What are Some Famous Egyptian Gods and Goddesses?
Ancient Egyptian religion was a complex and intricate system of beliefs and practices that evolved over thousands of years. Central to this religion was a vast pantheon of gods and goddesses, each associated with specific aspects of nature, human activity, and the afterlife. The ancient Egyptians believed that these gods and goddesses were responsible for the creation and maintenance of the world and that they played an active role in the lives of humans.
The gods and goddesses of ancient Egypt were often depicted in human or animal form and were associated with specific symbols and attributes. They were also believed to have unique personalities and relationships with one another, which were reflected in the stories and myths that were told about them.
Some of the most important gods and goddesses in ancient Egyptian religion included Ra, the sun god; Osiris, the god of the dead and the underworld; Isis, the goddess of magic and fertility; Horus, the god of the sky;
and Anubis, the god of embalming and mummification. These gods and goddesses played a crucial role in ancient Egypt’s religious and cultural life, and their influence can still be seen in modern culture today.
The worship of the gods and goddesses of ancient Egypt was a central part of daily life for many Egyptians, and their temples and shrines were among the most impressive and ornate structures of the ancient world. The ancient Egyptians believed that by honoring and worshiping these deities, they could gain their favor and protection in all aspects of life.
What is Mythology?
Mythology refers to the collection of myths, stories, legends, and beliefs used to explain or interpret aspects of the world or universe, human nature, and the origin and purpose of life.
Myths often involve gods, goddesses, supernatural beings, and heroes. They may provide moral or spiritual guidance, offer explanations for natural phenomena, or serve as a way to understand the human experience.
Mythology has been found in virtually every human culture throughout history and can take many forms, including written texts, oral traditions, visual arts, and religious practices.
Myths are often deeply rooted in a culture’s history, beliefs, and values and can provide insights into the worldview and mindset of the people who created them.
While some myths are considered to be purely fictional or symbolic, others may be based on historical events or real people and can have significant cultural, social, or political implications.
Mythology can also change and evolve as new stories and interpretations are added or as cultural and societal norms shift.
For example, Hathor, the Goddess of love, music, and maternal feelings, was depicted as a Cow or a woman with cow horns.
The ancient Egyptians used myths full of symbolism to explain the world around them, and more importantly, they tell us more about our ancestors.
Ancient Egypt was formed by devout people full of beliefs, including the Egyptian gods strongly influenced their daily lives.
The Egyptian pantheon is the collection of gods and goddesses worshipped in Ancient Egypt.
The beliefs and rituals surrounding these deities formed the core of the ancient Egyptian religion, which emerged sometime in prehistoric times.
They thought their deities acted for the benefit of humans and sought to ensure that harmony in the universe was maintained.
Other peoples worshiped even some Egyptian Gods in ancient times.
List Of Ancient Egyptian Gods and Goddesses And Their Powers
As we mentioned, the Egyptian religion consisted of several gods, some more important than others.
Some were only worshiped in one city, but they were necessary anyway.
The following is a list of the main gods that made up the Egyptian pantheon:
1-Ancient Egyptian God Amun (God of the Air)
He is the supreme god of ancient Egypt during the new kingdom.
He was the city’s chief god of Thebes (modern-day Luxor) and constituted the Theban triad with his wife Mut and their son Khonsu.
Ammon was represented in various ways, as a man with an animal’s head or just a man or even an animal.
Some animals were associated with Amun, such as the goose and the ram (a race with long horns).
2- Heket Egyptian God
He is the sun god of ancient Egypt, and his central cult was Heliopolis, where he was identified with the local sun god Atum.
Atum or Atum-Ra was responsible for the origin of the Ennead of Heliopolis (from the other Egyptian gods).
He was associated with numerous other gods, such as Amun-Re, Re-Horakhty, Khnum-Re, and Sobek-Re.
He was seen as the god who ruled over the Earth, heaven, and the underworld.
Ra is usually represented by a hawk with a solar disk on its head and the serpent (uraeus).
According to some scholars, it was only in the fifth dynasty that he became one of the main gods of ancient Egypt.
3- Ancient Egyptian Sun God (Ra God )
The first god of the pantheon, Ra-Atum, is responsible for creating the world.
Represented by the Sun, he is depicted in several ways, the most common being the face of a bird of prey.
