An Introduction to Gods and Goddesses for Junior Egyptologists
This is an overview of some of the gods and goddesses you might find lurking in our galleries (if you are viewing this trail in person, start at the Gods case in the lower gallery). The ancient Egyptians believed in lots of different gods and goddesses, relating to different aspects of their lives - which one is your favourite?
Amun is sometimes described as the King of the Gods. When Amun was combined with the sun god Re he was even more powerful. He was then called Amun-Re.
Horus was the son of Isis and Osiris. Following many battles with his uncle Seth, he became the king of Egypt. In one of these battles, he lost his ey (cont.)
Seth is the brother of Osiris, and the two of them battled over who should rule Egypt. When Osiris was killed, his son Horus battled his uncle Seth. I (cont.)
The god of mummification Anubis is usually shown as a jackal, as jackals were often seen prowling the cemeteries looking for something to eat. Because (cont.)
Nefertum is the son of Ptah, and depicted as a boy with a blue water lily or lotus upon his head. Amulets and small statues of Nefertum were thought t (cont.)
Hathor is a goddess of love, as well as of music, dance, and parties. She is sometimes shown as a cow, or as a woman with the ears and horns of a cow. (cont.)
Ptah was a master craftsman and creator god. He is shown as a bald-headed mummy carrying a staff. Some creation stories say that Ptah breathed life in (cont.)
Mut was a mother goddess - her name literally means "mother". She is thought to be the wife of the creator god Amun-Re, and is shown wearing the combi (cont.)
Thoth is the god of wisdom and writing, and is often shown with the head of an ibis and holding a reed pen and papyrus scroll. He is also sometimes sh (cont.)
Khnum is a god with the head of a ram. Can you see his curved horns? He was originally a water god associated with the Nile, and so is associated with (cont.)
Bes is a protective god often associated with the household. As such, he often appears on amulets, plaques, furniture, and even drinking vessels.
Sekhmet is usually shown with the head of lioness, and was a very powerful and fearsome goddess. She is the wife of Ptah and the mother of Nefertum. H (cont.)
Bastet is a goddess shown with the head of a cat. She is associated with joy, love, pleasure and pregnant woman. At Bubastis, visitors left cat amulet (cont.)
The Apis bull was thought to be a personification of the god Ptah on earth. A bull calf chosen for its special markings and was treated with extra spe (cont.)
Sobek is a god often in the form of the crocodile. At some points in ancient Egyptian history, a live crocodile was kept as a personification of Sobek (cont.)
Khepri is usually shown in the form of the scarab beetle. He was thought to push the sun across the sky in the same way as a beetle pushes a ball of p (cont.)
Osiris is the god of the Afterlife - can you see how he is shown wrapped up tightly in bandages? This is because his wife Isis had to put his body bac (cont.)
Isis and Nephthys are the sisters of Osiris. Isis was also the wife of Osiris and the mother of Horus, and a very powerful magician. Nephthys is usua (cont.)
Taweret is usually shown as a hippopotamus goddess, and is thought to protect mothers and children as hippos were spotted fearlessly protecting their (cont.)