Set versus Apophis: the legendary duel between good and evil in Egyptian mythology

In Egyptian mythology, Set is the god of violence and storms, often described as a half-human, half-animal hybrid with the head of a dog or ram. He is best known for his legendary confrontation with Apophis, the god of chaos and destruction. This symbolic battle is of major importance in Egyptian mythology, reflecting the conflict between good and evil, light and darkness, a duality omnipresent in many cultures. In this article, we explore the contours of this fascinating myth.

In Egyptian mythology, Set is known as the son of Geb and Nut, the brother of Osiris and Isis. He is often depicted with a muscular body and a dog-like face, an appearance that testifies to his violent and impulsive nature. Set is associated with brute force, violence and anger, but he is also seen as a protector of the gods and pharaohs. In some versions of Egyptian mythology, Set was created with the mission of protecting Ra, the sun god, from Apophis.

The importance of Set in the fight against Apophis

The confrontation between Set and Apophis is presented as a duel between the forces of good and evil, reflecting the eternal duality in many cultures. In Egyptian mythology, Apophis represents darkness and ignorance, while Set symbolizes light and wisdom. The battle between the two divinities is therefore the manifestation of this existential duel.

In Egyptian mythology, Apophis is a gigantic serpent who wants to devour the sun every evening. At night, he crosses the sky and attempts to swallow the solar bark of Ra, the sun god. Seth is called upon to protect Ra from the enormous serpent of death. To this end, Seth uses all the weapons in his possession, such as a club or harpoon, to strike Apophis and prevent him from devouring the sun.

Apophis, the god of chaos

Apophis is considered the god of chaos and destruction in Egyptian mythology. He is depicted as a giant serpent, symbolizing the forces of evil and disorder. Apophis is often described as the main enemy of Ra, the sun god, and thus of the Egyptian world. He is seen as a destructive force intent on destroying the established order and plunging the world into darkness.

Different aspects of the battle between Set and Apophis

The battle between Set and Apophis takes place in several stages. First of all, Seth must catch up with Apophis, who is in perpetual motion in the sky. Then, he must strike him to immobilize him with a club or harpoon. The fight is a difficult one, as Apophis is a formidable adversary who requires all Seth's skill and strength to be defeated.

The weapons used by Seth also have an interesting symbolism. The club, for example, is often associated with physical power and brute force, while the harpoon symbolizes precision and finesse. Seth must therefore use his wits and strength to defeat his adversary.

The fight between Seth and Apophis: a metaphor for good and evil

The fight between Seth and Apophis is a symbolic representation of the duality between good and evil in Egyptian mythology. Set, as the god of violence, symbolizes the force of good that must protect Re against the evil forces of Apophis. The confrontation between the two deities is therefore a struggle to safeguard the established order. This battle is recurrent in many cultures, reflecting the eternal struggle between good and evil.


The confrontation between Set and Apophis in Egyptian mythology is a fascinating story rich in symbolism. This battle is a metaphor for the struggle between the forces of good and evil in many cultures, reflecting human duality. The representation of this duel has influenced Egyptian culture, and its legacy can still be seen today. The story of Set versus Aepep has lost none of its universal significance or its timelessness.