The Demonic Calendar Of Ancient Egypt

The Demonic Calendar Of Ancient Egypt


The Egyptians, like many cultures, had no generic word for ‘demon’. Although some words, such as Akhw, get very close.  Etymologically, the Greek derived term ‘daemon’ or ‘demon’ means divider or alloter, and from Homer’s time onwards, it referred to an operator of unexpected and intrusive events in a person’s life. Unlike Olympian gods, a daemon was an impersonal thing, unpredictable, anonymous and often frightful in manifestation, thus connected with fate.

Egyptian scene with demons (Image: Courtesy Chris Morgan)

Egyptian scene with demons (Image: Courtesy Chris Morgan)

Plato, perhaps influenced by Egyptian and Hindu thought, added a new concept of the ‘guardian daemon’ that accompanied a person in life, and postmortem, acted as one’s judge or advocate. Contemporary magical practitioners often describe a spiritual entity known as the Holy Guardian Angel, that becomes attached to or comes into existence at one’s birth or conception.

The Living, The Dead And The Gods

The ancient Egyptians recognized three categories of sentient beings: The Ankhew, the Akhew and the Neterew which can be translated as the Living, the Dead and the Gods. All three have their good and bad sides. In fact, Egyptian texts present much information about the ancient fear of attack from night demons, but because of a general prejudice amongst old guard Egyptologists, much of this information was buried in obscure academic publications.



A Middle Kingdom star chart (Public Domain)

A Middle Kingdom star chart ( Public Domain )

One such spell lay untranslated for years after its discovery, until younger academics such as Robert Ritner, took another look. To paraphrase his translation: “ Oh male adversary (DAy), Oh female adversary, Oh male ghost, Oh female ghost, Oh dead men, Oh dead women, be far from me. Listen but do not come. Your faces are twisted backwards, your limbs are unsound. Your heart is destined for the sacrificial meal of the Cobra Goddess”.

The spell reveals the way most Egyptians viewed the perils of the night. These entities can be dangerous, and there is a relationship between them and certain kinds of illnesses. Central to the process are night demons, ‘vampiric’ entities that are now known as ‘ incubi’ or ‘succubi’ . These creatures attack sexually, entering the bodies of their victims, perhaps during lovemaking, distracting sexual and other body fluids such as blood.

Ram-headed demon, hands outstretch probably to hold two snakes. From a royal tomb in the Valley of the Kings, Thebes, Egypt. (1325 BC).British Museum (Public Domain)

Ram-headed demon, hands outstretch probably to hold two snakes. From a royal tomb in the Valley of the Kings, Thebes, Egypt. (1325 BC).British Museum ( Public Domain )

And neither are Egyptian demons a completely separate species. They come from the same familiar categories mentioned above, the living, the dead or the gods.


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Chris Morgan  is a respected independent scholar, former Wellcome student, and holder of an advanced degree in Oriental Studies from University of Oxford. He is the author of several books on Egypt, specializing in folk religion, ritual calendars and the “archaeological memory” encoded in the religions of post pharaonic Egypt. He is the author of Demonic Calendar Ancient Egypt

Top Image : Goddess Nut, supported by the god of the air Shu; the earth god Geb is below them ( Public Domain )

By Chris Morgan


Chris Morgan's picture

Best source is a bit heterodox nevertheless check out The Testament of Solomon – has descriptions of them all there 

Mogg Morgan

Chris Morgan's picture

Great Comment – AFAIK demons and even the satan in the ancient Jewish Bible are viewed somewhat differently to how they were encountered in the later Christian tradition. Given that the Hebrews trace their origins to Egypt, it wouldn’t be surprising to find this kind of imagery and magick there, especially the Kabbalah. One example I give in the book comes from the magical Book of Abramelin, whose list of demons to be dealt with by the magician can also be grouped into decans.Many of them have hebrew names.

I will look at the Book of Jubilees – which I’m told was never part of the Jewish Bible – some sort of Gnostic construction likely – but a likely source on the decans in Judaism . 

Mogg Morgan

Hi All,

It's somewhat astounding to know every culture around the Globe the existence of demon's and Evil-Spirit's. From my Christian background I learned of Demon's through The Gospel's and The Book's of Act's, The Book of Revelation.

Though it is traditional seemingly World Wide New Year's Day's celebration, The New Year celebration I love and so enjoy celebrating is Chinese & Vietnamese New Year, in fact I've liked the celebration since Kindergarten.

Parts of The celebration conducted on Chinese & Vietnamese New Year is the use of the Fire Cracker's to chase away the
Evil-Spirit's. There are traditions that the Chinese and Vietnamese make preparations for the New Year to keep Demon's and Evil-Spirit's away for Good Luck.

Like I addressed earlier about this Subject of The Demonic Calendar; my only source on demon's is through The Bible.

I hadn't understood the complete origins of these Being's in question till I read previous Biblical Text that is no longer apart of The Traditional Bible; it's little wonder why The Early Church Father's came to such a decision Because they Feared what They Read.

Through reading first from Enoch where The Demon's and Evil-Spirits came from, then Jubilees according to lesser Genesis (this is how Jubilees is identified by Scholars), Lucifer makes a request of The Ancient of Day's after, The Great Flood and everyone but, Noah's Family is dead.

Lucifer asks that He receive 10 Evil-Spirits to tempt Man with and all the rest send Them to Hell (which is not of Earth), The Heavenly Father actually grants Lucifer this request.

I've read The traditional Bible since my Childhood just as soon I learned how to read. None of the Scriptures ever testified to this significant event.

If the Church Father's hadn't ran interference with Jubilees being in The Bible we all would have been aware of this single okay maybe not so much single event's since there were numerous moment's captured in The Bible, Just startling.

Enoch the oldest Book in The Ancient World; older than even The Epic of Gilgamesh, covers why the Demons came to exist.

The fascinating part of the whole Demonic Calendar of Ancient Egypt seemingly coincide with Enoch's take on these Demon's the descriptions of them alarming to say the least.

I'm wondering if the Egyptian Demonic Calendar is displaying perhaps the Egyptian pantheon metamorphosing in to Demon's or is this calendar in question separating the gods from The Demon's?

As memory serves from The Bible's perspective; it's like after emerging from The Ark once The Great Deluge ended an Humanity began again They Chose which of the Ancient Civilizations before Their Time would Be the gods that They would follow which is how Egypt picked the gods they wanted.

This explains why The Living God of Abraham approached Man through Abraham to begin with, for it seems that the Age of Demon's and Evil-Spirit's had begun to play out on Earth.

Still I do I wonder of the possibility Egyptian Demonic Calendar captures them interchanging into Demon's.

I think this is all I have to share so until next time, Everyone, and I'm aware my theory involving this calendar is odd so Goodbye!

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