Page:The Religion of Ancient Egypt.djvu/90

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EGYPTIAN CIVILIZATION.

"I was one who did that which was pleasing to his father and his mother; the joy of his brethren, the friend of his companions, noble-hearted to all those of his city. I gave bread to the hungry; . . . I received [travellers?] on the road; my doors were open to those who came from without, and I gave them wherewith to refresh themselves. And God hath inclined his countenance to me for what I have done; he hath given me old age upon earth, in long and pleasant duration, with any children at my feet, and sons in face of his own son."[1]

God's reward for well-doing is again mentioned in the great inscription now at Miramar[2] in honour of a lady who had been charitable to persons of her own sex, whether girls, wives or widows.

"My heart inclined me to the Right when I was yet a child not yet instructed as to the Right and Good. And what my heart dictated I failed not to perform. And God rewarded me for this, rejoicing me with the happiness which he has granted me for walking after his way."

We are acquainted with several collections of Precepts and Maxims on the conduct of life. Such are the Maxims of Ptahhotep contained in the Prisse Papyrus, the Instructions of Amenemhāt, and the

  1. Bergmann, Hieroglyphische Inschriften, pi. vi, l. 8.
  2. Ibid. pl. viii, ix.