Limestone representation of Hathor (E11816). Probably Dynasty 18
Hathor was often shown
as a woman wearing a crown composed of a sun disk surrounded by
a pair of cow horns. Sometimes she could be shown completely in
cow form, or as a woman with cow ears. Hathor had her main cult
center at the site of Dendereh. In
the Ptolemaic period (305 B.C.-A.D. 30), an impressive temple to
Hathor was built at the site. It is very well preserved and is fronted
by six columns bearing the image of the goddess' head. Hathor, in
the form of a cow, was revered as a mortuary goddess in the Theban
area. One of her attributes is a musical instrument called a sistrum.
She was also revered as the goddess of love, music, and joy.