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Encyclopedia > Ankh

The ankh (symbol ) was the Egyptian hieroglyphic character that originally stood for the Egyptian word ˁnḫ "mirror" or "image", but gradually became used to represent the word "life". Deities are often portrayed carrying it by its loop, or bearing one in each hand, arms crossed over their chest. It is also known as the Egyptian Cross, the key of life, or as crux ansata, Latin for "cross with a handle". It has been taken as a symbol by many Neopagans.[citation needed] Ankh may mean: Ankh, an Egyptian hieroglyphic character Ankh (computer game), a 1998 computer adventure game Ankh: Tales of Mystery, a 2005 computer adventure game River Ankh, a fictional river in the Discworld novels of Terry Pratchett Category: ... Image File history File links Ankh. ... Image File history File links Ankh. ... It has been suggested that Hieroglyph (French Wiki article) be merged into this article or section. ... A mirror, reflecting a vase. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into image (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Life (disambiguation). ... Wikipedia does not yet have an article with this exact name. ... For other uses, see Latin (disambiguation). ... Also known as the Latin cross or crux ordinaria. ... Neopaganism or Neo-Paganism is any of a heterogeneous group of new religious movements, particularly those influenced by ancient, primarily pre-Christian and sometimes pre-Judaic religions. ...



in hieroglyphs


The precise origin of the symbol remains a mystery to Egyptologists, and no single hypothesis has been widely accepted. E. A. Wallis Budge thought it might have originated as the belt-buckle of the mother goddess Isis (despite the potentially anachronistic fact that belts were a 20th Century apparel artifact of returning from World War I soldiers), an idea joined by Wolfhart Westendorf with the notion that both the ankh and the knot of Isis were used as ties on ceremonial girdles. Sir Alan Gardiner speculated that it represented a sandal strap, with the loop going around the ankle. The word for sandal strap was also spelled ʿnḫ, although it may have been pronounced differently. It has been suggested that Hieroglyph (French Wiki article) be merged into this article or section. ... The Great Sphinx of Giza against Khafres Pyramid at the Giza pyramid complex. ... E. A. Wallis Budge in his office at the British Museum around the turn of the century. ... This article discusses the ancient goddess Isis. ... The Knot of Isis is a symbol of Egyptian mythology. ... Sir Alan Henderson Gardiner (March 29, 1879 Eltham - December 19, 1963 Oxford) was one of the premier British Egyptologists of the early and mid-Twentieth century. ... Modern multi-colored Sandalette Yoga sandals In some parts of the United States, this type of sandal is referred to in slang as the mandal in that it is worn primarily by men. ...

Still other theories include the notion that the ankh represents the sun crowning over the horizon,[2] the path of the sun from east to west (with the loop representing the Nile), a stylized person, or that it is a combination of the male and female symbols of Osiris (the cross) and Isis (the oval) respectively, and therefore signifies the union of heaven and earth.[3] The Nile (Arabic: , transliteration: , Ancient Egyptian iteru, Coptic piaro or phiaro) is a major north-flowing river in Africa, generally regarded as the longest river in the world. ...

In their 2004 book "The Quick and the Dead", Andrew H. Gordon and Calvin W. Schwabe speculated that the ankh, djed and was symbols have a biological basis derived from ancient cattle culture (linked to the Egyptian belief that semen was created in the spine), thus: Year 2004 (MMIV) was a leap year starting on Thursday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Djed pillar represents stability and has been interpreted as the backbone of the Egyptian god Osiris. ... Was symbol For other uses, see Was (disambiguation). ... Horse semen being collected for breeding purposes. ... The vertebral column seen from the side Different regions (curvatures) of the vertebral column The vertebral column (backbone or spine) is a column of vertebrae situated in the dorsal aspect of the abdomen. ...

