‘The Abyss’ (fem.), a Goddess belonging to the Hermopolitan Ogdoad. Naunet is the feminine complement to Nun, occurring together with him in contexts such as PT utterance 301, where the two of them are said to “protect the Gods with your shadow,” or utterance 606, in which the resurrected king, identified with the sun, is enthroned with Shu to his east, Tefnut to his west, Nun to his south and Naunet to his north. Naunet is possibly regarded as personifying the ‘nether sky’, the sky traversed by the sun through the night. References in the Pyramid Texts to a place called nnt include PT utterance 218, in which the king’s authority in the afterlife is affirmed over earth-dwellers of the west, east, south and north, then over “those in the nnt“; utterance 222, in which the king is urged by the officiating priest to “go down” with Atum, “discern the needs of the nnt and succeed to the thrones of Nun”; and utterance 548, in which the king crosses the “Winding Waterway” (thought to designate the ecliptic) “to the Field of the nnts,” or ‘nether skies’, which are situated temporally and perhaps spatially ‘before’ the Field of Reeds, which in turn lies temporally just prior to the sunrise, and so the ‘nether sky’ or ‘nether skies’ would presumably, in lying ‘before’ it, lie deeper in the night. Naunet is also sometimes characterized straightforwardly as “mother of Re“.
Allen, J. P. 1989. “The Cosmology of the Pyramid Texts.” In J. P. Allen, et al., eds. Religion and Philosophy in Ancient Egypt. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press.
Faulkner, R. O. 1969. The Ancient Egyptian Pyramid Texts. Oxford: Oxford University Press. [PT]