Nut

Nut was the Egyptian goddess of sky, stars, cosmos, mothers, astronomy and the universe.

Symbols: Sky, stars, cow
Parents: Shu and Tefnut
Siblings: Geb
Consort: Geb
Children: Osiris, Isis, Set, Nephthys
Greek equivalent: Rhea

Nut swallowing Ra, on the ceiling of the Tomb of Rameses VI.

 She was seen as a star-covered nude woman arching over the Earth.

She was originally the goddess of the nighttime sky, but eventually became referred to as simply the sky goddess. Her headdress was the hieroglyphic of part of her name, a pot, which may also symbolize the uterus. Mostly depicted in nude human form, Nut was also sometimes depicted in the form of a cow whose great body formed the sky and heavens, a sycamore tree or as a giant sow, suckling many piglets, which represented the stars.

Traditiona depiction of Nut.

Nut and Ra

Ra was the second to rule the world. Ra was a strong ruler but he feared anyone taking his throne. When he discovered that Nut was to have children, he was furious. He decreed, ‘Nut shall not give birth any day of the year’.

Depiction of Nut on the ceiling of the Temple of Dendera.

Nut spoke to Thoth and heagreed to help. Thoth gambled with Khonsu, god of the Moon, whose light rivaled that of Ra’s. Every time Khonsu lost, he had to give Thoth some of his moonlight. Khonsu lost so many times that Thoth had enough moonlight to make five extra days. Since these days were not part of the year, Nut could have her children. 

Nut is supported by Shu the god of air, and the ram-headed Heh deities, while Geb reclines beneath. Book of the Dead of Nesitanebtashru. British Museum.

She had five children: Osiris, Horus the Elder, SetIsis and Nephthys. When Ra found out, he was furious. He separated Nut from her husband Geb for eternity. Her father, Shu, was to keep them apart. Nevertheless, Nut did not regret her decision.

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