Divinity and Rebirth: the Religious Symbolism of Ancient Egyptian Headrests
Wen Jing;Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations,University of Pennsylvania;
Headrests were not only a kind of daily life equipment for the ancient Egyptians, but also an important funerary item supposed to accompany the dead in the afterlife. Headrest amulets appeared in the New Kingdom. The solar symbolism of the headrest derived from the similarity between its shape and the Egyptian concept of horizon. It symbolized sunrise with human head identified as the sun. It could also support the head and awaken its user from deep sleep, a state similar to death. Headrests in funerary context thus could awaken the dead in the afterlife for his resurrection. Furthermore, the funerary usage of the headrest indicates the popularization of the solar religion. As the intermediary of hierophany, the dead was identified as the sun god by using a headrest, so that he/she could become divine and obtain rebirth.
【CateGory Index】： B933;K884.11