, pub-5063766797865882, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0 Anubis God of the Dead Facts Part 2/3 ~ Ancient Egypt Facts

March 4, 2012

Anubis God of the Dead Facts Part 2/3

The Tale of the Two Brothers - Anubis God of the Dead Facts Part 2/3
Anubis God was a central figure in one of the most elaborate Egyptian stories to have survived. “The Tale of the Two Brothers” is a complex narrative combining elements of myths and folktales into a delightful and human story. The chief characters are Anubis God and Bata, a lesser known god of considerable antiquity from Sako in Middle Egypt. In the tale the two are depicted at first more as humans than as gods, but later there are supernatural events that demonstrate the two have more than mortal powers.

The Tale of the Two Brothers - Anubis
The tale has been variously interpreted as portraying a conflict between the two gods that ended in happy reconciliation or describing the conflict between neighboring villages, though these need not be conflicting interpretations. Anubis God has the lesser role of the two gods and only in his efforts to restore his brother to life does his part here reflect his traditional characterization, but this well-known tale provides important insights into Egyptian myth and folklore.

Once, many years ago, there were two brothers; the elder was Anubis God and his younger brother was Bata. Anubis God lived in his own home with his beautiful wife and Bata farmed for him. Bata tended the crops and animals and greatly increased Anubis’ wealth, for he had the power of a god within him. Each day Bata worked in the fields, then reported to his elder brother of his labor. Each evening Bata retired to his own bed in the stable where he watched over the cattle.

In the mornings as he drove the cattle to the fields, he talked with them and asked where the best grazing would be that day.

They would reply, “The grazing will be good today in such and such a field.” With such care the cattle flourished and multiplied.

When the season for planting the fields came, Anubis God told his brother, “In the morning have ready a yoke of oxen to plow the earth and seed to plant in the new-turned land.” At dawn the two brothers set forth for the field and worked side by side with vigor and friendship. When they had planted their supply of seed, Anubis God sent his brother back to the house to fetch more.

Approaching the house, Bata saw his sister-in-law combing and plaiting her hair. “Go quickly,” he said to her, “and bring me seed that I may hurry back to the fields.” But she was no help: “Go yourself and open the bins because I am busy with my own work.”

Bata did as he was told, and soon burdened his shoulders with a heavy vessel of barley and emmer. When the wife saw his muscles strain with the heavy load, she became aroused and called out to Bata, “Come and stay with me an hour and we will take our pleasures. I will make it to your advantage and stitch fine clothes for you as a reward.”

Anubis Egyptian God Statue
Bata was furious at the proposal arid immediately rejected her.
You have been to me as a mother and what you suggest is an abomination. Say no more about it and I will keep quiet and tell no one myself.” With this rebuke he took his seed and hastened to e fields, where he kept all this to himself, nevertheless, that evening as Anubis God returned from his labors, leaving Bata to bring in the cows and equipment, the wife decided she had better be prepared to protect herself. She made it look as though she had been beaten and took a drug to make her vomit When Anubis God entered the house and saw his wife in cruel condition, he asked who had offended her. “No one has come near me but your brother,” she confessed. “When he came to get the seed, he saw me and asked me to lie with him. When I refused, he beat me.”

At this story, the elder brother became as angry as a leopard and took his spear and hid behind the door of the stable to attack Bata when he entered. When Bata approached the building, the first cow he was driving warned him, “Take care. Your brother is waiting to ambush you.” The second cow repeated the caution. When Bata looked under the crack of the stable door, he saw Anubis’ feet and quickly ran away, with his brother in close chase.

Bata called to Ra-Herakhty, “My great god, you are he who judges between the right and the wrong. Save me from this evil I do not understand.” Ra heard his prayer and caused a great body of water full of crocodiles to spring between the brothers, and Anubis God could not get at his brother. Even at the next dawn Bata was safe from all Anubis God wanted to do to him. Bata called across the water, “Why do you want to harm me? It was your wife who tried to seduce me and I am innocent. Do you take the word of a whore over mine?” With that, Bata took a reed knife and cut off his own penis and threw it into the water, where the fish ate it. Bata then told his brother that he was leaving the land and journeying to the Valley of the Cedars (perhaps Lebanon):

There I will take out my heart and place it high in the cedar on a flower. If the tree is cut down, I will appear to die, but if you spend seven years seeking the tree and find it and place my heart like a seed in water, I will live again. You will know you are needed when you find your pot of beer in a froth.
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