(Khuyet) The principal Goddess at Athribis, capital of the tenth nome or district of Lower (Northern) Egypt and consort of Khenty-khety, Khuit’s name means “Protector”, referring particularly to her role in relation to Osiris, whose heart was at Athribis, from which the city received its name in Egyptian: Ḥw.t-tꜣ-ḥry-ỉb, “the place which is upon the heart”. Khuit is depicted as a winged Goddess wearing the Red or White Crown, or the solar disc with ostrich feathers, and sometimes with items characteristic of Hathor and her entourage, such as the sistrum or tambourine.
Khuit’s most characteristic epithet is ḥbs-nṯr, “who clothes the God,” with reference again to Osiris, especially as incarnate (i.e., clothed in the living form) in a sacred black bull known as Km-wr, “the Great Black One”, housed at Athribis. The ‘clothing’ Khuit supplies to the God is identified with the bandages that wrap the mummy, but not exclusively. Khuit extends her protection, frequently expressed as enfolding with her wings, also to Isis with the infant Horus, to Ihy, to Isis herself, as well as to other Gods and to their icons. Khuit’s action of ‘clothing’ the God can also be understood as concealing their form, as in a passage (BD spell Pleyte 168 S 44-5, Allen p. 219) which can be taken to refer to her obliquely: “Raise thyself, Andjety, in Athribis, while the Veiler [Ḥbsyt] clothes thy Image. Raise thyself, ḏd-pillar, in Busiris. The one who covers [ḥbs] the head has hidden thy form.” Khuit’s function of protecting or clothing a God with her wings is also sometimes conceived as fanning [ḥbs bh], an action associated with supplying the breath of life.
In at least one text, Khuit is addressed as “child of ꜥm tꜣwy [‘who knows the Two Lands’]”, a common epithet of Thoth (§212 in Vernus, p. 254), in which connection it should perhaps be noted that the Egyptians saw the heart as the bodily locus for the mind, and Thoth accordingly has a number of epithets relating him to the heart.
Leitz, Christian et al. 2002. Lexikon der ägyptischen Götter und Götterbezeichnungen. Band V, Ḥ-ḫ. Leuven: Peeters: 675-6.
Vernus, Pascal. 1978. Athribis: textes et documents relatifs à la géographie, aux cultes, et àl l’histoire d’une ville du delta égyptien à l’époque pharaonique. Cairo: Institut français d’archéologie orientale. [See esp. pp. 440-444]