• Religion
  • Coffin Texts

  • Comparison Between Coffin and Pyramid Texts

    Criteria Coffin Texts Pyramid Texts
    ImagesCoffin Texts Pyramid Texts
    Timeline The magical funerary spells written upon coffins of the Middle Kingdom
    - Portions of these texts were later incorporated into the Book of the Dead.
    Hieroglyphic inscriptions cut upon the walls of the chambers and corridors Old Kingdom pyramids
    Usage Used by both royalty and common people, because ordinary people who afforded to have a coffin now had access to these funerary spells Reserved for royal use only, the Pharaoh had exclusive rights to the afterlife
    Script Written in hieratic script, and for the first time in funerary literature, these descriptions were supplemented by illustrations and maps of the underworld called "The Book of the Two Ways". They were written in hieroglyphic script, with no graphical illustrations at all
    Content - Emphasize the subterranean elements of the afterlife
    - The object of the texts is to provide the souls of the dead with a guide that will enable them, when they leave this world, to make a successful journey across the Tuat (the Dead Land)
    - The work describes the roads that must be traveled over, and names the places where opposition is to be expected, and supplies the deceased with the words of power which he is to utter when in difficulties.
    - . Because of the limited writing surfaces in coffins, the spells were often abbreviated, giving rise to long and short versions of the spells
    The spells are primarily concerned with protecting the pharaoh's remains, reanimating his body after death, and helping him ascend to the heavens.