Egypt: Ancient Egyptian People

About Ancient Egypt


Ancient Egyptian People


For comprehensive information see Rulers of Ancient Egyptof Egypt and Who's Who of Egypt
4th Dynasty Queensby Pete Vanderzwet

Much has been said about queens such as Cleopatra, but what those who helped form Egypt's early history.

Aha! Or is it King Menes? by Marie Parsons

Manetho and Herodotus are the "best" historical sources for the tradition that Menes was the unifier and first King of a unified Egypt. Manetho lived in Sebennytos in the Delta during the Ptolemaic period. He was a priest, perhaps chief priest, of Ra, and served as a consultant to the early Ptolemaic rulers on the cult of Serapis.


Ahmose I, Founder of the 18th Dynasty and the New Kingdom of Ancient Egypt by Jimmy Dunn writing as Richard Warner

Egypt's 18th Dynasty that established the New Kingdom is, to most people interested in Egypt, a dynasty of stars. It is the dynasty of Tutankhamun who was a fairly minor king, but perhaps the best known of any of the pharaohs. It was also the dynasty of the well known Akhenaten, and of Queen Hatshepsut. The founder of this Dynasty is less well known to the general public, but unquestionably of major importance to Egyptian history. He was Ahmose I, during who's reign Egypt was finally and completely liberated from the Hyksos.


Alexander in Egypt by Alan M. Fildes & Dr. Joann Fletcher


Alexander III of Macedon (356-323 bc), better known to history as 'Alexander the Great', spent several months in Egypt as part of his on-going campaign against the mighty Persian Empire of Darius III. After conquering Persia's naval bases all along the coastline of Asia Minor and Syria-Palestine, Alexander marched south into Egypt where he remained for some six months. Although generally regarded as little more than an eccentric diversion, Alexander's Egyptian sojourn was essential to his future plans. He needed a strong coastal base for both strategic and commercial purposes, from which he could not only communicate across the Mediterranean but which could also handle the highly lucrative sea-borne trade network he wanted to divert from Phoenicia.


Amasis, the Last Great Egyptian Pharaoh by Jimmy Dunn

Amasis who was probably the 4th ruler of Egypt during the 26th Dynasty, has been called the last great Egyptian Pharaoh. This is because the rule of his son, Psammetichus III, was very short lived, and in fact even in the last days of Amasis' life the Persians were already advancing on Egypt. They were the overwhelming power of the region, and would control Egypt up until Alexander the Great's conquest of Egypt, and the ensuing Greek rulers. After his son, never again would an Egyptian rule ancient Egypt. Amasis was actually the king's Greek name. His birth name was Ahmose II, which means "The Moon is Born, Son of Neith". His throne name was Khnem-ib-re, meaning "He who embraces the Heart of Re". We believe he ruled Egypt between 570 and 526 BC.


Amenemhet I, 1st King of the 12th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Amenemhet I was the first ruler of the 12th Dynasty, and some Egyptologists believe that recovery from the First Intermediate Period into the Middle Kingdom only really began with his rule. He was almost certainly not of royal blood, at least if he is the same Vizier that functioned under his predecessor, Mentuhotep IV. Perhaps either Mentuhotep IV had no heir, or he was simply a weak leader. This vizier, named Amenemhet, recorded an inscription when Mentuhotep IV sent him to Wadi Hammamt. The inscription records two omens. The first tells us of a gazelle that gave birth to her calf atop the stone that had been chosen for the lid of the King's sarcophagus. the second was of a ferocious rainstorm that, when subsided, disclosed a well 10 cubits square and full of water. Of course that was a very good omen in this barren landscape.


Amenemhet II, 3rd King of the 12th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Amenemhet II was the son of Senusret I and one of his chief queens, Nefru. He was the third ruler of Egypt's 12th Dynasty. Like his father, he served the first part of his reign as co-regent (perhaps for only two years) with Senusret I. His co-regency may have been short, but we are told that during this co-regency, Amenemhet II led a Nubian expedition. Apparently, Amenemhet II also took his son, Senusret II as a co-regent, but also for only a brief time before his own death. Amenemhet II apparently ruled Egypt for a period of some 30 years after his co-regency. The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt gives his reign as lasting from 1911 through 1877 BC, while Clayton gives it as 1926 through 1895 BC.


Amenemhet III, the 6th Ruler of Egypt's 12th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Amenemhet III was the son of Senusret III and the last great ruler of the Middle Kingdom. Amenemhet III appears to have shared the throne with is father as co-regent for at least a while before the death of his father. The king's principle wives were buried in his pyramid at Dahshur in their own chambers, a very unusual feature at this time. The Chief wife was probably Aat. The second queen we are unsure of. We also know of a daughter named Neferuptah and of course his successor who was probably his son, Amenemhet IV. However, Amenemhet IV may have been a grandson, but in any event, Amenemhet III probably made him a co-regent. It is also possible that the queen who ruled as the last pharaoh of the 12th Dynasty, Sobkhotpe IV, was also his daughter.


