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

    Shed, the Saviour or the Enchanter, whose epithets were "Great God, Lord of Heaven", and "Lord of Deserts",[10] was a child god who is documented first at Amarna [7] and became popular during the later New Kingdom being often represented on apotropaic stelae, so-called cippi.[12] He belonged to a group of apoptropaic deities whose powers were very specific:[3] He was invoked as protector against snake bites and scorpion stings. As a desert god Shed is related to Horus, Lord of the Desert.[9]
    Shed was usually depicted frontally as a child or a youth wearing a sidelock, fighting against dangerous animals,[1] trampling on crocodiles and strangling snakes–similar to Horus the Child, with whom he was at times identified [2] and merged into Hor-Shed since the 26th dynasty.[8] In a depiction Hor-Shed is represented in profile, holding an oryx and two snakes in one hand and a lion and a scorpion in the other, while the face of Bes is carved above him.[11] He is also shown on a chariot, drawn by crocodiles and griffins which are described as catchers of serpents.[4] From the Coptic period there exists an amulet showing Christ and New Testamental scenes on the one side, and a winged Horus-Shed fighting scorpions and crocodiles on the other.[5]


Footnotes:
[1] Geraldine Pinch, Magic in ancient Egypt, University of Texas Press, 1995, p.36
[2] John Francis Nunn, Ancient Egyptian Medicine, University of Oklahoma Press, 2002, pp.107f.
[3] Olaf E. Kaper, The Egyptian god Tutu: a study of the sphinx-god and master of demons with a corpus of monuments, Peeters Publishers, 2003, p.123
[4] Kaper 2003, p.82
[5] Erik Hornung, The secret lore of Egypt: its impact on the West, Cornell University Press, 2001, p.75
[6] Anna Stevens, Private religion at Amarna: the material evidence, Archaeopress, 2006, p.143
[7] Ian Shaw, The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt, Oxford University Press, 2002, p.313
[8] Council for British Research in the Levant, British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem, British Institute at Amman for Archaeology and History, Levant, British School of Archaeology in Jerusalem, 1973, p.81
[9] Sylvia Schoske, Akten des vierten Internationalen Ägyptologen Kongresses, München, 1985, 1991,ęp. 251
[10] Ancient Egyptian religion, Hutchinson's University Library, 1957, p.72
[11] Hartwig Altenmüller, Dietrich Wildung, Studien zur altägyptischen Kultur, H. Buske Verlag, p.145
[12] Robert Kriech Ritner, The mechanics of ancient Egyptian magical practice, Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago, 1993, p.106
 

 
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