The Egyptians believed that their king (Pharaoh) was the incarnation of Ra.
4-ISIS – Goddess of Good Fortune and Protector of the Dead
Sister-wife of Osiris, Isis was protective, pious, and related to magic. With Osiris, she had the son Horus.
It was also called Sait, Ist, Iset, Aset, or Ueset, and its symbology is related to fertility and motherhood.
She is represented in various ways, associating herself with the cow and the scorpion.
5-Serket- Ancient Egyptian Goddess of Scorpion
The Goddess slept or stole is the Goddess of fertility and nature, medicine and magic, and the Goddess of animals and healing, especially from poisonous stings.
She came in the form of a woman with a scorpion’s headdress, and she is the son of the god Ra and the Goddess Nate, learn more about the Goddess stolen or slew below.
6-Nephthys Egyptian Goddess
Set’s sister-wife. After Osiris’ death, she separated from her husband and joined her sister Isis in mourning.
She is related to the cult of the dead, represented as a woman without animal characteristics who stands next to the coffins.
7-Hours Ancient Egyptian God of the Sky
Horus in Egyptian mythology, the god of the sky and the sun in the guise of a falcon, a man with the head of a falcon or a winged sun, the son of the fertility goddess Isis and Osiris, the god of productive forces.
Its symbol is a solar disk with outstretched wings. Initially, the falcon god was revered as a predatory god of hunting, claws digging into prey.
According to the myth, Isis conceived Horus from the dead Osiris, who was treacherously killed by the formidable god of the desert, Seth, his brother. Having retired deep into the swampy Nile Delta,
Isis gave birth and raised a son, who, having matured, in a dispute with Seth, seeks to recognize himself as the sole heir of Osiris. In the battle with Seth, the killer of his father,
Horus is first defeated – Seth tore out his eye, the wonderful Eye, but then Horus defeated Set and deprived him of his masculinity. As a sign of submission, he placed the sandal of Osiris on Set’s head.
He gave his excellent Eye of Horus to be swallowed by his father, and he came to life. The resurrected Osiris gave his throne in Egypt to Horus, and he became the king of the underworld.
8-Hathor, ancient Egyptian Goddess of Love
Guardian goddess of pregnant women and protector of lovers.
Hathor, the wife of Horus, is represented with the head or ears of a cow.
9-Anubis, Ancient Egyptian God Of the Dead
Anubis, in Egyptian mythology, the god and patron of the dead, the son of the god of vegetation, Osiris, and Nephthys, the sister of Isis.
Nephthys hid the newborn Anubis from her husband Seth in the swamps of the Nile Delta. The mother goddess Isis found the young god and raised him.
Later, when Set killed Osiris, Anubis, organizing the burial of the deceased god, wrapped his body in fabrics soaked in a unique composition, thus making the first mummy.
Therefore, Anubis is considered the creator of funeral rites and the god of embalming. Anubis also helped judge the dead and accompanied the righteous to the throne of Osiris.
Anubis was depicted as a black jackal or wild dog Sab (or a man with the head of a jackal or a dog).
10-Bastet Egyptian god
She is the Cat goddess worshiped by everyone in ancient Egypt. At first, she was seen as the lion goddess as representations showed her with a lion’s head.
She appears in the texts of the pyramids of Pharaoh Unas as the sovereign’s protector.
Bastet was seen as the lady of the East, and Sekhmet (the lion goddess) was the lady of the West.
It is usually represented as a woman with the head of a cat holding a Sistrum (musical instrument) and an Aegis (a kind of protective shield) or just in the form of a cat.
11- Osiris – Ancient Egyptian God of Death and Resurrection
He is the god of the dead. He was one of the most famous Egyptian gods of Ancient Egypt, and his cult dates back to remote times in Egyptian history.
In the pyramid texts, he is the son of the earth god Geb, and his mother is the sky goddess Nut.
Husband of Isis and father of Horus, he presided over the judgment of the dead, where the heart of the deceased was weighed against the weight of the feather of the Goddess Maat.
Throughout the history of ancient Egypt, several temples were dedicated to Osiris, which shows the size of his popularity.
12-Sekhmet, The Lioness Egyptian Goddess
In Egyptian mythology, Sekhmet (“mighty”) is the goddess of war and the scorching sun, the daughter of Ra, the wife of Ptah, and the mother of the god of vegetation, Nefertum.