Amenhotep I, the Second King of Egypt's 18th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

The son of Ahmose and Queen Ahmose Nefretiri, Amenhotep I was the second king of the 18th Dynasty. He may have ascended to the throne at a relatively young age, for an elder brother had been designated as heir only about five years earlier. He may have even served a brief co-regency with his father, however. He evidently carried on many of the practices of his father, and his mother certainly played an important part in his reign, acting as God's Wife of Amun.. Amenhotep I may have been married to his sister, (Ahmose-) Merytamun, though there is apparently little documentation to substantiate this relationship. Better known is this king's daughter, Satamun, who is known both from her coffin found in one of the royal mummy caches, and from two statues at central and southern Karnak.


Amenhotep II, 7th Pharaoh of Egypt's 18th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn


We believe Amenhotep II was the 7th Pharaoh of Egypt's 18th Dynasty. Amenhotep (heqaiunuwas) his birth name, meaning "Amun is Pleased, Ruler of Heliopolis".He is sometimes referred to by Amenhotpe II, or the Greek version of his name, Amenophis II. His throne name was A-kheperu-re, meaning "Great are the Manifestations of Re".


Amenhotep III, the Ninth King of Egypt's 18th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

We believe that Amenhotep III ruled for almost 40 years during the 18th Dynasty of Egypt's history that represented one of its most prosperous and stable periods. We must grant to Amenhotep III's grandfather, Tuthmosis III, who is sometimes referred to as the Napoleon of ancient Egypt, the foundation of this success by dominating through military action Egypt's Syrian, Nubian and Libyan neighbors. Because of that, little or no military actions were called for during his grandson's reign.


Amun-her-shepeshef, First Son of Ramesses II by Jimmy Dunn

The First son of born to Ramesses the Great, was Amun-her-wenemef, meaning Amun Is on His Right Hand". The child's mother was Ramesses II's Great Wife, Nefertari. Had he outlived his father, he would have therefore become Pharaoh, the King of Egypt. Amun-her-wenemef came into the world while his father was still co-regent to his father, Seti I. Therefore, Amun-her-wenemef probably was the current king's first grandson. When Ramesses II Ascended the throne of Egypt upon Set I's death, Amun-her-wenemef's name was changed to Amun-her-shepeshef, which means, "Amun Is with his Strong Arm".


Anedjib, the 5th Ruler of Egypt's 1st Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Today, we lament the lack of information on some of Egypt's earliest dynastic kings, but in reality, we are perhaps lucky to have as much information as we do on these kings who's lives were lived, and than past almost 5,000 years ago. As excavations continue in Egypt, always providing us with more and more evidence of these kings, though sometimes raising more questions than answers, we will probably learn even more about these kings. We believe Anedjib (Andjyeb, Enezib), who seems to have been from the area around Abydos known as This, and is recorded as a Thinite king on the Saqqara King List from the tomb of Thunery, was the 5th ruler of Egypt's 1st Dynasty. Anedjib was this king's Horus name, which means "Safe is His Heart". If he is to be identified with Manetho's Miebidos (Miebis, Merpubia), then he may have ruled Egypt for about 26 years. However, most Egyptologists seem to give him a somewhat shorter reign, though he may have served as a co-regent with his father, who was probably Den, for some time.


Apries, the 4th Ruler of Egypt's 26th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

The King commonly referred to as Apries (his Greek name), who's birth name was Wah-ib-re, meaning "Constant is the Heart of Re" and who's Throne name was Haa-ib-re, meaning "Jubilant is the Heart of Re Forever", succeeded his father, Psamtik II in February of 589 BC., of Egypt's 26th Dynasty. We believe he ruled Egypt until his defeat at the hands of Amasis in 570 BC. Some sources provide that Apries was the Biblical Hophra.


Ay, Successor to Tutankhamun by Jimmy Dunn writing as Mark Andrews

The 18th dynasty is one of the most interesting periods in Egypt's history, having such notable kings as Akhenaten, the heretic king, and such well known kings as Tutankhamun. Ay, who was probably an old man (at least 70) when he inherited the thrown from Tutankhamun, apparently inherited the thrown by marrying Tutankhamun's widow, Ankhesenamun. There seems to have been considerable intrigue to this marriage. This she likely did against her wishes, as Ay was probably her grandfather. Further, is would seem that she was not even regarded as a dominant wife, as paintings in his tomb usually showed Ay accompanied by Tiy, an older wife.


Baybars al-Bunduqdari The First Great Slave Ruler of Egypt by Ismail Abaza

One character of Medieval Egypt who stands out was Zahir Baybars (Baybars al-Bunduqdari). Baybars was born in Kipchak (Mongol Russia). In the Cairo of 1830, Edward Lane counted some thirty reciters of epics related to Baybars in the city's coffee houses, making him one of the most popular characters of Egyptian history. Baybars the first great Mameluke ruler of Egypt (when Egypt was ruled by former slaves), and with the idea of promoting a cult of personality, this thirteenth century ruler had commanded court scribes to compose heroic accounts of his life. Even back then, he probably paid reciters to broadcast these tales of his piety and valor, but over time, Baybars' biography warped out of all recognition. What filtered down to Lane's coffee shop listeners had blossomed magnificently into fable.


