Hatshepsut was described by early modern scholars as only having served as a co-regent from about 1479 to 1458 BC, during years seven to twenty-one of the reign previously identified as that of Thutmose III.
For other Egyptian ladies called Maatkare see Maatkare
Hatshepsut (; also Hatchepsut; meaning Foremost of Noble Ladies; 1508–1458 BC) was the fifth pharaoh of the Eighteenth dynasty of Ancient Egypt. She is generally regarded by Egyptologists as one of the most successful pharaohs, reigning longer than any other woman of an indigenous Egyptian dynasty. According to Egyptologist James Henry Breasted she is also known as "the first great woman in history of whom we are informed."
Hatshepsut was the daughter of Thutmose I and his primary wife Ahmes. Her husband Thutmose II was the son of Thutmose I and a secondary wife named Mutneferet, who carried the title King's daughter and was likely a child of Ahmose I. Hatshepsut and Thutmose II had a daughter named Neferure. Thutmose II fathered Thutmose III with Iset a secondary wife.
Although it was uncommon for Egypt to be ruled by a woman, the situation was not unprecedented. As a regent Hatshepsut was preceded by Merneith of the first dynasty, who was buried with the full honors of a pharaoh and may have ruled in her own right. Nimaethap of the third dynasty may have been the dowager of Khasekhemwy, but certainly acted as regent for her son, Thutmose III, and may have reigned as pharaoh in her own right. Nitocris may have been the last pharaoh of the sixth dynasty. Her name is found in the Histories of Herodotus and writings of Manetho, but her historicity is uncertain. Queen Sobekneferu of the twelfth dynasty is known to have assumed formal power as ruler of "Upper and Lower Egypt" three centuries earlier than Hatshepsut. Ahhotep I, lauded as a warrior queen, may have been a regent between the reigns of two of her sons, Kamose and Ahmose I, at the end of the seventeenth dynasty and the beginning of Hatshepsut's own eighteenth dynasty. Amenhotep I, also preceding Hatshepsut in the eighteenth dynasty, probably came to power while a young child and his mother, Ahmose-Nefertari, is thought to have been a regent for him. Other women whose possible reigns as pharaohs are under study include Akhenaten's possible female co-regent/successor (usually identified as either Nefertiti or Meritaten) and Twosre. Among the later, non-indigenous Egyptian dynasties, the most notable example of another woman who became pharaoh was Cleopatra VII, the last pharaoh of Ancient Egypt.
In comparison with other female pharaohs, Hatshepsut's reign was much longer and prosperous. She was successful in warfare early in her reign, but generally is considered to be a pharaoh who inaugurated a long peaceful era. She re-established international trading relationships lost during a foreign occupation and brought great wealth to Egypt. That wealth enabled Hatshepsut to initiate building projects that raised the calibre of Ancient Egyptian architecture to a standard, comparable to classical architecture, that would not be rivaled by any other culture for a thousand years. She managed to rule for about 20 years.
Although contemporary records of her reign are documented in diverse ancient sources, Hatshepsut was described by early modern scholars as only having served as a co-regent from approximately 1479 to 1458 BC, during years seven to twenty-one of the reign previously identified as that of Thutmose III. Today Egyptologists generally agree that Hatshepsut assumed the position of pharaoh and the length of her reign usually is given as twenty-two years, since she was assigned a reign of twenty-one years and nine months by the third-century BC historian, Manetho, who had access to many historical records that now are lost. Her death is known to have occurred in 1458 BC, which implies that she became pharaoh circa 1479 BC.
Hatshepsut was given a reign of about twenty-two years by ancient authors. Josephus writes that she reigned for twenty-one years and nine months, while Africanus states her reign lasted twenty-two years, both of whom were quoting Manetho. At this point in the histories, records of the reign of Hatshepsut end, since the first major foreign campaign of Tuthmosis III was dated to his twenty-second year, which also would have been Hatshepsut's twenty-second year as pharaoh. Dating the beginning of her reign is more difficult, however. Her father's reign began in either 1506 or 1526 BC according to the low and high chronologies respectively. The length of the reigns of Tuthmosis I and Tuthmosis II, however, cannot be determined with absolute certainty. With short reigns, Hatshepsut would have ascended the throne fourteen years after the coronation of Tuthmosis I, her father. Longer reigns would put her ascension twenty-five years after Tuthmosis I's coronation. Thus, Hatshepsut could have assumed power as early as 1512 BC, or, as late as 1479 BC.
