'ab at Abydos Egypt width. Near Khentyamentiu’s temple, a mile north of the Umm el Ga’ab (Qa'ab) cemetery and nested among the enclosures were fourteen (found to-date) large boat graves The remains of the ancient ships, dating to the 1st Dynasty, were uncovered in the desert. Each averages 75 feet in length and had been encased in a structure two-feet thick with whitewashed mud-brick walls. Whether they were meant to represent solar barques, anticipating the ship built by Khufu and found within his Pyramid at Giza, is not yet known.
North Abydos contains an ancient settlement and also the remains of a large stone temple from the 30th Dynasty, along with a portal structure of Ramesses II, and a fairly recently discovered temple built by Tuthmosis III. Most of the early town lies beneath modern groundwater and the remains of later settlements. Another temple, that of Khentyamentiu which was later identified with Osiris as his temple, dates from the later third millennium BCE. Royal cult buildings or kand Dynasty. chapels were built here by kings from the Old Kingdom through the New Kingdom. Buildings to the west and southwest of the cult buildings proved to be houses spanning the period from late Predynastic to the 2
A residential and industrial section have also been found to the southeast of those excavations, dating to the Old Kingdom and First Intermediate Period. A number of mudbrick houses, consisting of between 7 and 10 small rooms, courtyards and a narrow street have been found. A workshop, the earliest and most complete faience workshop in Egypt, was also uncovered, complete with kilns.
The Northern cemetery was the principal burial ground for non-royal individuals at Abydos during the Middle Kingdom, and continued to be so used through the Graeco-Roman period.
The tombs of the first kings of unified Egypt were deep brick-lined structures topped with mounds of sand, later called mastabas, the Arabic word for bench, since their square or rectangular shapes resembled benches. Later in the 1st Dynasty, one structure was placed underground, supported by a retaining wall, and the second mastaba was placed above ground directly over the first, to protect the lower one.
The most striking standing buildings are the enclosure of King Khasekhemwy from the 2nd Dynasty, the well-preserved New Kingdom temples of Seti I (temple) and Ramesses II (temple) from the 19th Dynasty, and the walled enclosure now called the Kom es-Sultan, the location of the early town and main temple dedicated to Osiris.
The 19th Dynasty Seti temple contains seven sanctuaries set in a row, each dedicated to a different deity, Ptah, Ra-Harakhty, Amun-Ra, Osiris, Isis and Horus. Seti I himself was included with his funerary shrine. The unusual L-shaped plan of the temple is caused by a southeast wing appended to the main rectangular-shaped temple. This wing contains rooms dedicated to Sokar and Nefertum and other funerary deities. There is also a King list to the south of the sanctuaries. Since the temple was unfinished when Seti died, his son and successor Ramesses II finished the work.
Immediately behind the chambers dedicated to the Osiris cult is another structure, subterranean, called the Osireion. It contains offering scenes and other scenes from the Book of Gates and the Book of the Dead.
South Abydos was developed as a zone for royal cult complexes, two well-preserved ones so far identified as belonging to Senusret II of the 12th Dynasty and Ahmose of the 18th Dynasty, who built a small pyramid here. .
Relief fragments at the complex of King Ahmose, the founder of the New Kingdom and conqueror of the Hyksos invaders, have been found near his pyramid and funerary complex at Abydos. One fragment represents a group of three arcers, teams of bridled chariot horses, ships with oars, and fallen warriors recognizable as Asiatics. Other fragments bear the names of Apophis, the leader of the Hyksos, and that of Avaris, the capital city of the Hyksos.
As work proceeds at ancient Abydos, a home of the dead for so many millennia, more and more of the history and religious beliefs of the ancient Egyptians is returning to life.
Third Month Proyet Emergence
February 28 Day 2
It is the day His Majesty Geb proceeds to the throne of Busiris to see Anubis, who commands the council, to learn the day's requirements.
Third Month Proyet Emergence
February 27 Day 12
It is the day of smiting the enemies who rebelled against their mistress. There is a great feast in heaven.
Third Month Proyet Emergence
February 26 Day 30
Last Day of the Month
It is the day of the feast in Busiris. The names of the doorways [of the horizon] come into existence. House of Ra, House of Osiris, House of Horus.
Third Month Proyet Emergence
February 25 Day 29
If you see anything on this day. it will be good.
Third Month Proyet Emergence
February 24 Day 28
It is the day of the feast of Osiris in Abydos.
February 23 Day 27
Do not do anything on this day.
Third Month Proyet Emergence
February 22 Day 26
It is the day he is sent into the cave without the knowledge of the great ones to look for the occasion of coming.
Third Month Proyet Emergence
February 21 Day 25
Today is the day of the great cry which the gods of the desert make, having come this day.
Do not do anything on this day.
Third Month Proyet Emergence
February 20 Day 24
Do not go out of your house on any road on this day.