Brill’s New Pauly

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Ushebti
(187 words)

[German version]

(Egyptian wšb.ty, 'answerer', secondarily from šb.ty, of uncertain meaning). Term for a small magical figure in the Egyptian cult of the dead (Dead, cult of the). Ushebtis are made of wood, stone or faience, usually representing the dead person in the form of a mummy, sometimes laid out in a coffin. Based on the associated magic spell, which was often written on the figure (spell 472 of the Coffin Texts, spell 6 of the Book of the Dead, cf. [2]), they were supposed to answer on behalf of the dead person if he was called to do work in the Afterlife, and do it in his place. The earliest u…

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Seidlmayer, Stephan Johannes (Berlin), “Ushebti”, in: Brill’s New Pauly, Antiquity volumes edited by: Hubert Cancik and , Helmuth Schneider, English Edition by: Christine F. Salazar, Classical Tradition volumes edited by: Manfred Landfester, English Edition by: Francis G. Gentry. Consulted online on 26 November 2020 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1574-9347_bnp_e1226300>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: 9789004122598, 20110510



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