Sekhmet (Sakhmet) is one of the oldest known Egyptian deities. Her name is derived from the Egyptian word "Sekhem" (which means "power" or "might") and is often translated as the "Powerful One" or "She who is Powerful". She is depicted as a lion-headed woman, sometimes with the addition of a sun disc on her head. Her seated statues show her holding the anhk of life, but when she is shown striding or standing she usually holds a sceptre formed from papyrus, suggesting that she was associated primarily with the north. However, some scholars argue that the deity was introduced from Sudan (South of Egypt) where lions are more plentiful.
This golden cultic object is called an aegis. It is devoted to Sekhmet, highlighting her solar attributes. Walters Art Museum, Baltimore.
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