Gold statue of Amun found in Karnak temple. The ostrich feathers have broken off.


Amun was the king of the gods in the New Kingdom. His main temple was Karnak, but the Luxor Temple and Hatshepsut's temple were dedicated to him, plus several others. His name means 'the hidden one'. In the New Kingdom he was joined with the sun god Re to become Amun-Re, the creator god and father of the pharaohs. Pharaohs also began claiming that Amun was their father. Inscriptions in Hatshepsut's temple portrayed her divine birth, which helped to strengthen her position as a female pharaoh.

Amun was worshipped mainly by the high priest who would look after his cult statue in the inner sanctuary of his temple. The statue would have been made of solid gold - unfortunately none have survived, although we do have some statues of Amun made of gold and silver.

The priest would make offerings of incense, food, flowers, wine and beer; he would anoint the statue with perfumes and incense; he would wash it with holy water; and he would clothe it in fine linen. A lector priest would also read out prayers and spells to bring the statue to life and ask it for its blessings.

Amun was shown as a man with two ostrich plumes on his head.



Entrance to Karnak temple

The ram's head sphinxes represent Amun.