Cambyses II, the Persian Ruler of Egypt And His Lost Army by Jimmy Dunn


In 525 BC the Persian emperor Cambyses II, son of Cyrus the Great, who had already named his son as king of Babylon though Cambyses II resigned that position after only one year, invaded Egypt and successfully overthrew the native Egyptian pharaoh, Psamtek III, last ruler of Egypt's 26th Dynasty to become the first ruler of Egypt's 27th Persian Dynasty. His father had earlier attempted an invasion of Egypt against Psamtek III's predecessor, Amasis, but Cyrus' death in 529 BC put a halt to that expedition.


Den, the 4th King of Egypt's 1st Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

While an early King, Den, who's name means "Horus Who Strikes" (Udimu), is perhaps better attested than some. We believe he served as the 4th King of Egypt's 1st Dynasty. He may have come to the throne at an early age, with his mother, Merneith, acting as regent. He left a number of labels and inscriptions on stone vases which cite the king, including events during his reign. We have found seals impressions and inscriptions in tombs 3035, 3036, 3038, 3504, 3506, 3507, X and a lower status tomb at Saqqara, from a tomb at Abu Rowash and of course, from King Den's own Tomb at Saqqara.


Djedefre, 3rd King of Egypt's 4th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

A lot of the history surrounding Djedefre is changing as we find out more about his pyramid at Abu Rawash. He was presumably the 3rd King of Egypt's 4th Dynasty, and traditionally is considered the son of Khufu by a minor blond, Libyan consort. Perhaps his main significance is that he was the first king to adopt the name, "son of Re". This is significant from the standpoint of the 5th Dynasty, when kings would completely embrace this sun god. Though he was indeed the son of Khufu, the mother has been bought into question by some modern Egyptologists. In fact, our whole understanding of this king seems to be in doubt. The Turin King list gives Djedefre eight years of rule, though because of some cattle counts, some Egyptologists credit him with a little longer reign.


Djedkare, 8th Ruler of the 5th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Djedkare was the eighth ruler of Egypt's 5th Dynasty. The relationship of Djedkare with his predecessors or successors is not entirely known, but he was probably the son of Menkauhor, his predecessor. If not, then he may have been Menkauhor's brother by Niuserre, or even Menkauhor's cousin by Neferfre, though that seems unlikely. It is possible that his principle queen was Meresankh IV, but her tomb is located in the main Saqqara necropolis. A pyramid believed to be that of a queen or consort of Djedkare just next to that of his in South Saqqara has no inscriptions to provide us with evidence of her name. According to an Abusir Papyrus, Djedkare perhaps lived in South Saqqara near his pyramid.


Djer (Itit) by Jimmy Dunn


Horus Djer or Itit (his nomen) was either the second or third ruler of the first dynasty. His reign came after that of Narmer and Aha, though which of these two kings actually founded the first dynasty is unsure. A majority of modern scholars seems to believe that Aha was the first king of that dynasty and so was the ruler who united Upper and Lower Egypt. That would make Horus Djer, his apparent heir, the second ruler. He and the following kings are largely responsible for the consolidation of the unified state of Egypt.


Djet, the 3rd King of Egypt's 1st Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

We believe that Djet (also called Wadjit, or Uadji) succeeded Djer and we traditionally place his as the third king of Egypt's 1st Dynasty. Djet would have probably been the son of Djer, though we seem to have no real direct evidence of this relationship. However, there might have been a queen that ruled between Djer and Djet. Her large tomb at Abydos (Petrie's Tomb Y) was thought at one time to belong to a king. More likely Merneith (Meryetneith) was a daughter of Djer and a consort of Djet. A fairly recent find of a clay seal at Abydos that bears her name appears to indicate that she was probably the mother of Den, Djet's successor. She may also have acted as her young son's regent upon the death of Djet. On this seal, her title was clearly given as "King's Mother".


Early Dynastic Kings, Part I by Marie Parsons


Aha, probably the son of Narmer and his queen Nithotep, is thought to be the first king of the 1st Dynasty. A tomb at Abydos is attributed to him. It is the largest in the northwestern part of the cemetery, and another tomb close by contained labels with the name Berner-Ib, or "Sweetheart," possibly his queen.


Early Dynastic Kings, Part II by Marie Parsons


Six kings may have ruled in the 2nd dynasty, which lasted little more than 200 years. The names of the first three rulers, Hetepsekhemwy, meaning "Pleasing in Powers," Raneb, meaning "Ra is the lord," and Nynetjer, meaning "Godlike," were inscribed on the back of a statue of a priest named Hotepdief. This priest presumably was in the royal mortuary cult at Saqqara for these kings.


