Yasser Metwally

My life…and the world

Hathor: the ancient Egyptian royal goddess

The author: Professor Yasser Metwally

http://yassermetwally.com


Hathor as the royal goddess. Her name means ‘House of Horus." Her image could take the form of a cow, a woman with a cow’s head, or a woman wearing the horns of a cow. As a motherly cow, she gave the king her divine milk, and protected him as a cow protects her calf. She was the goddess of love, music, singing, and dance. She was one of the most important deities in the Age of the Pyramids, and her popularity continued to the end of Egyptian civilization. In the early economy of Egypt, cows were wealth. A herd of cattle was a beautiful sight because it represented wealth in the form of food, milk, hides, and work, as oxen pulled the ploughs of farmers. Cattle dung was a valuable fertilizer and had many uses in building.

The Egyptians admired many qualities in cows, besides their economic benefits. The cow’s careful tending of her calf was a model for motherhood. In a time when many women died in childbirth, the ability of cow’s milk to sustain a human baby was deeply appreciated.      Cows, like people, love music and will happily listen to a human singing, thus it made sense for Hathor to be goddess of music. The big, gentle brown eyes of cows set a standard for beauty.

Hathor: the ancient Egyptian royal goddess

Figure 1. Hathor: the ancient Egyptian royal goddess

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November 27, 2009 - Posted by | Ancient Egyptian panorama

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