The Pyramids of the Cold - Section 6 • Inclined Well : the Taweret Lady of the Well sealing block
In summary : goddess of Childbirth Taweret is a glorifying metaphoric representation of the upper granite plug of the Great Pyramid of Giza. Because Taweret is referring to the granite block that was the sealing block at the bottom of the inclined well, and would have been permanently underwater, Taweret had been personified into an hippopotamus : a huge semiaquatic animal that loves to stay, walk and even sleep completely submerged underwater.
Some of Taweret's epithets are "the Lady of the Well", and "She Who Removes Water".
Taweret and Bes (the wedging block that maintained Taweret in place during the operation period of the pyramid) were associated with chilbirth, because of the way these two blocks were involved into the draining procedure of the well through a drain hole : the metaphor is about the water breaking.
Hatshepsut’s birth scene, from Édouard Naville "The Temple of Deir el Bahari" (London, 1896), vol. 2, pl. 50. Image courtesy of the University Library Heidelberg : The Ebony shrine, northern half of the middle platform. https://digi.ub.uni-heidelberg.de/diglit/naville1896bd2/0050
6.01 The Hatshepsut’s birth scene, from Édouard Naville "The Temple of Deir el Bahari"
I really didn't expect to find any kind of proof that would validate the fact that the Taweret block was maintained in its position for the time being of the operating of the Great Pyramid, by a wedging block , but not only the immobilized Taweret/Bes scene is that proof and Bes that particular wedging block, but also we have to note the position of that scene within the entire relief : it is located at the very end of the story.
Whatever the story is exactly, the scene showing that Taweret was blocked by Bes is at the very end of it.
We can imagine 2 different approaches :
1 • Time related approach : the story ends up when it is time for Bes to break and stop immobilizing Taweret. It would be the end of the operating period of the pyramid.
2 • Space related approach : this is a plan of the entire ascending passage that starts with the Grand Gallery and the 4 crewmembers of one hauling beetle, and end with the Taweret/Bes couple at the bottom of the flooded part of the first ascending passage : the inclined well.
Between the 4 crewmembers and the Taweret/Bes couple, there is a bizarre empty space, but again it can be interpreted with both approaches : time and space related.
The inclined well of the Great Pyramid of Giza, during its operation period, showing the Taweret granite sealing block and the small Bes granite wedging block.
6.02 Taweret and the water breaking metaphor
The draining of the inclined well would have result in a huge amount of water gushing out of the bottom of the well after the upper granite plug had moved down and revealed the breach. The metaphor with the water breaking is the origin of the Taweret goddess of childbirth.
"In Ancient Egyptian religion, Taweret is the protective ancient Egyptian goddess of childbirth and fertility. The deity is typically depicted as a bipedal female hippopotamus with feline attributes, pendulous female human breasts, the limbs and paws of a lion, and the back and tail of a Nile crocodile.[...] She commonly bears the epithets "Lady of Heaven", "Mistress of the Horizon", "She Who Removes Water", "Mistress of Pure Water", and "Lady of the Birth House" [...] The name "Taweret" (Tȝ-wrt) means "she who is great" or simply "great one". Source : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taweret
As clearly said by Anneke Stracke in her thesis "The Hippopotamus of Deir el-Medina", goddess Taweret was clearly associated with water :
Excerpt from page 30 of her thesis : "Of the twelve objects within this catalogue that include hieroglyphic epithets of Taweret… three of them make clear mention of her role as a goddess of water. While it is not unthinkable that a hippopotamus goddess should be associated with water, it is still quite unusual that a quarter of all epithets of the goddess which survive from Deir el-Medina feature this role so heavily. The epithets preserved in Deir el-Medina refer to “the pure water”, “lady of the well” and “Taweret, who is in the midst of the purification waters of Nun”. https://studenttheses.universiteitleiden.nl/access/item%3A2624829/view
In short, some of Taweret's epithets are : "the Lady of the Well", "the Big One", "the Great One" and "She Who Removes Water", and she is referring to the upper granite plug (block #3).
In other words, Taweret is the upper granite plug : "The Great One", "The Big One", "The Lady of the Well" and "The One Who Removes Water".
The fact that both Bes and Taweret, as the wedging block and the sealing of the well block, were both associated with the draining of the well, explains why both were associated with childbirth : the metaphor is about the water breaking.
The ascending passage of the Great Pyramid of Giza showing the little imprint with a small block of granite still present today and that was the anchor for the Bes wedging block.
The upper granite plug of the Great Pyramid of Giza was the sealing block of the inclined well. This block had been glorified into the "Lady of the Well" Taweret goddess and represented into the hippopotamus, a huge semiaquatic animal that loves to stay, walk and even sleep completely submerged underwater.
6.03 The completely worn out upper granite plug is Taweret : the "Lady of the Well"
If you compare the two blocks appearing on the above photograph from the Edgar brothers, you can immediately see that if the lower block (this is the middle plug #2) looks like new, this is not true for the upper block that appears completely worn out.
