Apepi, Book of Overthrowing of
An Egyptian work that forms a considerable portion of the
funerary papyrus of Nesi-Amsu. It deals with the diurnal combat
between Ra the Sun-God and Apepi the great serpent and
personification of spiritual evil. Several chapters (notably 31,
33, and 35–39) are obviously borrowed from the Book of the
Dead, or Papyrus of Ani. Its 15 chapters contain a great deal
of repetition and details concerning various methods for the
destruction of Apepi, including many magical directions.
It stipulates that the name of Apepi must be written in green
on a papyrus and then burnt. Wax figures of his attendant
fiends were to be made, mutilated, and burnt, in the hope that,
through the agency of sympathetic magic, their prototypes
might be injured or destroyed.
Another portion of the work details the creative process and
describes how men and women were formed from the tears of
the god Khepera. This portion is known as The Book of Knowing
the Evolutions of Ra. The work is evidently very ancient, as is
shown by the circumstance that many variant readings occur,
and only one copy is known. The funeral papyrus in which it
is contained was discovered at Thebes in 1860, purchased by
the archaeologist A. H. Rhind, and sold to the trustees of the
British Museum by David Bremner. The linen on which it is
written is of very fine texture, measures 19 feet by 9 inches, and
has been translated by Wallis Budge in Archaeologia (Vol. 52,
Part 2).

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