The earliest attestation of Hatshepsut as pharaoh occurs in the tomb of Ramose and Hatnofer where a collection of grave goods contained a single pottery jar or amphora from the tomb's chamber—which was stamped with the date Year 7. Another jar from the same tomb—which was discovered in situ by a 1935–1936 Metropolitan Museum of Art expedition on a hillside near Thebes—was stamped with the seal of the 'God's Wife Hatshepsut' while two jars bore the seal of ‘The Good Goddess Maatkare’ The dating of the amphorae, "sealed into the [tomb's] burial chamber by the debris from Senenmut's own tomb," is undisputed which means that Hatshepsut was acknowledged as the king of Egypt by Year 7 of her reign.
Hatshepsut established the trade networks that had been disrupted during the Hyksos occupation of Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period, thereby building the wealth of the eighteenth dynasty.
She oversaw the preparations and funding for a mission to the Land of Punt. The expedition set out in her name with five ships, each measuring 70 feet (21 m) long bearing several sails and accommodating 210 men that included sailors and 30 rowers. Many trade goods were bought in Punt, notably myrrh.
Most notably, however, the Egyptians returned from the voyage bearing thirty-one live myrrh trees, the roots of which were carefully kept in baskets for the duration of the voyage. This was the first recorded attempt to transplant foreign trees. It is reported that Hatshepsut had these trees planted in the courts of her Deir el Bahri mortuary temple complex. Egyptians also returned with living Puntites (people of Punt). This trading expedition to Punt was roughly during Hatshepsut's nineteenth year of reign.
She had the expedition commemorated in relief at Deir el-Bahri, which also is famous for its realistic depiction of the Queen of the Land of Punt, Queen Iti, who appears to have had a genetic trait called steatopygia. Hatshepsut also sent raiding expeditions to Byblos and Sinai shortly after the Punt expedition. Very little is known about these expeditions. Although many Egyptologists have claimed that her foreign policy was mainly peaceful, there is evidence that Hatshepsut led successful military campaigns in Nubia, the Levant, and Syria early in her career.
Hatshepsut was one of the most prolific builders in ancient Egypt, commissioning hundreds of construction projects throughout both Upper Egypt and Lower Egypt. Arguably, her buildings were grander and more numerous than those of any of her Middle Kingdom predecessors'. Later pharaohs attempted to claim some of her projects as theirs.
She employed the great architect Ineni, who also had worked for her father, her husband, and for the royal steward Senemut. During her reign, so much statuary was produced that almost every major museum in the world has Hatshepsut statuary among their collections; for instance, the Hatshepsut Room in New York City's Metropolitan Museum of Art is dedicated solely to some of these pieces.
Following the tradition of most pharaohs, Hatshepsut had monuments constructed at the Temple of Karnak. She also restored the original Precinct of Mut, the ancient great goddess of Egypt, at Karnak that had been ravaged by the foreign rulers during the Hyksos occupation. It later was ravaged by other pharaohs, who took one part after another to use in their pet projects and awaits restoration. She had twin obelisks, at the time the tallest in the world, erected at the entrance to the temple. One still stands, as the tallest surviving ancient obelisk on Earth; the other has broken in two and toppled.
Another project, Karnak's Red Chapel, or Chapelle Rouge, was intended as a barque shrine and originally, may have stood between her two obelisks. It was lined with carved stones that depicted significant events in Hatshepsut's life.
She later ordered the construction of two more obelisks to celebrate her sixteenth year as pharaoh; one of the obelisks broke during construction, and thus, a third was constructed to replace it. The broken obelisk was left at its quarrying site in Aswan, where it still remains. Known as The Unfinished Obelisk, it demonstrates how obelisks were quarried.
