Basic Information

Alternative spellings: Amam, Amit, Am-mit, Amamet, Ammit, Amunet, Amermait
Titles: The Devourer, Eater of the Dead, Devourer of Amenti, [8] Devourer of the Condemned Dead, [2] Great of Death, [1] Eater of Hearts [9]
Translation: Amermait can be translated as "the Corpse-Eater", "the Bone Eater", or "the Devourer." [7] Her other names translate to "female devourer of the dead." [9]
Type/Species: Draconic Hybrid
Origin: Egyptian Mythology

About Ammut

Ammut was one of the crocodile deities of Ancient Egypt. [9] People feared her as the devourer of the dead, [4] because Ammut, the Eater of the Dead, [3] swallowed the heart, [3] or the soul, [1] of anyone burdened with transgression after death. [3] Sources refer to her variously as a supernatural monster, [7] a demonic goddess, [8] or a female demon. [4]

Ancient Egyptian beliefs of the afterlife held that, each individual after death had to travel through the underworld [6] to the realm of Osiris. [1] Ultimately, the individual's goal of this journey was to transform into an akh, or a transfigured spirit. [6]

But before any transformation could happen, the person must stand in the Hall of Judgment, [8] where Ammut waited by the scales of justice, [5] ready to consume those not granted access to the afterlife, [9] such as those who failed to justify their existence in the divine court, [6] or those who led wicked lives, [9] or those who were judged as guilty [8] .

Ammut attended the Judgment of the Dead, [1] and people regarded her as the monster that performed the duty of ritual cleansing of guilt, [7] no record indicates that she has ever performed this function. [8] This may be because preparations like the Negative Confessions List found in some Egyptian tombs [8] could circumvent Ammut's punishment. [9]

Physical Description

Ammut was described as a composite mythical creature, [9] comprised of the following:

  • The head of a crocodile, [9] or a crocodile body in general [1]
  • The hindquarters of a hippopotamus, [3] or a hippopotamus body in general [1]
  • The neck, mane, and foreparts of a lion, [9] or another predatory cat [4]

Rarely, descriptions of Ammut described her head as that of a dog, [2] but the majority of sources showed Ammut with the head of a crocodile. [9]

In Egyptian mythology, the head presented the most essential aspect of any composite creature, which is why people consider Ammut a crocodile deity. [9]

The Book of the Dead portrays Ammut as a hybrid monster resting either at a temple gateway or beside the deity Osiris. [7]

Quick Facts

  • The crocodile was Ammut's essential aspect. [9]
  • Ammut had the head of a crocodile, [9] the neck, man, and forelimbs of a lion, [9] and the hindquarters of a hippopotamus. [3]
  • Ammut attended the Judgment of the Dead. [1]
  • Her title, the Eater of the Dead, [3] came from her role as the demon that devoured the souls of the unjust. [1,3]
  • She performed the duty of ritual cleansing of guilt. [7]
  • Ammut's punishment could be circumvented [9] with special preparations, such as the Negative Confessions List found in some Egyptian tombs. [8]


  1. Ancient Egyptian Lives
  2. Littleton 74
  3. Littleton 75
  4. Lurker 22
  5. Lurker 23
  6. Pinch 93
  7. Rose 15
  8. Turner 46
  9. Wilkinson [Complete] 218

For more information on footnotes and references, please see the bibliography.