If you’re an Egyptophile, I want to wish you a happy New Year, today. Because of the agrarian nature of ancient Egyptian society, the first day of the first month took place when Sirius the Dog Star could first be briefly seen before dawn. What we now call the Heliacal Rising of Sirius.
The Middle Kingdom pharaohs decreed that this day marked the beginning of the first of the three seasons, Akhet, or inundation of the River Nile. The other seasons were Peret or Winter, and Shemu or Summer.
The ancients called this day the First Day of the Month of Thoth. Traditionally, the Heliacal Rising of the Dog Star was observed in Egypt’s first capital, Memphis. The Ptolemaic scientists had calculated that this rising event happened at the same day of the calendar every 1,460 years, the Sothic Cycle.
The scribes used this mathematical information to configure their civil calendars. The Pharaohs ruled that each fourth year shall be 366 days instead of 365 days. The farming people didn’t at first accept the change because their work cycle went strictly by nature. However, in 22 BCE, general Egyptian useage of the official calendar was law. That meant the first of Thoth falling on our August 29th, was locked in place.
Why was the first month of their year named after the God Thoth? Probably because he was the self-begotten, self-created One. Thoth was the master of the physical and moral realms. Furthermore, the Egyptians believed that Thoth performed the calculations that established all of the heavens, the many stars and the Earthly home along with all the inhabitants.
Because Thoth was master of communications and words, the Gods themselves could never exist. The words of Thoth enabled the mental creation of everything. Egyptians regarded Thoth as the inventor of science, philosophy, magic and religion. It was through Thoth’s work, each branch of human and divine wisdom came into being.
In the most ancient times of Egyptian antiquity, Thoth was the personification of the Moon. He was one of the eyes of the sky God Horus who had been half-blinded. The other eye was the Sun or Ra.
Eventually, the Moon and the Sun became deities in their own rights. Because the people associated the phase of the crescent moon with the ibis’ curved beak, Thoth was depicted with the head of the ibis. Some sects depicted Thoth as a baboon-headed God holding the crescent moon. This association regarded him as having Astennu, one of the male baboons. as his consort living in the place of judgment.
In Thoth’s role as record keeper, he is regarded to be the author of the oldest recorded tradition of Egypt. He supposedly wrote Chapter 30 of The Egyptian Book Of The Dead.
The Blue Jay of Happiness notes that The Eye of Horus will be completely full in two days from now.