Isis and Osiris: A Tragic Tale of Love from Ancient Egypt

Isis

Updated On: April 23, 2024 by   MariseMarise

Magnificent mother Isis, the Egyptian Goddess of medicine and sorcery, played a pivotal role in the religious practises of ancient Egypt. Even though her ancient Egyptian name was Aset, she is more commonly referred to by her Greek name, Goddess Isis.

Goddess Isis is also sometimes depicted wearing the headdress of the Goddess Mut, a vulture, and other times she is shown wearing the headdress of the Goddess Hathor, a disc with horns on the sides. As she adopted their mannerisms and characteristics, she donned their headdresses. She was also depicted as a goddess with wings, and when she travelled to the underworld to meet her husband, she brought a breath of fresh air with her.

Goddess Isis was the sister of the God Osiris and also his wife. Osiris was the God who ruled the underworld. The most well-known version of the story begins with Seth, Osiris’s jealous brother, dismembering their father and strewing the pieces of his body across Egypt. 

She was born from one of Osiris’s body parts. According to the ancient sacred stories, the other gods were so moved by her unwavering commitment to locating and reviving her lost husband that they offered assistance in this endeavour. Isis, who possessed a wide variety of distinct powers, held a significant place in the culture of the ancient Egyptians. She was the one who brought magic into the world, as well as the one who guarded women.

 She was initially considered a minor figure compared to her husband, Osiris; however, after thousands of years of worship, she was elevated to the position of Queen of the Universe and became the personification of cosmic order. By the time of the Roman era, it was believed that she had control over the very power of destiny.

The Goddess of Motherhood, Magic, Fertility, Death, Healing, and Rebirth

Goddess Isis’ primary role was that of a goddess who presides over magic, love, and motherhood in addition to fertility. She belonged to the Ennead and was one of the nine most significant gods in ancient Egypt. The ‘throne’ headdress, the moon disc with cow’s horns, the sycamore tree, the kite hawk with outspread wings, and the throne were some symbols used to represent her. Additional Symbols of the Goddess Isis, who Is Known as the Goddess of Fertility Isis, was typically depicted as a woman dressed in a long sheath dress and wearing an empty throne as a headdress. 

The empty headdress symbolised the fact that her husband was no longer alive and that she was now acting as the pharaoh’s seat of power. In some scenes, she is depicted as a woman, and her headdress appears to be a solar disc and horn. In a few select instances, she takes on the appearance of a woman with the head of a cow. As the wind goddess, she is depicted as a woman with wings spread out in front of her. She is also depicted as a woman holding a lotus, sometimes alongside her son Horus, sometimes with a crown and a vulture, and sometimes with all of these things together.

Her emblem in the night sky is the constellation Sept. Cows, snakes, and scorpions are among the animals that Isis fears. Additionally, she is the protector of vultures, swallows, doves, and hawks alike. Isis is known as the mother goddess as well as the fertility goddess. She was considered the mother goddess and was thought to exemplify the concept of motherhood in its most pristine form. She shared the role of Hathor in caring for Horus throughout his childhood.

Goddess Isis is also well-known for imparting agricultural knowledge to the Egyptians and enlightening them about the benefits of planting along the Nile. It was believed that the annual flooding of the Nile was caused by the tears that she shed after the death of her husband. These tears were said to have been triggered by the appearance of the star Sept in the night sky. Even in modern times, “The Night of the Drop” is celebrated annually to commemorate this legendary event.

Isis and Osiris: A Tragic Tale of Love from Ancient Egypt

Goddess Isis’s Dominance

It was believed that Isis completely mastered the magical arts and could use her words alone to bring life into the world or take it away. Goddess Isis achieved the desired effect because she knew the words that needed to be spoken to cause certain things to occur and could use exact pronunciation and emphasis. The myth of Isis was created by the priests of Heliopolis, who were devotees of the God Re, the sun god. This indicated that she was the sister of the gods Osiris, Seth, and Nephthys the daughter of Nut, the sky goddess, and Geb, the earth god.

 Isis was a queen married to Osiris, the King of Egypt. Goddess Isis was known for her devotion to her husband and for teaching Egyptian women how to weave, bake, and brew beer. But because Seth was filled with envy, he devised a plan to eliminate his brother. Seth imprisoned Osiris in a decorated chest made of wood, which Seth then coated in lead and threw into the Nile River. The chest had been transformed into Osiris’s tomb.

 As a result of his brother’s disappearance, Seth ascended to the throne of Egypt. Goddess Isis, however, could not let go of her husband, and she looked for him all over the place before finally coming across Osiris, who was still held captive within his chest in Byblos. She transported his body back to Egypt, where her son found the chest and became so enraged that Seth cut Osiris’ body into pieces, which he then dispersed throughout the world. Goddess Isis could find and reassemble the parts of her husband’s body after transforming into a bird with the assistance of her sister, Nephthys. 

Goddess Isis could make Osiris whole by utilising her magical abilities; after being wrapped in bandages, Osiris had become a mummy and was neither alive nor dead. After nine months, Isis gave birth to a son named Horus. After that, Osiris was cornered and forced to flee to the underworld, where he eventually ascended to the throne of the dead. She was the model of a traditional Egyptian wife and mother. She was happy to remain in the background as long as everything ran smoothly, but she was also capable of using her wits to protect her husband and son if it became necessary. 

The safety and security that she provided for her child endowed her with the qualities of a goddess of protection. However, her most prominent aspect was that of a powerful sorceress. Her ability far surpassed any other god or Goddess. Multiple accounts describe her magical skills as significantly more potent than Osiris and Re. She was frequently invoked on behalf of those afflicted with illness. Along with the goddesses Nephthys, Neith, and Selket, she guarded the graves of the deceased. 

Isis came to be associated with several other goddesses, such as Bastet, Nut, and Hathor; as a result, both her nature and powers grew to encompass a wider range of characteristics. She became known as the “Eye of Re,” just like other fierce goddesses in the Egyptian pantheon, and she was equated with the Dog Star, Sothis (Sirius). Behbeit el-Hagar, located in the central Nile delta, was the location of the first major temple dedicated to the Goddess Isis. It was constructed during the late period by King Nectanebo II (360–343 BCE).

Osiris

Osiris, the God of the dead, was the eldest child and son of Geb, the earth god, and Nut, the sky goddess. Geb was the creator of the universe. Isis was his wife and sister, the Goddess of motherhood, magic, fertility, death, healing, and rebirth. She was also his sister-in-law. It was said that Osiris and Isis were madly in love even while they were still in the womb. During the time of the New Kingdom, Osiris was revered as the lord of the underworld, also known as the next world and the afterlife.

According to the legend, Osiris ruled Egypt. He was responsible for introducing humans to agriculture, legislation, and civilised behaviour before ascending to the position of ruler of the afterlife. Isis and Orisis are also usually depicted with The Ankh, the symbol of life, representing their place as Gods of life and death.

One comment on “Isis and Osiris: A Tragic Tale of Love from Ancient Egypt

  1. Myth? Or fact? Only light workers know for sure. ( Enlightened. ) Love yourself. Avoid addictive behaviors. Meditate. Pray for love and guidance. Generosity comes in all forms. Helping others. Will uplift your heart. Love Earth. Love all.

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