Sobek, Lord of the Land of the Lake

Edda Bresciani

in Divine Creatures

Published by American University in Cairo Press

Published in print April 2005 | ISBN: 9789774248580
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781936190010 | DOI:
Sobek, Lord of the Land of the Lake

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The primeval power of Sobek is already acknowledged in a hymn from the Pyramid Texts (PT 317), where the dead pharaoh identifies himself with the god, who here appears as son of the Great Neith-Meher-Weret, the celestial cow of the inundation: “Sobek, green of feathers, alert-looking, broad-chested, sparkling, coming out from the legs and the tail of the Great One, who is in splendour.” This very ancient description of the divine reptile, who in the same “Pyramid Texts” bears also the epithet of Shedite (“that of Shedet,” the capital town of the swampy region of the Fayum lake), incorporates his basic characteristics. The deification and the cult of the crocodile belong to the religious phenomenon of the ancient Egyptian animal cult. The animal specimen which embodied the god was always unique, as a new one took the place of the dead one, who was mummified and buried with solemn rituals.

Keywords: Sobek; Neith-Meher-Weret; reptile; Shedite; Egyptian animal cult

Chapter.  2737 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Society and Culture

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