TO PREVENT, TREAT AND CURE LOVE IN ANCIENT EGYPT.

ASPECTS OF SEXUAL MEDICINE AND PRACTICE IN ANCIENT EGYPT

PAULA VEIGA Universidade de Lisboa

Our Portuguese writer Eça de Queirós speaks of «the eternal fertility of the Nile» ; «the wide noise of the Nile called them eternally to natural, human, sweet ideas2» indirectly relating high temperatures as being conducive to sexual relations. But he also states that, considering ancient Egypt: «ancient Egyptians had only one wife, (…), polygamy was, in all times a social necessity for harmony3.» This expression may reflect the thought that ancient Egyptians considered sex a necessity for family procreation and this was true. Another expressing identifying the Egyptian landscape to sexual inclinations is this one: «the simple line (of the horizon) drives oneself to primitive feelings: reminds us of tranquility, quietness, a woman of beautiful lines, the abundance4». Pliny the Elder reports the increase of fertility in Egypt (cases of triplets) as being an effect of the Nile waters. Multiple births are ominous NB events. He reports some cases at his time and draws associations between twins and androgynous people5. There are expressions and words in the medical papyri that mention the private parts of human body. Having sex initiated a set of actions: cleaning, shaving, perfuming, moisturizing, and, in some cases as today, substances to prevent or avoid ill-effects.
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Genitalia Genitalia carved or shaped from natural materials were used as amulets; both male and female organs represented prosperity, fertility, and thus health, so they had to be cherished. Shells6 were occasionally used for ornaments and amulets. The cowrie shell, because of its form suggesting female genitalia, was a symbol of fecundity. Fecundity figures often have exaggerated breasts and pubis. The Hebrew word7, like the Greek peritome, and the Latin circumcisio, signifies a cutting and, specifically, the removal of the prepuce, or foreskin, from the penis. In sur1 2

QUEIROZ, 1926: 139. Idem, 222. 3 Idem, 156. 4 Idem, 217. 5 PLINY THE ELDER, 2004: 80. 6 An existing example is a Cowrie shell on original string, 3rd Intermediate Period, Petrie Museum, UC37162. 7 berit milah in Hebrew; the word circumcision means literally «cutting around» and its practice is ancient and can be found among the ancient Hebrews and Egyptians.

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literally “cut out [ek]”). 1973: 126-30. in which case uncircumcised makes no sense. and here uncircumcised makes the most sense. 10 J.AD 24. as we can conclude from the reliefs of Ankhmahor‟s tomb. sixth century AD. 1997: 91-100. Amenhotep I. 12 63/64 BC–c. the term is at times used for date fruits. and the well known relief from Ankhmahor‟s tomb also portrays the circumcision of two pubertyaged youths. circumcision8 may be the oldest known surgery in Egypt. Tutankhamun‟s lost phallus was. Mark Spigelman FRCS (University College London). Philo. HARRIS. Book XVII. 454 . the priest holds the boy's penis and in the right is what appears to be a circular flint with which he is removing the prepuce. and it is possible that his successor.html. From the Persian period onwards. questions whether circumcision is the actual procedure being carried out in this relief. the practice of circumcision11 on males was common. fertility and prosperity. Ancient Egyptians practiced circumcision. 2003: 109. was also uncircumcised10. 5 http://penelope. suggesting instead that it was a surgical intervention intended to treat an indeterminate pathology: M. A priest squats before one standing youth whose hands are firmly held by an assistant. SPIGELMAN. there were numerous amulets exaggerating its size. with his loincloth pulled to the back. girls at puberty and he also says that men were circumcised ( peritemnein) and women were excised (ektemnein. 47.edu/Thayer/E/Roman/Texts/Strabo/17B*. ancient Egyptians seemed to think of men‟s reservoirs for semen as «blessed» by divine intervention. Grego Στράβων. Geography. Joachim Friedrich Quack from the Ägyptologisches Institut in Heidelberg is preparing a publication focusing this issue (circumcision). K. In the Piankhi Stela and in a text from Philae. during the mid fifth century BC. had the obligation of shaving their bodies every other day and had to be circumcised: «They practice circumcision. Strabo states that boys were circumcised at the age of 14. an idea expressed on the walls 8 Prof. ama refers to someone unclean who is not allowed in palace or temple. reveals a circumcised penis. The phallus had representations and meanings that flow to ideas of conception. leave their private parts as nature made them14». does lump male and female circumcision. 9 It should be noted that a study by Dr. WEEKS. In Roman Egypt. There is much evidence that circumcision declined in New Kingdom Egypt. chapter 2.gical terms. X-rays of Pharaoh Ahmose's mummy (sixteenth century BC) indicate that he was not circumcised. 13 Maybe combined with a taboo for eating fish as several postscripts to Book of the Dead spells couple the eating of fish with sexual activity and interpret ama in this direction. 11 Greek word peritemnein. In the left hand. the normal word used for circumcision in the Septuaginta. Questions and Answers on Genesis III. Herodotus states that priests. while men of other nations.uchicago. a carpenter from the Sixth Dynasty (2350-2000 BC). buried since the sixties. Circumcised foreigners are shown on the Narmer palette. in a discourse on Jewish male circumcision and hence I presume he uses the Septuaginta word. after all. except those who have learnt from Egypt. 14 HERODOTUS. but mummified remains older than this relief show that this practice is of an earlier stage9. but unripe would do13. Finally. In a Greek text by Strabo12 he mentions this practice in the first century AD. Pharaohs have special treatment of their own phalli and testicles. probably as a rite of passage. At a Saqqara tomb in Saqqara. at least in the examples that we know of. in the sandbox and this generated much controversy.

