In Egyptian mythology, Nefertem (perhaps to be translated: 'the beautiful one who closes' or 'the one who does not close'; also read as Nefertum, Nefer-Tem, Nefer-Temu) was originally a lotusflower at the creation of the world, who had arisen from the primal waters. Nefertem represented both the first sunlight (also often associated with the shapes of a lion or a falcon god; sunlight was also supposed to shine forth from the double high feathers from the deity's head, a usual aspect of his iconography) and the delightful smell of the Egyptian blue lotusflower having arisen from the primal waters within an Egyptian blue water-lily, Nymphaea caerulea. (This flower is widely used in Egyptian art, religion and literature. In much of the literature about ancient Egypt, it is called the "(blue) lotus". However, the true lotus, Nelumbo nucifera, is not found in Egypt until the time of the Persian invasion, when it was introduced as a food crop. Some of the titles of Nefertem were "He Who is Beautiful" and "Water-Lily of the Sun", and a version of the Book of the Dead says,
"Rise like Nefertem from the blue water lily, to the nostrils of Ra (the creator and sungod), and come forth upon the horizon each day."
As the power of Memphis grew, their chief god, Ptah, was said to be the original creator, and thus of all the other gods, including any lesser creators, who create the remaining gods having first being created by Ptah. Consequently Nefertum came to be merely the son of Ptah, rather than a creator of light proper. As son of Ptah, it was said that either the lioness-deities Sekhmet, or Bast (whichever was considered wife of Ptah), was his 'mother'. As a god now only associated with the highly aromatic blue water-lily rather than creation, he became a god of perfume and luck. In art, Nefertum is usually depicted as a beautiful young man having blue water-lily flowers around his head. As the son of Bast, he also sometimes has the head of a lion or is a lion or cat reclining. Nefertem was associated both with the scent of the blue water-lily flower and its supposed narcotic effect (widely presumed, but yet untested scientifically). The ancient Egyptians often carried small statuettes of him as good-luck charms.
From: WikiNefertem - "Tem is Beautiful; the Beauty of Tem" Son of Ptah and Sekhmet of Mennefer, Nefertem is portrayed as a beautiful young man with a lotus flower on His head or holding lotuses. An original creation story of the city of An (G/R Heliopolis) relates that on the day of creation, a beautiful child emerged from the center of a huge lotus flower floating on the surface of the Nun; Nefertem's name, which honors Tem, the Self-Created One of An, probably hearkens to this myth. Nefertem is patron of both the healing arts and the arts of beautification, though in later periods his newly-introduced younger brother, Imhotep, would assume the healing aspects. Nefertem is usually given attributes associated with both the flowers He carries (both their beauty and their narcotic qualities, which were used for medical anesthesia) and their scent, and is especially invoked in the purifications and blessings of offerings involving flowers and perfumes. Very infrequently, and possibly in reflection of the three Names often attributed as being His mother (Sekhmet, Wadjet and Bast), Nefertem is depicted with the head of a lion.
From: Kemet.orgOther Names: Nefertum Patron of: the rising of the sun.
Appearance: a man with a crown of lotus blossoms
Description: Nefertem was the god of the sunrise who helped to bring the sun into the sky where Ra was. According to myth, he had no father and no mother, instead being born from a lotus blossom.
Worship: Nefertem had no formal cult or temple. His primary devotion seems to have been in the form of small statues of him carried by people, similar to modern saints medals.
An ancient Egyptian god identified with the lotus, but he also personified some form of the morning sun. He is a son of Ptah and Sakhmet or Bastet. Nefertem is usually represented as a man with a cluster of lotus flowers upon his head, but sometimes he has the head of a lion. In the little faïence figures of him, which are so common, he stands upon the back of a lion. He represents the sun-god in the legend which made him burst forth from a lotus, for in the pyramid of Unas the king is said: "Rise like Nefer-Temu from the lotus (lily) to the nostrils of Ra" and to "come forth on the horizon every day."
From: Pantheon.orgThe Name of Nefertem means "Tem is Beautiful". The god of fragrance, his form was "the Divine Lotus". He was also the patron of healing and of beautification, though in later periods Imhotep was introduced as his brother, and took over as the patron of healing.
