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Myth Monday - Min

By July 26, 2010

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A relief adorning the main gate of the temple at Deir el-Haggar, depicting Amun-Min.
2006 NYU Excavations at Amheida
Even such a specific food item as lettuce has its own god. From early Egypt on, the ithyphallic fertility god Min, who came to be associated with Amun, was honored in an important harvest procession and feast (the "Going-out of Min [to the htjw]") in which the altar represented a garden plot with lettuce plants, according to Moens. As late as the Roman period, a tomb representation may show this procession. The festival has been associated with the annual renewal of the king.

Min is said to have been a rain god and a god of nomads. He was part of the Egyptian pantheon from the first dynasty, especially at Coptos, which was on the trade route to the Red Sea. Min was associated with Horus (part of the Coptic triad of Min, Horus, and Isis) and from this connection Moens says he became king of the gods.

From the 11th dynasty, Min was worshiped at Thebes and associated with the fertility aspect of Amun.

Min appears in a 2-feathered head-dress, carrying a flail, and bearing an erect phallus.

  • "The Procession of the God Min to the ḫtjw-Garden," by Marie-Francine Moens; Studien zur Altšgyptischen Kultur (1985), pp. 61-73.
  • "Some Celestial Associations of Min," by G. A. Wainwright; The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology (Dec., 1935), pp. 152-170.
  • "The Emblem of Min," by G. A. Wainwright; The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology (Nov., 1931), pp. 185-195.
  • "103. Min and His Functions," by G. D. Hornblower; Man (Sep. - Oct., 1946), pp. 113-121.
  • "Min" A Dictionary of World Mythology. Arthur Cotterell. Oxford University Press, 1997.
  • "Min" The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Archaeology. Timothy Darvill. Oxford University Press, 2008.
For terms related to the Egyptian god Min, see:


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