the sign Gardiner D52 is used also to: procreate. maybe transmitting the idea that all substances from the body were carried by the male organ. @nn . Plato later considered that the seed is of divine origin. the Romans called the bone the os sacrum. Dendara and Esna temples15. the sacred organs of procreation. bnn. Ancient Egyptians thought that semen originated in the spinal cord. tata. they thought that some damage vertebrae were the cause of it. Semen can mean the creation done by a god holding the power of Ma‟at insinuating that the soul has to take some semen to have life during the passage on to the other life. Khonsu. In his work Sauneron18 speaks about the os. the seed. And. mwt. mTA. In one of the Edfu‟s inscriptions reproduced by Sauneron. Several verbal forms dress phallic expressions. plural entity. the ram. thus continuing this idea. paí. 1998: 28. Was this a thought possible to exist in ancient Egyptian minds? Maybe… 455 . Further readings had issued a possible comprehension of ancient Egyptian‟s ideas of conception. The myth of Osiris being cut in pieces by his maleficent brother Seth must have originated the idea of having the genital area completed as a whole. pwí. reserved in the male human body for further use. in most cases. another phallic insinuation. 18 SAUNERON. 17 DUQUESNE. This idea may have come from the butchery performed on oxen and the anatomical observation of temple priests. 1960: 19-27. the os. When a man complained about impotence. The feminine womb was the environment or skin where the fetus grew. can be interpreted as the semen originating from the bone (see next paragraph). In ancient Egyptian. . for penis: @ms . the same thing. who may have considered bovine phalli as a possible extension of the vertebral sequence. in the female. seed and poison are represented by the same expression: mtwt. the ovaries and uterus. The name os sacrum may derive from that idea19. urinate. anatomical conduit. 1960. the holy bone. pi. which literally meant the holy bone and the Greeks termed it the hieron osteon. mt. which makes us guess that the different liquids in the human body may not be completely distinguished one from another in graphic representation and that this opposite definition can refer to malignant substances as well. This explains the emphasis given to the last vertebrae of the skeleton. the determinative shows what seems like a woman receiving in a cup on top of a channel coming from her pubic area (womb?)16: «Thou floodest the wombs with seed from the bone». «fécondes les femmes au moyen de la semence venant de(s) os».of Hibis temple at the Kharga Oasis. The vessel of the body is represented by . 2000:58. dada. 15 16 SAUNERON. moist: bah. (ww ?). masculine contribution. reproduced in Edfu. 19 FAYAD. that was coagulated by the god. Several options using this sign as determinative or verbal form were used to designate sexual intercourse: usn. since the sacrum is usually the last bone of a buried body to rot ancient peoples believed the sacrum to be the focal point around which the body could be reassembled in the afterlife. Philae. In Greek hieron meant not only sacred but also a temple. a flux from the spine. In Papyrus Jumillac milk and semen altogether may represent total reintegra17 tion .