The sacred animal of Sekhmet is the lioness. The goddess was depicted as a woman with the head of a lioness and was revered throughout Egypt.
In the myth of how Ra punished the human race for sins, she exterminated people until god stopped her by cunning. Together with the cobra goddess Uto and the goddess of royal power,
Nekhbet Sekhmet guarded the pharaoh, and during the battle, she threw enemies at his feet. Her appearance terrified the enemy, and her fiery breath destroyed everything.
Sekhmet could possess magical powers and kill a person or put a disease on him; the goddess’s wrath brought pestilence and epidemics. At the same time, Sekhmet is a healer goddess who patronized doctors who were considered her priests. The Egyptians identified Sekhmet with many goddesses – Bast, Uto, Mut, etc.
13- Ancient Egyptian God Seker
The god came up in many imaginations, but the most famous of these is its image in the form of a falcon sitting on a stone.
The god also appeared in human form with the head of a falcon, The symbol of the deity is the falcon.
In the belief of the ancient Egyptians, the seker was the protector of miners.
The god seker had a role in the ritual of opening the mouth for the dead, a way that the ancient Egyptians followed during the mummification process.
14- Mut, the Mother Goddess of Thebes
Amon’s wife. It is related to the protection and liberation of souls; she is seen as the “great mother” and wears two crowns on her head to represent Upper and Lower Egypt.
The deity is also linked to the Goddess Hathor, who is also related to the symbology of the “divine mother.”
15-Widget – Ancient Egyptian Cobra Goddess
His role was to protect the pharaoh Symbolized as a serpent, her image was often inserted into the royal logo to show the king’s superiority and defend him from enemies.
16-Anuket, the ancient Egyptian Goddess of the Cataracts of the Nile.
Besides other fertility gods such as Khenmu (her husband) and Satis, Anuket is a deity associated with water, specifically the waterfall in the city of Aswan, the first waterfall formed by the Nile River on Egyptian soil.
The Goddess of fertility, Anuket, is also associated with sexuality.
She was mainly worshiped on Elephantine Island, an island in the Nile River in southern Egypt, very close to Aswan.
17-Ancient Egyptian Goddess Ammit
Ammit ate the hearts of souls who had committed sins, a devouring entity. Thus, it is linked to justice and the final judgment.
A scary figure is represented with the head of a crocodile and a body half hippopotamus and half leopard.
18-Thoth- Ancient Egyptian God of Knowledge
Some texts evoke him as the son of Ra, while others as the son of Seth.
Patron of the moon, wisdom, and healing, Thoth has the head of a bird, the ibis.
19-Nut, ancient Egyptian Goddess of the Sky
Nut, in Egyptian mythology, the goddess of the sky, the daughter of the air god Shu and the goddess of moisture Tefnut, the twin sister of the earth god Geb. Against the will of Ra, she married her brother.
Ra became so angry that he ordered Shu to separate the twins. Shu lifted Nut – this is how the sky was formed, and Hebe left below – how the earth was formed.
The fury of Ra was great, and he commanded that Nut could not conceive a child in any of the months of the year. God took pity on her. He invited the moon to play checkers with him, won,
and took moonlight as a prize to create five new days. Each day, Nut conceived a child: Osiris, Seti, Isis, Nephthys, and Horus. Another myth tells how Nut helped Ra get away from people when he became disillusioned with their deeds. Taking the form of a cow, she sat Ra on her back and began to rise into the sky. But the higher she climbed, the more her head spun, and she called on the four gods to hold her legs.
These gods became the pillars of heaven. Nut was called “the great mother of the stars, giving birth to the gods.”
20-Qetesh, Egyptian Goddess
Goddess of sexuality, fertility, and childbirth, Bastet was one of the daughters of Ra.
Although her image was unclear for many years, after 1000 BC, she began to be represented as a cat, an animal symbol of good luck for the Egyptians.
God of the air is depicted with a human body, the head adorned with a feather, and he was born from an Atum sneeze.
22-Maat, Ancient Egyptian Goddess of Justice and Order
Maat was the Goddess of truth, justice, morals, order, and harmony. It symbolized the universe’s natural balance, being the antithesis of chaos.
