ancient egypt: history and culture
Ancient Egyptian deities: Marul
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also Merwel, Mandulis
The temple of Debod, rebuilt in Madrid     Marul or Merwel (Greek Mandulis) was a Lower Nubian sun god identified with Re and venerated by the nomads of the country.

The temple of Debod.
Its original site was near the Isis temple at Philae. It was dismantled before the flooding of the Nile valley because of the Aswan dam and rebuilt in Madrid.
© Osvaldo Gago
This file is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 2.0

At Debod Mandulis was associated with Geb and Nut.[1] As a child and as a sun god he appeared in the form of Mandulis the Child and Mandulis the Elder respectively, two falcons bedecked with flowers.[3] He was represented in human shape wearing a hemhem crown, a headdress of horns, cobras and plumes, topped by sundisks. He was associated with Horus.
    A first temple in his honour was built at Kalabsha 50 km south of Aswan during the 18th dynasty and replaced under the Ptolemies and later the Roman emperor Augustus by the largest free standing temple in Nubia which attracted Greek and Roman pilgrims and soldiers from afar. To these believers he was a form of the god Aion from Alexandria, while to the nomads he was the son of Horus, the merging of the two deities being a deliberate act of syncretism on behalf of the authorities, intended to unite nomads and soldiers in the worship of a common god.

Marul Marul, temple at Kalabsha
© Wikipedia user Ben Pirard, published under the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2

    Marul also had a chapel at Philae, close to the Isis temple and was possibly closely asociated with the goddess.[2]
    The last dated hieroglyphic inscription written in Egypt was dedicated to this god and inscribed in the Isis temple at Philae in the year 394 CE:
Before Mandulis, son of Horus, made by Esmetakhom, son of Esmet, the second priest of Isis, for ever and eternally. Words to be spoken by Mandulis, Lord of the Abaton, the great god.
The rest of the inscription was written in demotic, possibly because the writer's knowledge of hieroglyphs was limited living in these last years of the dying ancient Egyptian culture.
David Frankfurter, Religion in Roman Egypt: Assimilation and Resistance, Princeton University Press 1998, pp.108f.
[1] The Harvard Theological Review 1908, Harvard Divinity School, p.54
[2] George Hart, The Routledge Dictionary Of Egyptian Gods And Goddesses , Routledge 2005, pp.91f.
[3] Claude Traunecker, The Gods of Egypt, Cornell University Press 2001, p.106

© February 2008
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