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Passport to the Egyptian Afterlife
The Book of the Dead of Ramose

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Book of the Dead: spell 83

Vignette from Ramose Book of the Dead

Vignette from Spell 83 of the
Book of the Dead of Ramose

Spells 83 enables Ramose to turn into a benu-bird. This mythical bird was associated with the sun-god, especially the rising sun, and so with daily re-birth. In later times people equated it with the phoenix, perhaps because they were both believed to be repeatedly re-born from a fiery origin.

They way it was depicted varied at different periods. In the Books of the Dead it is usually shown in the form of a heron, as here.

The way the bird has been painted on this papyrus is very skillful and gives one a sense of the delicate shape of the bird’s body, and the downy feathers on its chest. The sharp beak is also really well depicted.

Translation of spell 83







Notes on Translation
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