The Happiest Pharaohby Jimmy Dunn


King Tut may not have been the greatest Egyptian Pharaoh, but according to their ancient religion, he should be a happy one.


Hatshepsut, Female Pharaoh of Egypt by Caroline


SeawrightAlthough not the only female ruler of Egypt, Ma'at-ka-Ra Hatshepsut is one of the best known
(next to Cleopatra). She was an 18th dynasty Pharaoh, daughter of Thuthmose I and Aahmes. When her father died her half brother, Thuthmose II, ascended to the throne. He was young, apparently younger than Hatshepsut herself.


Herihor, A Ruler but not a King by Jimmy Dunn

Under Ramesses XI at the end of the New Kingdom, the steadily increasing power of the Amun Priesthood at Thebes finally came to a head. Homer said of Thebes in the Iliad, Book 9, that "in Egyptian Thebes the heaps of precious ingots gleam, the hundred-gated Thebes". By this time, the priesthood at Amun was in control of two-thirds of all temple land in Egypt, which was extensive. They also owned 90 percent of all ships, and 80 percent of all factories, as well as many other resources, so their grip on the Egyptian economy was paramount. No wonder that, by the end of Ramesses XI's reign, he was virtually powerless and it was but a short step for the priesthood at Thebes to enforce supremacy, at least in the south.


Horemheb, Egypt's Last King of the 18th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Other than the fact that Horemheb came from Herakleopolis near the entrance to the Fayoum, little else is known about the background of this pharaoh that we place as the last king of Egypt's important 18th Dynasty (New Kingdom). His parentage is completely unknown. Horemheb obviously showed a very early gift as a military officer, first probably serving under Amenhotep III. Later, in the reign of Akhenaten, he became Great Commander of the Army.


Hotepsekhemwy, the 1st King of Egypt's 2nd Dynastyby Jimmy Dunn


Perhaps because it does not have the prestige of the 1st Dynasty, or the great monuments built during the 3rd Dynasy, Egypt's 2nd Dynasty seems almost an interlude. It is doubtful that Egyptologists have put the effort into this era that they have the dynasties before and after it. Regardless, it would seem that the 2nd Dynasty must have been a time when the economic and political foundations were put in place for a strong centralized state, though our lack of archaeological evidence does not support this conclusion. Basically we know the names of the first three rulers of the 2nd Dynasty, Hotepsekhemwy, Raneb and Nynetjer, from inscriptions on the back of a statue (now in the Egyptian Antiquities Museum) of a priest named Hotep-dif (or perhaps, more accurately, Redjit.


Huni, the Last King of Egypt's Third Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

While there is some confusion over kings and their order of rule near the end of the 3rd Dynasty, it is fairly clear who terminates the period and who also stood on the threshold between ancient Egypt's formative period and the grand courts of the Old Kingdom to follow. Huni paved the way for the great pyramid builders of the 4th Dynasty with his substantial construction projects and the possible restructuring of regional administration. Yet, we really know very little about this king who ruled during a pivotal point in Egyptian history. The name Huni may be translated as "The Smiter". He is attested on monuments of his time by his nswt-bity name, written in a cartouche.


Ibn Tulun in Cairo, Egypt by Jimmy Dunn writing as Ismail Abaza

Tulun himself was a Turkish slave from Bokhara who was given to Caliph Mamun in 815 AD as a present. Afterwards, he became a powerful and influential person in the court of Mamun, allowing his son Ahmad Ibn Tulun (ibn means son of) to be well educated in the best traditions of Islamic law and government. As a young man, Ahmad was a loyal servant to his caliph in Samarra (north of modern Baghdad), Mesopotamia and when his father died and his stepfather was given Egypt as a sort of private estate by the caliph, Ahmad Ibn Tulun was sent to administer the country.


Imhotep, Doctor, Architect, High Priest, Scribe and Vizier to King Djoser by Jimmy Dunn

Of the non royal population of Egypt, probably one man is known better then all others. So successful was Imhotep (Imhetep, Greek Imouthes) that he is one of the world's most famous ancients, and his name, if not his true identity, has been made even more famous by various mummy movies. Today, the world is probably much more familiar with his name then that of his principal king, Djoser. Imhotep, who's name means "the one that comes in peace". existed as a mythological figure in the minds of most scholars until the end of the nineteenth century when he was established as a real historical person.


