Inventory number


  • Document
  • Writing Recto

General description

Anonymous Amduat papyrus

Turin papyrus Cat. 1783 presents a complete version of the Amduat's Twelfth Hour.

The treatise’s structure consists of three horizontal registers. From left to right it describes the Netherworld's reality through a multimodal composition of visual and linguistic signs.

The Twelfth Hour describes the end of the Sun-god Re’s nocturnal journey through the Netherworld. Here, the Sun's rejuvenation process takes place inside the life-regenerating serpent ankh-netscheru (Life of the gods), as we can see on the manuscript’s far right-hand side a beetle, Khepri, representing the Sun-god’s rebirthed form. Hence, Re, in his renewed form, exits the Netherworld travelling through the air-god Shu's outstretched arms to be reborn as the sun disk at dawn. In the top and bottom registers, many deities witness the end of the Sun-god’s journey, praising the Great God and protecting him from the danger of his nemesis, the serpent Apophis.

This hour presents the following scenes: The Twelve Goddesses with Snakes, The Twelve Worshipers, The Solar Boat, The Twelve Gods of Tow, The Snake of Rejuvenation, The Thirteen Goddesses of Tow, Khepri and Shu, The Primordial Deities, The Row of Rowers, The Ten Worshipers and The Mummy of Osiris.


Third Intermediate Period (1076-664 BC)


Dynasty 21 (1076-944 BC)




Thebes (?)

Acquisition: Drovetti, Bernardino

Acquisition Date: 1824

Joining object(s) (log into TPOP)



  • Text 1


  • Hieroglyphs
    • Hieroglyphs
    • Hieroglyphs


Enrico Pozzi (EP)


Shenali Boange (SB)


cursive hieroglyphs

Text type



Twelfth Hour

Place name

Hidden Chamber (a.t-imn.t), Unified Darkness (kkw-smAw), Netherworld (dwA.t), Nun (nww)


Third Intermediate Period (1076-664 BC)


Dynasty 21 (1076-944 BC)





Drawing description

The manuscript’s visual representation describes the Sun-god Re's nocturnal journey through the Twelfth Hour of the night. The treatise's visual model perfectly resembles the prototype established that decorates the 18th Dynasty royal burial chambers in the Valley of the Kings. However, a few deities are missing (deities 826, 856, 873, 885 and 886). The treatise's structure consists of three horizontal registers presenting Re, in his nocturnal shape as a ram-headed deity, travelling on the solar barque through the last netherworld region. The top register presents thirteen goddesses with fire-spitting snakes on their shoulders. They punish Re’s nemesis Apophis and brighten the Netherworld’s darkness. Here there are also twelve worshipers, characterised by the typical adoration gesture with raised hands, who praise the Great God. In the middle register - in order to complete Re's rejuvenation process, twelve gods and twelve goddesses tow the solar barque through the entire body of the life-regenerating serpent anx-nTr.w (Life of the gods). On the register’s far right-hand side, we see the accomplishment of this deed: a beetle known as Khepri, the Sun-god in his renewed form, exits the Netherworld by travelling through the outstretched arms of the air-god Shu to be reborn as the sun disk at dawn. The bottom register presents two primaeval deities with wAs sceptres, as well as nine rowers of the solar barque alongside the serpent nsr-m-ir.t=f (He who burns with his eye). In the final scenes, ten worshippers adore and praise sSm-iwf (Image of the flesh), the corpse of Osiris, who is restricted into the boundaries of the Netherworld.

Bibliographical reference

Hornung E., Das Amduat: die Schrift des verborgenen Raumes, Teil I–III (ÄA 7 und 13), Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz 1963-1967 (OEB10071-12422).

Hornung E., Texte Zum Amduat, Teil I-III: Kurzfassung und Langfassung, 1. bis 12. Stunde, Autographiert von Lotty Spycher und Barbara Lüscher (AH 13–15), Genève: Éditions de Belles-Lettres 1987–1994 (OEB 28504, 35567, 36111).

Niwinski A., Studies on the Illustrated Theban Funerary Papyri of the 11th and 10th Centuries B.C. (OBO 86), Fribourg / Göttingen: Universitätsverlag / Vandenhoeck Ruprecht 1989 (OEB 32792).

Sadek, A-A F., Contribution à l’étude de l’Amdouat: Les variantes tardives du Livre de l’Amdouat dans les papyrus du Musée du Caire (OBO 65), Freiburg / Göttingen: Universitätsverlag / Vandenhoeck Ruprecht 1985 (OEB 29751).

Museo Egizio