Volume 5 (2022)

First page of the paper.

Papers presented at the third international conference of the Hellenic Institute of Egyptology

Une Relecture Égyptologique de l'Hymne Orphique à la Lune

Maravelia, Alicia


In this paper we focus on an egyptological re–reading of the Orphic Hymn to the Moon (Selēnē) [QUANDT 41973: 9], presenting its principal astronomical and cosmographic nuances, comparing it to some references to the Moon in the ancient Egyptian funerary texts (mainly PT, CT, BD, some other epigraphic references also included) and offering various interesting conclusions. As the dating of the ideas contained in the corpus of the Orphic Hymns coincides with the NK and the astronomical knowledge of the Orphics was significantly im-portant, many cosmovisional allegories are met, describing the lunar traits, brightness and movements. The affirmations related to the objective archaeoastronomical data have neither the purpose nor the result to contradict the philological and literary data or the historical accounts presented in several modern scholarly studies; our scope is only to suggest that the long tradition, upon which the astronomical (and cosmographic) ideas and the content of the Orphic Hymns was based, shaped and formed, has a very ancient past, as is actually the case for similar ideas met in the corpus of the PT. On the other hand, in the most ancient funerary texts of the ancient Egyptians, cosmic metaphors are used to delineate the lunar epiphanies and describe cha-racteristically the peculiar behaviour of the Moon on the Ecliptic and the periodicity of its phases, connected to the monthly lunar feasts and the concomitant food offerings to the deceased and the deities of the hereafter.


Maravelia, A. 2022. «Une Relecture Égyptologique de l'Hymne Orphique à la Lune», JHIE 5: 75–92



Language: fr

Submitted on 2022-05-20; accepted on 2022-12-15


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