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Old November 25th, 2012, 01:52 AM   #1

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Isis


From a historical perspective this Goddess is probably among the most known in Egyptian history, but probably the tradition has left us something more about her image coming from later cultural pollutions.


First aspect of this deity: Isis is not so ancient as common people expect. Actually documented Egyptian sources mention this Goddess only from V dynasty on. And the first artistic representation comes from a sarcophagus of the Middle Kingdom. A good sample of this is at the Egyptian Museum, Cairo, JE 32868, XII D, Sepi, 1920 b.c., about.



From that period Isis maintained her qualities of mother, sister, wife which still in Greek age were her identity. The image of the Goddess is usually human and she bring the hieroglyphic of her name, a throne, on the head. Example: from Tut’s tomb, Egyptian Museum, Cairo, JE 62368. Or Nefertar’s tomb, West Tebe, QV 66, XIX D, 1250 b.c. About.
It was from the New Kingdom that Isis took the “make up” of the Goddess Hator: cow’s horns, solar disc over a crown made by “ureus” snakes. Moreover she brought also the sight of Mut, the same of the queens.



Also the wings came from the figure of Mut. Isis, wife and sister of Osiris, was often represented with the wings open, standing behind the husband to protect him.

The Goddess


Isis, being the mother of Horus, protected the King, incarnation of Horus, and she defended him from his enemies. The fact that in the myth she took care of the dead body of the husband, gave to Isis a position besides Nefti, during the burial ceremony of the preparation of the mummy.
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Old November 25th, 2012, 08:40 AM   #2

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Actually documented Egyptian sources mention this Goddess only from V dynasty on. And the first artistic representation comes from a sarcophagus of the Middle Kingdom. A good sample of this is at the Egyptian Museum, Cairo, JE 32868, XII D, Sepi, 1920 b.c., about.
People should be aware that there is virtually no documentation of any sort from before the 5th dynasty. Most of the later writing is actually the Pyramid Texts itself and this is not understood by Egyptology so constitutes a weak starting point.

It's true the pantheon is better known to the earliest times so saying "Isis" doesn't exist at that time by that name is not as misleading as most of the Egyptological pronouncements. While almost no writing survives they did draw their "gods".

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The image of the Goddess is usually human and she bring the hieroglyphic of her name, a throne, on the head.
Her name means "stone seat" in the ancient language and she is invariably paired with her sister "Nephthys" whose name means "house basket". Interpreting "stone seat" as "throne" is assumptive. This interpretation is not especially logical if you think about it.

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Also the wings came from the figure of Mut. Isis, wife and sister of Osiris, was often represented with the wings open, standing behind the husband to protect him.
I believe this doesn't apply to the earliest incarnation of this Goddess. In the Pyramid Texts it is Nut who protects Osiris. I believe neither Mut nor Nefti existed at the time that Isis first arose so she must be independent of them.

The bottom line is virtually nothing at all exists from before the 5th dynasty and there isn't much from before 2000 BC. Anything concerning the origins of the so-called Egyptian religion are speculative and these speculations are not consistent with the tiny amount of information that does exist.

Isis became a very important deity nearly world wide and was adopted by numerous cultures but her origin is shrouded in mystery.
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Old November 25th, 2012, 08:49 AM   #3
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at first Horus was Isis brother right???? and there parents are Nut and Geb rightZ???
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Old November 25th, 2012, 09:05 AM   #4

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The interesting fact is that the phonetic value of the hieroglyph for "throne" is "st" [pr. pr. Aset], quite near to the English "seat", if we note.

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at first Horus was Isis brother right???? and there parents are Nut and Geb rightZ???
Yes, in the myth she is also sister of Seth and Nefti.
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Old November 25th, 2012, 09:41 AM   #5
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Yes, in the myth she is also sister of Seth and Nefti.
so horus then decieded to be Isis son???
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Old November 25th, 2012, 10:19 AM   #6

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I am interested in the evolution of Isis in Austria/ Germania, as Isis Noreia. Do we have any idea of how she was co-opted/ combined, and Romanized in this area?
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Old November 25th, 2012, 12:06 PM   #7

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so horus then decieded to be Isis son???
There are apparently two distinct Horus's; "Horus the Elder" and "Horus, son of Isis". The origin of both is somewhat murky and I have difficulty keeping them separate because Only "Horus, son of Isis" is common in the Pyramid Texts.

I believe the entire pantheon changed right before our earliest copy of the PT was written and "Horus" was the one exception to the rule that new names were used for the Gods.
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Old November 25th, 2012, 12:35 PM   #8

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I am interested in the evolution of Isis in Austria/ Germania, as Isis Noreia. Do we have any idea of how she was co-opted/ combined, and Romanized in this area?
It seems to be an identification. When the Romans met the Noreia, local deity of the Norea, they noted some aspects which carried them to identify the local Goddess with the Egyptian Isis [in the form the Roman knew her].

The only statue of a certain importance of that deity was in Virunum in the area of the baths [II century CE, Klagenfurt c/o Landesmuseum].

The identification seems to have been driven by the connection of the deities with a cult linked to the waters [Romans knew Isis also as lady of the waters]. For example, in Roman age on the isle of File in the Temple of Isis they collected the "sacred water".
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