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Unexplained / Ancient civilizations / Ancient Egypt / Gods - Goddesses / 

Gods - Goddesses

The Great Ennead

These nine gods were the foremost deities of the Egyptian pantheon. They were the close family of Ra, the sun god, and formed a sort of protective dynasty about him. They were also called Great Ennead of Heliopolis. That city was for a long time the religious capital of Egypt. It was the city sacred to Ra.

Below is a list of most of the Egyptian Mythical Gods and Goddesses.

In truth - one soul played all of these roles - as well of those of the Pharaohs and Kings.


An earth-god also presiding over the juncture of the western and eastern horizons in the Underworld. The motif of Aker consists of the foreparts of two lions, or two human heads, juxtaposed so that they face away from each other. Aker opens the earth's gate for the king to pass into the Underworld. He absorbs the poison from the body of anyone bitten by a snake and neutralises 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 being hacked to pieces bby Isis. This idea of enclosure accounts for the socket holding the mast of the Underworld ferryboat being identified with Aker.

In the Egyptian notion of the Underworld Akerr could provide along his back a secure passage for the sun-god's boat travelling from west to east during the hours of night. From the tomb of Ramesses VI in the Valley of the Kings, the massive tomb of Pedamenopet. (Dynasty XXVI) in el-Asasif necropolis at Thebes, and mythological papyri of the priesthood of Amun in Dynasty XXI, it is possible to reconstruct a 'Book of Aker', concerned with the solar journey from sunset to sunrise. A more threatening side to Aker can be detected when he pluralises into the Akeru or earth-gods. In apotropaic passages in the Pyramid Texts the Akeru are said not to seize the monarch; 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 than Geb, earth-god of the cosmogony of Heliopolis.


A goddess whose name means 'hidden one' and whose shadow, among the primeval gods, is a symbol of protection. A deity at Karnak temple at least since the reign of Sesostris I (Dynasty XII), she is predominantly the consort of Amun playing, however, a less prolific role than his other wife Mut. A statue datable to Tutankhamun's reugn which was set uup in the Record Hall of Tuthmosis III at Karnak shows the goddess in human form wearing the Red Crown of the Delta.

Reliefs at Karnak clearly mark her as prominent in rituals closely associated with the monarch's accession and jubilee festival. For instance, in the momument of Tuthmosis III, known as the Akh-menu, Amaunet and Min lead a row of deities to watch the king and sacred bull in the jubilee celebration. Much later in the Greek domination of Egypt she is carved on the exterior wall of the sanctuary suckling the pharaoh Philip Arrhidaeus who is playing the role of the divine child immediately following the scene depicting his enthronement. A late equation at Karnak identifies her with Neith of the Delta- comparable to the analogy made between Mut and Sakhmet- but she retains her own identity well into the Ptolemaic period.



A bearded Man wearing a cap surmounted by two tall plumes. A ram, a ram headed man, or a ram headed sphinx.

Self created at the beginning of time. Believed to be the physical father of all Pharaohs.

King of the gods of Egypt. Patron of the Pharoahs. Originally a god of fertility, a local deity of Memphis. Ammon became linked with the sun god Ra through the royal family, becoming Ammon-Ra.

Early, a god of air and wind. Later, a fertility god. The Creator of all things. During the New Kingdom he became "The king of the gods". He was said to be able to assume any form he wished, with each of the other gods being one of these forms. From the eighteenth dynasty on he was a national deity. Through political means managed to assimilate many lesser gods.

One of chief Theban deities; united with sun god under form of Amen-Ra. As the city grew from a village to a powerful metropolis so Amun, whose name signifies 'hidden', grew in importance. He ousted the Theban god of war, Mont, and went on to be regarded as chief god Egypt, 'King of the Gods'. Originally he might have been a wind or air god; later he was given several powers and attributes.

As an ithyphallic god, either standing or enthroned carrying a whip, Amun was god of fertility. At Karnak he was considered to be incarnate in a sacred ram which was kept in that temple. Another symbol of sexual power, the goose, was also sacred to him.

From being worshipped as a god of generative power to being worshipped as an agricultural deity responsible for the growth of crops was but a short step for Amun. He then rose to be the patron of the Pharaohs, and because of the inevitable connections between royalty and the sun, became linked to the great god Ra. As Amun-Ra he became supreme amoung the gods and ruler of the Great Ennead. During the reign of Akhenaten, the worship of Amun, like that of all the other great gods, was severely curtailed.

On the death of Akhenaten the new king, the boy Tut-ankh-aten, changed his name to declare his allegiance to the neglected but now ascendant Amun; the youthful monarch is known to us as Tut-ankh-amun. Thebes, home of the god Amun, developed into a state within a state, a rich and powerful inner kingdom ruled by the high priestess of Amun and staffed by men of nobility and genius.

