Monday, June 29, 2015

Ancient Egypt this week Pricey Shroud, Solar Boat, Emmer, Tut the Mini Series

Thirty wooden beams of second solar boat arrive to the Grand Egyptian Museum

A collection of 30 wooden beams of the second solar boat have arrived to the Grand Egyptian Museum (GEM) after restoration. The new batch is to be stored in the museum galleries for reconstruction and later display.

The first solar boat (shown in the photo) in the Solar Boat Museum outside the Great Pyramid is almost as awe-inspiring as the Pyramids themselves.

Rare ancient Egyptian shroud fetches 374,000 euros at auction

A follow-up from last week on the rare 3,400-year-old Egyptian burial shroud. It fetched 374,000 euros ($426,000) at auction in Paris Thursday, on the latest leg of a journey that has seen it passed from a billionaire banking heir to his wife and, later, his mistress. I should note that I was not the winning bid.

Emmer wheat making a comeback?

Believed to have been cultivated for at least 7,000 years. Sometimes known as Pharaoh’s wheat because it was common in ancient Egypt. Referred to in newer translations of the Bible. Still popular in Italy, where it’s known as farro.

Restoration of Tutankhamun's funerary mask to start in August

Beginning in August, visitors of Tutankhamun's galleries at the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir will not be able to admire the king's distinguished gold funerary mask which will leave its original display for intensive restoration to repair the improper restoration carried out recently.

Video clips of King Tut the Mini-Series

There are twenty-one video clips if you're itching to see things before the premiere on July 19.

Nile Magazine's article on the series has this tip: If you go into it expecting to be more entertained than enlightened, then you'll be fine. If the recent Exodus movie is any guide, Hollywood is great at the razzle dazzle, but on historical accuracy? Not so much.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Ancient Egypt this week: Isis to Osiris, Engineering Feats, Egyptian Blue, Recovered statue, Valley of Kings at Night, Rare Shroud, Tut-inspired jewelry, Papyrus discovery, and Pyramids from Space

Helsinki theatre changes name from Isis to Osiris
Is a name change a sign of surrender by an organisation whose name has been co-opted by a ruthless jihadist group? That question has been pondered by at least two Finnish firms.

Nine Engineering Feats of Ancient Egypt

In short:
The Great Pyramid of Giza
The Egyptian System of Measurement
The Tubular Drill
The Sphinx
The Ancient Egyptian Cutting Tools
The Granite and Basalt Boxes
The Statue of Ramses II at Memphis
The Statue of Ramses II at Luxor
The Egyptian Lathe

Egyptian Blue – The Oldest Known Artificial Pigment

Egyptian Blue, also known as calcium copper silicate, is one of the first artificial pigments used by man. The oldest known example of the exquisite pigment is said to be about 5000 years old. It was found in a tomb painting from the reign of Ka-Sen, the last pharaoh of the First Dynasty.

Egypt recovers 2,700-year-old statue from auction house in Germany

Egypt stopped the sale of a 2,700 year-old Egyptian statue that was put up for sale in a Germany-based auction hall. The statue was stolen from the storerooms of the Antiquities Ministry in Aswan’s Elephantine Island, which were looted in 2013.

For more information, see this article in the Cairo Post.


A whole new way to experience the New Kingdom pharaohs' sacred burial ground., or as one of the original visitors might have said, "I, Philastrios the Alexandrian, who have come to Thebes, and who have seen with my eyes the Colossi, and the work of these tombs of astounding horror, have spent a delightful day."

Rare ancient Egyptian shroud in first-of-kind auction in Paris

A rare ancient Egyptian burial cloth, more than 3,000 years old, is to go under the hammer in Paris. Such artifacts are usually found only in museum collections.

The small square of vividly painted fabric is among roughly 20 known to exist in the world. The majority are on display at museums like the Louvre and the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The King Tut–Inspired Gemstones Even Museums Can’t Afford

It couldn’t have been easy to stand out among all the flapper fringe of the Roaring 20s, but Linda Lee Porter, wife of the iconic Broadway composer Cole Porter, pulled it off with a belt buckle.

