Other Names:
Hathor, Het-Heru, Het-heret

(Het-heret, Het-Heru; G/R Hathor) - "House of Heru" Another Name known from predynastic times, Hethert represents the feminine principle, as reflected in several of Her symbols: the cow, the mirror, and the ritual rattle or sistrum. Hethert is patroness of women, and professions given to Her priesthood include dancers, singers, actors and acrobats; even up to Greek times the arts were under Hethert's dominion. Hethert's temples, especially that at Ta-Netjer (Arabic Dendera) were centers for both healing (with a hospital/sanatorium on-site) and midwifery. Priests in the temple of Ta-Netjer conducted oracles with Hethert in trance rituals held in crypts underneath the sanctuary, and any person could sleep on the temple roof and hope for a dream, which could be interpreted the next morning by the priests. Even today, one can see graffiti and gameboards left behind by those pilgrims, carved into the stones of Ta-Netjer's roof. Hethert's association with both cows and the sistrum probably results from Her assimilation of the Predynastic Netjer Bat; "sistrum capitals" atop the pillars throughout Kemetic temples show Hethert's full face with cow's ears atop a "naos"-style sistrum. Hethert was closely associated with Heru-Behdety at Edfu, perhaps influencing the fact that She was a patroness of Kemet's queens (as Heru is to the king, so Hethert is to the queen). Some queens are referred to by Hethert's titles of "Mistress of Heaven" and "Lady of Gold." Nefertary's spectacular temple at Abu Simbel in Nubia depicts the Great Royal Wife as Hethert in many places; and her husband Ramses II is depicted in its sanctuary, suckling from the udder of Hethert as a divine cow.

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