The Temple of Pakhet was built by Hatshepsut at Beni Hasan in the Minya Governorate south of Al Minya. The name, Pakhet was a synthesis that occurred by combining Bast and Sekhmet, who were similar lioness war goddesses, in an area that bordered the north and south division of their cults. The cavernous underground temple, cut into the rock cliffs on the eastern side of the Nile, was admired and called the Speos Artemidos by the Greeks during their occupation of Egypt, known as the Ptolemaic Dynasty. They saw the goddess as a parallel to their hunter goddess Artemis. The temple is thought to have been built alongside much more ancient ones that have not survived. This temple has an architrave with a long dedicatory text bearing Hatshepsut's famous denunciation of the Hyksos that has been translated by James P. Allen. They had occupied Egypt and cast it into a cultural decline that persisted until a revival brought about by her policies and innovations. This temple was altered later and some of its inside decorations were usurped by Seti I, in the nineteenth dynasty, attempting to have his name replace that of Hatshepsut.
Following the tradition of many pharaohs, the masterpiece of Hatshepsut's building projects was her mortuary temple. She built hers in a complex at Deir el-Bahri. It was designed and implemented by Senemut at a site on the West Bank of the Nile River near the entrance to what now is called the Valley of the Kings because of all the pharaohs who later chose to associate their complexes with the grandeur of hers. Her buildings were the first grand ones planned for that location.
The focal point was the Djeser-Djeseru or "the Sublime of Sublimes", a colonnaded structure of perfect harmony nearly one thousand years before the Parthenon was built. Djeser-Djeseru sits atop a series of terraces that once were graced with lush gardens. Djeser-Djeseru is built into a cliff face that rises sharply above it. Djeser-Djeseru and the other buildings of Hatshepsut's Deir el-Bahri complex are considered to be significant advances in architecture. Another one of her great accomplishments is the Hatshepsut needle (also known as the granite obelisks).
Hyperbole is common, virtually, to all royal inscriptions of Egyptian history. While all ancient leaders used it to laud their achievements, Hatshepsut has been called the most accomplished pharaoh at promoting her accomplishments. This may have resulted from the extensive building executed during her time as pharaoh, in comparison to many others. It afforded her with many opportunities to laud herself, but it also reflects the wealth that her policies and administration brought to Egypt, enabling her to finance such projects. Aggrandizement of their achievements was traditional when pharaohs built temples and their tombs.
Women had a high status in ancient Egypt and enjoyed the legal right to own, inherit, or will property. A woman becoming pharaoh was rare, however; only Sobekneferu, Neferneferuaten, Cleopatra VII and possibly Khentkaus I and Nitocris preceded her in known records as ruling solely in their own name. The existence of this last ruler is disputed and is likely a mis-translation of a male king. Twosret, a female king and the last pharaoh of the nineteenth dynasty, may have been the only woman to succeed her among the indigenous rulers. In Egyptian history, there was no word for a "queen regnant" as in contemporary history, "king" being the Ancient Egyptian title regardless of gender, and by the time of her reign, pharaoh had become the name for the ruler. Hatshepsut is not unique, however, in taking the title of king. Sobekneferu, ruling six dynasties prior to Hatshepsut, also did so when she ruled Egypt. Hatshepsut had been well trained in her duties as the daughter of the pharaoh. During her father's reign she held the powerful office of God's Wife. She had taken a strong role as queen to her husband and was well experienced in the administration of her kingdom by the time she became pharaoh. There is no indication of challenges to her leadership and, until her death, her co-regent remained in a secondary role, quite amicably heading her powerful army—which would have given him the power necessary to overthrow a usurper of his rightful place, if that had been the case.
