Egypt | Mythology

A List of Gods from Ancient Egypt

Published: Jan 13 2021

The 10 best known Gods of Ancient Egypt, from Bastet to Osiris.

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  The god Ra or Re is easily noticed on Egyptian iconography: he usually has the head of a hawk and the sun over his head. In Egyptian mythology, he permanently sailed across the sky on his boat. During the day, he shed the light of the sun onto the living. During the night he shone in the realm of the dead.

To note: Ra and Horus are quite alike and were fused together in late Ancient Egypt.


  Osiris was the king of the underworld and symbolized death, resurrection, the cycle of nile floods and more. He was a king of egypt who was cut into pieces by his brother Seth. His wife Isis put him back together and produced their child Horus.


  The son of Isis and Osiris and the symbol for divine rule. He is most often portrayed as a falcon and represents war as well as hunting. Most pharaos made a claim of descendancy from this God. Some even said they are manifestations or reincarnations of Horus.


  One could call her the loving mother of Egypt: she cared for mortals even after they died. That is why you will see her in many royal tombs; she could care for the deceased. What's more: many Pharaohs claimed they are horus reincarnated. In other words: Isis is their actual mother.

The Egyptian religion merged with that of others - as is the case with this image. On the mural, the Macedonian ruler of Egypt Ptolemy introduces himself to the royal gods Isis and Osiris - a privilege only given to the Pharaoh of Egypt. It is a prime example of syncrety (Egyptian-Roman fusion)


   Before Osiris became god of the underworld, Anubis had reigned over these realms. After the change of dynasties, Anubis occupied himself with funerary practices and the care for those who died. He became the prime deity for mummification in Egypt and is almost always portrayed as a jackal holding the key of life.


  Thoth is the Egyptian god of wisdom. He is most often depicted as an ibis - a bird living close by the Nile. With wisdom came skill insight; Thoth knew things even his fellow divinities did not know. Thoth is particularly known for having invented language and the Egyptian script of hierogplyphs.


  Perhaps you once heard that Ancient Egyptians worshipped cats. The goddess Bastet is the one that these feline creatures represent. She is a goddess of partying and having a good time. In that sense, she is much alike the Greek god Dionysus and the Roman Bacchus.

Cats were adored throughout Ancient Egypt. When the Roman Empire became mighty, the Egyptian cult of bastet (of cats) was worhsipped in its capital.


  Seth was the god of chaos, plagues and storms. He is depicted with a doglike body, but scholars are not quite sure which animal he really represents. Seth is said to reign over the South of Egypt (known as 'Upper Egypt'), where the climate is more hostile and the land is less fertile.


  The goddess Hathor was the daughter of Horus, and like her father she is a 'god of the sky'. She is most often represented as a cow or with elements of a cow.

   It was sometimes said that Hathor is the literal and figurative 'golden eye of Horus': she not only replaced the eye after Seth cut it of, but she was also her father's most prized posession. That is to say, she caught 'the loving eye' of her father. The formation of this eye, or the birth of Hathor, is presented by the phases of the moon.


  Many Egyptian gods have an origin city, and for Amon, it is the historic city of Thebes. He could be depicted as a Ram or a Goose, but he simply wore a crown quite often too. At some point in Egypt's history Amon was merged with the sun-god Ra. The temple of Amon-Ra is a testimony of this fusion.

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