Short Hymn to the Aten

(Translation from M. Lichtheim. Ancient Egyptian Literature: A Book of Readings. Vol. 2, pp. 91-92.)


Adoration of Re-Harakhti-who-rejoices-in-lightland In-his-name-Shu-who-is-Aten, who gives life forever, by the King who lives by Maat, the Lord of the Two Lands: Neferkheprure, Sole-one-qf-Re; the Son of Re who lives by Maat, the Lord of crowns: Akhenaten, great in his lifetime, given life forever.


Splendid you rise, O living Aten, eternal lord!

You are radiant, beauteous, mighty,

Your love is great, immense.

Your rays light up all faces,

Your bright hue gives life to hearts,

When you fill the Two Lands with your love.

August God who fashioned himself,

Who made every land, created what is in it,

All peoples, herds, and flocks,

All trees that grow from soil;

They live when you dawn for them,

You are mother and father of all that you made.


When you dawn their eyes observe you,

As your rays light the whole earth;

Every heart acclaims your sight,

When you are risen as their lord.

When you set in sky's western lightland,

They lie down as if to die,

Their heads covered, their noses stopped,

Until you dawn in sky's eastern lightland.

Their arms adore your ka,

As you nourish the hearts by your beauty;

One lives when you cast your rays,

Every land is in festivity.


Singers, musicians, shout with joy,

in the court of the benben-shrine,

And in all temples in Akhet-Aten,

The place of truth in which you rejoice.

Foods are offered in their midst,

Your holy son performs your praises,

O Aten living in his risings,

And all your creatures leap before you.

Your august son exults injoy,

O Aten living daily content in the sky,

Your offspring, your august son, Sole one of Re;

The Son of Re does not cease to extol his beauty,

Neferkheprure, Sole-one-of Re.


I am your son who serves you, who exalts your name,

Your power, your strength, are firm in my heart;

You are the living Aten whose image endures,

You have made the far sky to shine in it,

To observe all that you made.

You are One yet a million lives are in you,

To make them live (you give) the breath of life to their noses;

By the sight of your rays all flowers exist,

What lives and sprouts from the soil grows when you shine.

Drinking deep of your sight all flocks frisk,

The birds in the nest fly up in joy;

Their folded wings unfold in praise

Of the living Aten, their maker.