ancient egypt: history and culture
Ancient Egyptian deities: Kadesh
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Kadesh

    also Qadesh, Qadishtu, Qetesh, Kent etc.

Kadesh     Originally a Middle Eastern goddess identified with Ashtoret, Kadesh was introduced into the Egyptian pantheon as qdS (transliterated qdS) during the New Kingdom, when the Egyptians came into closer contact with the peoples of the Levant.
    She was a love and sex goddess and as such at times given attributes typical of Hathor such as the sistrum. She was generally depicted frontally as a woman, naked or wearing a tight fitting dress, standing on a male lion, holding snakes, lotus stems, or lotus blossoms [1] in her hands and wearing the cow horns and sun-disk of Hathor on her head.

Kadesh, Stela in the Egyptian Museum of Turin

    Kadesh was at times identified with Hathor or Isis and associated with Re, Min and Reshef. On the Turin and other stelae she is called Lady of Heaven, the mistress of all the gods, the eye of Re, without a second.
    Her name is supposed to be derived from semitic qdS (qedesh), a temple prostitute.
 

[1] Lotus flowers are often depicted in New Kingdom images of festivities or sex where they hover above the heads of the revellers.

Other Middle Eastern deities worshipped in Egypt:
Astarte, Ishtar
Baal
Hauron
Reshef
 

 
© October 2005
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