Study Guide

Nun Sightings

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High Nun

Before creation, according to the ancient Egyptians, Nun existed as the highest and most important god. It (or he or she or they—all of these are correct) was always there, and included everything and nothing at the same time. Many different creation stories tell about how the Nun became either divided into other lesser gods and parts, or how it gave birth to these other gods and all of the creations. But nobody got here before Nun!

Jan 1, 1970 - Dec 20, 2019

One of Eight

Nun shows up as part of the Ogdoad, ancient Egypt's creator gods who all died when creation began. In the Ogdoad, Nun isn't just one god, but splits into two: a male god called Nun and a female goddess called Naunet. As part of the Ogdoad, Nun and Naunet's powers are the same: the creative power of the first water.

Jan 1, 1970 - Dec 20, 2019

The 12th Hour Boat Elevator

In the mysterious papyrus Egyptologists call the Book of Gates, Nun shows up at the end, during the twelfth (final) hour of night, to grab Ra's boat from the swirling chaos of darkness and lift it up into the sky to create the dawn. Once Nut (the sky goddess) grabs the boat, Nun can go back to whatever he was doing for the other twenty-three hours of the day.

Dec 20, 2019 - Dec 20, 2019

Now with 100% More Chaos

When Nun appears to the Greek-speaking Ptolemies, they don't think of him as a good guy. He's more of a bad guy, a formless chaos like their Titans, who can't be trusted. It's a shame they never got to know him well.

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