|Osiris||DESCRIPTION OF OSIRIS |
Egyptian god of the underworld and of vegetation. Son of Nut and Geb. His birthplace was said to be Rosetau in the necropolis west of Memphis. Brother of Nephthys and Seth, and the brother and husband of Isis. Isis gave birth to Horus after his death, having impregnated herself with semen from his corpse. Osiris was depicted in human form wrapped up as a mummy, holding the crook and flail. He was often depicted with green skin, alluding to his role as a god of vegetation. He wore a crown known as the 'atef', composed of the tall conical white crown of Upper Egypt with red plumes on each side. Osiris had many cult centers, but the most important were at Abydos (Ibdju) in Upper Egypt, where the god's legend was reenacted in an annual festival, and at Busiris (Djedu) in the Nile delta.
|Anubis||DESCRIPTION OF ANUBIS|
Egyptian god of the dead, represented as a black jackal or dog, or as a man with the head of a dog or jackal. His parents were usually given as Re in combination with either Nephthys or Isis. After the early period of the Old Kingdom, he was superseded by Osiris as god of the dead, being relegated to a supporting role as a god of the funeral cult and of the care of the dead. The black colour represented the colour of human corpses after they had undergone the embalming process. In the Book of the Dead, he was depicted as presiding over the weighing of the heart of the deceased in the Hall of the Two Truths. In his role as psychopomp he was referred to as the "conductor of souls". The Greeks later identified him with their god Hermes, resulting in the composite deity Hermanubis. His principal sanctuary was at the necropolis in Memphis and in other cities. Anubis was also known as Khenty- Imentiu - "chief of the westerners" - a reference to the Egyptian belief that the realm of the dead lay to the west in association with the setting sun, and to their custom of building cemeteries on the west bank of the Nile.
|Ra||DESCRIPTION OF RA|
Egyptian sun god and creator god. He was usually depicted in human form with a falcon head, crowned with the sun disc encircled by the uraeus (a stylized representation of the sacred cobra). The sun itself was taken to be either his body or his eye. He was said to traverse the sky each day in a solar barque and pass through the underworld each night on another solar barque to reappear in the east each morning. His principal cult centre was at Heliopolis ("sun city"), near modern Cairo. Re was also considered to be an underworld god, closely associated in this respect with Osiris. In this capacity he was depicted as a ram-headed figure.
|Amen||DESCRIPTION OF AMEN|
Amen's name means "The Hidden One." Amen was the patron deity of the city of Thebes from earliest times, and was viewed (along with his consort Amenet) as a primordial creation-deity by the priests of Hermopolis. His sacred animals were the goose and the ram.Up to the Middle Kingdom Amen was merely a local god in Thebes; but when the Thebans had established their sovereignty in Egypt, Amen became a prominent deity, and by Dynasty XVIII was termed the King of the Gods. His famous temple, Karnak, is the largest religious structure ever built by man. According to Budge, Amen by Dynasty XIX-XX was thought of as "an invisible creative power which was the source of all life in heaven, and on the earth, and in the great deep, and in the Underworld, and which made itself manifest under the form of Ra." Additionally, Amen appears to have been the protector of any pious devotee in need.
|Bast||DESCRIPTION OF BAST|
Egyptian cat goddess. A goddess of the home and of the domestic cat, although she sometimes took on the war-like aspect of a lioness. Daughter of the sun god Re, although sometimes regarded as the daughter of Amun. Wife of Ptah and mother of the lion-god Mihos. Her cult was centered on her sanctuary at Bubastis in the delta region, where a necropolis has been found containing mummified cats. Bast was also associated with the 'eye of Re', acting as the instrument of the sun god's vengeance. She was depicted as a cat or in human form with the head of a cat, often holding the sacred rattle known as the sistrum.
|Bes||DESCRIPTION OF BES|
Egyptian dwarf god believed to guard against evil spirits and misfortune. In contrast to the other Egyptian deities, who were usually depicted in profile, Bes was depicted full face. He was shown to be ugly and grotesque in appearance, with a large head, protruding tongue, bow legs and a bushy tail. He bore a plumed crown and wore the skin of a lion or panther. Despite his appearance, he was a beneficent deity and his appearance was meant to scare off evil spirits. He bore swords and knives to ward off evil spirits, as well as musical instruments which he used to create a din which would frighten them off. Bes aided the hippopotamus goddess Taweret in childbirth. He was originally the protective deity of the royal house of Egypt, but came to be a popular household deity throughout Egypt.
