Horus

We bought this statue of Horus at the British Museum in October 2013.

Horus is one of the oldest and most important gods of the Egyptian Pantheon. Horus was present in some form from the late Predynastic period (around 3100 BCE) through to Greco-Roman times.

Horus’s most common appearance is that of a falcon-headed man, similar to other bimorphic representations such as Anubis and Bastet, however Horus took many forms. Other forms included a falcon, a sphinx, or a lion with the head of a falcon. Rather than being a single being, Horus is accepted as a general term for a number of falcon gods.

In the older versions of the deity Horus was the god of war of Egypt’s neighbouring tribes, however once he was absorbed into Egypt’s state religion Horus became first the son of Ra and later the son of Osiris.

The symbolism of Horus

In all of his forms Horus is worshipped as the prince of the gods and the patron of the current ruler. He is sometimes shown in Egyptian art as a falcon resting on the shoulder of the Pharaoh, whispering guidance into his ear.

At times Horus was also the patron of young men. Horus was idolised as the idea of the dutiful son who grows up to become a just and fair man.

The Eye of Horus

The Wedjat Eye, or Eye of Horus, was a symbol of protection in ancient Egypt, worn to ensure the health and safety and provide wisdom and prosperity to the bearer. Click here for more info on this symbol.

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