Iabet (Abet, Abtet, Ab, Iabtet, or Iab) was the personification of the eastern desert, known as Khentet-Iabet (“Before the East” or “Foremost of the East”). She was often associated with Amentet, the goddess of the west.
Iabet was the mother and wife of the god Min (known as “The Bull of His Mother”), who was also a god of the Eastern Desert and fertility. She was also linked to Isis, Nephthys, and to Hathor, who all used the title Khentet-Iabet. Sometimes, in a funerary context, Isis would replace Amentet and Iabet would be replaced by Nephthys.
Iabet was the goddess of fertility and rebirth. She often appears in New Kingdom tombs and funerary goods in scenes relating to the journey of the sun god, Ra, who she was believed to purify as he passed through the underworld, linking her closely to Kebechet (the daughter of Anubis) who purified the dead with water. However, she rarely appears in the tombs of the royal family.
In the Amduat, Iabet is depicted as a woman with her arms by her sides, along with eleven other goddesses, including Neith, Isis, and Tefnut, collectively known as “Those who give praise to Ra as he passes over Wernes”.
She was worshiped in Khent-Min (Panopolis, Akhmim) along with Min and his other consort, Repyt (Repit).
Copyright J Hill 2010