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In Egyptian mythology, Maahes (also spelt Mihos, Miysis, and Mahes) was a lion-god. The first mentions of Maahes occur in the New Kingdom, and many think he was a god of foreign origin; indeed there is some evidence that he may have been copied from the lion-god Apedemak worshipped in Nubia. His name was the start of the Hieroglyphs for lion, although in isolation it also means (one who can) see in front. However, the first glyph is also part of the glyph for Maàt, meaning truth/order and so it came to be that Maahes was considered to be the devourer of the guilty and protector of the innocent. Maahes was rarely referred to by name and was instead referred to as "The Lord of the Massacre."     

The lion hieroglyphic was used in words such as prince, strength, and power, since the lion was considered to have such attributes, and so lion-gods and goddesses were associated with the pharoahs, and became patrons of Egypt. As a lion-god and patron, he was considered the son of Bast, the lion-goddess and patron of Lower Egypt, or of Sekhmet, the lion-goddess and patron of Upper Egypt. As his cult was centred in Leontopolis and Per-Bast, he was more usually the son of Bast. As patron of Egypt, his father was said to be the chief god - either Ptah, or Ra (at this time Atum had already merged into Ra as Atum-Ra). When considered the son of Ra, it was said that he fought Apep during Ra's daily night voyage.

He was pictured as a man with the head of a lion, occasionally wearing the double crown of Egypt, holding a knife. Sometimes Maahes was shown with a bouquet of lotuses near him, but he was also depicted as a lion devouring a captive. Some of Maahes’s titles were Lord of Slaughter, Wielder of the Knife, and The Scarlet Lord. Tame lions were kept in a temple dedicated to Maahes (thus the name of the city Leontopolis), and an ancient Greek historian, named Aelian, said: In Egypt, they worship lions, and there is a city called after them [leontopolis]... the lions have temples and numerous spaces in which to roam; the flesh of oxen is supplied to them daily ... and the lions eat to the accompaniment of song in the Egyptian language.     

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