The god's fame extended well beyond the boundaries of Egypt; Ethiopia was virtually a vassal state to the city of Thebes. To the west, in Libya, his cult was the centre of public religion, lasting well into Classical times as the cult of Jupiter Ammon. Even Alexander the Great thought it worthwhile consulting the oracle of Amun.

He received a favorable reply and assumed the title, Son of Amun. Apart from Thebes, which grew so important that it was simply known as 'the city', Amun was worshipped all over Egypt, and his magnificent temples at Luxor and Karnak are among the finest remains of antiquity. Amun formed a triad with his wife Mut and his son Khons.



A combination of the head of a crocodile, the middle of a lioness and the hind quarters of a hippopotamus.

We find Ammut during the weighing of the heart of a deceased person against the feather of Maat. It was Ammut who would devour the souls of those who's hearts proved heavier than Maat. This was a terrifying prospect for the ancient Egyptians. It meant the end of existence. They would never meet Osiris and live forever in the Fields of Peace.


God in anthropomorphic form originally worshipped in the mid-Delta in Lower Egyptian nome 9. Andjety (meaning 'he of Andjet', i.e. the town of Busiris) was the precursor of Osiris at the cult centre of Busiris. The iconography of this god persuasively argues for his being the forerunner of Osiris. Andjety holds the two sceptres in the shape of a 'crook' and a 'flail', insignia which are Osiris's symbols of dominion. Also his high conical crown decorated with two feathers is clearly related to the 'atef' crown of Osiris.

As early as the beginning of Dynasty IV King Seneferu, the builder of the first true pyramid tomb, is carved wearing this crown of Andjety. The close relationship of the god to the monarch is is also evident from the earliest references in the Pyramid Texts, where the king's power as a universal ruler is enhanced by his being equated to Andjety 'presiding over the eastern districts'. Perhaps Andjety is an embodiment of sovereignty and its attendant regalia. As such he would readily be absorbed into the nature of Osiris and by extension into the pharaoh himself. The most likely explanation of his epithet, 'bull of vultures', found in the Middle Kingdom Coffin Texts, is that it emphasises his role as a procreative consort of major goddesses.

Andjety figures in a funerary context as well. The notion that he is responsible for rebirth in the Afterlife is probably the reason for the substitution for the two feathers of a bicornate uterus in early writings of his name in the Pyramid Texts. In the Underworld too there is an obvious identification between Andjety and Osiris, as ruler. Hence in the Temple of Sety I at Abydos, the king is depicted buring incense to the god Osiris-Andjety who holds a 'crook' sceptre, wears two feathers in his headband and is accompanied by Isis.

ANHUR (Anhert, Onouris, Onuris)

A sky god associated with Shu.

Anhur is shown as a man with one or both arms raised. He wears four straight feathers on his head and sometimes holds a spear. His name is interpreted as 'skybearer', or 'he who leads that which has gone away'. He was a warrior, and was invoked against both human and animal enemies whom he chased in his chariot. Apart from being a personification of war, he was also regarded as the creative power of the sun. Sometimes he is shown holding a string by which he leads the sun; this to recall the story that when Ra's eye eandered away it was Anhut who went to fetch it back. He was a popular god in the New Empire with cult centres at Sebennytus and This. Married to the goddess Mehit, Anhur was a generally benign god, warlike in order to be helpful. His festival included a playful mock combat between the priests and people, who hit each other with sticks in honour of their saviour god.



A man with the head of a jackal. A dog or a jackal.

The jackal-headed god. Anubis can foresee a mortal's destiny and is associated with magic and divination. Anubis supervises the weighing of the soul when the departed are brought to the hall of the dead.

Guardian of the Necropolis (cemetery). He was the guide of the dead as they made their way through the darkness of the underworld. As a patron of magic, it was believed he could foresee a persons destiny, in this role he was the announcer of death.

Anubis was the patron of embalming. He was also the keeper of poisons and medicines. He provided unguents and rare herbs to help Isis and Nephthys with the embalming of Osiris. Anubis then performed the funeral of Osiris, which would be the model for all funerals to come. As he received the mummy into the tomb, he performed the 'Opening of the Mouth' ceremony.

In the Hall of Maat - Anubis appears on behalf of the diseased. It was Anubis who saw that the beam of the great scale was in the proper position as he supervises the weighing of the heart of a deceased person against the feather of Maat. The god of knowledge,Thoth, records the results. It is also Anubis that protects the dead from Ammut, the 'Devourer'.

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