Hiding in plan sight

Today I was reading about Imhotep.

I had things in particular that I was looking for. Things that I pretty much already knew were there. But if you want to stay in a state of knowing everything, you have to refresh your memory every once in a while.

By all accounts, Imhotep was a pretty extraordinary man. He made such an impression on the Egyptians that they deified him a couple thousand years after he died as the God of Healing. Some modern scholars still argue that he is the father of medicine as we know it today.

But that stuff does not interest me, as it is a little dubious. What does interest me is the full list of Imhotep’s titles….

Chancellor of the King of Egypt, Doctor, First in line after the King of Upper Egypt, Administrator of the Great Palace, Hereditary Nobleman, High Priest of Heliopolis, Builder, Chief Carpenter, Chief Sculptor and Maker of Vases in Chief.

Now if your knowledge of ancient Egypt is a little lacking, there are some things that might not jump out at you. For example, do you know what Heliopolis was? From Wikipedia……

As the capital of Egypt for a period of time, grain was stored in Heliopolis for the winter months, when many people would descend on the town to be fed, leading to it gaining the title place of bread.

Now Heliopolis is how you write out the name by today’s conventions. But in Biblical Hebrew, Heliopolis is called “On” (or at least that is how they transliterate it into English). If you don’t immediately recognize where “On” is mentioned in the Bible, think “Asenath daughter of Potiphera, priest of On”.

Incidentally, in ancient Egypt Heliopolis was the center for the worship of Atum. Atum was at that time was seen as the creator God through whom all other things were created (Egyptians religious views fluctuated through time, but this seems to have been the prevailing understanding of Atum at the time of Imhotep).

And those are some random facts from a man who spends to much of his life reading (I blame my father).

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