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The Priests of Ancient Egypt

 Author: Serge Sauneron  Category: Deities, Priests, Temples  Publisher: Cornell University Press

The gods were everywhere in ancient Egypt. represented by statues, bas-reliefs, and funerary paintings, they even walked among the Egyptians in the person of the pharaoh, considered to be a living god, son of the divine Re. what better way to understand that distant culture than by becoming familiar with the people who served those gods?

using as his sources the Egyptian texts and the testimony of classical authors, Serge Cameron illuminates the role of the priesthood in ancient Egypt. He recreates the system of thought of one of the great civilizations of antiquity, addressing such topics as priestly functions, the world of temples, holy festivals, tombs, and pyramids.

Cameron describes the ceremonies of daily worship, considered vital in preventing the world’s descent into chaos. he takes us deep into the sacred precincts of the temples – home to the divine statues in which a  part of the god was believed to dwell. one of the duties of the priests was to maintain these sacred effigies, to nourish, clothe and protect them from attacks by evil spirits. This edition of the priests of Ancient Egypt, an augmented version of the 1957 classic, was published in France in 1988 and has been translated authoritatively by David Lorton.

The late Serge Cameron was the director of the institute francais archeologic in Cairo and the author of many works on ancient Egypt. The Egyptologist David Lorton has translated several previous Cornell books, including History of Ancient Egypt: an introduction by Erik Hornung. Jean-Pierre Corteggiani is the author of the Ancient Egypt of the Pharaohs at the Cairo Museum.

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