The Egyptian Zodiac

Star signs and characteristics were introduced to Egypt by the Greeks, and the Egyptian Zodiac reflects the Ptolemaic period. The way we know astrology today first began in Ancient Greece.

But... there are similar maps and charts in ancient Egypt, although not as thorough. So this page is more fun than factual and it will only give you a brief idea of our ancient zodiac.

In Dendera there is a very famous depiction of the Zodiac that dates back to the first century AD, during the Roman period. As you can see there are 12 constellations, each one made of 3 decans (10 days). Each decan represents a major star.

We are not sure what all the symbols represent. Some of them are obvious, like Taurus, Libra and Pisces, and some of them we're not so sure. Take a look and see which ones you recognize.

Egyptian Zodiac

There are two main interpretations of this Dendera relief, and even so they are only interpretation as there isn't sufficient factual evidence that this is how the ancient Egyptians used it. Click here to read about them.

And also, Dendera in general is definitely one the most beautiful sites and temples to see, especially the temple of Hathor. It is the most well-preserved temple in Egypt. It is near the town of Qena, which is about 35 miles north of Luxor.

In fact, the town is quite beautiful on its own. It used to be the ancient Egyptian town of Cainepolis. Getting there is a bit of a hassle though as there is no airport, but there are roads that do go there from bigger cities with airports, such as Luxor and the Red Sea.

There are buses, and some people like to take road trips from the Red Sea to Luxor and pass through Qena.

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