ancient egypt: history and culture
Ancient Egyptian bestiary: Falcons
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Source: Excerpt, 'Ancient Egypt', Time-Life Books
    The Barbary falcon (Falco peregrinoides), about 40 cm tall, lives in Egypt all year round, as does the somewhat smaller Sooty falcon and the kestrel (falco tinnunculus). The merlin hibernates, while the Hobby (falco subbuteo), the Red footed falcon (falco vespertinus) and the Lesser kestrel (falco naumanni) just pass through.
    The falcon was the symbol of Horus' earthly descendants, the pharaohs. He was also the master of the skies protecting the earth with his wings.
    There are some other falcon deities: Montu, a god of war, wearing a double crown of feathers, the god of the dead Sokaris and the sun god Re. Sometimes Hathor was depicted as a falcon, a female counterpart of the heavenly Horus.

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