In the Pyramid Texts there is a description where Nefertem is said to be the lotus flower which is held before the nose of Re but he is often shown as human wearning a lotus on his head, often with two vertical plumes.
A creation story from Heliopolis states that Nefertem emerged as a beautiful child, sitting on a lotus which floated on the waters of Nun at the time of the creation.
Nefertem was associated both with the scent of the flower and its narcotic effect, which in ancient Egypt was used for medical anaesthetics.
He was occasionally depicted with a lion's head, thus showing his solar symbolism, the sun being reborn each day like the lotus that hides beneath the surface of the water at night and reemerging each morning. He was said to dwell "each day" with Re, and through his connection to the sun he and Horus became as one.
Nefertem is also the son of Sekhmet and Ptah, thus forming the Triad of Memphis, though at times he was seen as the son of either Bast or Wadjet (at Buto in the Delta).
Main center of worship:
at Mennefer/Memphis, 1 st Nome, Lower Egypt
From: hereNefertem was the son of Sekhmet and Ptah. A leonine god he was called defender of the two lands, and protector of the two lands. When depicted in human form he often wore a lotus blossom on his head. The Shabaka Stone speaks of him as Nefertem at the nose of Re every day, the sweet smelling flower gods love so much.
Papyrus Harris 500 describes the triad - and an unknown deity Iadet
Its rushes are Ptah,
Sakhmet is its foliage,
Iadet its buds,
Nefertem its lotus blossoms.
M.Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature, Vol.2, p.189
Nefertem was the protective deity of the perfumers.
From: hereOther Sites:Nefertum (Nefertem, Nefertemu) was originally considered to be an aspect of Atum. According to one version of the creation story of the Ennead in Heliopolis, Nefertum (translated as beautiful Atum, or perfect Atum) was born from a blue lotus bud which emerged from the waters of Nun at the beginning of creation. Atum represented the sun and so Nefertum represented the sunrise. He cried because he was alone and his tears created humanity. It was thought that he was born with every sunrise, matured into Atum during the day before passing into the world of the dead every sunset. The cycle of birth in the morning and death every evening (as the sun travelled through the underworld) represented the daily struggle between Chaos and Order (Ma´at).
When Atum was absorbed by Ra (Atum-Ra), Nefertum came to be considered as a seperate deity, still closely associated with the newborn sun. Then Ptah was promoted to the chief national god and proclaimed the ultimate creator, and Nefertum was described as his son by either Sekhmet or Bast (both "Daughters of Ra"). However, as the son of Ptah, he also became patron of the cosmetic and healing arts derived from flowers. Thus, Nefertem was seen as both an aspect of the sun god, and also his grandson.
He was most closely associated with the blue lotus, a flower with narcotic properties. According to one legend, he brought bouquet of beautiful lotuses to the aging Ra to ease his suffering. As a result, he was described in the Pyramid Texts as "the lotus blossom which is before the nose of Re". Nefertem was linked both to the pleasant scent of the lotus flower and to its medical properties (which were well known to the ancient Egyptians). He was also associated with a number of the egyptians favourite flowers, such as rose, geranium and cornflower. In fact, he could be described as the archetypal aromatherapist.
Nefertum was usually depicted as a beautiful young man wearing a lotus headdress, sometimes standing on the back of a lion. He occasionally wears a headdress with two plumes and two necklace counterpoises which were symbols of fertility associated with Hathor (who in turn was closely associated with both of the goddesses described as his mother - Sekhmet and Bast). He was sometimes depicted as a man with the head of a lion or as a reclining lion or cat. In this form he was associated with the lion god Maahes who may have been his brother, but may also have been an aspect of Nefertum. As the newborn sun he was generally depicted as a beautiful baby sitting in or on a lotus bud.
He was known as "He Who is Beautiful" and "Water Lily of the Sun" and He was held in great affection, and people Egyptians often carried small statuettes of him as good-luck charms.
Nefertem, Ancient Lord of Perfume
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Nefertem, God of Perfume, Water Lily of the Sun...
Wepwawet Wiki: Nefertem