“’We’ll go to Punt. The people of Punt worship an ivory woman, and they wash gold out of the river in wicker baskets.’” — Robert E. Howard: “Jewels of Gwahlur”
Nebethet, the Ivory Goddess of Punt, is worshipped primarily there, although some Shemitish scholars equate her with Derketo. She is also known as the Queen of Darkness and Mistress of the Night.
Her traditional image is of a voluptuous woman with the head of a skull, although recent visitors to the shrine report that the original statue has been replaced by one appearing more human.
The Shrine of Nebethet is a round, domed temple located leagues east of Kassali. The white marble shrine is designed to look like a giant silver skull. The people of Punt come to her for advice, since she is supposedly all-knowing and gives spoken omens through her image.
Nebethet is dual in nature, worshipped as the bringer of both darkness and light. In her dark aspect, she brings death and must be placated with sacrifice. In her beneficial aspect, she is worshipped as a bringer of wealth, materialized by the ivory and gold which the Puntish people have been blessed with in abundant quantities.
Spheres of Influence: Ivory, death, oracles
Symbol: Silver skull
When moonlight falls on the goddess’ idol, it is said to come alive and deliver spoken omens. The goddess can manifest by possessing a mortal woman that enters her temple, surrounding her with a purple glow.
According to the holy laws of Punt, the temple of Nebethet must remain uninhabited by mortal men and women. Therefore, the priests of Nebethet only visit the temple to offer sacrifice and receive omens from the goddess, often accompanied by the king of Punt. The darkness-shrouded chambers of the temple are supposedly guarded by inhuman creatures.
The priests of Nebethet have shaven heads and dress in purple robes. They have good relations with the priests of Keshan. Priests of Nebethet must always be male.
The high priest of Nebethet is Zaramba.
Prerequisites: Cha 13, must be male
Domains: Death, Luck, Prophecy
Turning: Turn or command undead (priest’s choice)