Egyptology Glossary: Ancient Egypt and Egyptology has a bewildering array of confusing names and terminology, this Egyptology Glossary will hopefully go some way to describe many of the most common words and phrases.
Egyptology Glossary
Egyptology Glossary

Egyptology Glossary

Ancient Egypt and Egyptology has a bewildering array of confusing names and terminology, this Egyptology Glossary will hopefully go some way to describe many of the most common words and phrases.

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Pa shed
Pa shed

Pa shed meaning the Saviour or Enchanter

Added: 30/05/2009

Pectoral
Pectoral

An ornament—often elaborate—suspended by a cord or necklace and worn on the chest.

Added: 30/05/2009

Peh-Netcher
Peh-Netcher

Peh-Netcher meaning sorcery

Added: 30/05/2009

Per Ankh
Per Ankh

Per Ankh meaning House of Life.

Added: 30/05/2009

Pert
Pert

Pert - Coming forth or appearing.

Added: 30/05/2009

Per-Wer
Per-Wer

The Egyptian word for the King’s Palace, meaning Great House (per means house and wer means great), and it is from this word that we get the word pharaoh.

Added: 30/05/2009

Primal Mound
Primal Mound

The Primal Mound was also the place upon which the creator God stood, which varies from cosmology to cosmology, and brought about the creation of the other gods. It is the point of origin of all things, the place where everything first came into being.

Added: 30/05/2009

Punt
Punt

The land of Punt was regarded by the ancient Egyptians almost as a semi-mythical place or country and was used as an exotic setting in ancient Egyptian literature. It was always regarded as something a bit special, a magical land. It is found in Egyptian stories, particularly in the love poems and songs of the New Kingdom.

But it was a real place, as well as being a kind of mythical place; it was also a centre for commercial enterprise. Although it is depicted in the Hatshepsut scenes as being a one-way affair, in reality it was much different. They sent envoys to the Red Sea ports where they arranged the exchanges of goods with merchants from Punt. (Punt is not thought to be on the Red Sea coast itself, but located elsewhere.)

Added: 30/05/2009

Pyramid
Pyramid

The word pyramid comes from the Greek word pyramis, meaning ‘wheat and cakes’; the ancient Egyptian word for pyramid is Mer meaning ‘Place of Ascension’, which gives some inkling into the function of the pyramid as a place to ascend to the heavens and join with the sun god.

Added: 30/05/2009

Pyramid Complex
Pyramid Complex

The Pyramid Complex comprises of the following elements.

1. The Pyramid itself, which is the burial place of the king.
2. The Mortuary Temple, also called the Royal Cultus Temple (r.c.t.), which was where the funeral service was held and the food offerings given.
3. The Causeway, which would have been covered joining the mortuary temple with the Valley temple.
4. The Valley Temple, which functioned as a sort of reception area, where the kings body was brought by river. This would have originally been on the bank of the Nile, but over the thousands of years the river has changed its course. (It was once thought that the Valley Temple or Building was the place where mummification took place.)

Added: 30/05/2009

Pyramid Texts
Pyramid Texts

The earliest religious texts are the Pyramid Texts, taking the form of inscritiptions found inscribed on the walls and corridors of 5th and 6th Dynasty Pyramids (2465-2150BC). The Pyramid Texts are a series of magic spells, incantations, religious beliefs and myths that are used to magically tranform the deceased into Osiris. When the King was alive he was thought of as being Horus [son of Isis]. The deceased is always addressed or referred to as Osiris 'so and so', and the Pyramid Texts are designed to bring about this transformation.

The Priests of Heliopolis are credited with their origin, prompted by a desire to provide the deceased with knowledge of the Tuat or Underworld. The rituals also tell the story of Isis and Osiris, though they do not tell the story in a connected order as this was not their purpose. The story of Isis and Osiris by Plutarch was the collected story, in Egyptian literature there is no one collected body of work that tells the whole story of Isis and Osiris.

Each sentence of the text is referred to as a spell, each group of spells dealing with a unit of the ritual is called an 'Utterance'. There are 2217 spells or fragments divided into 714 Utterances. The Pyramid Texts gave way to the Coffin Texts in the First Intermediate Period (2134-2040BC).

Added: 30/05/2009

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