Egyptian Myths and Legends

Topics: Ra, Isis, Osiris Pages: 9 (3869 words) Published: April 29, 2013
The Story Behind Ancient Egyptian Gods
In the stories of Ancient Egypt there are many variations of how there world was shaped. In my paper I am going to go over the Gods and their stories, and their rule in Ancient Egypt. Ancient Egyptian theology dealt with hundreds of deities. They had a god for everything. The gods changed as the dynasties, and the importance of the gods changed depending on the ruler of the time. Egyptians worshipped their gods in temples , and each temple was dedicated to a specific god. In the temples a statue would stand in the center . Everyday Egyptian priests care for the statues of gods. They would clean them and dress them, offer the meals, before worshipping ceremonies would take place. (Budge, 1999 & 2003) One variation tells us that the ocean was the only thing in existence. Then the sun came in, Ra was said to come out of an egg (or a flower) in other versions that appeared on the surface of the water. Ra , the sun god created four children. The children were gods as well, Shu and Tefnut became air, who stood on Geb , the earth, and held up Nut, who became the sky. Ra ruled all. The children of Ra then had children of their own, Geb and Nut had two sons , Set and Osiris, and two daughters Isis and Nephthys. Osiris was said to have succeeded Ra as the ruler of the earth, Isis was said to have helped in this task. Set hated his brother and out go deep jealousy and killed him. Isis embalmed Osiris’s body with the help of Anibis , who then became the god of embalming. It was said that Isis resurrected Osiris, and then became the god of the afterlife and the land of the dead. Horus , the son the of Osiris and Isis, was said to have later defeated Set in a horrific battle, and then became the king of the earth. In another versions it says that Ra emerged from primitive waters . Then Shu the god of air emerged and Tefnut the god of moisture arose from him. Then came the unification of Geb the of the earth, and Nut the god of the sky. In one other version some say that Ra became the god of the afterlife but was still the supreme god. These stories are ever changing and it up to you as the reading to decide. (Budge, 1999 & 2003) Ra

Ra means "creator." He is or was for a time, in nearly all accounts of Egyptian mythology, the supreme god. He was "the father of the gods, the fashioner of men, the creator of cattle, the lord of all being". He is the god of the sun in most of these accounts and is shown as a man with a falcon's head. He carries a staff and the symbol for life, the ankh. The symbol of the sun, also known as the solar disc, is above his head. Despite the fact that he was a very important figure to Egyptians, he had few temples dedicated to him. This was because of the fact that his importance was reflected in all other worshipping rituals. The pharaohs named themselves as sons of Ra. The passage of the sun across the sky obviously fascinated the Egyptians and from it rose many metaphors. At dawn the sun was regarded as a newborn child emerging from the womb of Nut. The sun was also associated with a falcon flying across the midday sun, thus Ra's appearance. He could also be a boat sailing across the great blue sea of the heavens. At dusk he was an old man stepping down to the land of the dead. (Museum) (Budge, 1999 & 2003)

Amon is "the complete one". He was regarded as an important deity after the second millennium BC, and considered supreme, surpassing even Ra, after the sixteenth century B.C. He, like most other gods, had the body of a man. He had a human head, and wears a crown with two tall plumes on its top. Amon started out having power over the air or wind, but was not in complete control of these forces. He later acquired powers of fertility that had belonged to god Min, the god of Harvest. (Museum) (Budge, 1999 & 2003) By being accepted as the supreme god, Ra was a rival. To satisfy the claims of supremacy made by Amon and...
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