>Bread and Beer

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Image: Hieroglyphs at the burial chamber of Queen Behenu

A recent translation of the hieroglyphs found at the burial chamber of Queen Behenu shows that the queen was offered bread and beer during her funeral.

The following is an excerpt from an article published by Discovery News:

One loaf of bread and one jug of beer: that’s what Egypt’s Queen Behenu was offered during her funeral, according to a translation of hieroglyphics engraved on white stone found in her 4,000-year-old burial chamber this week.

Known as the “Pyramid Texts,” these hieroglyphics represent the oldest body of Egyptian religious writings and were widely in use in royal tombs during the 5th and 6th Dynasties of the Old Kingdom.

Discovery News asked one of the top scholars of the Pyramid Texts, James P. Allen, a Wilbour Professor of Egyptology and Chair of Egyptology and Ancient Western Asian Studies at Brown University, to translate part of the newly discovered hieroglyphs.

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The Offering ritual accompanied preparation for and presentation of a great meal. For example, in the case of Queen Behenu, we have (middle of the third complete column in the middle of the image):

Recitation: Osiris Behenu, accept Horus’s Eye: gather it to your mouth.
Presentation, 4 times.
1 loaf of bread and 1 jug of beer.

The offering is usually called “Horus’s Eye,” referring to the mythical struggle in which the eye of the falcon-god Horus was torn out by his opponent Seth, and later restored.

Read the article in its entirety by clicking here.

Read my previous post on Queen Behenu.

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Dr. Claude Mariottini

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Claude Mariottini
Professor of Old Testament
Northern Baptist Seminary

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