  • the Ankh - symbol of life - thoracic vertebra of a bull (seen in cross section)
  • the Djed - symbol of stability - base on sacrum of a bull's spine
  • the Was - symbol of power and dominion - a staff made from a dried bull's penis

Over time, the ankh has come to symbolize life and immortality, the universe, power and life-giving air and water. Its keylike shape has also encouraged the belief it could unlock the gates of death, and it is viewed this way by the modern Rosicrucians and other hermetic orders. The Coptic Christians have used it as a symbol of life after death.[4] Diagram of a tsetse fly, showing the head, thorax and abdomen The thorax is a division of an animals body, that lies between the head and the abdomen. ... A diagram of a thoracic vertebra. ... A 3-D view of a beverage-can stove with a cross section in yellow. ... For the record label, see Sacrum Torch. ... The penis (plural penises, penes) is an external male sexual organ. ... The Temple of the Rosy Cross, Teophilus Schweighardt Constantiens, 1618 The Rosicrucians are a legendary and secretive order dating from the 15th or 17th century, generally associated with the symbol of the Rose Cross, which is also used in certain rituals of the Freemasons. ... Hermeticism should not be confused with the concept of a hermit. ... The word Copt signifies the natives of Egypt as a nationality, and in popular common culture in Egypt it is used to specifically signify Christian Egyptians, although its use to mean Egyptian is not unwitnessed. ...


The ankh appears frequently in Egyptian tomb paintings and other art, often at the fingertips of a god or goddess in images that represent the deities of the afterlife conferring the gift of life on the dead person's mummy; this is thought to symbolize the act of conception. Additionally, an ankh was often carried by Egyptians as an amulet, either alone, or in connection with two other hieroglyphs that mean "strength" and "health" (see explication of Djed and Was, above). Mirrors of beaten metal were also often made in the shape of an ankh, either for decorative reasons or to symbolize a perceived view into another world. This article discusses the term God in the context of monotheism and henotheism. ... For the 1934 film, see, see The Goddess (1934 film). ... For other uses, see Afterlife (disambiguation). ... This article is about the corpse preparation method, for other uses of Mummy see Mummy (disambiguation) An Egyptian mummy kept in the Vatican Museums. ... The term conception can refer to more than one meaning: Concept Fertilisation This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... An amulet from the Black Pullet grimoire An amulet (from Latin amuletum, meaning A means of protection) or a talisman (from Arabic tilasm, ultimately from Greek telesma or from the Greek word talein wich means to initiate into the mysteries. ... The Djed pillar represents stability and has been interpreted as the backbone of the Egyptian god Osiris. ... Was symbol For other uses, see Was (disambiguation). ... A mirror, reflecting a vase. ...

The ankh was almost never drawn in silver; as a sun-symbol, the Egyptians almost invariably crafted important examples of it (for tombs or other purposes) from the metal they most associated with the sun, gold. A similar metal such as copper, burnished to a high sheen, was also sometimes used.

In popular culture

The ankh has been a popular symbol within various cultural movements (Hippie, Goth), cinema (Logan's Run, The Hunger), comic books (Sandman, Doctor Fate), musical groups (Kiss, Elvis Presley, The 69 Eyes), television shows (Yu-Gi-Oh!) and video games (Tomb Raider, Ultima, World of Warcraft, Guild Wars, Ankh). Singer of a modern Hippie movement in Russia The hippie subculture was a youth movement that began in the United States during the mid-1960s and spread around the world. ... This article is about the late 20th / early 21st century subculture. ... Logans Run is a 1976 science fiction film based on the novel of the same name by William F. Nolan and George Clayton Johnson. ... The Hunger is a 1983 English language horror film. ... The Sandman is a comic book series written by Neil Gaiman and published in the United States by DC Comics for 75 issues from 1988 until 1996. ... Doctor Fate is a DC Comics superhero and wizard, best known as a member of the Justice Society of America. ... Kiss is an American rock band formed in New York City in 1972 (see 1972 in music). ... “Elvis” redirects here. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Serialized in Weekly Shonen Jump Shonen Jump BANZAI! Shonen Jump Comics House Original run 1996 – March 2004 Volumes 38 volumes, with 343 total chapters TV anime: Yu-Gi-Oh! Director Various Studio Toei Animation Network TV Asahi Original run April 4, 1998 – October 10, 1998 Episodes 27 TV anime: Yu... For the movie staring Angelina Jolie, see Lara Croft: Tomb Raider. ... It has been suggested that Mongbat (Ultima) be merged into this article or section. ... World of Warcraft (commonly abbreviated as WoW) is a massive multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) developed by Blizzard Entertainment and is the fourth game in the Warcraft series, excluding expansion packs and the cancelled Warcraft Adventures: Lord of the Clans. ... This article is for the Guild Wars series. ... Ankh is a point-and-click 3D adventure game by Deck13 Interactive. ...