Ancient Egyptians did not understand the woman„s participation in fetus growing. Hatshepsut united to Amon. column 6. Semen as human milk may alternate in the connection with the xpr (rebirth) concept of ancient Egypt. MEEKS. vulva. II. husband. male. G. and also . Gardiner‟s F45. AUFRÈRE 2003: 17-27. 4-6. Also indicated for women‟s genitalia are these terms. but also nurse. HORNUNG. Son of Ra. the exterior door of the womb to which medical prescriptions are applied. 25 Gardiner‟s J1 unclassified. About female genitalia there is an illustration of the vagina and uterus of Nunn20 indicating words for uterus. Ti dt/ King of Upper and Lower Egypt. D. The hieroglyphic expression for protector has also 20 21 NUNN. they thought that she was limited to feed the fetus through the placenta. representing a bovine uterus and its fallopian tubes with both ovaries22. The ovaries are organs about the size and shape of unshelled almonds. and D53 dropping liquid phallus may also represent the act of ejaculate or fertilize. this leads us to observe in hieroglyphic representation that there is a receptacle containing fluid (well full of water) .2751. as different from that means vulva. The representation for women‟s genitalia is hnmt . S. .Imn nh. this was the reference provided: R. The clitoris is mentioned by @nn-n-kAt in the Litany of the Sun21. Gardiner D52. In the Book of Thoth. That She may live forever. ZAUZICH. maternity or nutrition that turns into life in the dedication from the sarcophagus of Hatshepsut to her father Tutmes I: nswt bit M3 t-k3-r s3 R H3t-spswt hnmt (t). literally. B02. 22 Female internal organs extend outward and back from the sides of the upper end of the uterus are the two fallopian tubes or oviducts.-TH. in the Kahun Papyrus. kns. The phallus determinative is written in the hieroglyphic writing also to represent a donkey. 1980: 250 no 77. T. E. 1975-76. The bovine horns in uterus shape. DUQUESNE. K. being woman hmt . which appears to refer to the interior walls of the vagina. rkh. a plural (could it be twins) and a determinative of thinking action. There is also a pubic area representation. ALLEN. 456 . located on either side and somewhat below the uterus. prepuce. non-ejaculating phallus mt. Plate V. They are approximately four inches long and look like horns facing backward. bull. 23 Examples of hnmt variations related to childbirth. the phallus. makes a very convincing case that this glyph represents a sieve for grain. 2002: 47 References provided by T. and one can read23. JASNOW. the cow as Hathor‟s maternity symbol can stress out the connection of these signs as the feminine function of conception. x 25. and spty which appear to correspond to labia of the vagina. Maat-ka-re. Gardiner‟s N41.nk. 2005. egg tubes. 1974: 195. kAt or iwf for flesh. 24 Terence Duquesne‟s translation refers the vulva as the womb of wisdom where the student is the door or the exterior way out. The placenta Women «expecting» could have been represented with the foretell-expect-think sign: which presents us the so-called placenta sign. what makes important being a woman is the ability to breed: «(…) the vulva which is a nurse to the learned one May I enter within its threshold (…?)»24. 1-29 this means womb in general. nhp.

is suggested to be the royal placenta29. Urine In Berlin Papyrus 3038 we find the prognostic for childbirth that links barley to masculine and wheat to feminine and this can be explained by the phonetic resemblance of names. c. 2003: 1700-1708 28 Cairo‟s Egyptian Museum. Iron. mwt remeT. 26 27 «Women» in ancient Egypt. they were allowed to sit and putrefy for a few days. ‘it. barley resembled it.this sign. 1960. Since the placenta has an indisputable link with the newborn‟s life.nu/akhet/Childbirth. mother. mwt. cereal32. We know now that placenta tissue is iron rich26.philae. nx. women were not given to the embalmers immediately. 31 D. sounded like mtwt. Pre-dynastical. crushed in the mother‟s milk. As burial site. http://www. IKRAM. 30 Egypt is around 97% desert land. In mummification procedures female genitalia had special attention they were treated with gentle care and were stuffed with supplementary resinous flax stripes to emphasize breasts and pubis. 457 . this caused problems with the embalming process and many female mummies are in poorer condition than their male counterparts31. he would die. the SdSd as seen on Upwawet may not be placenta: perhaps a ceremonial pillow. The question is unsettled. Often. However. is important in the production of free radicals. the hieroglyph being a peculiar bolsterlike emblem which may have represented the royal placenta which was regarded as the kings «double». father. It was common to feed the newborn a piece of the placenta. . he would live. Protective mechanisms against free radical generation and damage increase throughout pregnancy and protect the fetus27. If he puked it. It is always the place to find precious gems. The scientific explanation for the test may be that the pituitary gland controls the functions of other endocrine glands specifically a hormone that exists in the ovaries. Giving Birth. being two of them topped by hawks) and a jackal. more now than in Pharaonic times. it was buried somewhere near the house30 or thrown into the Nile to ensure that the child would survive. 29 Upwawet's image is generally portrayed with a hieroglyph that has been described as representing the king's placenta. no written or archaeological evidence is available to support this view. the desert is also associated with the mountain sermon. The bag-shaped sign. as in The Bible. relating the experience of meeting with God as attested in prayers to Meretseger. Instead. which supports the idea of the mother as the nurturer of the new life. it is a point that begins the cycle of rebirth. surmounting a standard known as a shedshed. The figure represented in Narmer‟s palette28 (the item in front of the king where four men carry sticks. later associated with the god Khonsu. however. 32 SAUNERON. was first explained as the royal placenta and its worship was known in ancient Egypt. for sure and Set inhabited these places. This was a measure to prevent necrophilia. which is particularly abundant in the placenta. 1998:103-107.html CASANUEVA. if he ate it. arid and hot. 3200 BC.