|Chons||DESCRIPTION OF CHONS|
The third member (with his parents Amen and Mut) of the great triad of Thebes. Khons was the god of the moon. The best-known story about him tells of him playing the ancient game senet ("passage") against Thoth, and wagering a portion of his light. Thoth won, and because of losing some of his light, Khons cannot show his whole glory for the entire month, but must wax and wane. The main temple in the enclosure at Karnak is dedicated to him.
|Dua||DESCRIPTION OF DUA|
One of the Four Sons of Horus, Duamutef was represented as a mummified man with the head of a jackal. He was the protector of the stomach of the deceased, and was protected by the goddess Neith.
|Geb||DESCRIPTION OF GEB|
Egyptian earth god. Son of Shu and Tefnut. Brother and consort of the sky god Nut. Father of Osiris, Seth, Isis, and Nephthys. Geb was generally depicted lying on his back, often wearing the crown of Lower Egypt, with the naked body of Nut arched above him. In this context, he was often shown with an erect penis pointing upward toward Nut. Sometimes, however, the air god Shu was shown standing on the body of Geb, supporting Nut and perhaps separating her from Geb. His skin was often green, indicative of his role as a god of fertility and vegetation. The goose was his sacred animal and his symbol in Egyptian hieroglyphics. Geb was also said to imprison the souls of the dead, preventing them from passing on to the afterlife. The laughter of Geb was said to cause earthquakes.
|Hathor||DESCRIPTION OF HATHOR|
Egyptian cow goddess. Daughter of Nut and Re. In early Egyptian mythology she was the mother of the sky god Horus, but was later replaced in this capacity by Isis. Hathor then became a protectress of Horus. She was depicted either as a cow or in human form wearing a crown consisting of a sun disk held between the horns of a cow.Her name appears to mean "house of Horus", referring to her role as a sky goddess, the "house" denoting the heavens depicted as a great cow. Hathor was often regarded as the mother of the Egyptian pharaoh, who styled himself the "son of Hathor". Since the pharaoh was also considered to be Horus as the son of Isis, it might be surmised that this had its origin when Horus was considered to be the son of Hathor.
|Isis||DESCRIPTION OF ISIS|
Throne". Egyptian mother goddess. Daughter of Geb and Nut according to the Heliopolitan genealogy. Sister and wife of Osiris. Mother of Horus. She was depicted in human form, crowned either by a throne or by cow horns enclosing a sun disk. A vulture was also sometimes incorporated in her crown. She is sometimes depicted as a kite above the mummified body of Osiris. As the personification of the throne, she was an important source of the pharaoh's power. Her cult was popular throughout Egypt, but the most important sanctuaries were at Giza and at Behbeit El-Hagar in the Nile delta. Isis later had an importan cult in the Greco-Roman world, with sanctuaries at Delos and Pompeii. Her Latin epithet was Stella Maris, or "star of the sea".
|Ka||DESCRIPTION OF KA|
Egyptian name for the vital force of life.
|Maat||DESCRIPTION OF MAAT|
Straight: law and order. Egyptian goddess of truth and justice. She was associated with Thoth, Ptah and Khnemu in the Egyptian Creation. She was a goddess of the underworld, sitting in judgment over the souls of the dead in the Judgment Hall of Osiris.
|Min||DESCRIPTION OF MIN|
Egyptian fertility god. Sometimes given as either the son or consort of Isis. He was depicted in human form with an erect penis. He generally held a flail in his raised right hand and wore a crown surmounted by two tall plumes. Min was preeminently a god of male sexuality, and in the New Kingdom (1567-1085 BC) he was honoured in the coronation rites of the pharaohs to ensure their sexual vigour and the production of a male heir. The "White Bull" appears to have been sacred to him, as was a type of lettuce which bore a resemblance to an erect penis and had a white sap that resembled semen. His most important sanctuaries were at Koptos (Qift) and Akhmim (Panoplis). Min was also worshipped as a god of desert roads and of travellers. In addition to his role in coronation rites, Min was honoured in harvest festivals during which offerings of lettuce and sheaves of wheat.