The winged sun is one of the oldest Egyptian icons and symbols that appeared as early as the Old Kingdom. It is usually a symbol of royalty, divinity and power not only in Egypt but also in the whole Near East including the countries of Mesopotamia, Persia and Anatolia. In Egypt, it is a symbol of the soul and its eternity. It is often placed in temples as a memento to the people of their eternal nature. During the Middle Kingdom, it evolved into a symbol of protection and became a popular protective amulet during the Ptolemaic Period.
Because of its solar reference, it has been connected with the sun god, Ra. However, it has been known as the Behdety, an ancient god later assimilated by Horus. With Horus, it became the Horus of Behdet. Similarly, it was known as the Great Flyer, which, in female form, was the cow goddess, Hathor.
The idea of winged solar disc existed even during the prehistoric times in the form of a falcon wings spread all over the world. It used to be a solar barque that was attached to these wings, which later, in the Fifth dynasty, became the solar disc. During this time, it became the symbol of heavens and a solar symbol as well. At this time, Behdety became an aspect of Horus, who was then the protector of the kingship and the personification of the divine ruler of the whole Egypt. In the New Kingdom, Horus in the form of the solar disc is usually flanked by the uraeus on both sides (Nekhbet and Wadjet) when in flight towards battle.
In one legend from the Ptolemaic period, Set and his allies attacked Ra after he defended Horus. This story is depicted in a grand pharaonic manner using dates and descriptions of the heroic feats and movements of armies headed by the divine ruler. In the battle of Edfu, Horus takes this form as he battles hid utmost enemy Set. It is believed that Thoth, with the aid of his wisdom and magic, turns Horus Behdety into this sun disc with the majestic outstretched wings