God shadow (egyptian mythology)

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God shadows in hieroglyphics
Old empire
R8 O34

R8 O21

sḥ-nṯr God's hall, God's tent

Djoser Seh-netjer-Kapelle.jpg
Stone form of God's shadow in the Sedfest courtyard on the complex of the Djoser pyramid

God's shadow (also God's tent, God's hall, church, temple of God ) is an ancient Egyptian term from ancient Egyptian mythology and describes a tented hut . Wearable shadows of God in connection with harvest festivals are already documented in the Old Kingdom .

As a barque sanctuary, the divine shadow was the decisive location for the solemn proclamation of the title of the throne . After receiving the royal insignia, the kings moved to the building of the shadow of God , sitting in a barge , in order to perform the coronation after proclaiming the name of the throne.


Old empire

During the harvest processions, the kings carried a tent with them next to the statues of gods , for example Renenutet and Min , in order to set up the images of gods underneath at the respective field breakpoints. The tent itself was previously set up under a canopy , which is why the name tent hut or God's shadow was derived from this construction .

On the complex of the Djoser pyramid , in the area of ​​the Sedfest courtyard, there are mock chapels, the shape of which is a stone replica of the shadow of God, in order to make it available to the pharaoh for the otherworldly use.

Middle and New Kingdom

In the Middle and New Kingdom , the old tent huts were replaced by massive station stamps, where the processional procession stopped and the traditional rites performed . The cult objects included a tent and canopy, which symbolically represented the shadow of God .

Site plan of the Amun-Re temple in Karnak

Thutmose I built a portico and another small pylon to the east behind the fourth pylon. In front of the fourth pylon, Thutmose I erected the first obelisks for the temple of Amun-Re in Karnak . The no longer preserved divine shadow barque sanctuary of Thutmose I was probably located between the obelisk and the portico. Also Hatshepsut was there to announce her throne name before together with Thutmose III. a new barque sanctuary of the shadow of God with the name "Staircase of Amun-Re " built in the immediate vicinity of the temple of Kamutef . In addition, the ceremonies of the Min festival took place in the newly erected god's shadow of Amun-Re as king of the gods .

See also


  • Herbert Ricke : The Kamutef Shrine Hatshepsut and Thutmoses' III. in Karnak. Report on an excavation in front of the mother temple district . Swiss Institute for Egyptian Building Research and Antiquity, Cairo 1954.
  • Siegfried Schott : Ancient Egyptian festival dates . Publishing house of the Academy of Sciences and Literature, Mainz / Wiesbaden 1950.