She was usually depicted as a woman with an ostrich feather. The “Weighing the Heart” ceremony was held in the Maat hall, as described in the Book of the Dead.
This ceremony was nothing more than a judgment after death, as the heart of the soul of the dead was heavy
If the heart was lighter than the feather of Maat, he was allowed to enter heaven.
Otherwise, I will cast my heart on the beast Amit who devoured him. Whatever it was, from the poorest of the kings to the most powerful, nothing survived the rule of Maat.
23-Tefnut, Ancient Egyptian Goddess of Moisture
Goddess of humidity, twin sister of Shu, born from a spit of Atum, her name is sometimes written with the hieroglyphic sign of the lips that expel spit.
People worship God, Bess. They believed this deity could protect them from evil, so they decorated everyday objects and amulets with his image.
He is usually depicted as a dwarf with a long beard, large ears and nose, and a prominent tongue.
Bess’s representations are curious; unlike other gods, he was represented looking straight ahead.
25-Geb, Ancient Egyptian Earth God
Geb, in Egyptian mythology, is the god of the earth, the son of the air god Shu and the goddess of moisture Tefnut. Geb quarreled with his sister and wife Nut (“sky”), because she daily ate her children – heavenly bodies,
and then gave birth to them again. Shu separated the couple. He left Geb below, and lifted Nut. The children of Geb were Osiris, Seth, Isis, and Nephthys.
The soul (Ba) of Hebe was embodied in Khnum, the god of fertility. The ancients believed that Geb was kind: he guarded the living and the dead against snakes living on the earth, and the plants needed by people grew on him, which is why he was sometimes depicted with a green face. Geb was associated with the underworld of the dead, and his title, “prince of princes,” gave him the right to be considered the ruler of Egypt.
The heir of Geb is Osiris; from him, the throne passed to Horus, and the pharaohs, who considered their power as given by the gods, were considered the successors and servants of Horus.
26-Khepri, Ancient Egyptian God of Solar Creator
The symbol of a scarab represents the god sun of the morning.
27-Ancient Egyptian Goddess Nekhbet
Goddess-vulture of Upper Egypt, whose outstretched wings protect the king Nekhbet, and Wadjet, the cobra goddess, was called “The Mighty.”
Seth, in Egyptian mythology, is the god of the desert, that is, “foreign countries,” the personification of the evil inclination, the brother and murderer of Osiris, one of the four children of the earth god Geb and
Nut, the goddess of heaven. The sacred animals of Set were considered a pig (“abomination for the gods”), an antelope, a giraffe, and a donkey was the main one.
The Egyptians imagined him as a man with a long thin torso and a donkey’s head. Some myths attributed to Set the salvation of Ra from the serpent Apep – Set pierced the giant Apep, personifying darkness and evil,
with a harpoon. At the same time, Set also embodied the evil principle – as the deity of the merciless desert, the god of strangers: he chopped down sacred trees, ate the holy cat of the goddess Bast, etc.
Goddess with the appearance of a female hippopotamus, protector of pregnant women.
30-Seshat Goddess of Writing and Record Keeping
Seshat was ancient Egypt’s Goddess of writing, knowledge, and wisdom.
She is seen as a writer, and “the one who writes” is what her name means.
Mythology says that she came up with the idea of writing.
She was also known as the Goddess of history, architecture, astronomy, astrology, building, math, surveying, and construction.
31-Ptah – Ancient Egyptian God of Craftsmen
Ptah, in Egyptian mythology, is the creator god and patron of arts and crafts, especially revered in Memphis. Ptah created the first eight gods (his incarnations – Ptah), the world,
and everything that exists in it (animals, plants, people, cities, temples, crafts, arts, etc.) “with language and heart.” Having conceived the creation in his heart, he expressed his thoughts in words.
Sometimes Ptah was called the father of even such gods as Ra and Osiris. The wife of Ptah was the goddess of war, Sekhmet, the son was Nefertum, the god of vegetation.
In Greek mythology, Hephaestus most closely matches it. Ptah was depicted as a mummy with an open head, with a rod standing on a hieroglyph, meaning truth.
Hapi was the phrase deity of the god who symbolized the Nile and was reflected as a human figure with dark blue and emerald green paint.
Hapi was worshipped in ancient Egypt; Hapi adorned his head with a hat made from aquatic plants and wore a fisherman’s headband in the shape of a kidney.
