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Khensu Nefer-Hetep


Khensu Nefer-Hetep

KHENSU NEFER-HETEP form of Ra, the son of the goddess Nubit, a child in "the morning, an old man in the evening, a youth at the beginning "of the year, who cometh as a child after he had become infirm,"and who reneweth his births like Disk." From this passage it appears that khensu-pa-khart was both the spring sun, and the spring moon, and also the moon at the beginning of each month, in fact, the symbol of the renewed light of the sun and moon, and the source of generation and reproduction. In these aspects he was readily identified with many forms of the young Sun-god, whether Horus or Ra, and with some of the gods of reproduction, i.g., Amsu, or Min. As a Horus god he became the son of Osiris. As Dr. Brugsch pointed out, the "two Bulls" mentioned in texts of the late period are Osiris and Khensu, and they represent the Sun and the Moon. The forms in which Khensu is depicted on the monuments are of considerable interest, and may be thus described. Whether standing or seated on a throne he has usually the body of a man with the head of a hawk ; sometimes, however, his head also is that of a man. He wears on his head the lunar disk in a crescent, or the solar disk with a uraeus, or the solar disk with the plumes and a uraeus. As "Khensu of Behutet, the great god, lord of heaven," he is seen seated on a throne and holding in his hands. As Khensu Nefer-hetep he appears on the throne ; over his forehead is the uraeus of royalty and by the side of his head is the lock of youth. Behind his neck hangs the menat, and below his chin is the collar which is usually worn by Hathor ; in his hands are and. On the stele behind his back are two pairs of ears and two pairs of eyes, and the deceased is made to address the god as "lord of gods, Khensu-nefer-Hetep-Tehuti, lord of Annu "rest {i.e., Annu of the South, chief Mabi, peace, "peace, O gracious one, who art at peace, and who lovest "peace." As Khensu, the mighty, who cometh forth from Nu," he is provided with the two hawks' heads, one facing to the right and the other to the left, and four wings, and he stands with each foot upon the head of a crocodile ; on his heads rest the lunar crescent and disk. In this form he represents both the sun at sunrise and the new moon, and the two crocodiles symbolize the two great powers of darkness over which he has triumphed. As "Khensu, the chronographer, he wears the solar disk on his head and holds a stylus in his right hand, and the Khensu-Ra, he wears the crown,. The phrase of Khensu which appears to have been of the greatest interest to the Egyptians was that which was deified under the name of Khensu Nefer-hetep. This god not only ruled the month, but he also supposed to possess absolute power over the evil sprits which infested earth, air, sea, and sky, and which made themselves hostile to man and attacked his body under the forms of pains, sickness, and diseases, and produced decay, and madness, and death. He it was, moreover, who made plants to grow, and fruit to ripen, and animals to conceive, and to men and women he was the god of love. We have no means of knowing what views the Egyptians held concerning the influence of the moon on the minds oh human beings on the seventh, fourteenth, and twenty-first day of its age, but it is probable that, like the Arabs, they assigned to it different and special powers on each of these days, In the reign of Rameses III, and according to a tradition which his priests in very much later times caused to be inscribed upon a stele, the fame of his Theban representative was so wide-spread that it reached to a remote country called Bekhten, which was situated at a distance of a journey of seventeen months from Egypt.


PRINCESS OF BEKHTEN

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