Hatshepsut assumed all of the regalia and symbols of the pharaonic office in official representations: the Khat head cloth, topped with the uraeus, the traditional false beard, and shendyt kilt. Many existing statues alternatively show her in typically feminine attire as well as those that depict her in the royal ceremonial attire. Statues portraying Sobekneferu also combine elements of traditional male and female iconography and, by tradition, may have served as inspiration for these works commissioned by Hatshepsut. After this period of transition ended, however, most formal depictions of Hatshepsut as pharaoh showed her in the royal attire, with all of the pharaonic regalia.
At her mortuary temple, in Osirian statues that regaled the transportation of the pharaoh to the world of the dead, the symbols of the pharaoh as the deity Osiris were the reason for the attire and they were much more important to be displayed traditionally, her breasts are obscured behind her crossed arms holding the regal staffs of the two kingdoms she ruled. This became a pointed concern among writers who sought reasons for the generic style of the shrouded statues and led to misinterpretations. Understanding of the religious symbolism was required to interpret the statues correctly. Interpretations by these early scholars varied and often, were baseless conjectures of their own contemporary values. The possible reasons for her breasts not being emphasized in the most formal statues were debated among some early Egyptologists, who failed to understand the ritual religious symbolism, to take into account the fact that many women and goddesses portrayed in ancient Egyptian art often lack delineation of breasts, and that the physical aspect of the gender of pharaohs was never stressed in the art. With few exceptions, subjects were idealized.
Modern scholars, however, have theorized that by assuming the typical symbols of pharaonic power, Hatshepsut was asserting her claim to be the sovereign rather than a "King's Great Wife" or queen consort. The gender of pharaohs was never stressed in official depictions; even the men were depicted with the highly stylized false beard associated with their position in the society.
Moreover, the Osirian statues of Hatshepsut—as with other pharaohs—depict the dead pharaoh as Osiris, with the body and regalia of that deity. All of the statues of Hatshepsut at her tomb follow that tradition. The promise of resurrection after death was a tenet of the cult of Osiris. Since many statues of Hatshepsut depicted in this fashion have been put on display in museums and those images have been widely published, viewers who lack an understanding of the religious significance of these depictions have been misled. Aside from the face depicting Hatshepsut, these statues closely resemble those of other kings as Osiris, following religious traditions.
Most of the official statues commissioned of Hatshepsut show her less symbolically and more naturally, as a woman in typical dresses of the nobility of her day. Notably, even after assuming the formal regalia, Hatshepsut still described herself as a beautiful woman, often as the most beautiful of women, and although she assumed almost all of her father's titles, she declined to take the title "The Strong Bull" (the full title being, The Strong Bull of his Mother), which tied the pharaoh to the goddesses Isis, the throne, and Hathor, (the cow who gave birth to and protected the pharaohs)—by being her son sitting on her throne—an unnecessary title for her, since Hatshepsut became allied with the goddesses, herself, which no male pharaoh could. Rather than the strong bull, Hatshepsut, having served as a very successful warrior during the early portion of her reign as pharaoh, associated herself with the lioness image of Sekhmet, the major war deity in the Egyptian pantheon.
Religious concepts were tied into all of these symbols and titles. By the time of Hatshepsut's reign, the merger of some aspects of these two goddesses provided that they would both have given birth to, and were the protectors of, the pharaohs. They became interchangeable at times. Hatshepsut also traced her lineage to Mut, a primal mother goddess of the Egyptian pantheon, which gave her another ancestor who was a deity as well as her father and grandfathers, pharaohs who would have become deified upon death.
While Hatshepsut was depicted in official art wearing regalia of a pharaoh, such as the false beard that male pharaohs also wore, it is most unlikely that she ever wore such ceremonial decorations, just as it is unlikely that the male pharaohs did. Statues such as those at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, depicting her seated wearing a tight-fitting dress and the nemes crown, are thought to be a more accurate representation of how she would have presented herself at court.
As a notable exception, only one male pharaoh abandoned the rigid symbolic depiction that had become the style of the most official artwork representing the ruler, Pharaoh Amenhotep IV (later Akhenaten) of the same eighteenth dynasty, whose wife, Nefertiti, also may have ruled in her own right following the death of her husband.
