Ankh Ankh Ankh Ankh Ankh

Notes for teachers

Ankh Ankh Ankh Ankh Ankh
These web pages are designed with young children in mind. They could be used in the History National Curriculum for Primary School. Anyone reading about Egyptian gods will soon realise that sex and violence are not just modern obsessions! I have toned this down as much as I can without destroying the point of the stories. For example Osiris and Isis were actually brother and sister, and I have left this out. But Nut and Geb is a story of adultery, and the rest of the stories can be quite gruesome or spooky. Osiris' story is about Death. You will have to check the stories for yourself to see if they are suitable for your pupils, or whether you will need to discuss any of the events in class. I have also tried to avoid long, boring lists. Every god has a picture and a story or facts about the god. I have also included some symbols, since these were very important for the Ancient Egyptians. You can try finding the symbols in these pages, and elsewhere.

Egyptian Mythology has a very complex history. The Egyptian civilisation lasted a very long time, and gods became more or less important. A god like Seth (Set) started as a respectable god, but then there was a power struggle between worshippers of Seth, and those of Horus. Since the followers of Horus won, Seth was naturally rewitten as a 'baddie', although it is interesting that several gods, including Horus, use Seth's sceptre. Amun was a god of Thebes who eventually became top god, but has no stories that I can find at all! But I had to include him because of Tutankhamun. You also got confusion between gods. Isis is often portrayed with horns and sun-disk, like Hathor. Indeed, one reference says "All goddesses are Hathor". Also both Ra and Horus are falcons. Hathor and Sekhmet are the same goddess, although they have different forms, and completely different characters, and Bastet has the head of a cat, but originally had the head of a lion, like Sekhmet. It was either Sekhmet which kills the snake Apep, or Ra in the form of a cat. And so on. So the stories and images are often simplified, but I have tried to make sure that they are accurate as far as they go.

These are some of the websites that I got information from. They are not necessarily child-friendly!

Egyptian Mythological Deities
Encyclopedia Mythica
Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Egypt Gallery from the BBC
Ancient Egypt from the British Museum
Egyptian Religions & Important Egyptian Gods
The Ancient Egypt site
List of Ancient Egypt gods

In Association with In Association with
I recommend
Understanding Hieroglyphs by Hilary Wilson - for background information - buy UK or USA
Reading Egyptian Art by Richard H. Wilkinson - symbols in Egyptian art - buy UK or USA

My name is Jo Edkins. I do not have any qualification in this field - merely an interest.

Egyptian Gods index