Human milk is highly nutritional compared to ordinary food and it has always contraceptive qualities that were not neglected since to breastfeed delayed another pregnancy.html 35 BARDINET.mig. in different shapes even Ísis looking ones where she was breastfeeding a sick Hórus and her milk was flowing from the little holes in the nipples. also in the uterus and mammal glands.se/svanborg/hamlet. increased other mothers‟ fertility. purification and rejuvenation37. healed burnings. Milk from a mother that just had given birth to a male child was considered the best. In the Jumillac Papyrus we find the reference to the milk goddess Hezat mother of Anti. pneumonias. 36 BARDINET. and prolactine that we find abundantly in mammal glands. Prescriptions can be found in the several papyri36. It was recommended to hit the mother‟s back when she was still pregnant and feed her with bitter barley bread so the milk would come in its full nutritional value. healed colds.oxitocine. Their functions included to produce milk in postpartum women who were not lactating. a folding variant of alpha-lactalbumin from human milk that induces apoptosis in tumor cells and kills bacteria. 1995: 445 (Ebers 796).lu. 1350 BC. so he could get better from the infection disturbing him. treated infant‟s diarrheas. The offering of milk was a symbol of nourishment. then kept them in a purse hanged from the baby‟s neck. 458 . 34 Catharina Svanborg Research Group. to reinforce the lactic power as the example of a mother with a sick child that ate a rat and skinned its bones. Milk of superior quality was kept inside anthropomorphic vases in the shape of a woman‟s body emphasizing the breasts. treated the eyes. 1995: 437-454. especially of the breast. it was food to a child. HAMLET. exists in pregnant women‟s urine33. these were the «Nannies‟ vases». A Swedish team is investigating a new approach to the scientific use of human milk. Their use was accompanied by amulets and magic. and the milk could be «diagnosed» as good by it‟s‟ smell35. allowing newborns protection for the first period of their fragile lives reducing diarrhea. bronchitis and coughing from newborns. Re and the Ennead pu33 What may have been the earliest test on urine to determine pregnancy recorded in the Berlin Medical Papyrus c. http://www. Human milk as a medicine Perfect newborns come with enough hydrates so they will not need more liquids besides human milk which prevents them from infections. We must not forget that there is increasing evidence that chronic ingestion of cows‟ milk among women is implicated in gynecological cancers. shortening disease prone situations and diminishing the risk of dehydration. 2000:57. 37 DUQUESNE. who had disturbed the temple of Hathor and for that. a folding variant of alpha-lactalbumin from human milk that induces apoptosis in tumor cells and kills bacteria in people with tumor cells34.