One of the most famous examples of the legends about Hatshepsut is a myth about her birth. In this myth, Amun goes to Ahmose in the form of Thutmose I and awakens her with pleasant odors. At this point Amun places the ankh, a symbol of life, to Ahmose's nose, and Hatshepsut is conceived by Ahmose. Khnum, the god who forms the bodies of human children, is then instructed to create a body and ka, or corporal presence/life force, for Hatshepsut. Heket, the goddess of life and fertility, and Khnum then lead Ahmose along to a lioness' bed where she gives birth to Hatshepsut. Reliefs depicting each step in these events are at Karnak and in her mortuary temple.
The Oracle of Amun proclaimed that it was the will of Amun that Hatshepsut be pharaoh, further strengthening her position. She reiterated Amun's support by having these proclamations by the god Amun carved on her monuments:
Hatshepsut claimed that she was her father's intended heir and that he made her the heir apparent of Egypt. Almost all scholars today view this as historical revisionism, or prolepsis, on Hatshepsut's part since it was Thutmose II—a son of Thutmose I by Mutnofret—who was her father's heir. Moreover, Thutmose I could not have foreseen that his daughter Hatshepsut would outlive his son within his own lifetime. Thutmose II soon married Hatshepsut and the latter became both his senior royal wife and the most powerful woman at court. Biographer Evelyn Wells, however, accepts Hatshepsut's claim that she was her father's intended successor. Once she became pharaoh herself, Hatshepsut supported her assertion that she was her father's designated successor with inscriptions on the walls of her mortuary temple:
American humorist Will Cuppy wrote an essay on Hatshepsut which was published after his death in the book The Decline and Fall of Practically Everybody. Regarding one of her wall inscriptions, he wrote,
Hatshepsut died as she was approaching what we would consider middle age given typical contemporary lifespans, in her twenty-second regnal year. The precise date of Hatshepsut's death—and the time when Thutmose III became the next pharaoh of Egypt—is considered to be Year 22, II Peret day 10 of her reign, as recorded on a single stela erected at Armant or January 16, 1458 BC. This information validates the basic reliability of Manetho's kinglist records since Hatshepsut's known accession date was I Shemu day 4, (i.e.: Hatshepsut died 9 months into her 22nd year as king, as Manetho writes in his Epitome for a reign of 21 years and 9 months). No contemporary mention of the cause of her death has survived. If the recent identification of her mummy (see below) is correct, however, the medical evidence would indicate that she suffered from diabetes and died from bone cancer which had spread throughout her body while she was in her fifties. It also would suggest that she had arthritis and bad teeth.
Hatshepsut had begun construction of a tomb when she was the Great Royal Wife of Thutmose II, but the scale of this was not suitable for a pharaoh, so when she ascended the throne, preparation for another burial started. For this, KV20, originally quarried for her father, Thutmose I, and probably the first royal tomb in the Valley of the Kings, was extended with a new burial chamber. Hatshepsut also refurbished the burial of her father and prepared for a double interment of both Thutmose I and her within KV20. It is likely, therefore, that when she died (no later than the twenty-second year of her reign), she was interred in this tomb along with her father. During the reign of Thutmose III, however, a new tomb, (KV38), together with new burial equipment was provided for Thutmose I, who then was removed from his original tomb and re-interred elsewhere. At the same time Hatshepsut's mummy might have been moved into the tomb of her wet nurse, Sitre-Re, in KV60. It is possible that Amenhotep II, son to Thutmose III by a secondary wife, was the one motivating these actions in an attempt to assure his own uncertain right to succession. Besides what was recovered from KV20 during Howard Carter's clearance of the tomb in 1903, other funerary furniture belonging to Hatshepsut has been found elsewhere, including a lioness "throne" (bedstead is a better description), a senet game board with carved lioness-headed, red-jasper game pieces bearing her pharaonic title, a signet ring, and a partial shabti figurine bearing her name. In the Royal Mummy Cache at DB320, an ivory canopic coffer was found that was inscribed with the name of Hatshepsut and contained a mummified liver or spleen as well as the tooth that now has been found to fit the second mummy in the wet nurse's tomb. There was a royal lady of the twenty-first dynasty of the same name, however, and for a while it was thought possible that it could have belonged to her instead.