Mrs. Porter commissioned Cartier to create a scarab-beetle-shaped buckle brooch (on the far right) inspired by the ancient Egyptian treasures unearthed from King Tutankhamen’s tomb three years earlier in 1923. Unlike costume-jewelry copycats  and even fine pieces imitating the loot from the boy king’s tomb, hers was made from actual ancient Egyptian artifacts—namely, faience (glazed ceramic, often blue-green) culled from Louis Cartier’s collection. For good measure, Cartier set it with diamonds and sapphires in the fresh art-deco style of the time.

Ancient papyrus texts discovered

A valuable collection of ancient Egyptian papyrus manuscripts has been discovered in the University of Basel’s library after being forgotten for more than a century.  The 2,000-year-old texts, written in Greek, Latin, Coptic Egyptian and hieratic, were acquired by the university 115 years ago but were subsequently overlooked.

The coolest thing on Twitter?

A message from Nasa Astronaut Terry W. Virts:

It took me until my last day in space to get a good picture of these!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Summer Solstice in Ancient Egypt

In Ancient Egypt, summer solstice was the most important day of the year. The sun was at its highest and the Nile River was beginning to rise. It was the beginning of the Egyptian New Year.

Accurately predicting the floods and the start of the growing season was vitally important to Ancient Egyptians. It was linked to the appearance of Sopdet (the deification of Sothis, a star considered by almost all Egyptologists to be Sirius). Sopdet is depicted as a woman with a five-pointed star on her head. Sopdet  appears around the time of the summer solstice.

Special ceremonies were held to honor the goddess Isis. Egyptians believed Isis was mourning for her husband, Osiris who was killed by their brother Set, and  her tears made the Nile rise. Some believe the solar deity Horus, the son of Isis and Osiris, defeated his uncle Set at this time of the year. With this victory, divine order and fertility were restored in Egypt and allowed the Nile floods to come, bringing life back to the Nile valley.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Writers Retreat Workshop 2015: the "writing vacation that can change your life"

So to be honest, my initial reason for going to the Writers Retreat Workshop 2015 in San Antonio: my rather brilliant editor, Jason Sitzes, is the workshop director, and he suggested I attend. While he might disagree that I do everything he tells me to do, I always give his advice serious consideration.  There I am in the second row.

Some more honesty. This year, I've become a somewhat jaded conference/workshop attendee. I've been to a lot of them. I'm a little burned out. I've heard a lot of this stuff before, and (while I'm still not perfect -- just ask Jason) much of it just doesn't apply to me anymore. Still, my friend Ellan says any workshop/retreat/conference that offers one nugget of insight is worth its weight in gold. If so, the Writer's Retreat made me a wealthy woman.

Meeting and working with Richard Thomas author and editor of Dark House Press was an undiluted pleasure. I was skeptical when I  read his bio. After all, he's a neo-noir guy, and I write historical fantasy. How could he possibly help me? Right? OK. Wrong. Richard was one of  the most enthusiastic and helpful writers I met at this workshop and maybe anywhere. I was in his critique group and had a private critique on the new novel I've been mulling over. As with all new projects, I'm in a bit of a dither about where to start. After talking with Richard a couple of times, I think I'm straightened out or at least heading in the direction of straightened out. He was also amazingly encouraging about my new project. I liked working with him so much, we discussed him traveling downstate to do a workshop for the Quincy Writers' Guild. I'm working on finding the money to fund that. Richard was a very big nugget.

My second nugget was Carol Doughterty. Carol began in the Writer’s Retreat Workshop in the early 90’s and then changed her focus from writing fiction to writing as a Zen practice. She lived at and worked for the San Francisco Zen Center, was ordained as a Zen Buddhist priest, and earned a Master of Divinity at Naropa University. Every morning, Carol led us in a meditation and then a writing exercise somewhat akin to the morning pages in the Artist's Way. I've done morning pages before with varying degrees of success; but with Carol's direction and exercises, I came to a major realization about a character who was well on his way to becoming a stereotype. I also got the germ of a couple of scenes from those sessions. Well, worth the price of admission. She's also a marvelous editor, as I found out in my 1:1 session with her. I would be remiss if I didn't mention that I became so involved in talking with her, I left my beloved jeans jacket behind. It's a work of art I've been embellishing for about 10 years now, and I rarely let it out of my sight. She was that impressive.

