Who's Who of Egyptian people, queens and family: Sahure


Fifth Dynasty

The succession of Sahure, the second king of the Fifth Dynasty, was secured through his mother, Queen Khentkawes, the heiress of King Menkaure, who had earlier been married to King Shepseskhaf. She evidently brought the kingship to her new husband, Userkaf, and then to her sons, Sahure and Neferirkare, who followed him on the throne.

Sahure and his successors gave particular prominence to the cults of the sun-god Re; their names are all compounded with that of the god.

Sahure moved the royal necropolis to Abusir. He built a pyramid there, of relatively modest proportions; it is now very much deflated. He continued the practice, inaugurated by the founder of the dynasty, Userkaf, of building a sun-temple in addition to his pyramid; thus did he and other kings of the dynasty demonstrate their attachment to Re. Sahure's sun-temple at Abusir has not been found; it is known only from references in papyrus inscriptions.

Sahure's reign was notable for considerable trading activity and for various expeditions against the marauding tribes which had always harried Egypt's frontiers. At the Wadi Maghara in the Sinai, Sahure left a warning of the fate which awaited those who rebelled against his authority: the immemorial propaganda image in the form of a relief of the king smiting a desert chieftain.

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Last Updated: June 20th, 2011