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The Book of Gates

    The Book of Gates


"The Book of Gates" is a seminal work by E. A. Wallis Budge, first published in 1905. This ancient Egyptian cosmological treatise delves into the architecture and inhabitants of the Tuat, the underworld navigated by the Sun God, Ra, during the night. It stands as the second volume in a trilogy by Budge that explores the Egyptian concepts of the afterlife, often referred to as the Egyptian Heaven and Hell.

Key Themes

  1. The Journey of Ra: The text outlines the nocturnal voyage of Ra through the underworld, highlighting the challenges and entities he encounters.
  2. Cosmology and Mythology: Offers deep insights into ancient Egyptian beliefs regarding the universe, the afterlife, and the deities governing these realms.
  3. Rituals and Symbolism: Examines the rituals, symbols, and texts used by the Egyptians to navigate and conceptualize the afterlife.


Budge's work is meticulously structured, beginning with an introduction to the ancient text's significance, followed by a detailed exploration of the Tuat's physical and metaphysical aspects. The book is divided into sections that correspond to the gates of the underworld, each gate offering new revelations about the journey of the soul and the divine.


"The Book of Gates" is more than a mere historical document; it is a portal to understanding the complex beliefs of ancient Egyptians regarding life, death, and the afterlife. Budge's translation and commentary provide a comprehensive view of the underworld's architecture and the journey of Ra, making it an invaluable resource for scholars of Egyptology and ancient religions.