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January’s Spotlight on Egyptian Gods and Goddesses

In order to become more familiar with the gods and goddesses of Egyptian culture, why not take the time to gain an understanding about some of the deities that make up pieces of ancient history and belief. In this article, you will encounter the likes of Antaios and Bennu , amongst others.

Antaios

This Greek name is given to one of the older Egyptian deities named Antwey, who possesses a rather ambiguous origin. In the very beginning of his existence, he was represented by two falcons, which are highlighted before the first dynasty ever took place. It is believed that his existence is traced back to the earliest times of Egyptian history. Antwey is a combination of Horus and Set. In Greek myths, he served as the king of Libya and lost his life to Hercules, which is one form or another , held a connection to Egypt. Anyhow, Horus was quite popular when it came to gods among the Greeks. A temple was even dedicated to him, which still stands in Edfu.

Bennu

This bird represents the manifestation of the god named Osiris, who signifies eternal life and resurrection. Sometimes, this god appears as the body of a man. In the beginning, the bird held phoenix-like qualities mixed with that of a heron, who actually burned himself to death every day. This is a reference to the sun setting of each day. The next morning, the bird would appear alive about his own ashes. A solar cult of Re developed, where a sun disc served as symbolism upon the head. This was the style of Re. Other times, an Atef-crown with feathers was worn, which was the fashion of Osirian. A white or blue mummy dress found under a lengthy transparent coat was also typical.

The First Animals on Earth

There is a tale associated with Middle Egypt that speaks of eight frogs and snakes that became known as the first animals that furthered life , at the will of the creator Thoth. During 300 BC, the Greeks took over and renamed the capital Hermopolis, where a cult continued to thrive centered on the thought of reptiles. A group emerged and this was called the Ogdoad , otherwise known as the Group of Eight.

Ptah

The old smith and creator god of the Memphis region was called Ptah, who is often associated with two rather old deities in Egyptian history , Tatenen and Sokar. Sometimes referred to as “The First of Gods,” Ptah is looked upon as the patron of the craftsmen. Other gods saw him as the creator of mankind, as it only took a couple of words from this being in order to create life. He represented good morals and was worshipped at a temple in Memphis that gained the name of “Mansion of the soul of Ptah.” In depictions, he is the one seen dressed in a white mummy outfit.