There were many other nugget-worthy moments. Too many to mention them all, but here's a sampling. Les Edgerton's scene by scene analysis of Thelma and Louise. The night-owl sessions where things sometimes got a little weird. (How to write a damn good sex scene comes to mind; I'll never think of asparagus in the same way.) Indulging in our workshop tradition of raiding Walgreens for mini-bottles of wine with Ellan. Watching Letterman's retirement. Stumbling to my room and agreeing with a young acolyte that yes, this is somewhat like all those conversations in college in which we discovered the meaning of life. Meeting some interesting writers and reconnecting with old writer-friends. Feeling very well taken care by Gail Provost Stockwell who worried over my "workshop rash." Soaking up the atmosphere of the Oblate Retreat Center and finding its gift shop where I discovered the Virgin of Guadalupe that I've been searching for. May she inspire many afternoons of writing on my front porch.

And last but not least, Larry Brill, a writer and videographer, documented the day and a half Donald Maass spent at the retreat.

Registration is open for 2016. So if  you want to bump your writing to the next level, now is the time.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Ancient Egypt this week: Mummifying millions, 26th Dynasty Tombs, Sun Temples of Abusir, Karnak, and the Sphinx

Mummifying Millions: The Canine Catacombs and the Animal Cult Industry of Ancient Egypt

Many associate two popular themes with ancient Egypt: animal worship and mummies. The two have been combined on unprecedented levels deep in the Catacombs of Anubis in North Saqqara. The necropolis of Saqqara is the burial site of kings, commoners and sacred animals.

Six tombs containing mummies belonging to elite figures of 26th Dynasty unearthed in Egypt

A new collection of 26th Dynasty tombs are uncovered in Aswan, described as 'distinguished' by Egypt's antiquities minister. Minister of Antiquities Mamdouh Eldamaty describes the discovery as "distinguished" in being the first discovery in that area of tombs from the Late Pharaonic period. All the tombs previously discovered there are dated to the Old and Middle kingdoms.

The missing sun temples of Abusir 

There are some sun temples out there somewhere.

Abusir is one of the large cemeteries of the Old Kingdom kings, around 16 kilometres south of the famous Great Pyramids of Giza.

The Burning Question after the Karnak Attack

At lot has been written since local police pounced on a planned attack at Karnak Temple on Wednesday. Much of it revolves around the big question: is it safe to visit Egypt right now?

 Excavating the Sphinx

The Great Sphinx is believed to be the most immense stone sculpture in the round ever made by man.

The figure was buried for most of its life in the sand. King Thutmose IV (1425 - 1417 BC) placed a stela between the front paws of the figure, describing an event, while he was still a prince, when he had gone hunting and fell asleep in the shade of the sphinx. During a dream, the sphinx spoke to Thutmose and told him to clear away the sand. The sphinx told him that if he did this, he would be rewarded with the kingship of Egypt. Thutmose carried out this request and the sphinx held up his end of the bargain. Of course, over time, the great statue, the only single instance of a colossal sculpture carved in the round directly out of the natural rock, once again found itself buried beneath the sand.

When Napoleon arrived in Egypt in 1798, the Sphinx was buried once more with sand up to its neck, at by this point, we believe the nose had been missing for at least 400 years. Between 1816 and 1817, the Genoese merchant, Caviglia tried to clear away the sand, but he only managed to dig a trench down the chest of the statue and along the length of the forepaws. Auguste Mariette, the founder of the Egyptian Antiquities Service,also attempted to excavate the Sphinx, but gave up in frustration over the enormous amount of sand. He went on to explore the Khafre Valley Temple, but returned to the Great Sphinx to excavate in 1858. This time, he managed to clear the sand down to the rock floor of the ditch around the Sphinx, discovering in the process several sections of the protective walls around the ditch, as well as odd masonry boxes along the body of the monument which might have served as small shrines. However, he apparently still did not clear all the sand.

In 1885, Gaston Maspero, then Director of the Antiquities Service, once again tried to clear the Sphinx, but after exposing the earlier work of Caviglia and Mariette, he also was forced to abandon the project due to logistical problems.

Between 1925 and 1936, French engineer Emile Baraize excavated the Sphinx on behalf of the Antiquities Service, and apparently for the first time since antiquity, the great beast once again became exposed to the elements.

In fact, the sand has been its savior, since, being built of soft sandstone, it would have disappeared long ago had it not been buried for much of its existence.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Ancient Egypt this week: Amelia Edwards, Objects returned, Designer Egypt, Clothing, Tut the Movie, and Tut in Cape Town with videos

Who was Amelia Edwards?