Toward the end of the reign of Thutmose III and into the reign of his son, an attempt was made to remove Hatshepsut from certain historical and pharaonic records. This elimination was carried out in the most literal way possible. Her cartouches and images were chiselled off some stone walls, leaving very obvious Hatshepsut-shaped gaps in the artwork.
At the Deir el-Bahari temple, Hatshepsut's numerous statues were torn down and in many cases, smashed or disfigured before being buried in a pit. At Karnak, there even was an attempt to wall up her obelisks. While it is clear that much of this rewriting of Hatshepsut's history occurred only during the close of Thutmose III's reign, it is not clear why it happened, other than the typical pattern of self-promotion that existed among the pharaohs and their administrators, or perhaps saving money by not building new monuments for the burial of Thutmose III and instead, using the grand structures built by Hatshepsut.
Amenhotep II, the son of Thutmose III, who became a co-regent toward the end of his father's reign, is suspected by some as being the defacer during the end of the reign of a very old pharaoh. He would have had a motive because his position in the royal lineage was not so strong as to assure his elevation to pharaoh. He is documented, further, as having usurped many of Hatshepsut's accomplishments during his own reign. His reign is marked with attempts to break the royal lineage as well, not recording the names of his queens and eliminating the powerful titles and official roles of royal women such as, God's Wife of Amun.
For many years, presuming that it was Thutmose III acting out of resentment once he became pharaoh, early modern Egyptologists presumed that the erasures were similar to the Roman damnatio memoriae. This appeared to make sense when thinking that Thutmose might have been an unwilling co-regent for years. This assessment of the situation probably is too simplistic, however. It is highly unlikely that the determined and focused Thutmose—not only Egypt's most successful general, but an acclaimed athlete, author, historian, botanist, and architect—would have brooded for two decades of his own reign before attempting to avenge himself on his stepmother and aunt. According to renowned Egyptologist Donald Redford:
The erasures were sporadic and haphazard, with only the more visible and accessible images of Hatshepsut being removed; had it been more complete, we would not now have so many images of Hatshepsut. Thutmose III may have died before these changes were finished and it may be that he never intended a total obliteration of her memory. In fact, we have no evidence to support the assumption that Thutmose hated or resented Hatshepsut during her lifetime. Had that been true, as head of the army, in a position given to him by Hatshepsut (who was clearly not worried about her co-regent's loyalty), he surely could have led a successful coup, but he made no attempt to challenge her authority during her reign and, her accomplishments and images remained featured on all of the public buildings she built for twenty years after her death.
Writers such as Joyce Tyldesley hypothesized that it is possible that Thutmose III, lacking any sinister motivation, may have decided toward the end of his life, to relegate Hatshepsut to her expected place as the regent—which was the traditional role of powerful women in Egypt's court as the example of Queen Ahhotep attests—rather than king. Tyldesley fashions her concept as, that by eliminating the more obvious traces of Hatshepsut's monuments as pharaoh and reducing her status to that of his co-regent, Thutmose III could claim that the royal succession ran directly from Thutmose II to Thutmose III without any interference from his aunt.
The deliberate erasures or mutilations of the numerous public celebrations of her accomplishments, but not the rarely seen ones, would be all that was necessary to obscure Hatshepsut's accomplishments. Moreover, by the latter half of Thutmose III's reign, the more prominent high officials who had served Hatshepsut would have died, thereby eliminating the powerful religious and bureaucratic resistance to a change in direction in a highly stratified culture. Hatshepsut's highest official and closest supporter, Senenmut, seems either to have retired abruptly or died around Years 16 and 20 of Hatshepsut's reign and, was never interred in either of his carefully prepared tombs. According to Tyldesley, the enigma of Senenmut's sudden disappearance "teased Egyptologists for decades" given the lack of solid archaeological or textual evidence" and permitted "the vivid imagination of Senenmut-scholars to run wild" resulting in a variety of strongly held solutions "some of which would do credit to any fictional murder/mystery plot." In such a scenario, newer court officials, appointed by Thutmose III, also would have had an interest in promoting the many achievements of their master in order to assure the continued success of their own families.
