(Rât, Râït, Reyet) Raet is the feminine counterpart or complement of Re, but she features most often as the consort of Montu, by whom she is the mother of Harpre, ‘Solar Horus‘, a child God similar in form to Harpocrates. She is depicted as a woman wearing the headdress typical of Hathor, namely the solar disk, cow’s horns and uraeus serpent, sometimes with the addition of two feathers to the disk. Frequently she is known as Raettawy (var. ‘Rât-taui), ‘Raet of the Two Lands’, ‘the Two Lands’ being the standard term for the united Egypt and, in a sense, for the ideal world. ‘Raet’ is in the first place a title originated by Hatshepsut which designated her as wielding the power of solar sovereignty, that is, the power of illumination and innovation, in this world. The sense of ‘Raet’ as a title is akin in certain respects to that of aten or visible disk of the sun. Subsequently, due to the scarcity of female sovereigns, the title comes to be borne by Goddesses who are consorts of Gods identified with Re; by Goddesses who act as Re’s executive or ‘Eye’; and by Goddesses identified as Re’s daughter. Among the Goddesses bearing this title most often are Hathor, Mut, Ma’et, and Isis. Sometimes the title ‘Raet’ is interchangeable with the feminine form of Aten, ‘Atenet’. The epithet is also used to introduce the name of a Goddess preeminent in a given place. The name ‘Raettawy’ is used more commonly to denote the consort of Montu. Raettawy is also sometimes regarded as the mother of Thoth, in which capacity she is also called Seneket-Net, ‘Wet-nurse of Neith‘ (el-Sayed 1969, 73-75). This epithet would seem to designate Raettawy as Thoth’s grandmother, Thoth sometimes having been regarded as the son of Neith, although it is more likely that it simply expresses that Raettawy is primordial, having nursed the primordial Goddess Neith herself. In the cosmogony involving the lotus, Raettawy is identified with the bud of the lotus from which the solar child comes forth as the blossom (Ryhiner 1986, 135f, 192f), and in general as nourishing and protecting the solar child.

Gutbub, Adolphe. 1984. “Rait” and “Rat-taui.” Pp. 87-90 and 151-155 in vol. 5 of Helck, Wolfgang and Eberhard Otto, eds. 1973–. Lexikon der Ägyptologie. Wiesbaden: Otto Harrassowitz.
Ryhiner, Marie-Louise. 1986. L’Offrande du Lotus dans les Temples Égyptiens de l’Époque Tardive. Brussels: Fondation Égyptologique Reine Élisabeth.
el-Sayed, Ramadan. 1969. “Thoth n’a-t-il Vraiment pas de Mère?” Revue d’Égyptologie 21: 71-76.

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