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Myths and Legends of Ancient Egypt

Page: 67

A Religion of One God

One of the features of the new religion was that it was essentially monotheistic, and could not tolerate the inclusion of other deities. Thus whereas certain sun-gods in like circumstances might have become fused with Ra, such fusion was impossible in the case of Aten. Not only was he king of the gods, he was the god, the divinity par excellence. Yet did this monotheistic religion retain many of the forms and rites of other cults, paradoxical as this must have appeared. The king retained his title of 'son of the sun' (Aten), while he exchanged his Horus and other titles for Aten titles. The burial customs and the use of scarabs were still continued. Yet the name of Amen-Ra, with which they had previously been associated, was everywhere obliterated by order of the king, even where it formed part of proper names. The temple which


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