Khaba, a Shadowy King of Egypt's Late, 3rd Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

We know very little about the King, who probably occupied the throne of Egypt near the end of the 3rd Dynasty, named Khaba, who's name means "The Soul Appears". His nswt-bity and nbty names are unknown. It has been suggested that the king's birth name might have been Teti. In the Turnin King List, this king's name is marked as "erased", but is credited with a reign of six years. The fact that his name was marked as "erased" may mean that there were dynastic problems, or simply that the scribe who composed the Turin King List was unable to read his name from more ancient records. Khaba is attested to at four, and perhaps five sites in Egypt


Khaemwese, the 4th Son of Ramesses II by Jimmy Dunn

It would have been interesting were Khaemwese to have outlived his father, Ramesses II. He would have been king, rather then Merenptah, who's reign seems somewhat bland (perhaps only because it was short). But Khaemwese, the fourth son of Ramesses by his wife, Isisnofret (her second son), seems to have been gifted, as well as loved and respected for his intelligence, common sense and knowledge of religious matters. He was probably born when Ramesses II was still young, perhaps even before he ascended to the throne. We believe that Khaemwese may have been married to a woman named Nubnofret. Though he died before his father, never having ruled, he was still regarded as one of Egypt's greatest scholars and magicians a thousand years after his death.


Khafre, the 4th King of Egypt's 4th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

As with many of the very earliest Pharaoh's, even though they may have left some of the grandest of all monuments in Egypt, they left little in the way of inscriptions, and so we know very little about them. Khafre (Chephren), the builder of the second pyramid on the famous Giza Plateau near Cairo is a fine example. His birth name was Khafre, which means "Appearing like Re". He is also sometimes refereed to as Khafra, Rakhaef, Khephren or Chephren by the Greeks, and Suphis II by Manetho. Khufu by Marie ParsonsKhufu may have been already on in years when he took the throne. His kinsman and vizier, Hemiunu, was also the architect of the Great Pyramid. Khufus senior wife was named Merityotes, and she and his other two wives were each buried in one of the three smaller subsidiary pyramids that lie just south of the mortuary temple of the main pyramid.


Khumaraweh (Tales from Cairo, Biography of a City) by James Aldridge


Ibn Tulun was one of the most famous rulers of Egypt during the early Islamic period, but it is his son, Khumaraweh, who was a most interesting character in Egyptian history. Like so many sons inheriting a strong father's wealth he was softer and able to indulge in eccentricities.


King Catfish Also Called Narmer by Marie Parsons


King Narmer is thought to have reigned c. 3150 BCE as first king of the first dynasty (and/or last king of the 0 dynasty) of a unified ancient Egypt.


Kings (Pharaohs) of Ancient Egypt by Jimmy Dunn


The title of "Pharaoh" actually comes to us from the Greek language and its use in the Old Testament. It originates in the Egyptian Per-aa, meaning "Great House", a designation of the palace, which first came to be used as a label for the king around 1450 BC, though it only became common usage some centuries later. For most of the time, the usual word for the king of ancient Egypt was nesu, but a whole range of titles were applicable to any full statement of a king's names and titulary. According to Egyptian legend, the first kings of Egypt were later some of Egypt's most famous gods. We really do not know whether some of these individuals actually existed in human form or what regions of Egypt they may have ruled over.


King Menkauhor, the 7th Ruler of Egypt's 5th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Menkauhor was probably the seventh ruler of Egypt's 5th Dynasty. Menkauhor was this king's throne name, which means "Eternal are the Souls of Re". His birth name was Kalu. However, he is probably the least well attested ruler of this dynasty and can be counted among the least attested kings of any non intermediate period. The relationship of Menkauhor with his predecessors or successors is not known. However, it is likely that he was either the brother or son of Niuserre, his predecessor. If he was Niuserre's son, it would probably have been by Niuserre's chief queen, Neput-Nebu.


Menkaure, the Last Great Pyramid Builder On the Giza Plateau by Jimmy Dunn

While the great pyramids of the Giza Plateau attest to the lofty rule of at least three of Egypt's early, 4th Dynasty rulers, we actually know very little about these men. Of course, one reason for this was the lack of inscriptions on their most dominate and enduring monuments, including the last and smallest of the Giza Pyramids built by Menkaure and named, "Menkaure is Divine".


Mentuhotep II, First Ruler of the Middle Kingdom by Jimmy Dunn

For everyone who studies Egyptian history, we like to point out occasionally the fallacy of accepting a single reference about many different ancient topics. One problem with experts is they have their own opinions, which they often state unequivocally, even though others disagree. References on the first ruler of the Middle Kingdom are a perfect example of this. We believe he was the son or heir of Intef III, for a number of reasons. First, there is a relief located at Wadi Shatt el-Rigal, near Gebel es-Silsila, that incorporates a colossal figure of Mentuhotep II dwarfing three other figures believed to be he mother, Intef III and Khety his chancellor.


Mentuhotep III of Ancient Egypt's 11th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Mentuhotep III (actually, the second Mentuhotep of the Middle Kingdom and sometimes referred to as Mentuhotep II), benefited from a strong and flourishing country upon the death of his father, Mentuhotep II. He used this to good advantage, though by the time he took the throne of Egypt in about 2010 BC he was relatively old and only ruled for about twelve years. Though an 11th Dynasty ruler, his order in this dynasty, perhaps as its fifty king, differs according to any number of chronicles of the period, due to the inclusion or exclusion of previous kings.


