The “Book of the Dead” is an ancient Egyptian funerary text containing a collection of spells and incantations believed to protect the deceased in the afterlife. It was not a single book, but rather a collection of texts and illustrations that were included in tombs and burial sites. The texts were written on papyrus rolls, and the illustrations were painted on the walls of tombs and burial chapels.
The “Book of the Dead” was believed to be a guide for the deceased in the afterlife, helping them to navigate the dangers and challenges they might encounter. It contained spells to protect against evil spirits, spells to help the deceased find their way in the afterlife, and spells to help them gain admission to the presence of the gods.
The “Book of the Dead” also contained hymns and prayers that were meant to be recited by the deceased or by the living on behalf of the deceased. These texts were often accompanied by illustrations that depicted the deceased, the gods, and various scenes from the afterlife.
The “Book of the Dead” was an important part of ancient Egyptian religion and was used from the New Kingdom period (c. 1550-1070 BC) until the end of the Ptolemaic Period (30 BC-AD 332).