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Heka: The Magical Arts of Ancient Egypt: Series of 5 lectures

Arab America

Date(s) - 06/01/2020
5:30 pm - 7:00 pm

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$34.01 USD
Contact Person:



Dr Joanne Backhouse

Arab America

Short course examining the ancient Egyptian concept of Heka.

Heka (magic) was a deity but also divine force. It could be used for good or bad, private, or state purposes. This course will examine the objects and images created to channel the power of heka, including execration and fertility figurines, amulets, bricks, wands, and papyri (spell books). The assimilation of heka (magic), medicine and religion in ancient Egypt will be considered.

A zoom link will be sent to you the Sunday evening before each lecture.

Course outline

Lecture 1

  • Definition of Heka
  • Representations of the god Heka and ritual practitioners

Lecture 2

  • Funerary Magic – Rituals carried out at the tomb, insertion of magic bricks, opening of the mouth ceremony, breaking of red pots and protective deities

Lecture 3

  • Magic in the Home – including birth bricks, masks, serpent, and fertility figurines

Lecture 4

  • State Sponsored Magic – Execration figurines and Spell Books

Lecture 5

  • Medicine and Magic, including the gods as healers
  • Amulets, in daily life and the funerary realm
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