the Triad of Thebes Name of the nome of  the 4th nome of Upper Egypt

the Triad of Thebes

The ancient Egyptian name for Thebes was Waset; it was the Greeks who gave it the name Thebai. It is located in Upper Egypt near the desert trade routes and Nubia. It reached its height of power during the New Kingdom. The city's exceptionally dry climate has helped to preserve its monuments, such as the temples at Karnak and Luxor, much better than those built in the northern cities.

When the Upper Egyptian city Thebes rose to prominence during the New Kingdom, so did its local gods. The chief of the Theban gods was called Amon. Amon was associated with the air as an invisible, dynamic force. He became indoctrinated as the supreme, all-powerful and unseen creator. It was said that he was self-created and born in secret. All other gods were just forms of Amon. The priests of Thebes incorporated the aspects of all of the great creator-gods in Amon. They said that the Ogdoad of Hermopolis were forms of Amon and that Amon left the earth to shine as the sun-god Re. The priests even claimed that Amon was the Tatenen, the primeval mound of Memphis.



The priests of Thebes claimed that the city was founded on a hill and this was how the world began. It was the site of the first water (Nun and of the first land (the primeval mound). As the first city in the world, Thebes was a model for all others. In fact, mankind was created specifically to build other cities in the pattern of Thebes.

Amon's consort at Thebes was the mother-goddess Mut, and his son was the moon, Khonsu.

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