Mentuhotep IV Nebtawyre The Last King of Egypt's 11th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Though Mentuhotep III Sankhkare (Mentuhotep II in a number of texts) is said by both the Saqqara and Abydos king lists as being the last of the 11th Dynasty rulers, followed immediately by Amenemhet I who founded the 12th Dynasty, the fragmentary papyrus known as the Royal Canon of Turin says there was a period of seven years without a king after Mentuhotep III. Egyptologists believe that it was Nebtawyre Mentuhotep IV who fit within this slot for a short reign of about six years. Mentuhotep was this king's birth name, meaning "The God Montu is Content". His Throne name, Nebtawyre, means "Lord of the Two Lands is Re". Unfortunately, no images of this king are known to us from reliefs or statuary. Because his name is missing from all of these kings lists, many presume that he may have usurped the throne. His mother was a commoner with no royal titles other than "king's mother', so it is possible that he may not even have been a member of the royal family.


Merenptah, the 4th King of Egypt's 19th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

By the time that Ramesses II died, he had apparently outlived twelve of his sons, so it was his 13th son, Merenptah who ascended the throne of Egypt. Merenptah was old himself by this time, probably nearly sixty years old, and his reign was rather dull, as well as short lived (perhaps only nine or ten years) in comparison with that of his father's reign. Merenptah (also hetep-her-maat, and commonly also called Merneptah) was the king's birth name, meaning Beloved of Ptah, Joyous is Truth). His throne name was Ba-en-re Mery-netjeru, which means "The Soul of Re, Beloved of the Gods". Merenptah was probably the fourth child of Ramesses II's second principle wife, Istnofret (Isisnofret).


Merenre, 3rd Ruler of Egypt's 6th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Merenre, sometimes referred to as Merenre I as there was a much later king by the same name, was the third ruler of Egypt's 6th Dynasty. As the oldest living son of Pepi I, he succeeded his father, we believe, at a fairly young age, and probably died unexpectedly young, perhaps between his fifth and ninth year of rule. He was succeeded by his younger half brother, Pepi II. The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt places the years he ruled as 2287-2278 BC while Chronicle of the Pharaohs gives him from 2283 until 2278. Merenre was this king's throne name, which means "Beloved of Re". He is sometimes also referred to as Merenra. His birth name was Nemty-em-sa-f, which means, "Nemty is his Protection". His Horus name was Ankh-khau.


Moses in Egypt by Jimmy Dunn

A fairly recent documentary starring Charlton Heston which has aired on the Discovery Channel and other education networks made an argument for Akhenaten, Egypt's 18th Dynasty heretic King with Moses of biblical fame. There is nothing new in this argument, which has been made since antiquity. Even Manetho, and Egyptian Priest (c. 300 BC) who wrote a valuable history of Egypt claims that the founder of monotheism, whom he called Osarsiph, assumed the name Moses and led his followers out of Egypt in Akhenaten's reign. Afterwards, other writers such as Lysimachus, Tacitus and Strabo also alluded to this association.


Muhammad Ali by Jimmy Dunn & Zahraa Awed


Muhammad Ali is one of the most famous and important late Kings of Egypt, often reputed to be the founder of Modern Egypt


Muhammad Ali in Alexandria by Zahraa Adel Awed


At the turn of the 19th century, Alexandria was little more than a fishing village, but Muhammad Ali did much to revive the old city.


Mummy Treasures of King Tut by Jimmy Dunn


Cone of the most interesting aspects of King Tut's mummy is the vast array of items that were attached to the body.


Al-Nasir Mohamed (Muhammad) A Mamluke Builder by Jimmy Dunn writing as Ismail Abaza

Sultan al-Nasir (Nasser) Mohamed (Muhammad) Ben Qalawoon (Qalaun) was a Bahari Mamluke who ruled Egypt no less than three times, first between 1293 and 1294 AD, the second between 1298 and 1309, and finally once again between 1309 and 1340. He was the only son of Qalawun (Qalaun) by a Mongol princess named Aslun Khatun, who is perhaps best known as a prolific builder in Cairo. Basically, he ruled Egypt for forty-two years, beginning at age eight, except for two intervals totaling about five years, when he was still too young to hang on to the empire.


Nectanebo I, The First Ruler of Egypt's 30th and Last Native Egyptian Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Nectanebo I (Nakhtnebef) of Sebennytos (modern Sammanud) founded the 30th Dynasty, the last dynasty to be ruled by native Egyptians, late in Egypt's Pharaonic Period. His birth name was Nakhtnebef, meaning "strong in his Lord", while his throne name was Kheper-Ka-re, meaning "The Soul of Re Abides". Nectanebo was actually the name given to him by the Greeks. The line of 29th Dynasty pharaohs of Egypt hailed from Mendes and Nakhtnebef had been a general under the last of these rulers, known as Nepherites II. In fact, he had suppressed a revolt under the Nepherites II's predecessor, Hakoris. However, he later turned on his royal masters, bringing an abrupt end to the reign of Nepherites II and Egypt's 29th Dynasty.


