Painting of Buto Buto


(Uatchit, Udjat, Wadjit, Edjo)

Symbols: cobra, Udjat, Red Crown and the cobra-headdress or uraeus worn by royalty.
Cult Center: Buto

Buto was a cobra-goddess whose original home and cult center was in the Delta of the Nile at Per-Uatchit. In time she became a prominent protectress of all of Lower Egypt. As such she was routinely connected to the goddess of Upper Egypt, Nekhebet. Together, they appeared in many pieces of art as symbols of the Two Lands, a united Egypt.

Buto did not just protect Egypt, she also was an aggressive defender of the king. She was portrayed as the uraeus cobra first worn on the brow of Re, and later the pharaohs'. Her hood is spread in a threatening position and she is ready to spit poison on all of the pharaoh's enemies or burn them with her fiery glare. It is thought perhaps that her powers could be used against the pharaoh as well. Her bite may have been the deadly device used by Anubis at the appointed time of the pharaoh's death.

Buto was a personification of the sun's burning heat and she was called the "Lady of Heaven" and the queen of all of the gods. She was closely associated with Horus the Elder, who was the protector god of Lower Egypt. Also she was associated with Harpokrates (Horus the Younger); she protected him from Seth in the marshes of the Delta while Isis was searching for the body of Osiris.

Buto was depicted in art as a woman wearing the uraeus or the Red Crown of Lower Egypt. She was shown carrying a papyrus stem around which was coiled a cobra. Sometimes she was shown as just a cobra coiled in a basket and wearing the crown of Lower Egypt.

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