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Egyptian Gods and Goddesses

Hathor

The Egyptian goddess Hathor

Other names : Athyr, Het-Hert
Titles : Goddess of the Sky, Goddess of Fertility, Goddess of Love, Goddess of Joy

Hathor is one of the oldest Egyptian goddesses, dating to predynastic times. She is often depicted as a cow, or a woman with a cow's head, or a woman with the horns of a cow and a solar disc on her head.

As one of the older Egyptian goddesses, Hathor has been associated with many different attributes and characteristics. However, the majority of records describe her as the goddess of women, childbirth, happiness and anything to do with the joy of life.

Hathor's name also implies that she is the protector of Horus. It is likely that Hathor has previously been considered the mother of Horus, and by extension the mother of the pharaoh. However, as the influence of the goddess Isis grew, Hathor's role as Horus' mother was absorbed by Isis, as were the roles of other Egyptian goddesses.

 

Horus

The Egyptian god Horus

Other names : Harmakhis, Harpokrates, Heru, Hor
Titles : God of the Sky, God of War, God of Hunting, Bird God, Falcon God, Patron God of Nekhen

Horus is one of the more important Egyptian gods. He is usually depicted as a man with the head of a falcon, or sometimes as a falcon as well. He is also depicted as a falcon encircling the head of the pharaoh with his wings.

Horus is another of the Egyptian gods with many attributes associated with him. He is sometimes associated with the sun god Ra and embodies the power of the sun and sky, and represents the pharaoh of Egypt. However, more popular myths describe the Egyptian god Horus as the dutiful son of Osiris and Isis. When the evil god Set murdered Osiris, Horus avenged his father and killed Set.

Horus is also depicted in the final judgment. After the deceased passes the weighing of the scales, Horus will lead the deceased to the underworld.

 

Isis

The Egyptian goddess Isis suckling the baby Horus

Other names : Aset, Iset
Titles : Mother Goddess, Goddess of Health, Goddess of Marriage, Goddess of Wisdom, Goddess of Children, Protector of the Dead

The Egyptian goddess Isis, commonly described as the sister and wife of Osiris and mother of Horus, is the most important of the Egyptian goddesses. Her cult was the biggest, spreading the farthest among all the Egyptian gods, as far as Europe and Persia.

Isis is commonly depicted as a seated queen suckling and cradling the baby Horus. This symbolism is said to influence the idea of the Virgin Mary and the baby Jesus. She is also depicted with either a throne or a vulture on top of her head.

Isis was considered the mother goddess, watching over the pharaoh and the throne. As her influence and following grew over the centuries, Isis' portfolio grew to include many other attributes, such as goddess of magic, queen of the underworld and goddess of agriculture.

 

Ma'at

Ma'at - Goddess of Truth

Other names : Maat
Titles : Goddess of Truth and Justice, Goddess of Harmony, Goddess of Order

Ma'at was the goddess of truth, justice and balance, and was one of the most ancient Egyptian gods. Together with her husband Thoth, Ma'at was there when the Ra created the world.

Ma'at also symbolized the balance of creation. This balance has to be maintained or chaos will ensue and the world will plunge into destruction. Every pharaoh was given a mandate to rule as long as he pledged to follow Ma'at and ensure that balance and justice was forever upheld.

The goddess Ma'at is also a key figure in the Final Judgment. In the Hall of Ma'at, the heart of the dead is weighed against the feather of Ma'at, to determine if they are eligible to enter the Underworld.

Ma'at is commonly depicted with an ostrich feather on her head, and with wings connected to her arms.

 

Nekhebet

Nekhebet (Nekhbet) - Goddess of Upper Egypt

Other names : Nekhbet
Titles : Vulture Goddess, Bird Goddess, Patron Goddess of Upper Egypt

Nekhebet, also known as Nekhbet, is commonly pictured as a vulture holding an ankh. She is sometimes depicted with her wings spread protectively over the pharaoh.

As one of the more ancient Egyptian goddesses, Nekhebet, or Nekhbet, was originally the local goddess of the town Nekheb. However, as her influence grew, she became the goddess of the entire Upper (Southern) Egypt. In fact, the vulture of Nekhebet was used to symbolize Upper Egypt on the pharaoh's crown, while the cobra symbolized Lower Egypt. Nekhebet was the wife of Hapi, god of the Nile.

Nekhebet had a protective nature, being the protector goddess of mothers and children. She also had a more aggressive nature, guarding and fighting alongside the pharaoh in battles.

 

Nephthys

Nephthys - Mistress of the Dead

Other names : Neber-Het, Nebhut, Nebthet
Titles : Goddess of Death, Goddess of the Night, Lady of the Temple, Goddess of Service

Nephthys was the sister of Osiris, Isis and Set, and also the wife of Set. However, she was not as widely worshipped as her more popular siblings.

Nephthys is commonly associated with her sister Isis, helping her with many things. She helped Isis gather the various parts of Osiris' body after Set dismembered him. Nephthys also assisted Isis in delivering babies. She is now seen together with Osiris and Isis, ruling the underworld.

Nephthys was depicted as a woman with a basket and a house (which form the hieroglyphs of her name) on top of her head.

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