Skip to main content

The Myths of Aset

Horus´ Childhood

This is one of the stories in the Delta Cycle, a group of tales from the mythical period called the 'First Time', when the gods wandered upon the earth and ruled it. They are stories about the childhood of Horus as he grew up, hidden and protected by his mother Isis in Chemmis, an area of marshes in the Lower Egypt northeast delta, said to be near the ancient city of Buto. His childhood was dangerous and he was exposed for all kinds of dangers. Already in the 5th Dynasty there are different versions of these stories. Spells for snake bites are found in the Pyramid Texts from this time, and two large fragments have been preserved during the Late Period, written on various supports for statues of Horus as curative spells against poisonous bites. Obviously they stem from earlier sources, and they are also to be found on medical papyrii.

Horus is Bitten!

The spells included in this story were used in daily life to cure snake bites. It is played out in a mundane setting until Isis realizes her son is in mortal danger. At that point it becomes the concern of the whole cosmos and the gods come down to earth to intervene. Isis was pregnant with the son of Osiris and gave birth to him in the marshes of Chemmis in Lower Egypt, where Thoth had told her to hide. She hid Horus in the papyri and lotus thickets to stop Set from finding them. There she had to leave him to go begging for food. But for the third time Seth found out about them, and as he could not pass unseen through the brushes, he transformed himself into a snake. That way he could reach the child, sting it and then get quickly away.

One day, when Isis returned to their hidingplace, she found her child lying lifeless on his back and she could hardly hear his heartbeat. She did not know what kind of illness had struck her son, and when she began working her magic, she found that her power had deserted her. She was alone, her husband was dead, none of the gods were there to help her and she despaired. She took Horus in her arms and ran to the village nearby. The fishermen who lived there took pity on her and tried everything they could to heal the child, but nothing helped. Then someone brought a wise woman who examined Horus closely, consoled Isis and said that it must be Seth who had disguised himself as a snake or a scorpion and poisoned the child. Isis understood that the woman was right and that this must somehow be the doings of Seth and her anger rose within her.

Shaking Heaven and Earth

She let out a great wail:
'Horus has been bitten!
O Re! a scion of yours has been bitten!
Horus has been bitten!
The heir to your heir, a direct link with the kingship of Shu,
Horus has been bitten!
The babe of Chemmis, the infant of the House of the Prince,
Horus has been bitten!
The beautiful golden child, the innocent orphan child
Horus has been bitten!
The son of the "Beneficent Being", born of the "Tearful One",
Horus has been bitten!
Him I watched over so anxiously, for I foresaw that he would avenge his father....'

Her sister Nephtys came crying and was heard all over the marshes. Serqet cried:
'Pray, tell what has happened to Horus the son of Osiris? Ah Isis, my sister! Beseech heaven and the divine crew will bring Re´s boat to a standstill and the cosmic wind will cease to blow for the boat of Re while Horus lies on his side.'
Isis raised her voice and cried to the boat of 'millions of years' so loud that the earth shook and the sunboat stopped its course, for Isis knew the secret name of Ra, the King of the Gods. When he heard Isis cry and noticed that his sunboat had stopped so that there was no more light on the lands, he sent Thoth to find out what had happened. Isis told Thoth that Horus had been poisoned by Seth and that she wished she had died together with Osiris. She had lived only to see Horus grow up and take revenge on Seth for Osiris´death, but now there was no reason for her to live any longer.

Thoth consoled her:
'What is the matter, O Isis, you who are so divine and skilful and know your spell? Surely nothing has gone amiss with Horus? An assurance of his safety is in the boat of Re. I have just come from the barge. The sun is in its´place of yesterday so that all has become dark and the light has been driven away until Horus recovers his health - to the delight of his mother Isis.'
Then he began to utter his powerful words:
'Back, O Poison! You are exorcised by the spell of Re himself. It is the speech of the Greatest God which turns you away!
And the poison was driven out from Horus´ body and he was brought back to life again.
But Isis and the child had to stay in the marshlands until Horus was grown enough to revenge his father and take the throne back from Seth. To make sure they were safe, Thoth ordered the people of the marshes and all birds and animals who lived there to keep watch over them. And while Isis rejoiced, Thoth returned to the heavens and to the sunboat:
'Rejoice, O Re of the horizon. The life of your 'son' Horus has been saved!'


Popular posts from this blog

How ancient Egyptians Were cutting the Obelisk from the Granite quarry?

Today, quarrymen cut and carve granite using saws with diamond-edged blades and steel chisels.

But ancient Egyptian quarrymen and stonemasons didn't have these modern tools. How, then, did they quarry and cut such clean lines in their obelisks and other monumental statuary?
To find out how ancient Egyptians quarried huge pieces of granite for their obelisks, i traveled to an ancient quarry in Aswan, located 500 miles south of Cairo. This is where the ancient Egyptians found many of the huge granite stones they used for their monuments and statues.

One of the most famous stones left behind is the Unfinished Obelisk, more than twice the size of any known obelisk ever raised. Quarrymen apparently abandoned the obelisk when fractures appeared in its sides. However, the stone, still attached to bedrock, gives important clues to how the ancients quarried granite.

Archeologist Mark Lehner, a key member of nova expedition, crouches in a granite trench that abuts one side of…

Hesi-re, the first Dentist, in ancient Egypt and in the world

Hesire was a high official who lived during the reign of Netjerikhet (Dosjer) 2686 BC to 2613 BC . His tutelary informs us of the many offices he had held during his life. Thus he was the 'overseer of the royal scribes', at the head of the royal administration of Djoser. His most spectacular title, however, was that of the 'greatest (or chief ?)of physicians and dentists'. It is not entirely clear whether this title infers that Hesire himself was honored as the greatest of physicians and dentists, or rather that he was merely responsible for the administration of physicians and dentists. But whatever the case, the distinction between 'physicians' and 'dentists' in his tutelary does show a high degree of medical specialization at this early stage of the history of Ancient Egypt..

Das Tal der Koenige

Die geographische Lage
Das Gebiet bei Theben lieferte ein vorzügliches Gebiet für das Anlegen einer königlichen Nekropole. Vom Westufer des Nils erstreckt sich eine flache Ebene zu einer Bergkette mit zahlreichen abgeschiedenen Tälern, die sich zwischen hohen Klippen und weichem Gestein durchschlängeln. Die Ebene eignete sich ideal für das Errichten der königlichen Totentempel. Die Täler hingegen boten genügend Platz, um viele kunstvoll in den Fels gehauene Gräber anzulegen. Auch aus symbolischen Gründen wählten die Alten Ägypter diesen Platz für das Errichten einer Nekropole. Blickt man von der Stadt Theben über den Nil auf das thebanische Bergmassiv, dann ähnelt es in der Gestalt einer riesigen Version der Hieroglyphe für "Horizont". Es ist das ägyptische Symbol für das Gebiet der auf- und untergehenden Sonne. Im Neuen…