Alternate Names: Tau-Url, Thoueris
Taweret is the protector of childbearing women, as well as a protector of infants and children. Her name means 'the great one'. Another of Her titles 'mistress of the horizon' emphasizes Her as the pharonic constellation of the hippopotamus in the northern sky.
Taweret was originally the concubine to Set, however this changed during Set and Heru's battle for the throne of Egypt. During their conflict, Taweret left Set's side and went over to Heru's side. This is a good example of the differentiation between Taweret and Set. During this time, the male hippopotomous which was associated with Set (due to their aggressive nature, and their destructive capabilities) was feared by the Kemetic peoples while Taweret was not.
Taweret was depicted as having a hippopotamus head, the legs and arms of a lion, the tail of a crocodile, and pendulous human breasts. It is this ferocious appearance which would deter malevolent forces from harming both the pregnant mother and unborn child during the labor and delivery.
Her image can be found widespread throughout Egypt. Amulet's would be fashioned in Her image to be worn by pregnant women. Vases in Her image often had a hole where one of Her nipples would be. In this case, the milk which the vase contained would be magically charged by being contained inside the form of Taweret, and could be poured out to accompany certain magical workings.
In magical texts, Taweret is sometimes refered to as either the 'reret' or 'sow'. She is benign and protective towards the child Heru, and would also be invoked on behalf of the children which have been stung by scorpions.