33-Sobek, Ancient Egyptian Crocodile God
The Egyptian god Sobek was associated with both water and plants.
In the same vein, the Egyptians had a deep affection for it, which played a significant cultural role at the time.
The crocodile was the creature that Sobek personified throughout the story.
The Egyptians judged the crop to be successful for a given year if many of these animals could be found along the Nile.
34-Apophis, God of Chaos in Ancient Egypt—
Apis, in Egyptian mythology, is the god of fertility in the form of a bull with a solar disk. Memphis was the center of the Apis cult. Apis was considered the Ba (soul) of the god Ptah, the patron saint of Memphis,
and the sun god Ra. The living embodiment of the god was a black bull with special white marks. The Egyptians believed that the ritual run of the sacred bull fertilizes the fields.
Apis was associated with the cult of the dead and was considered the bull of Osiris. On sarcophagi, Apis was often depicted running with a mummy on his back.
Under the Ptolemies, there was a complete merger of Apis and Osiris into a single deity Serapis. To keep the sacred bulls in Memphis, not far from the temple of Ptah, a special Apeion was built.
The cow that gave birth to Apis was also revered and kept in a particular building. In the event of the death of a bull, the whole country was plunged into mourning,
and its burial and the choice of a successor were considered essential state matters.
35-Ash is the God of the Libyan Desert and the Oases of Western Egypt
Could the eagle be missing? Ash appears like a bird and is the god of oases and vineyards in the western Nile Delta.
Its practical nature was confirmed by some excavations in 1923, in which wine vessels with inscriptions attributed to its name were found.
He was associated with the darker Seth, the lord of the desert that once surrounded Egypt, He is represented by a man’s body and an animal’s head.
In some images, he had several leaders, which is unusual for an Egyptian deity, Its importance grew until the Second Dynasty before the cult of Seth absorbed it.
it is a mythological bird consecrated to the creator god Ra and approached the resurrection to the eternal fulfillment of the life cycle.
Its primordial appearance was that of a tiny wagtail, but during the New Kingdom, it took on the formation of a long-legged wader
with a thin beak and two feathers behind its head.
It often appears in the Book of the Dead and on a sacred conical stone ( Benben ) placed in the temple of Heliopolis.
It is connected with Khepri, a god associated with creation, renewed with each dawn.
The Greeks reworked the myth of Benu, particularly by Herodotus, who infused his traits in the legendary phoenix.
37-Hatmehit, Ancient Egyptian Goddess of Fish
In ancient Egyptian religion, Hatmehit was a fish goddess in the Mendes region. His name means “Leader of the Fish” or “Head of the Fish” in English.
She was often called a fish or a woman with a crown or emblem in the shape of a fish.
38-Ancient Egyptian Goddess Mafdet
Mafdet was the Egyptian Goddess who worked to keep snakes and scorpions away.
From the first dynasty on, it was part of the Egyptian pantheon and was seen as a cat or a mongoose.
The falcon god is the patron saint of warriors, It was considered the embodiment of the masculinity and power of the pharaohs.
The hieroglyph for Montu translates as ‘nomad.’ Sometimes the god was called “the mighty bull,” emphasizing his strength.
Montu was depicted as a man with a falcon on his head or a falcon’s head crowned with a solar disk and two feathers – symbols of heaven and war.
The cult of Montu spread thanks to the pharaohs of the XI dynasty, who, in the III millennium BC. e. were able to unite Upper and Lower Egypt by force.
Over time, the cult of Montu joined with the sun god’s cult, and he was called Ra-Montu.
The Greeks saw in him the god of war, Ares
40-Neith – Creator and hunter goddess
One of the most mysterious goddesses of Ancient Egypt, Her name is rarely found in inscriptions.
The Egyptians used epithets and metaphors to designate the Goddess, It is considered one of the elder gods, the creator of everything.
Some researchers suggest that Neith was able to give birth without a partner, suggesting her influence on the Christian cult of the Virgin Mary.
Neith is a fierce deity. She is the Goddess of war who preserves the bodies of warriors after death and helps them reach the realm of the dead.
Neith was depicted as a woman in a red robe with a spear or bow and arrows,
In later times, Neith began to be portrayed as the patroness of weaving, who wove the world on a loom.