Ancient Egyptian Gods and Goddesses: Anubis Facts

Here are some facts about Anubis, the Ancient Egyptian God.

  • Anubis was usually depicted by the Ancient Egyptians as having the head of a jackal (also known as the Egyptian Wolf) and the body of a human. Sometimes he is shown in full jackal form.
  • He was associated with the mummification process and the journey to the afterlife.
  • In the Book of the Dead Anubis is shown measuring the weight of the heart during the Weighing of the Heart ceremony (to determine who will enter Duat – the realm of the dead).
  • Anubis’s other roles included leading the leading the dead to the halls of Ma’at (where they were to be judged) and then leading the guilty and bad people to be devoured by Ammit.

Anubis

  • During the mummification process, the head embalmer often wore an Anubis costume.
  • In the earliest Ancient Egyptian myths, Anubis is the son of Ra, but in the later myths he is said to be the son of Set and Nephthys. In some of the myths, he is the son of Osiris.
  • Following the death of Osiris by the hand of Set, it is said that Anubis received Osiris’s organs as a gift.
  • His wife was called Anput and the goddess Kebechet (associated with purification and the washing away of dirt and decay) was his daughter.
  • Anubis’s jackal head was often shown as being black in colour. This was to represent his link with death.
  • Wepawet is another jackal-headed Ancient Egyptian god. Originally a god of war, he was often confused with Anubis, and they have become associated over time. In some myths, Wepawet is described as being the son of Anubis.

What next? Learn more about the Ancient Egyptian gods or visit our Ancient Egypt resources page.

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