44 SAMORINI. (…) the wide noise of the Nile called them eternally to natural. 42 BARDINET. the semen of Seth comes out from the marshes where Horus‟s hand had been thrown by Isis. 1995: (Ebers 808bis). Then. cuts off his hand and throws it into the marshes and by her magic creates a new one for him. Thoth helps Horus. being forbidden to celibate priests43. Horus however manages to catch the semen of Seth. «Tests showed that 1 gram of lactucarius induces calming and pain killing effects because of the presence of lactucin and lactucopicrin. Human blood as a medicine 41 Menstruation. In the Contendings of Horus and Seth recorded in Chester Beatty papyrus I. 53. @smnnt. 459 . was called «the purifications» by ancient Egyptians. and psoriasis. Giorgio Samorini44 suggests that the lettuce from ancient Egypt is the Lactuca serriola. At the highest doses [2 to 3 grams]. . Here they suffered more than anywere else: nature repelled them and their dreams could not live in all that brightness. Hezat squirted her milk over his skin and by magic restores Anti‟s body38. Horus‟s semen appears as a gold disc on the head of Seth who is the one humiliated. the stimulating effects of 38 Idem. 41 represents liquid issuing from lips (Gardiner D26) so. The human milk also indicates protection of some sort because the word bzA stated in a passage from the Pyramid Texts ensures the king‟s rebirth by something of milk. she makes Horus‟s phallus arise and catches the semen in a jar. Coptic medicine had a prescription that used garlic mixed with oil for a skin disease called psora40. 57 40 Greek. which he later shows his mother Isis. She is freed from work of all kinds and cannot enter temple rooms. more specifically scabies or itch. Seth was fooled with a lettuce after inviting Horus to his home and making a homosexual attack on Horus. we can comprehend the ancient Egyptian thought as today the entrance of a woman‟s genitalia are ca lled the «vagina lips». 1926: 222. There is a prescription surviving from Pharaonic times that uses the first flow of menstrual blood to keep breasts firm42.nished him by separating his flesh and entrails from his bones. 39 Idem. human. that was believed to stimulate the production of milk in women.» QUEIROZ. spreading it on lettuces which Seth later eats. sweet ideas. using powerful unguents. (bzA = zA / sA)39. Aphrodisiac lettuce as a medicine Lettuce was considered an aphrodisiac. She is outraged. Ancient Egyptians thought it cured sterility in women. 2005. literally psora means itching disease of the skin. Hezat was a form of Hathor worshipped as a white cow in the 12 th and 18th nomes of ancient Egypt. the time when a woman sets free from all impure substances. 43 «The saints from Thebes felt all temptations here. and when Set thought he would make a fool out of Horus in front of the Gods. part of daily diet and frequently offered to deceased.

The Lactuca serriola. Gardiner F45 on top of her head connecting her to Meskhenet and associating her with the royal birth. Magic is ubiquitous in everything health related. According to Samorini. She was represented as a woman with the bovine uterus symbol. long reputed for its magic and aphrodisiac powers. wild version of lettuce. purge the stomach. Lactuca serriola L.) from a brewery inside the temple of Ptahem Khent-Tjenenet. Women in ancient Egypt used a type of vaginal tampon to prevent pregnancy.23). 460 . says Samorini. pointy leaves vegetable with fluid that drops from leaves when broken off. 1995: 441 (Kahun 21. Typical tropane alkaloids of plants are atropine. wild lettuce Source: Plants Database. as the goddess of beer.gov/index. tenemu (beer).1550 -1527 a.usda. in the second century AD. Isis.tropane alkaloids prevail». to milk or lactate. One of these types of prescriptions can be perceived from a text using honey and crocodile dung amongst other ingredients as a vaginal unguent47. http://plants. Hathor. Also in this area we are able to detect some prescriptions mentioned in the Greco-Egyptian magical papyri. tnnt. There‟s a record in the Cairo Museum‟s Stela remembering Ahmes donation (c. 45 46 PLINY THE ELDER. 2004: 225. The Lactuca serriola is an oblong. contained in female-shaped vases with hands resting on top of the belly (womb) and the covered top of these vases also prevented bad spirits to reach the soon-to-bemother. He wrote in his Naturalis Historia that «lettuces have special properties. Bes. «This finally solves an ethno botanical riddle and explains the association between Min and lettuce».22. such as the legendary mandrake. and can check sexual appetite. Heqat and Tjenenet48. (…) they are soporific. Medicines for birth control Men used a rudimentary linen sheath to provide its wearer with protection from certain insects and diseases that served as a condom if the linen was really soft.html 47 BARDINET. This light green vegetable is normally associated with Min with his erect penis representing fertility. C. cool a feverish body. The woman‟s body has to be regularly anointed with beneficial unguents. and increase the volume of blood»45. also wrote about lettuce's ability to dampen sexual desires an opposite to what ancient Egyptians made of its use.. may be the grandmother of our Lactuca sativa46. The name lettuce comes from Latin lactuca. was represented in Middle Kingdom at the mammisi of Ermant. hyoscyamine. Pliny the Elder. tropane alkaloids present in Lactuca serriola can be also found in plants of the nightshade family. To be pregnant was to perform a task and since it is necessary to cast away any lurking danger with amulets the uterus had special protectors. and scopolamine. 443 (Ebers 783) 48 Tjenenet. Ermant or Hermontis was the first capital of the fourth nome with its higher peak at the XII dynasty. prickly lettuce.

