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The A, B, C's of Ancient Egyptian Gods and Religion

Describing the gods, goddesses, and belief systems of Ancient Egypt is tricky business. So, short of making up an alphabet song with the names of the gods, the best way to handle an introduction to it all is to keep it short and sweet. So, strap on your seatbelts because here we go. A little taste of the gods of Egypt. An appetizer portion shall we say.

Amun, the hidden one, is portrayed as a man with blue colored flesh. He is sometimes depicted with ram's horns (the ram being one of his sacred animals, along with the goose), but more often he is shown wearing a crown topped with two tall plumes (feathers) and holding a crook and a flail (symbols of sovereignty). Of all of the gods we noticed in the tomb paintings, Amun is almost always recognized as a god of great importance and stature.

Bastet, cat goddess and daughter of the sun god Ra could be ferocious as she was associated with her father, the sun's, vengeance. But, she was usually regarded as a friendly deity (god) and associated with joy. In contrast, the god Bes, who was a dwarfish, scary looking creature, was a good-natured character fond of music and dancing. He protected women in childbirth by frightening away evil spirits and watched over the newborns.

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Colossal cenotaph temples
Cenotaph temples are secondary mortuary temples dedicated to one or more gods and honoring the deceased Pharaoh who built it. Pharaohs' were thought to become gods upon death. The Cenotaph Temple of Seti I in Abydos is one of Egypt's most complete temples. This magnificent temple honors seven gods: Osiris, Isis, Horus, Amun, Ra-Harakhty, Ptah, and Seti I himself.

Still craving more? Check out the A,B,C's of the Egyptian Gods dispatch. Follow down the list from A-Z, and maybe, just maybe, you will find a god with a name similar to yours.


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