The CBd
Bonner, SMA, 158.

indistinct object which may be a scorpion. The headdress has been damaged, and its exact fore cannot be made out. This god seems to stand midway between the young Horus of the magical stelae and another and much stranger figure represented on the reverse of the largest and most important monument of this class, the so-called Metternich stele.10
The Horus on the face of that stone calls for no comment, as it conforms to the type previously described as characteristic of these objects. But the reverse is dominated by a very different figure (Pl. XXIV, Fig. 6). It stands facing front; the face is that of a bearded old man much like the less grotesque types of Bes. From his back project the rear parts and tail of a bird.
There are four arms; the upper pair grasps in each hand two serpents, two knives, two arrows (?), and several symbols such as the ankh and the crutch scepter. The lower left arm holds out a crutch scepter, the right holds the ankh. A pair of wings attached to the upper pair of arms, and another pair, parallel with the first, extends outwards from the middle of his back. The heads and necks of cobras project from his knees, and the feet are in the shape of jackal's heads, like those of the gods belonging to the primitive Eight.11 Under the feet is an elliptical cartouche formed by a serpent with his tail in his mouth, interpreted by Egyptologists as a symbol of the abyss; it contains several quadrupeds and reptiles.12 The complicated headdress cannot be described in detail. A fairly constant feature of the varieties of it that appear on gem amulets an upright, from each side of which the heads of certain animals project, especially rams and crocodiles; but sometimes they project from the sides of the head itself. This figure occasionally takes the place of the young Horus on the obverse of small magical stelae. Two good examples were published by Daressy.13
So complex a figure could be accurately represented only on a surface of some size; hence it is not surprising that the pendants and ring stones that served as amulets omit many of the details described above, and in general give only a crude and sketchy version of the type shown on the Metternich stele. The head sometimes becomes a mere blur, and sometimes it is nothing but a support for the projecting animal heads. In place of the objects grasped by the upper pair of hands we often see only tall staves (two or more) upheld by the wings. Other details are best learned from the illustrations.
Budge, following Golenishchev, calls the personage under discussion the aged sun-god;14 is it merely because he seems to correspond to the young Horus of the obverse? Others call it the pantheistic Bes; but if the head resembles that of Bes, the body, which is upright and normal, differs greatly from the dwarfish, misshapen torso and legs of Bes. Moret (see n. 3) thinks it is Shu wearing the mask of Bes. Zoega called such figures Horus, apparently simply because he recognized some kinship between them and the sun-god.

10 V. S. Golenishchev, Die Metternichstele, Leipzig, 1877; more conveniently accessible in Budge, Gods, II, 267-274.
11 Müller, pp. 48,223.
12 Budge, Gods, II, 273.
13 Textes, 9428, 9429, Pl. 10.
14 Golenishchev, op. cit., p. 18; Budge, Gods, II, 270.

Last modified: 2012-10-30 12:26:23