Surprisingly few people have heard of Amelia Edwards. Archaeologists know her as the founder of the Egyptian Exploration Fund, set up in 1882, and the Department of Egyptology at University College London, created in 1892 through a bequest on her death. The first Edwards Professor, Flinders Petrie, was appointed on Amelia’s recommendation and her name is still attached to the Chair of Egyptian Archaeology

Archaeologist? Travel writer? Novelist? Journalist? Musician? Linguist? Fund-Raiser? Feminist? Amelia Edwards was more than equal to any task. I want to be Amelia Edwards when I grow up.

Swiss return ancient cultural objects to Egypt
Switzerland has returned 32 cultural treasures dating from the Pharaonic and Roman periods to the Egyptian Embassy in Bern, the Federal Office of Culture announced on Monday. The objects had been involved in a cantonal criminal procedure.

Exclusive first look: Christian Louboutin launches Scarabée limited edition collection
It's no secret that Christian Louboutin considers Egypt to be his unofficial second home, as he is drawn in by the iconography and mythology of this ancient land, and naturally the creative designer finds abundant inspiration here. The new Scarabée limited edition collection of nail-colours is another shining example his ability to translate worldly themes.

Some very cool photographs of perfume at ancient sites.

How do we know about clothing in Ancient Egypt?

At Petrie Museum you find one of the oldest garments from Egypt on display in the world, the Tarkhan dress (pictured below) made of linen from around 3000 BC. There is also a reconstructed bead net dress that may have been worn for dancing in Dynasty 5 (c. 2400 BC). A visitor who was fascinated by these two garments asked me: how do we learn about Egyptian clothing?

'Tut': Sir Ben Kingsley Previews the Epic Spike Miniseries

The past comes alive in this exclusive new trailer for Spike’s event miniseries, Tut, which chronicles the brief reign of one of Ancient Egypt’s most famous pharaohs, Tutankhamun. I'll be right there on July 19, although I am invariably disappointed in movies about ancient Egypt. Keeping my fingers crossed.

Tut exhibition opens in Cape Town

"'Tutankhamun - His Tomb and His Treasures'  opened in Cape Town. The exhibit includes a multimedia presentation introducing visitors to the stories of King Tutankhamun, archaeologist Howard Carter ,and ancient Egypt. Visitors will also get to explore "faithfully reconstructed the tomb of Tutankhamun" which has been created to scale and includes replicas of the artifacts found within the tomb. Visit the exhibition site, read another review, and watch the following video for the exhibit.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Ah, Anubis, we hardly knew ye!

Anubis, one of my favorite Egyptian gods. He of the uncertain origins. Is he Wepewat, the god of cemeteries, repurposed? Another version of Khentamentiu? The son of Osiris and Nephthys? Or was it Set and Nephthys? Was he abandoned Nephthys and raised by Isis? Certainly, he must have helped Isis make Osiris into the first mummy. Then, Osiris usurped his role as Lord of the Underworld. Ingrate!

Anubis always lived in the shadow of death as a protector of graves, an embalmer, and the god who ushered souls into the underworld and attended the Weighing of the Heart.  One of the most ancient and most frequently depicted and mentioned gods in the Egyptian pantheon, Anubis played almost no role in Egyptian myths.

To celebrate the greatness that is Anubis. a video.

In my novel, Queen of Heka, Anubis was originally a major character. Through subsequent drafts, he became less and less prominent. (Are we seeing a pattern here?) Finally, reluctantly, I am removing one of my favorite scenes (reproduced here) that is told from his POV, a scene that takes place before he is a god, but hints at his future role.  Maybe someday, Big A will have his own novel, and I can use it again.