referred in the papyrus. Location Plate #96. Verso Column V. Premature and deficient newborns were prevented as possibilities of life were reduced at birth. . Probable examples of these were the daughters of Tutankhamen dead at five and six months of gestation. Lines 7-8 KABELIK. In Ebers Papyrus. The most common symptom of cancer of the cervix is abnormal bleeding. 1904. 821. 1898. 49 50 Formula No. reports the use of cannabis sativa. 1955: 4-6. «wrapped womb» would be of oncological pattern52. text in hieratic script. This status quo was the same for centuries until expeditions from Europe arrived there. it was functional. Cancer Cervical cancer (of the entrance to the womb. according to Stephen Quirke. 2004. The antibiotic properties of cannabis alkaloids were the subject of a large-scale symposium in Czechoslovakia50. uterus) can be described as the carcinoma uteri.Medicines for sexual transmitted diseases (STD) The prevalence of STD in ancient Egypt is thought to have been very low. Although their society was highly divided in classes. The 1907 Merck Index (page 132) lists emulsions of cannabis seeds to treat the effects of gonorrhea. This is a contraction» 49. SmSmt: «Cannabis is pounded [ground] in honey and administered into her vagina. 1995: 222. Gonorrhea was maybe the only pathology recorded to have existed in ancient Egypt to have been diagnosed as such. where the smell coming from the vagina is considered a sign of disease. Abortion It was one of the biggest fears and once again magic comes to its aid. 53 BARDINET. The expression nemsu uteri. Gynecological pathologies are described in some medical papyri with special reference to the Kahun Papyrus51. 52 COLLIER. In the London Papyrus MS. Bardinet translates nemsu as one of several uterine substances53. 51 GRIFFITH. 461 . 54 GRIFFITH. Column VI and Column VII54 there are enchantments to prevent «the flood» as it was called abortion due to its abundant bleeding.

(…) That I planted with flowers And sweet-smelling herbs. completely useless because he is not «equipped» with the all-nutrient «precious liquid containing vessel» as represented in Gardiner‟s N41. pomegranates are compared to teeth. defender of the Two Lands. As in every health concern in ancient Egypt. Sections 151-412). and this reveals sexual pleasure in connotation to vibrant health. Maybe this unidentified sign. Each look with which you look at me sustains me more than food and drink»57. the act of eating and the mouth by itself had associations with sex. Nefertem. especially females. The important conclusion is the will to arise the reflexion on female‟s importance as breeder and also protector of new life and the opposite male as an independent creator. from IIc. «(…) Sekhmet the great beloved of Ptah. Prosperity associated to procreation turned sex into a positive activity to be encouraged. (…) Hearing your voice is pomegranate wine. 462 . 1906: 183. The Third Collection. 58 Min is an example as he procreates by himself. BREASTED. Papyrus Harris 500. Another example of nature‟s association to sexual vitality are pomegranates and sycamores and that can be read in poems from Egypt's New Kingdom likely composed much earlier as this: «Saam-plants here summon us. breasts and mandragora are associated with beautiful hair and skin conditions. the goddess that represents both plague and medicine. Gardiner‟s J1 sometimes-placenta-sign can resume the 55 56 CARREIRA. and all the gods of Memphis…» (Papyrus Harris. Medicines using human secretions were used to treat pathologies as well as vegetable and mineral substances were also part of the real and spiritual sphere of healing. is mentioned in the Harris Papyrus 50056. 1999: 22. Sekhmet. I live by hearing it. 57 Poem 2. The bark and root of the tree were recommended in medicinal prescriptions for getting rid of parasitic worms. as some Gods are examples58. sexuality was addressed with nature combined with human endeavor. Fruits and flowers are compared to human body parts. but the link between pomegranates and shedeh has not yet been proved. it is mentioned in love poems where a girl‟s kiss is said to be sweeter than shedeh.Conclusions According to ancient Egyptian literature. and lotus is used to describe fingers. The number of offspring and their victory in the battle over pathological conditions and hunger was a synonym of a family‟s vitality. «Fertility was personified (…) animals and plants did not loose their divine ep iphanical ability (…)»55. It has been suggested that the ancient Egyptians made a wine from pomegranates known as shedeh.

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