A stylized ankh is also a popular tattoo amongst such celebrities as professional wrestlers Christopher Daniels and Edge, neo-soul/hip-hop artist Erykah Badu, pop music artist Anastacia and NBA stars Shaquille O'Neal and Dennis Rodman. A variety of consumer product lines have come to be identified with the symbol, such as skateboarder Mark Rogowski's "Ankh Model" of skateboard.[5] Christopher Daniel Covell (born December 24, 1970) is an American professional wrestler, best known by his ring name in the United States, The Fallen Angel Christopher Daniels. ... Adam Joseph Copeland (born October 30, 1973), is a Canadian professional wrestler currently signed to World Wrestling Entertainment, under the ring name Edge, wrestling on its SmackDown! brand where he is the current World Heavyweight Champion. ... Erykah Badu (born Erica Abi Wright, February 26, 1971, in Dallas, Texas) is an American neo-soul, R&B/hip hop artist whose work crosses over into jazz. ... This article is about the singer. ... NBA redirects here. ... Shaquille Rashaun ONeal (pronounced shak-KEEL) (born March 6, 1972 in Newark, New Jersey), frequently referred to simply as Shaq, is an American professional basketball player, generally regarded as one of the most dominant in the National Basketball Association (NBA). ... Dennis Keith Rodman (born May 13, 1961, in Trenton, New Jersey) is an American professional basketball player best known for his fierce defensive and rebounding ability, leading the National Basketball Association in rebounds per game for a record seven consecutive years and earning NBA All-Defensive First Team honors seven... Mark Gator Rogowski (b. ...

The ankh also remains popular among neopagan religious and spiritual movements, as a symbol for a variety of concepts relating to life or immortality. Neopaganism (sometimes Neo-Paganism, meaning New Paganism) is a heterogeneous group of religions which attempt to revive ancient, mainly European pre-Christian religions. ...


  1. ^ Collier, Mark and Manley, Bill. How to Read Egyptian Hieroglyphs: Revised Edition pg 23. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998.
  2. ^ Internet Book of Shadows: Egyptian Metaphysics (Michael Poe)
  3. ^ Christian Resource Center
  4. ^ "The Origin of Early Christian Book Illumination: The State of the Question". Kozodoy, R. Gesta, Vol. 10, No. 2 (1971), pp. 33-40.
  5. ^ Collection of Skateboards, including the Ankh series


  • Collier, Mark and Manley, Bill. How to Read Egyptian Hieroglyphs: Revised Edition. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1998.
  • Salaman, Clement and Van Oyen, Dorine and Wharton, William D. and Mahé, Jean-Pierre (translation) (2000). The Way of Hermes: New Translations of The Corpus Heremticum and The Definitions of Hermes Trismegistus to Asclepius. Rochester: Inner Traditions. 
  • Three Initiates (1912). The Kybalion. Chicago: The Yogi Publication Society Masonic Temple. 

The Kybalion: Hermetic Philosophy is a book that was authored by three individuals calling themselves The Three Initiates. ...

External links

  • Ankh: The Original Cross

  Results from FactBites:
Ankh - definition of Ankh - Labor Law Talk Dictionary (486 words)
The ankh appears frequently in Egyptian tomb paintings and other art; it often appears at the fingertips of a god or goddess in images that represent the deities of the afterlife conferring the gift of life on the dead person's mummy.
The ankh symbol was often carried by Egyptians as an amulet, either alone, or in connection with two other hieroglyphs that mean "strength" and "health." Mirrors were often made in the shape of an ankh.
The ankh is widely employed in pop culture, as a textual device to instantly communicate deep history, arcane life-forces and/or spiritual magic.
Ankh - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (2017 words)
The Ankh of the God Anubis is related to the protection of the dead, that of Sekmet, War, Hapi related to the living waters of the Nile and Amen, the spirit God, the breath of life.
The long-standing importance of the Ankh, and its deep symbolism to the dynastic Egyptians, led to it being gradually adopted by the fourth century Christian church in Egypt (which eventually became the Coptic Church).
In Gothic sub-culture the ankh is a symbol for vampires.
  More results at FactBites »



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