Shu (meaning dryness and he who rises
up) is one of the primordial gods, a
personification of air, one of the Ennead of Heliopolis.
He was created by Atum
his father and Iusaaset, his mother in the city of Heliopolis. With
his sister, Tefnut
(moisture), he was the
father of Nut
. His daughter, Nut, was the sky
whom he held over the Earth
(Geb), separating the two.
As the air, Shu was considered to be cooling, and thus calming,
influence, and pacifier. Due to the association with air, calm, and
justice and order), Shu was portrayed in art as wearing an ostrich feather
. Shu was seen
with 1-4 feathers.
In a much
later myth, representing the terrible weather disaster at the end
of the Old Kingdom, it was said that
Tefnut and Shu once argued, and Tefnut (moisture) left Egypt for Nubia (which was always more temperate).
said that Shu quickly decided that he missed her, but she changed
into a cat that destroyed any man
or god that
, disguised, eventually
succeeded in convincing her to return. He carries an Ankh
, the symbol