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Illustrated Guide to Mythology

Egyptian Mythology


Thoth


Thoth is the god of many different areas: wisdom, the moon, the arts, writing, math, science and arbitration. He is also thought to be the official scribe of the gods. He is often depicted with an ibis head, a moon disk, and a scroll.

Thoth
Thoth

Example

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Thoth’s birth tale was one mired in violence and trickery. Some versions said that he was created by Ra; but many other versions depicted Thoth as the product of a night of domination and revenge between Horus and Set. At the end of it, Thoth was believed to have come from Horus’ seed and borne through Set’s forehead.

Thoth was very often the arbitrator between gods, including Ra vs. Apep, Horus vs. Set, and Bekhutet vs. Set. He would always restore health to a god who was seriously injured so that neither god could physically overpower the other. Thoth was also believed to be the creator of the modern calendar. According to legends, he bargained with the moon to gain five days of its light so that Nut the sky goddess could be fertile and bear children. Before this, the calendar was only 360 days long.

Thoth was also the god who aided Isis in recovering the dismembered parts of her husband, Osiris’ body, after they had been scattered all over the earth by Set. After helping her get the pieces together, he embalmed Osiris and then gave Isis the secret power to bring him back to life for a short time. Thoth is also the god who repaired Horus’ badly-injured eye, creating the Eye of Horus. Thoth was thought to be the scribe of the gods, keeping meticulous records for them in hieroglyphics, which was also then passed down to mankind.

Thoth Quick Reference

Parents

Ra, or Horus and Set


Power / Domain

Wisdom, the moon, the arts, writing, math, science, and arbitration


Symbols / Attributes

  • moon disk
  • ibis head
  • scroll

Notable Myths

  • Ra vs. Apep
  • Creation of the 365-day calendar
  • Resurrection of Osiris


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