Wadj-wer’s name means ‘the Great Green’, which refers to some large body of open water, either the Mediterranean Sea or the network of lakes at the northern limits of the Delta. He is depicted in a fashion very similar to Hapy, as a scantily-clad pot-bellied man with enlarged breasts and long hair. He can be distinguished from Hapy, however, in that his body is covered with lines representing waves. Just as Hapy embodies the fertility made possible by the Nile’s annual inundation, Wadj-wer embodies the productivity of the ‘Great Green’, especially fishing. In PT utterance 366, the king is compared to Wadj-wer: “You are hale and great in your name of ‘Sea’; behold, you are great and round [i.e. encircling] in your name of ‘Ocean’.” Most references to Wadj-wer, however, denote a place rather than a divinity, albeit sometimes it is a mythic locale: in the Conflict of Horus and Seth, the three-month combat between Horus and Seth in the form of hippopotami is said to take place in the wadj-wer. The only myth we know in which Wadj-wer features, and which is known in very fragmentary fashion, told of how Seth subdued the sea on behalf of the other Gods. The myth is possibly to be regarded as originally involving the Canaanite Gods Ba’al and Yamm. Indeed, in one of the attestations of the myth (spell no. 23 in Borghouts), reference is made indifferently first to Seth, then to Ba’al. In a spell against “the Asiatic disease,” it is said that the disease is to be conjured by Seth “just as Seth conjured Wadj-wer” (no. 56 in Borghouts).

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