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Another theory holds that the ankh was symbolic of the sunrise, with the loop representing the Sun rising above the horizon, which is represented by the crossbar. The vertical section below the crossbar would then be the path of the sun.
Wolfhart Westendorf felt it was associated with the tyet emblem, or the "knot of Isis". He thought both were ties for ceremonial girdles. Winfried Barta connected the ankh with the royal cartouche in which the king's name was written, while others have even identified it as a penis sheath. The presence of a design resembling a pubic triangle on one ankh of the New kingdom seems to allow for the idea that the sign may be a specifically sexual symbol.
It is at least interesting that the ankh word was used for mirrors from at least the Middle Kingdom onward, and that indeed, many mirrors were shaped in the form of an ankh sign. Life and death mirror each other, and in any number of ancient religions, mirrors were used for purposes of divination.
As the Christian era eclipsed Egypt's pharaonic pagan religion, the sign was adapted by the Coptic church as their unique form of a cross, known as the crux ansata.