Liverpool Egyptology seminar

Liverpool Egyptology Seminars presents: Rita Lucarelli (Berkeley)

5:00pm - 6:30pm / Thursday 4th March 2021
Type: Seminar / Category: Department / Series: Egyptology Seminar Series
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Agents of Punishment and Protection. Assessing the Demonic in First Millennium BCE Egypt, by Rita Lucarelli (Berkeley)

Demonology is an integral, though often neglected aspect of ancient Egyptian religion. The conceptual dimension of the demonic always poses questions of definition and classification, especially when dealing with an ancient civilization where one can only attempt to interpret available written, iconographical and material sources, which are rarely comprehensive. In the specific case of ancient Egypt, demons appear to function not only as agents of divine punishment but also of protection of sacred and liminal spaces on earth (temples and tombs) and in the netherworld (gates and other passages). In this talk, while presenting a current book project, the role that ancient Egyptian demons played in relation to the main deities and to humankind will be outlined, by distinguishing categories of demons according to where they appear, namely demons of the netherworld and demons wandering on earth. By assessing the existence of an ancient Egyptian demonology that is comparable to other discourses on demons in the ancient world, I intend to define how demonic agency may be distinguished from divine agency within the ancient Egyptian religion and according especially to sources produced during the first millennium BCE.