      Nubis powdered his hair gray and blackened out his front teeth with a resin. He smeared white clay over his face to replicate the weary pallor he saw in the streets. When the face in the mirror looked nothing like him, he went outside where frankincense from the temples mingled with beer and vomit.
      Statues of Min held court in every quarter of the city. The three-day festival honoring the god of pleasure and fertility spawned a single benediction. 
      A blessing to you, Min, who fertilizes the mother. Deep is the secret of what you did to her in the dark.
      Women, desperate to conceive, placed flower garlands on the statues. Men, seeking godly vigor, poured offerings of strong beer for the god who wore the double-plumed crown and a shroud out of which an enormous black penis emerged.
      As night shrouded the city, Min’s gold-flecked eyes perused the crowd with deific indifference. Smoke from guttering torches floated above the taverns and tenements. Nubis found the Queen celebrating in a tavern by the river. Yuya hovered nearby, making sure no one crowded her. Nubis sidled up to him.
      “I thank you.” Yuya quaffed the beer Nubis offered in Min’s name.
      “A good festival this year,” Nubis said, elated that his disguise duped the usually observant Yuya. Or maybe, as Seti taunted, Yuya had simply forgotten him.
      “Can’t say I know. Been with her the whole three days.” Yuya arched his eyebrows toward the Queen. “She’ll be about the city until sunrise, then I’m off to my own bed.”
      That was all Nubis needed to know, but the long night still stretched out before him. They drank another bowl of beer. 
      “Gods!” Yuya made a rude noise with his lips. “This one, Min. Should I fall on my knees just because his rod’s bigger than mine? Then, there’s other one with the lion head."
      "Sekhmet,” Nubis said.
      “Sekhmet, yeah, Sekhmet.” Yuya’s tone was suddenly belligerent. “They say she killed people and guzzled their blood until even Ra ran and hid. Someone, maybe some other god, I don’t remember anymore, gave her a barrel of wine. She thought it was blood and drank until she passed out.”
      Nubis nodded; it was an old story. 
      “Are them gods better than us?” Yuya gulped beer and belched. “They live longer. They kill us on a whim. Damn me if that makes them better.”
      “We deserve better gods.”
      Nubis had never agreed with Yuya before now. He dismissed the thought, because next he might start regretting what he had to do. Down that path, a debacle.  As Yuya rambled, the level of the water clock sank. Finally, Nubis excused himself and walked to a tavern owned by a man named Het where Yuya’s woman served beer. He loitered —wishing there was some other way to get into Yuya’s house — until she left. Then, he tracked her, staying in the shadows until they passed the last tavern.
     “Name yourself.” Her hand slipped inside her bodice and withdrew a knife.
      “Someone who wants to be a friend. Het said you might be looking for a friend.”
      “Nubis Bakh?” She squinted in the darkness and came close enough to brush the hair out of his face. “What are you hiding behind that white hair?”
      “Ah, you’re a clever one.” A pity. He had planned to spare her, but recognition sealed her fate. “Het said Yuya was busy tonight.”
      “Always on the Queen’s business that one,” she said, diverted as he intended. “As you might be, except you chose sand and scorpions. Gods above, the tales they tell about you.”
      Nubis knew most of them, had even started a few.
      “Did you really kill a lion when you was still a boy and suckle at a jackal’s tit? Isn’t that why they call you the Jackal Lord?” Lotus had always been a talker.
      “I’m just some hired sword.” Nubis fell in step with her. The perfume cone in her hair had slumped from the heat and left an oily trail on a clump of curls. “It’s the festival of Min. I most desperately need a frolic. Are you willing to frolic with the Jackal Lord?”
      “Maybe.” She squeezed his arm. “What do you have for me?”
      They both knew Yuya’s rage wasn’t worth risking for a few debens of copper, so             Nubis held up a silver ring to catch the moonlight.
     She nodded and tucked the ring and the knife into her bodice. “My house isn’t far.”
      Their house was almost in the desert. Nubis let the small falsehood stand, so she wouldn’t suspect he’d canvassed her home. Several nights earlier, under the cover of darkness, he scaled the walls, because there were no windows. From the roof, he counted four small rooms that opened into a tiny central garden, patrolled by a brute of a dog. Yuya was nothing if not careful.
      When they arrived, Lotus slipped a key into a knot hole in the door’s cross beam. The wood pins rasped against wood sockets. She locked it behind them before pulling off her shift. Leaning against the wall, she arched her back. A little bag, heavy with copper, hung between her breasts. A low growl came from the corner. A black hound padded toward them, almost filling the small room.
      “Shut up, Tum.” Lotus cuffed the beast; her breasts jiggled.
      Nubis dropped to his haunches and stretched out his fingers, letting the dog smell him and lick his face. He scratched its ears.
      With a gruff command for the dog to stay, Lotus motioned Nubis to follow her across the garden into the bedroom. She put the bag of coins in a carved box and carefully locked it before grabbing at his kilt. He avoided the lunge.
      “What about a bath?” Nubis asked. “I need a lovely, cool bath.”
      She licked her lips suggestively and ushered him into a cramped alcove with a serviceable copper tub. She uncorked the spout connected to the outside tank. Water trickled into the tub. He took her arm and helped her into the tub.
      “Ah, that feels good.” She slid down until the water lapped at her chin.  He knelt, planting kisses along her spine and massaging her shoulders. Her cheek rubbed the back of his hand. His fingers crept higher until he had her head locked between his hands.
      “I am sorry, Lotus.”
       It was a quiet sound, the jolt of flesh and bone giving way to copper when he smashed her head against the tub. She went heavy in his hands. Beneath the tangled hair, blood trickled from a finger-wide gash. He released his grip; she slid beneath the water.  
    A dollop of oil from the perfume cone glistened on the water and drifted into a lazy spiral. He kept a slight pressure on her forehead, holding her beneath the surface until there were no more air bubbles.
      Bowing his head, Nubis recited a Prayer for the Dead, a custom he scrupulously observed whenever he killed someone. “I pray thee, travel safely on thy way. May the Spirits give ba unto you instead of water and air and the longings of love; let quietness of heart be given unto you instead of cakes and ale. Look upon the face of Khenti Amenti and may the power of Khenti Amenti purify you and make you whole.”
      Lotus’s hair floated around her face. Her eyes, fixed in death’s single-minded stare, were incredulous. He had observed the same expression in the eyes of every single person he killed.
      In the distance, a single voice offered a final salute to Min. Deep is the secret of what you did to her in the dark.
      Nubis left Lotus in the tub. Water might save her body from the fire he meant to start so her family could bury her. His quarrel was not with her; he saw no reason to begrudge her making the journey to the Realm of the Blessed Dead.
      He went to the kitchen. The larder held a haunch of smoked beef against which he tested the sharpness of his blade. “Tum.”
      The dog came directly and gobbled a hunk of meat. Nubis sat on a small stool. The dog nuzzled between his legs, wiggling with happiness as Nubis alternately scratched his head and fed him. Tum’s guttural noises became a single yelp when Nubis snapped his neck.
      Dawn brightened the sky. The house lay silent as a tomb. Then, he heard the lock’s rasp. Yuya, reeking of beer, staggered through the door and down the hall. Nubis caught him outside the bedroom, the knife nothing more than a flicker in the gray light of dawn. Blood, hot and thick, filled the air with its coppery stink.
      For good measure, Nubis recited a curse that condemned Yuya for a million years. “Terror of the Living; Angry Spirits of the Condemned Dead, I write thy name, Yuya. I burn thy name in flames, Yuya. I kill thy name, Yuya, and thus thee are accursed even unto the underworld where I will kill thee again.”  
      Then, he piled furniture and rags into a heap and set a blaze fierce enough to destroy Yuya’s body along with his name.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Ancient Egypt this week: Grave secrets, onions, and death magic

