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.The Ogdoad of Hermopolis

Hermopolis, "the City of Hermes" in Greek, was a major cult centre of the god Thoth, whom the Greeks associated with their god Hermes. The ancient Egyptians knew the city as Khmun, "the City of the Eight".

The Ogdoad was a group of eight deities, four gods and their respective consorts. The gods were all depicted with frog's heads, whilst the goddesses had the heads of serpents. However, in this temple they would all appear to have been created with human heads, of which those of the gods and one goddess are now missing.

Each pair represented the male and female aspects of the four major creative forces. Nun and Nunet represented the primordial waters; Huh and Huhet represented eternity; Kuky and Kukyet represented darkness; and Amun and Amunet represented air, or that which is hidden (this couple are found on the west wall of this room as Nu-Amun and Nuet-Amunet).
Ogdoad of Hermopolis
In the creation myth, the eight elements combined causing the energy which caused the creation of the primordial mound (located at Hermopolis), which rose from the water. The gods and goddesses of the Ogdoad then ruled the earth. When they died they took up residence in the Duat (or Underworld).

Also, from the four main creation myths comes the idea that the world was born from a cosmic egg, created by the Ogdoad. It was invisible because the sun did not yet exist. When it opened, the sun god Re hatched from the egg, who then created the world and everything in it.

Map of Lower Egypt
Another version states that the egg was laid by an ibis, (the bird associated with Thoth). However, the cult of Thoth did not appear until after the original myths of the Ogdoad. It is therefore quite probable that this version was an attempt to incorporate Thoth into the already existing Ogdoad.

Later, only Amon was considered to be more than a primordial force; and Nun was the only one referred to as the representation of the waters of creation.


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