Presuming that it was Thutmose III (rather than his co-regent son), Tyldesley also put forth a hypothesis about Thutmose suggesting that his erasures and defacement of Hatshepsut's monuments could have been a cold, but rational attempt on his part to extinguish the memory of an "unconventional female king whose reign might possibly be interpreted by future generations as a grave offence against Ma'at, and whose unorthodox coregency" could "cast serious doubt upon the legitimacy of his own right to rule. Hatshepsut's crime need not be anything more than the fact that she was a woman." Tyldesley conjectured that Thutmose III may have considered the possibility that the example of a successful female king in Egyptian history could demonstrate that a woman was as capable at governing Egypt as a traditional male king, which could persuade "future generations of potentially strong female kings" to not "remain content with their traditional lot as wife, sister and eventual mother of a king" and assume the crown. Dismissing relatively recent history known to Thutmose III of another woman who was king, Sobekneferu of Egypt's Middle Kingdom, she conjectured further that he might have thought that while she had enjoyed a short, approximately four-year reign, she ruled "at the very end of a fading [12th dynasty] Dynasty, and from the very start of her reign the odds had been stacked against her. She was, therefore, acceptable to conservative Egyptians as a patriotic 'Warrior Queen' who had failed" to rejuvenate Egypt's fortunes. In contrast, Hatshepsut's glorious reign was a completely different case: she demonstrated that women were as capable as men of ruling the two lands since she successfully presided over a prosperous Egypt for more than two decades. If Thutmose III's intent was to forestall the possibility of a woman assuming the throne, as proposed by Tyldesley, it was a failure since Twosret and Neferneferuaten (possibly), a female co-regent or successor of Akhenaten, assumed the throne for short reigns as pharaoh later in the New Kingdom.
The erasure of Hatshepsut's name—whatever the reason or the person ordering it—almost caused her to disappear from Egypt's archaeological and written records. When nineteenth-century Egyptologists started to interpret the texts on the Deir el-Bahri temple walls (which were illustrated with two seemingly male kings) their translations made no sense. Jean-François Champollion, the French decoder of hieroglyphs, was not alone in feeling confused by the obvious conflict between words and pictures:
The 2006 discovery of a foundation deposit including nine golden cartouches bearing the names of both Hatshepsut and Thutmose III in Karnak may shed additional light on the eventual attempt by Thutmose III and his son Amenhotep II to erase Hatshepsut from the historical record and the correct nature of their relationships and her role as pharaoh.
Sphinx of Hatshepsut with unusual rounded ears and ruff that stress the lioness features of the statue, but with five toes - newel post decorations from the lower ramp of her tomb complex
These two statues once resembled each other, however, the symbols of her pharaonic power: the Uraeus, Double Crown, and traditional false beard have been stripped from the left image; many images portraying Hatshepsut were destroyed or vandalized within decades of her death, possibly by Amenhotep II at the end of the reign of Thutmose III, while he was his co-regent, in order to assure his own rise to pharaoh and then, to claim many of her accomplishments as his.
The image of Hatshepsut has been deliberately chipped away and removed - Ancient Egyptian wing of the Royal Ontario Museum
Dual stela of Hatshepsut (centre left) in the blue Khepresh crown offering wine to the deity Amun and Thutmose III behind her in the hedjet white crown, standing near Wosret - Vatican Museum
Hieroglyphs showing Thutmose III on the left and Hatshepsut on the right, she having the trappings of the greater role — Red Chapel, Karnak
A Fallen obelisk of Hatshepsut - Karnak.
In the Discovery Channel documentary, Secrets of Egypt's Lost Queen, Hatshepsut is portrayed by actress Farah Ali Abd El Bar.
