The "Tale of Two Brothers" describes a rite of passage, telling the story of a handsome and chaste young shepherd who rejects seduction by a powerful older woman and, after many adventures, becomes king. The story of Bata is intertwined with that of his brother, Anubis, who, deceived at first, is unceasing in his efforts to restore his brother and eventually becomes king himself. The tale also has traits peculiar to ancient Egypt, notably that the main characters are gods as well as kings. Bata and Anubis are both divine figures connected with Egypt's mortuary cults, and their story is replete with religious symbols of rebirth. Using comparative analysis, Susan Tower Hollis makes a contribution to our understanding of a story that has puzzled folklorists for almost 140 years. At the same time she constructs a model for examining ancient narratives. To provide an ancient cultural context, the author utilizes a variety of works, including literary, mythological and wisdom texts, cultic materials, historical and political works, and Egyptian reliefs, paintings and sculptures.