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and fagium, was the report from the hands of by won Hiru Before the door of his palace are the four Gend of Amen and mear them three Demes, who enter represent the assessors, or may be the three stictures, who gave rise to the Minor, Eacus, and Khadamanthas of Greek
Another, gred in the side adytom of the Ptolemad temple of Dayr ei Medeeneh, at Thebes, represents the deceased approaching in a similarly submissive attitude, between two figures of Truth or Justice: whose emblem, the ostrich feather, he holds in his had The two figures show the double capacity of that Goddess, corresponding, as already shown, to the Thummim, or two Truths, and according well with the statement of Diodorus respecting her position "at the gates of Truth."÷ Horus and Anubis superintend the balance, and weigh the actions of the judged; whilst Thoth inscribes an account of them on his tablet, which he prepares for presentation to Osiris, who, seated on his throne, pronounces the final judgment, permitting the virtuous soul to enjoy the blessings of eternal felicity. Before him four Genii of Amenti stand upon a lotus flower; and a figure of Harpocrates, seated on a crook of Osiris between the scales and the entrance of the divine abode, which is guarded by Cerberus, is intended to show *Virg. Æn. vi. 566. :—
"Gnosius hæc Rhadamanthus habet durissima regna,
+ Vide supra, Vol. I. (2d Series) p. 326. Vide Diodor. i. 97., on the Punishment of the dead.
I Suprà, p. 28. and 433.
that the deceased on admission to that pure state must be born again, and commence a new life, cleansed from all the impurities of his earthly career. It also represents the idea common to the Egyptians and other philosophers, that to die was only to assume a new form,- that nothing was annihilated, — and that dissolution was merely the forerunner of reproduction.† Above, in two lines, sit the forty-two assessors, the complete number mentioned by Diodorus; whose office, as I have already observed, was to assist in judging the dead, and whose various forms have been given among the other Deities of the Egyptian Pantheon.‡
Many similar subjects occur on funereal monuments, few of which present any new features. One, however, is singular, from the Goddess of Justice being herself engaged in weighing the deceased, in the presence of Thoth, who is represented under the form of a Cynocephalus, having the horns and globe of the Moon upon its head, and a tablet in its hand. Instead of the usual vase, the figure of the deceased himself is placed in one of the scales, opposed to that of the Goddess; and close to the balance sits Cerberus with open mouth, as though prepared to vent his savage fury on the judged§, if pro
* Vide suprà, Vol. I. (2d Series) p. 316. Conf. Virgil, Æn. vi. 739.
+ Vide suprà, Vol. I. (2d Series) p. 315. 407. 439. etc.
Suprà, p. 76. It might be suggested that they represented the different forms through which a soul migrated; but I think this not probable.
§ Cerberus, according to Hesiod, welcomed those who came in, and devoured those who endeavoured to go out of the gates of Hades. Hesiod. Theogon. 770.
nounced unworthy of admittance to the regions of the blessed.
Another may also be noticed, from the singular fact of the Goddess of Justice, who here introduces the deceased, being without a head, as described by Diodorus; from the deceased holding in each hand an ostrich feather, the emblem of Truth; and from Cerberus being represented standing upon the steps of the divine abode of Osiris, as if in the act of announcing the arrival of Thoth with the person of the tomb.
Sometimes the deceased wore round his neck the same vase, which in the scales typified his good actions; or bore on his head the ostrich feather of Truth. They were both intended to show that he had been deemed worthy of admission to the mansions of the just; and in the same idea originated the custom of placing the name of the Goddess after that of virtuous individuals who were dead, implying that they were "judged," or "justified." Some analogy to this may perhaps be traced in the following passage of Plato's Gorgias "Sometimes Rhadamanthus, beholding the soul of one who has passed through life with truth, whether it be the soul of a private man, or of any other..... is filled with admiration, and dismisses it to the islands of the blessed.‡ And the same things are done by
The Goddesses Athor and Netpe frequently presented the virtuous after death with the fruit and
* Vide suprà, p. 30.
Conf. Lucian on Grief.
Plato, Gorgias, p. 458.
drink of heaven*; which calls to mind the ambrosia and nectar of Greek fable. +
The process of embalming is thus described by ancient writers: -"In Egypt," says Herodotus ‡, "certain persons are appointed by law to exercise this art as their peculiar business; and when a dead body is brought them they produce patterns of mummies in wood, imitated in painting, the most elaborate of which are said to be of him (Osiris) whose name I do not think it right to mention on this occasion. The second which they show is simpler and less costly; and the third is the cheapest. Having exhibited them all, they inquire of the persons who have applied to them which mode they wish to be adopted; and this being settled, and the price agreed upon, the parties retire, leaving the body with the embalmers.
In preparing it according to the first method, they commence by extracting the brain from the nostrils by a curved iron probe, partly cleansing the head by these means, and partly by pouring in certain drugs; then making an incision in the side with a sharp Ethiopian stone, they draw out the intestines through the aperture. Having
* Vide suprà, Vol. I. (2d Series) p. 313. 391.
+ Some suppose the former to have been eaten, the latter drunk. Hesiod (Theog. 640.) says,
“ Νέκταρ τ' αμέροσίην τε, τα περ θεοι αυτοι εξουσι.” Though Homer (Od. Y. 359.) calls the wine "a stream of ambrosia and nectar."
Herodot. ii. 86.
cleansed and washed them with palm wine, they cover them with pounded aromatics; and afterwards filling the cavity with powder of pure myrrh, cassia, and other fragrant substances, frankincense excepted, they sew it up again. This being done, they salt the body, keeping it in natron during seventy days; to which period they are strictly contined. When the seventy days are over, they wash the body, and wrap it up entirely in bands of fine linen ‡ smeared on their inner side with gum, which the Egyptians generally use § instead of glue. The relations then take away the body, and have a wooden case made in the form of a man, in which they deposit it; and when fastened up, they keep it in a room in their house, placing it upright against the wall. This is the most costly mode of embalming.
"For those who choose the middle kind, on account of the expense, they prepare the body as follows. They fill syringes with oil of cedar ||, and inject this into the abdomen, without making any incision or removing the bowels; and taking care that the liquid shall not escape, they keep it in salt during the specified number of days. The cedar oil is then taken out; and such is its strength that it brings with it the bowels, and all the in
* Not nitre.
† According to Genesis, 1. 3., only forty days; which is more probable. Diodorus says "upwards of thirty." The seventy or seventy-two, included the whole period of mourning. Vide infra, p. 454. 459.
“ Σινίονος βυσσινης τελαμωσι.” Vide Vol. III. p. 115.
On this occasion, but not for other purposes. Vide Vol. III. p. 173. Pliny says (xvi. 11.), "In Syriâ cedrium (e pice) cui tanta vis est, ut in Egypto corpora hominum defunctorum eo perfusa serventur." (And lib. xxiv. 5.)