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The Antinoöpolitan Triad

By P. Sufenas Virius Lupus

[Snip] In Egypt, there are various groupings of deities, often at particular locations, which includes the Heliopolitan Ennead and the Hermopolitan Ogdoad, but there are some that are triadic. Some of these include: the Memphite Triad of Ptah, Sekhmet, and their son Nefertem; the Triad of Medinet Madi, consisting of Renenutet, Sokonopis, and their son Anchoes; the Theban Triad of Amun, Mut, and their son Khonsu; and the Elephantine Triad, of Satis, Khnum, and their daughter Anoukis. I’m quite there are others (and if you know them, please feel free to list further examples of them below in the comments!), but the tendency with these is to be husband/father, mother/wife, and son/daughter (though most often sons, I think, rather than daughters, with the definite exception being Elephantine, as already mentioned).

One of the things that I like about highlighting some of these triads is that they are an excellent example of localized theologies. Depending on the importance of a given location during a particular period of Egyptian history, one of these Triads might find itself in ascendancy to a much higher degree and with a larger geographic scale of influence and recognition than they might have had otherwise–that’s certainly the case with the Theban and Memphite Triads, but not to as much of a degree with Elephantine or Medinet Madi. Nonetheless, acknowledging these Triads might be a way for various polytheists to come into greater awareness of the importance of place in theological understanding.

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