G is for Gods

Gods and goddesses were very important in ancient Egyptian times, and therefore a great many were worshipped. Ancient Egyptians believed that if they did not recognise and worship these gods and goddesses, life would not go smoothly. Some took part in creation, others brought the flood of the Nile every year, some offered protection to Egyptian people while others took care of people in the afterlife. There were also local gods who represented towns, and minor gods who represented plants or animals.

These are some of the most important Egyptian gods and goddesses:

Anubis - taken from here
- Anubis - the god of funerals and death, often painted on the walls of tombs as Egyptians believed him to be the protector of the dead. He is usually shown as a jackal or a wild dog.

- Bastet - the goddess of cats, women and children. She is usually shown with a cat's head.

- Bes - thought to protect women in childbirth, children and families against evil influences. He was small and human-like, and wore a feathered headdress and a lion's skin.

Horus - taken from here
- Horus - the son of Osiris and Isis, known as the god of the sky. He lost his eye fighting Seth, who killed Osiris. Horus is believed to give power to the Pharaohs. He is usually shown as a falcon.

- Isis - the goddess of motherhood and love. She is the wife and sister of Osiris and the mother of Horus, and brought Osiris back to life after he was killed by Seth. 

- Osiris - the god of the underworld. He was killed by Seth, who wanted to take his place as king, but was brought back to life by Isis. He was usually shown as human. It was believed that all Pharoahs became an Osiris when they died.

Ra - taken from here
- Ra - the god of creation. He is usually shown as a falcon with the sun on his head. He was believed to have created the world; the rising sun was therefore the symbol of creation and renewal. 

- Sekhmet - the goddess of medicine, war and pestilence. She was usually shown with a lion's head. One of the oldest groups of doctors and vets were known as the priests of Sekhmet.

- Seth - the god of chaos. He murdered Osiris and plucked out Horus's eye. He is shown with a greyhound-like body, a curved muzzle, almond eyes and long straight pointed ears.

- Thoth - the god of wisdom and writing. Thoth helped Isis to bring Osiris back from the dead. He had two forms - an ibis bird and the baboon.

There are a lot more ancient Egyptian gods and goddesses, but I've been trying to keep these posts short. My favourites are Bastet (I love cats, what can I say) and Thoth, of course, being the writing god. 
What are yours?


  1. Goddess of medicine, war and pestilence - that's quite the combination!

  2. Nice glossary. I'm using a mixture of Gods in my novels, this can be useful.

  3. Gods of the lessor realm. I was once called on for not capitalizing God in my writing, and explained it this way. When I write of God - I capitalize the word. When I write of the gods, I'm talking of mythology. She still wasn't happy, she claimed those gods, were still the gods of believers. I don't think there is a way to win such an argument, do you?

  4. Ra is also (or therefore) the word for "sun" in ancient Egyptian, and you can usually spot it in hieroglyphics because it's the circle shape.

    Another educational post, Laura! :)

  5. This is another fascinating post! I have to love Thoth for the same reason you do.

  6. I haven't heard of many of these before - I need to brush up on my Gods and Goddesses!

  7. Gods and goddesses have always fascinated whether from Ancient Egypt or Greek mythology. One could dedicate a post a day to one god/goddess from Ancient Egypt and have an infinite supply of posts! :D

  8. I remember the first time I saw Anubis. Scared the bejeebers out of me. Of course, I was eight and in a mock up of a tomb. I had a right to be scared. Later, when I knew about what to really be scared of, the Egyptian gods became fascinating.

  9. Well done Miss Laura. . . . . I thought this little youtube clip might help also . . . After all you cant have too much research . . . . . .:)

    Egypian Mummies

  10. I'm strictly a Greek-Roman person. But I do love the lavish portrayal of the Egyptian gods.

    Over here from the A to Z.

  11. Can you imagine irritating a god or goddess and blaming them for some of life's tragedies? Now we just blame Mother Nature or global warming. But back then, they had so many characters to choose from.

    M. J.
    A - Z Co-Host

  12. I find Egyptian anything fascinating! Thanks for the post. I just wish the Egyptians drew and painted in 3-D. That would have helped explain their culture better.

  13. Isis is definitely my favorite god.

    1. Just kidding, she's kind of lame. I love her kids though. Horus is terrific.

  14. I always have trouble keeping the different gods and godesses straight in my head, thank you for your list, it is most useful. I was fond of Shu and Tefnut, simply because I researched them to write and SG1 fic :).
    Tasha's Thinkings - AtoZ (Vampires)
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  15. My favourite is probably Anubis - but that could be because I've watched The Mummy and The Mummy Returns so much and he's mentioned quite a bit lol

  16. Thoth is new to me- I never knew there was an Egyptian god of writing!

  17. There are so many god and goddesses in Ancient Egypt, they seemed to happily adopt and add to their pantheon as they saw fit :) I've always has a soft spot for Osiris and also Anubis.

    The only big hiccup was when Ahkenaten tried to go monotheistic with the Aten and replace all the gods.
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