Nectanebo II, The Last Ancient Egyptian Native King by Jimmy Dunn

The 30th Dynasty was not one of Egypt's greatest moments, despite the fact that Nectanebo I, the founder of the dynasty, may have provided us with a last a vision of the empire's past. By the end of the 30th Dynasty and the reign of Nectanebo II, Egypt would no longer be ruled by true Egyptians, and in many ways, they would not be ruled again purely by Egyptians until the 1952 revolt that brought President Nasser into power. His birth name, Nakhthorheb and epithet, mery-hathor, means "strong is His Lord, Beloved of Hathor". His throne name was Snedjem-ib-re Setep-en-inhur, meaning "Pleasing to the Heart of Re, Chosen of Onuris (Osiris)".


Neferefre, A King of the Fifth Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

There are some real problems concerning the kings list after Neferirkare. Most references today place an almost unknown king, Shepseskare next in line, but those same references will also often point out that he could have come after Neferefre's rule, who we are almost certain was a prominent son of Neferirkare. We are fairly certain of this from a block found near Abusir depicting Neferirkare, his wife Khentkaus II and a young son who we interpret to be Neferefre, though on the block his name is spelled somewhat differently.


Neferirkare Kakai by Jimmy Dunn

Documenting kings of ancient Egypt can be daunting, particularly with those such as Neferirkara Kakai. We actually know more about one of his officials named Ty, who was the overseer of the pyramid complexes and sun temples under both Neferirkara and other kings, then we do about Neferirkara himself. Much more is known about Neferirkare's brother, Sahure, who ruled Egypt just prior to Neferirkare, and to Shepseskare, who ruled just after him. He was probably the son of Userkaf, the first king of the 5th Dynasty, and a Queen Khntkawes, who's pyramid is situated next to Neferirkara's at Abusir. His immediate successors were also buried at Abusir.He was the first king to have employed both a prenomen and nomen (he had two names and two cartouches), a custom that later kings would follow. Also, papyrus found in his pyramid complex were written in ink and are the earliest known documents in hieratic script, a cursive form of hieroglyphics.


Queen Nefertiti by Jimmy Dunn

Arguably, to those who are not very involved in the study of ancient Egypt, Queen Nefertiti is perhaps better known then her husband, the heretic king Akhenaten (Amenhotep IV). It is said that even in the ancient world, her beauty was famous, and her famous statue, found in a sculptor's workshop, is not only one of the most recognizable icons of ancient Egypt, but also the topic of some modern controversy. She was more than a pretty face however, for she seems to have taken a hitherto unprecedented level of importance in the Amarna period. In artwork, her status is evident and indicates that she had almost as much influence as her husband.


A Critical Analysis of the Discovery Channel's Nefertiti Revealed by Jimmy Dunn

I frequently find myself tuned to the Discovery Channel and for good reason. I enjoy learning and more than just about Egypt. Certainly the Discovery Channel makes this interesting, but as an expert in a topic that they frequently explore, Egypt, I also know that they can overstate theories while at other times completely misstating facts. Overall, the life of Nefertiti and the Amarna Period as depicted in their recent show entitled, Nefertiti Revealed, was of course, mostly factual. It was small points made throughout the special that were a bother, along with a definite slant towards Joann Fletcher's theories regarding Nefertiti's mummy and a few other matters related to her life. This is a critical analysis of this documentary, so hopefully no one will be too upset if we become a little nit-picky on some of the small points, and perhaps even a little more critical on some of the major points.


Nekau II, of Egypt's 26th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Nekau (II), who we know better as Necho, was either the 2nd or 3rd king of Egypt's 26th Dynasty, depending on whether we allow the rule of a nominal king Nekau I at the beginning of the Dynasty. Nekau was his Birth name, and Necho is actually his Greek name. His Throne name was Wah-em-ib-re, which means "Carrying out the Wish of Re Forever".


Netjenkhet Djoser, the 2nd King of Egypt's 3rd Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Netjerikhet Djoser was the 2nd King of Egypt's 3rd Dynasty, and was probably the most famous king during this period. He is also sometimes referred to as Zoser, and by the Greeks, Tesorthos. Through contemporary sources, he is only known by his Horus and Nebt-names, Netjerikhet, "the divine of body". Djoser may have been the king's birth name and appears only in later records. The earliest evidence that the two names belong to the same king is found on a long inscription on a large rock on the island of Sehel at Aswan. According to the Turin King list, Netjerikhet Djoser ruled for about 19 years, following the 20 year long reign of the otherwise unattested Nebka (Sanakhte).


Ninetjer (Nynetjer): The Third King of Egypt's 2nd Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

As we descend into the murky far past of Egypt's history, there is no surprise that historical details become blurred, and this certainly applies to the period between the death of Qaa at the end of the 1st Dynasty and the accession of Netjerikhet Djoser in the 3rd Dynasty. Most of the kings of the 2nd Dynasty remain obscure, and we frequently know little more about them than Egyptologists of a generation past. However, the identity and order of the first three kings is certain, thanks to an inscribed statue in the Cairo Museum, and other contemporary monuments and later kings lists can be reconciled with reasonable certainty for the first five rulers.