Also its upper face looks curved, like something was stuck to it, but maybe this is only an illusion.
This Taweret block had a story completely different from the other granite plugs. The only logical explanation about the fact it appears so worn out, is that this block, and only this one, did moved or should I say forced its passage, on a short distance. It only could have been on a short distance, because many Egyptologists said that farther away up, the dimensions of the ascending passage wouldn't allow the block to pass through.
It is important to say that this upper block #3 would have only move a few meters and that it would have been most probably forced to do it by the huge pressure caused by the "explosive" opening of the King's chamber : if I am right about this, the man inside the grotto, not only triggered the last release of the impactor, but the impactor itself triggered the opening of the chamber.
6.04 Why goddess Taweret is represented as an hippopotamus
When the Great Pyramid was operational and the ascending passage flooded to form an inclined well, in the continuation of the Grand Gallery's central gutter, the upper granite plug was sealing the well.
Consequently, this sealing block would have been permanently underwater : it explains why ancient Egyptians chose to personify this block into the hippopotamus : a huge semiaquatic animal that loves to stay, walk and even sleep completely submerged underwater.
Taweret giving birth to snakes = Taweret giving birth to water (the water breaking metaphor).
6.05 Taweret : the "Lady of the Well" and "She who Removes water"
EA11862 from the British Museum is a very unusual figure that is depicting Taweret "giving birth" to a snake. To my knowledge, this is the only representation of Taweret associated with a snake.
We've seen in the previous post that snakes in ancient Egypt, were representations of the water from the annual inundation of the Nile : the very first snake is created by Hapi himself (relief of the Philae temple).
Here, with Taweret, we have the representation of the "last" snake, so to speak : Taweret is the representation of the draining of the inclined well that preceded the final shutdown procedure of the Great Pyramid.
Another outstanding figure of Taweret is the amulet 48.1555 from the Walters Art Museum, in Baltimore : it is the only figurine I know of Taweret that is revealing that the Sa sign is actually set on the figure so it is hiding from view a "secret pouring hole".
Amulet of the Goddess Taweret 48.1555 from the Walters Art Museum, Baltimore : https://art.thewalters.org/detail/11051/amulet-pendant-of-taweret/
Blue glazed steatite figure of Taweret and a snake EA11862 from the British Museum : https://www.britishmuseum.org/collection/object/Y_EA11862
Tthe emblem that Taweret is wearing on her head is the wedging block that maintained her into position before the draining of the well procedure. That emblem is Bes, the wedging block of the well.
6.06 The small granite block that was set in the floor imprint between the G8 and G9 girdle stones
In my opinion, the emblem that is showing Taweret on her head is the granite wedging block that was set on the floor of the ascending passage/inclined well, right between the G8 and G9 girdles.
Academic explanation is that this emblem is probably a "mast" that would have been needed to put a special headdress. But if you look at the last above photograph of a Taweret figure from the Artemis Gallery, in Louisville (CO), the "mast" is way to tiny to do the job. This cannot be a supporting "mast".
More about the Bes wedging block in the next Section.
Accession Number: 26.7.1193 from the Metropolitan Museum in New York : https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/544864
Glencairn Museum's Taweret figurine E66. Late Period : https://glencairnmuseum.org/newsletter/september-2014-the-goddess-taweret-protector-of-mothers-and.html
Faience Statuette of Taweret Ref.1352 from Christoph Bacher Archäologie Ancient Art, Vienna : https://www.cb-gallery.com/en/produkt/fayence-statuette-der-taweret/
Artemis Gallery, Louisville CO : https://www.bidsquare.com/online-auctions/artemis-gallery/impressive-detailed-egyptian-faience-votive---taweret-1396924
Diagram of the Great Pyramid of Giza in operation.
Very quick abstract of the study
Ancient Egyptian pharaohs used chemistry and physics to legitimate themselves as kings of Egypt, and they forged an entire religion for that matter : gods were self-glorification metaphors of their scientific accomplishments. The end game of this technological program was the Great Pyramid of Giza where evaporative cooling was engineered in the known part of the pyramid, using the power of water, most probably as suggested by the strong ammonia smell in the Red Pyramid, to cool down chemical manufacturing of sodium carbonate and sodium bicarbonate. At that time, sodium carbonate was called natron, and it was the salt used for the mummification of the pharaohs.
Ancient Egyptians were the first civilization to master a Solvay-like process for sodium carbonate manufacturing, long before it got reinvented in the 1800's in Europe. The key elements of that process is the temperature control of the chemical reactions (the cooling), and the dome shaped plate necessary for the counterflow chemical reactions to occur in an efficient way, and that plate is precisely what is the disc of Sabu.
If mastering the Solvay-process was important, it actually looks like the cold was the most magical phenomenon worshiped by ancient Egyptians, as suggested by Akhenaten and Nefertiti who represented themselves as Shu and Tefnut, the deities that combined together were creating the evaporative cold (Shu = dry warm air, and Tefnut = spat water).
Also, the very first pyramid complex, the Step Pyramid of Djoser, was called "the refreshment of the Gods".