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The Doruphoroi of Logos, as Egyptian Deities: SO and APH (??)

Posted: Wed Nov 18, 2020 9:40 pm
by billd89
E. Goodenough, By Light, Light: The Mystic Gospel of Hellenistic Judaism [1935], p.43 :
“With these {doruphoroi} Reitzenstein* connects a sentence from a papyrus in the British Museum: οἱ δύο θεοὶ οἱ περὶ σέ, Θαθ. καλεῖται ὁ εἷς θεὸς ο εσώτερος Σω, ὁ ἕτερος Ἀφ {=“The two gods who are beside you, Thoth. One god is called So, the other Aph”}.**”

* R. Reitzenstein, Poimandres; studien zur griechisch-ägyptischen und frühchristlichen literatur, 117-8: “The apparently most widespread form of the literature (i.e. in C.H. 13) of the Poimandres community is that Hermes teaches his son the deed. Two corpora were formed and divorced relatively early, the General Discourse and the Detailed Discourses. The connection between Tat and Hermes is initially strange, since Tat is itself the Egyptian Hermes. A duplication took place with the penetration of the new name in Hellenistic times, a process that we encountered quite often in earlier times on Greek soil. That it really made its way into cult seems to be shown by a strange magical prayer which Wessely and Kenyon have published: .... According to Prof. Spiegelberg, the name of the one god corresponds to that of the genius of the dead hpj. His name appears combined with that of Thoth in the Coptic Magic Papyrus of the second century AD, which Griffith published in the Zeitschrift für Ägyptische Sprache 1900 p.90; “Isis says: my father Ape-Thoth”. The connection between the two deities also shows the Greek misinterpretation of Hermanubis. In our prayer, too, hpj seems to be identical to Anubis, previously mentioned as the servant of Hermes.”
** Text as by K. Preisendanz, Papyri Graecae Magicae, Vol. 2 [1931], p.25. {PGM 7.557-8}

Though his book thoroughly elaborates his thesis of the Judeo-Hellenistic doruphoroi of Logos, Goodenough doesn't elaborate anything about the Egyptian variant/precursor dieties 'So' and 'Aph'. I'm also confused by Reitzenstein's reference, as roughly translated here (by me).

Who are 'So' and 'Aph', exactly? Google isn't my friend, either. Thanks for any help!


Re: The Doruphoroi of Logos, as Egyptian Deities: SO and APH (??)

Posted: Thu Nov 19, 2020 12:20 pm
by Ethan
Ἆφ is the vocative form of Ἆπις, Apis, a bull worshipped in Egypt. I am unsure about Σω but ΑΦ and ΣΩ evoke alpha and omega. ΣΩ cf. ת "Taw" for ת exchanges with Σ.

אף means πνοη, breath or the breath of Ἥφαιστος i.e flame. Perhaps ΑΦ and ΣΩ represent body and soul.

The baboon in Greek is κυνοκέφαλος 'dog-headed'.
In Egyptian the baboon is Babi, usually translated as "bull of the baboons".

Greek & Egyptian cultural exchange began with King Gygas during the reign of Psammatichus I in which a Greek colony was established in Elephantine.

votive stela showing Thoth as baboon.