A goddess of birth, personification of one of the 'birthing bricks' upon which ancient women used to squat when giving birth. She is often shown as either a woman with a brick as a head, or as a brick with a woman's head. Sometimes she is also shown fully human, with the image of a cow's uterus above her head.
After the safe delivery, Meskhenet decided the destiny of the child, and her protective powers guarded the infant. Conversely, she also appeared in the Hall of Judgment when the heart of the deceased was to be weighed. Here she could testify to the character of the deceased, and perhaps guard the symbolic rebirth in the Afterlife. She is also found assisting Isis and Nephtys in funerary rites.
There was no cult especially for Meskhenet.
Suggested Pdf Resources
- Pagan Gods of Egypt
- Meskhenet. Goddess protector of newborns and of destiny. Vulture or human.
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- Dead at the judgment of the deceased together with Meskhenet, a goddess of childbirth. Where Meskhenet presided over the actual birth itself,.
- TJP 52-2.indd
- Meskhenet is a personification of the so-called birthing bricks upon which women squatted during childbirth.
Suggested News Resources
- Études de lettres, 289 (2011/3-4): Des Fata aux fées
- Cathie SPIESER - Meskhenet et les sept Hathors en Egypte ancienne (p. 63-92) Dans la littérature égyptienne, le papyrus Westcar relate l'intervention déterminante des déesses Isis et Meskhenet pour le destin du nouveau-né.
Suggested Web Resources
- Gods of Ancient Egypt: Meskhenet
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- May 7, 2001 Meskhenet, Goddess of the Birth Brick and Childbirth.
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- Meskhenet. Meskhenet. Meskhenet was one of the Goddesses who officiated at both the birth of a child in this world and the re-birth of the soul in the Afterworld.
- Egypt: Meskhenet - Goddess of Childbrith
- Meskhenet. Meskhenet was a goddess who presided at child birth.
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