Horus was the son of Re
Horus was an Egyptian god, originally from Upper Egypt (Southern Egypt). In the Old Kingdom, people thought of Horus as having the head of a falcon, and his name means “falcon” in Egyptian.
Geography of Egypt
Old Kingdom Egypt
Egypt’s gods and religion
All our ancient Egypt articles
All our Africa articles
The Pharaoh was the human form of Horus, and then when he died, the dead Pharaoh was the human form of Osiris.
Who was Osiris?
The sun god Ra
More generally, Horus was a sky god,the son of the sun god, Ra. He was the god of war and the god of protection against evil. A lot of people carried good luck charms in the shape of the eye of Horus, to watch out for their safety.
Or was he the son of Isis and Osiris?
But all that gradually changed with the Middle Kingdom.
Egypt’s Middle Kingdom
Who was Isis?
Who was Set?
Now people thought of Horus as the son of Isis and Osiris. Horus was born when Isis brought Osiris back to life after Set killed him.
So Horus became a god of new life and rebirth, like the Greek Persephone or Dionysos, or the West Asian Attis or Tammuz, or the Christian Jesus.
Horus and canopic jars
In some stories, Horus also had sons of his own. Their mother was usually the same as his own mother, Isis. Mostly what Horus’ four sons did was to protect the internal organs of mummies, just as Horus himself protected living people.
More about canopic jars
Did you find out what you wanted to know about the god Horus? Let us know in the comments!
Learn by doing: Egyptian afterlife project
More about ancient Egyptian gods
Bibliography and further reading about the god Horus and the Egyptian gods:
Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Egypt, by Leonard Fisher (1999). For younger kids.
Isis and Osiris, by Geraldine Harris (1997). A retelling of the story for kids.
The Egypt Game (Yearling Newbery), by Zilpha Keatley Snyder (reprinted 1985). A great kids’ story about kids who pretend to be Egyptian gods and goddesses.
Religion in Ancient Egypt: Gods, Myths, and Personal Practice, by John Baines, David Silverman, and Leonard Lesko (1991). Pretty hard going, but it will tell you everything you need to know about Egyptian religion.
Isis in the Ancient World, by R.E. Witt (1997). Mostly about the spread of Isis worship to Greece and the Roman Empire.
I love learning about any gods like Greek and Egyptian gods so all of this info is very helpful I spent hours reading these
I’m delighted to hear it! Check out our articles on the Hindu gods too: https://quatr.us/india/hinduism-religion-india.htm
Isn’t Ra in Supergirl as in the sun god Ra?
That’s Rao? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rao_(comics) But yes, he does seem to be a lot like the Egyptian god Ra! Good call!
it’s RA, not Re.
Re is another way to spell Ra, but I usually do use Ra on this site, so thanks for the correction!