Technology helps unlock secrets of mummies

Doctors have become accustomed to using magnetic resonance imaging or CT scans to assess a whole range of ailments in living human beings. Now, scientists are increasingly using the same technology to unlock the secrets of dead - in many cases the mummified remains of humans dating back thousands of years.

In Ancient Egypt, Life Wasn’t Easy for Elite Pets
For ancient Egyptians, owning a menagerie of exotic animals conveyed power and wealth. But the remains of baboons, hippos, and other elite pets buried more than 5,000 years ago in a graveyard near the Nile reveal the dark side of being a status symbol.

Grilling the onion an ancient tradition updated
None revered the onion more than the ancient Egyptians did. They worshiped the onions seeing them as symbols of eternal life. Believing that the concentric layers of an onion was an image of existence into eternity and that the healing properties of onions would be helpful in the afterlife, they buried their dead with onions and onion flowers on and around the body, and mummies often were found adorned with onions.

Status of Osiris at the moment of his resurrection

The gods and goddesses of ancient Egypt were busier than our modern lot — less bloodthirsty too. History has shown us that gods mutate according to human desires. For the Egyptians, ensuring the fertility of crops was a necessity which the Nile River assisted by the gods, attended to. But making it through to the next world — the afterlife – was an even more pressing matter. Ensuring a safe passage to it accompanied by worldly goods was the job of a complex pantheon of gods and goddesses who evolved to administer the necessary rites and rituals.