Is Ankh the original cross ?

Is Ankh the original cross ?

The cross is an ancient kemet symbol in the form of an intersection, formed by two or more lines. The "region" is an area defined by the intersection (so there are usually four regions).

But is Ankh the Original and First of All Crosses ? 


The term cross comes from the Latin word crux which means "gallows".

According to the Robert historique de la langue française, "As early as Plautus (254-184 B.C.), crux is common in Latin and enters proverbial expressions; it takes the meaning of "moral torture" and, by metonymy, designates the tormentor."

General symbolism

The cross is the basis of all symbols of orientation1. The cross realizes the union of opposites: vertically it connects the poles to the plane of the equator; horizontally it connects equinoxes and solstices.

For the alchemists, the vertical branch, erect, symbolizes the male principle, and the horizontal branch, lying down, the female principle; their conjunction is a sign of life.


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What is the Ankh Cross ? 

The ânkh or annealed cross is used frequently in Egyptian art, especially in tomb paintings; it often appears at the fingertips of a deity, in images showing the deities of the afterlife giving life to the mummy of the deceased.

In Amarna art, the annealed cross is carried by the sunbeams (terminated by hands), symbolic of the sun giving life on earth.

This symbol was often worn as an amulet by the Egyptians

It is the Egyptian hieroglyph S34 (Gardiner code) meaning "life". In association with the hieroglyphs, U28 representing a fire stick meaning "integrity, prosperity..." and the hieroglyph S29 representing a folded garment meaning "health" they form the formula of Egyptian eulogy "life, prosperity, health"

the whole
S34 U28 S29
ˁnḫ(=w), wḏȝ(=w), snb(=w)

Crosses have been used as a sign of faith for centuries. The first known examples are the Ankh crosses found in ancient Egyptian burial sites. These ancients crosses consisted of a stick figure framed between two uprights. An Egyptian Ankh is also commonly regarded as a form of cross because it has a similar shape, although it might not be recognized as such by everyone. The Ankh is an ancient Egyptian symbol that was commonly used in art and illustrations from around the third millennium BCE onwards. It is important to note that the modern interpretation of this symbol may not reflect how the Ancient Egyptians would have perceived it, due to our limited knowledge of their culture and beliefs.

Original Ankh Cross

What does an Egyptian Ankh symbolize?

The Ankh is a symbol of life and eternal life.

The Ankh is also a symbol of the sun, fertility and creation.

In Ancient Egypt, the Ankh was the sign of the gods and goddesses, often worn by the king or by priests and priestesses to symbolize their connection to the divine.

The Ankh is also a symbol of abundance and eternal life.

The Ankh is commonly associated with the goddess of life, and fertilityIsis, with the Isis Knot. The Ankh symbolizes many things. It's a sign that the person is looking for eternal life.

Where is the oldest Ankh found?

The Ankh was first used in art during the second millennium BCE (according to most experts). A typical Ankh has an S-shaped cross-piece that is bent over the top of the vertical piece. The oldest Ankh found was discovered in a tomb in the area of el-Badari in Upper Egypt. It dates back to c. 3500 BCE, and it is believed that the Ankh might be the original cross. 

What does the Ankh symbol represent for Egyptians?

The Ankh was used as a hieroglyphic sign in the Egyptian language. The different symbols within the hieroglyphic text each represented a different word or phrase. The Ankh symbolized the word 'life'. The Ankh was also used to mark the beginning and end of papyrus written texts. The beginning of a text was marked by the Ankh symbol raised on a pedestal, while the ending of a text was symbolized by the Ankh sign lowered down below the line.


Ankh Earrings

How is the Ankh related to other Egyptian symbols?

The Ankh is commonly associated with the palm tree (symbolizing plenty). The palm tree and the Ankh are often portrayed together in inscriptions and art, and the palm tree is often used as a symbol for life, just like the Ankh. The Ankh is also associated with the papyrus plant, which symbolizes the creation of the world in Egyptian mythology.


We can conclude that the egyptian ankh is the original cross, it is an ancient symbol of life, fertility and creation. It was also the sign of the gods, often worn by the king or by priestesses to symbolize their connection to the divine. The ankh is also a symbol of abundance and eternal life. It is commonly associated with the goddess of life, fertility, and creation, Isis. The ankh is also associated with the palm tree and the papyrus plant.

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