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Bennu is an ancient symbol from Egyptian mythology and is thought to be the ba, or soul, of the Sun God Ra. Because of its association with rebirth, many scholars believed that it might be related with the phoenixes, especially since the first recorded cases of domesticated phoenixes were in Heliopolis where the Bennu was revered.
Diana Black

The Bennu is an ancient Egyptian deity linked with the sun, creation, and rebirth.


The Bennu was a self-created being said to have played a role in the creation of the world. It was said to be the ba of Ra and enabled the creative actions of Atum. It was said to have flown over the waters of Nun that existed before creation, landing on a rock and issuing a call that determined the nature of creation. It was also a symbol of rebirth and was therefore associated with Osiris.

Some of the titles of the Bennu bird were "He Who Came Into Being by Himself", and "Lord of Jubilees"; the latter epithet referred to the belief that the Bennu periodically renewed itself like the sun. Its name is related to the Egyptian verb wbn, meaning "to rise in brilliance" or "to shine".



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Myths and Legends

The yellow wagtail is seen as a symbol of Atum, and it may have been the original form of the Bennu bird. New Kingdom artwork shows the Bennu as a grey heron with a long beak and a two-feathered crest, sometimes perched on a benben stone (representing Ra) or in a willow tree (representing Osiris). Because of its connection with Osiris, it sometimes wears the atef crown.