Niuserre, the 6th Ruler of the 5th Dynastyby Jimmy Dunn


Niuserre (or Nyuserra, meaning "Possessed of Re's Power") was the sixth king of the 5th Dynasty. His throne name was Izi (or Isi, Ini, Iny). His Horus name was probably Setibtawy. We are not very sure how long he ruled Egypt because the Turin King list is somewhat damaged where this pharaoh is listed. We know that he ruled for at least 10 years, but Manetho's 44 years for his reign is considered unreliable. A reference to a Sed festival in his solar temple at Abu Gurab (named shesepu-ib-re) may, however, give him a reign of at least 30 years. Modern Egyptologists disagree on the dates of his reign as well as the length. For example, Peter A. Clayton gives him a reign from 2453-2422 BC, while Dodson says he reigned between 2432-2421. The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt gives his reign as 2445-2421.


Osorkon II, of Egypt's 22nd Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Osorkon II, a Libyan, succeeded Takelot I in 874 BC to become the fifth ruler of Egypt's 22nd Dynasty, known as the Libyan or Bubastite Dynasty, at Tanis. He was probably a young man when he came to the throne, for high reign was relatively long. Osorkon was this king's birth name, which together with the epithet, meryamun, means "Osorkon, Beloved of Amun" His throne name was User-maaat-re Setepen-amun, meaning "Powerful is the Justice of Re, Chosen of Amun". His set of titles harked back to Shoshenq I and his Horus name incorporated an epithet of Ramesses II: "He whom Ra has crowned king of the Two Lands".


Pepi I, 2nd Ruler of the 6th Dynasty of Ancient Egypt by Jimmy Dunn

Pepi I was the second ruler of Egypt's 6th Dynasty, a period that would eventually fall into the abyss of the First Intermediate Period. Pepi I was this pharaoh's birth name, though we may also find him listed as Pepy I, Piopi I, Pipi and the Greek Phiops. His throne name was Mery-re, meaning "Beloved of Re", though he actually used the throne name, Nefersahor during the first half of his reign, later changing it to Mery-re. He ruled Egypt from about 2332 through 2283 BC. He probably ascended the throne as an early age, and appears to have ruled for some 50 years (or at least 40 years).


Pepi II, Last ruler of the 6th Dynasty and Egypt's Old Kingdom by Jimmy Dunn

According to tradition, Pepi II was the last ruler of Egypt's 6th Dynasty, and in fact the last significant ruler of the Old Kingdom prior to the onset of what Egyptologists call the Fist Intermediate Period. We are told that his reign of possibly 94 (some Egyptologist believe 64) years was the longest in ancient Egyptian history. He seems to have come to the throne at about the age of six, and would therefore have lived until the age of one hundred. However, because of the onset of the First Intermediate Period, the latter part of his reign was probably ineffectual, perhaps at least somewhat due to his advanced age. Both the Oxford History of Ancient Egypt and Peter A. Clayton, have his reign lasting from 2278 until 2184 BC.


Pinedjem I in the Third Intermediate Period by Jimmy Dunn

We see at the beginning of the 21st Dynasty and the Third Intermediate Period, two individuals officially rising to power almost simultaneously in about 1070 BC. They were Smendes in the north at Tanis and Pindjem in the south at Thebes. By "officially rising", we mean that, at least in the case of Smendes, he seems to have been a very powerful individuals some years before, at least as implied in the Record of Wenamen. While we are really unsure of Smendes' claim to the Egyptian throne, Pinedjem I's pedigree is better known, as he was the son of the preceding High-Priest of Amun, Piankh, who ruled southern Egypt for only a short time after the death of Herihor.


Piye and the 25th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

From the earliest dynastic periods, Nubia was always a matter of conquest for the Egyptian pharaohs, and as such, much of Nubia was often under the control of Egypt. At times, it was very much a part of Egypt, and the customs of Nubia were a reflection of those in at least Upper Egypt. This perhaps explains Piye's seemingly strong emotional ties with Egypt, what he considered to be part of his motherland, even though he was not from Egypt proper. So at least towards the end of the Third Intermediate Period, when Egypt seems to have surrendered to chaos with four kings claiming rule within Egypt, as well as a number of local chieftains exercising control, particularly in the Delta, Piye decided to step in and fix Egypt's problems.


Predynastic Kings and Religion by Caroline Seawright


The people who are believed to be the ancestors to the predynastic Egyptians were a people known as the Badarian people. They lived in Upper Egypt, on the eastern bank of the Nile, near the village of Badari, south of Asiut. Archaeologists have found both a series of settlement sites as well as various cemeteries. They lived at about 4400 BC and may have even been as far back as 5000 BC.


Psammetikhos I of the 26th Dynasty by Jimmy Dunn

Psammetikhos I was the first ruler



Last Updated: June 12th, 2011