Hymn and Prayer to Ptah, papyrus Harris I (J.L.Foster)

Hymn and Prayer to Ptah (Papyrus Harris I)

Spoken by the King, Usermaatra Meramun, the great god under his Father, this splendid god, great Ptah, South of his Wall, lord of the life of the lands. Tatenen. father of the gods. exalted in the double plume, with sharp horns, the Handsome of Face upon the Great Throne:

The Hymn

Greetings to you, exalted ancient one.
O Tatenen, father of the gods.
Eldest god of the primeval time,
who shaped mankind and formed the gods;
Who began Becoming as the first primeval god—
every event that occurred came after him.
Who created the sky according to what his heart imagined
and raised it up like one lifts up a feather;
Who founded the world as his own creation,
circled it about with Ocean and the Great Green Sea;
Who made the underworld, provided for the dead,
allowing Re to sail across below to comfort them
as Ruler of Eternity, Lord of Forever.

Lord of life, who causes throats to breathe,
who offers air to every nostril,
who lets all people live through his provisions.
Time, fate, and fortune are under his dominion—
we live by that which issues from his mouth.
Who created the offerings for all the gods
when he embodied himself as Nun, the primal waters.
Lord of eternity—the everlasting is under his care—
he breathes out life for everyone,
And guides the king to his great Throne
in his Name of King of the Two Lands.

The Prayer

I am your son, whom you installed as king
on the throne of my father, peacefully;
And I am upon your waters, your good counsel is with me.
May you double good things for me while I am upon earth.
May you draw me toward rest at your side in the West of heaven
just as you do for all the hidden gods of the otherworld—
A friend of your Enneads in your secret precinct
like Apis, your splendid Soul, who is at your side.
Let me swallow contentment from your offerings—
the bread, incense, beer, shedeh, and wine.
Let me live again within the Sacred Realm;
and let me see you daily as your two Enneads do.
But while I am Ruler upon earth as lord of the Beloved Land,
let me not keep my heart from zealousness for you—
Seeking out all that is useful for your splendid dwelling,
governing well before you in your City of the Wall.

Translation from: John L.Foster, “Hymns, Prayers and Songs, an Anthology of Ancient Egyptian Lyric Poetry”, p.108-110
Translation from: unknown

Leave a Comment