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Ash was the ancient Berber god of oases, and thus was viewed as a benign deity. Flinders-Petrie in his 1922(?) expedition to the Sahara found several references to Ash in wine jar seals: I am refreshed by this Ash was a common inscription.

In particular, he was identified by the Ancient Egyptians as the god of the Libhu and Tinhu tribes, known as the people of the oasis. Consequently Ash was known as the lord of Libya, as the area, occupied by the Libhu and Tinhu tribes, corresponds roughly with the area of modern Libya. It is also possible that he was worshipped in Ombos, as their original chief deity.

In Egyptian Mythology, as the oases, Ash was identified as lover of Set, who was originally god of the desert, and was seen as protector of the Sahara, the Ancient Egyptians having no significant taboos concerning sexuality. The first known recorded mention of Ash dates to the Protodynastic Period, but by the late 2nd Dynasty, his importance grew, and he was seen as protector of the royal estates, since his lover, Set, in Lower Egypt, was regarded as the patron deity of royalty itself. Ash's importance was such that he was mentioned even until the 26th Dynasty.

Ash was usually depicted as a human, whose head was one of the desert creatures, variously being shown as a lion, vulture, hawk, or snake. Indeed, depictions of Ash are the earliest known depictions, in ancient Egyptian art, to show a deity as a human with the head of an animal. On occasion, Ash's relationship with Set lead to him being depicted similarly, as the currently unidentified Set-Animal.

Some depictions of Ash show him as having multiple heads, unlike other Egyptian deities, although some compound depictions were occasionally shown connecting gods to Min. In an article in the journal Ancient Egypt (in 1923), and again in a appendix to her book, The Splendor that was Egypt, Margret Murray expands on such depictions, and draws a parallel to a Scythian deity, who is referenced in Sebastian Meunster's Cosmographia Universalis.


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