The words for "ram" and "soul" sounded the same in Egyptian so ram deities were at times regarded as appearances of other gods.
Typically, the horned god Banebdjedet was depicted with four rams' heads to represent the four Ba's of the sun god. He may also be linked to the first four gods to rule over Egypt (Osiris, Geb, Shu and Ra-Atum), with large granite shrines to each in the Mendes sanctuary.
The Book of the Heavenly Cow describes the "Ram of Mendes" as being the Ba of Osiris, but this was not an exclusive association. A story dated to the New Kingdom describes him as being consulted by the "Divine Tribunal" to judge between Horus and Seth, but he proposes that Neith do it instead as an act of diplomacy. As the dispute continues, it is Banebdjedet who suggests that Seth be given the throne as he is the elder brother.
- Hermann Ranke: Die ägyptische Persönennamen. Verlag von J. J. Augustin in Glückstadt, 1935. , p.89
- Handbook of Egyptian mythology, Geraldine Pinch, p 114-115, Oxford University Press, 2004, ISBN 0-19-517024-5
- "Mistress of the House, Mistress of Heaven: women in ancient Egypt", Anne K. Capel, Glenn Markoe, p 72, Cincinnati Art Museum, Brooklyn Museum, Hudson Hills, 1996, ISBN 1-55595-129-5
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