(sometimes read as Thutmosis
, or Tuthmosis II
and meaning Born of Thoth
, probably pronounced during his lifetime as Djhutymose
) was the fourth Pharaoh of the Eighteenth dynasty of Egypt. He built some minor monuments and initiated at least two minor campaigns but did little else during his rule and was probably strongly influenced by his wife, Hatshepsut. His reign is generally dated from 1493 to 1479 BC. Thutmose II's body was found in the Deir el-Bahri Cache above the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut and can be viewed today in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.
Thutmose II was the son of Thutmose I and a minor wife, Mutnofret. He was, therefore, a lesser son of Thutmose I and chose to marry his fully royal half-sister, Hatshepsut, in order to secure his kingship. While he successfully put down rebellions in Nubia and the Levant and defeated a group of nomadic Bedouins, these campaigns were specifically carried out by the king's Generals, and not by Thutmose II himself. This is often interpreted as evidence that Thutmose II was still a minor at his accession. Thutmose II fathered Neferure with Hatshepsut, but also managed to father a male heir, the famous Thutmose III, by a lesser wife named Iset before his death.
Some archaeologists believe that Hatshepsut was the real power behind the throne during Thutmose II’s rule because of the similar domestic and foreign policies which were later pursued under her reign and because of her claim that she was her father’s intended heir. She is depicted in several raised relief scenes from a Karnak gateway dating to Thutmose II's reign both together with her husband and alone. She later had herself crowned Pharaoh several years into the rule of her husband's young successor Thutmose III; this is confirmed by the fact that "the queen's agents actually replaced the boy king's name in a few places with her own cartouches" on the gateway.
refers to Thutmose II as "Chebron" (which is a reference to his prenomen, Aakheperenre) and gives him a reign of 13 years, but this figure is highly disputed among scholars. Some Egyptologists prefer to shorten his reign by a full decade to only 3 years because his highest Year Date is only a Year 1 II Akhet day 8 stela. The reign length of Thutmose II has been controversial and much debated.
has been a debated topic among Egyptologists with little consensus given the small number of surviving documents for his reign, but a 13-year reign is preferred by older scholars while newer scholars prefer a shorter 3-4 year reign for this king due to the minimal amount of scarabs and monuments attested under Thutmose II. It is still possible to estimate when Thutmose II's reign would have begun by means of a heliacal rise of Sothis in Amenhotep I's reign, which would give him a reign from 1493 BC to 1479 BC, although uncertainty about how to interpret the rise also permits a date from 1513 BC to 1499 BC, and uncertainty about how long Thutmose I ruled could also potentially place his reign several years earlier still. Nonetheless, scholars generally assign him a reign from 1493 or 1492 to 1479.
Ineni, who was already aged by the start of Thutmose II's reign, lived through this ruler's entire reign into that of Hatshepsut. In addition, Thutmose II is poorly attested in the monumental record and in the contemporary tomb autobiographies of New Kingdom officials. A clear count of monuments from his rule, which is the principal tool for estimating a king's reign when dated documents are not available, is nearly impossible because Hatshepsut usurped most of his monuments, and Thutmose III in turn reinscribed Thutmose II's name indiscriminately over other monuments. However, apart from several surviving blocks of buildings erected by the king at Semna, Kumma, and Elephantine, Thutmose II's only major monument consists of a limestone gateway at Karnak that once lay at the front of the Fourth Pylon's forecourt. Even this monument was not completed in Thutmose II's reign but in the reign of his son Thutmose III which hints at "the nearly ephemeral nature of Thutmose II's reign." The gateway was later dismantled and its building blocks incorporated into the foundation of the Third Pylon by Amenhotep III. In 1987, Luc Gabolde published an important study which statistically compared the number of surviving scarabs found under Thutmose I, Thutmose II and Hatshepsut. While monuments can be usurped, scarabs are so small and comparatively insignificant that altering their names would be impractical and without profit; hence, they provide a far better insight into this period. Hatshepsut's reign is believed to have been for 21 years and 9 months. Gabolde highlighted, in his analysis, the consistently small number of surviving scarabs known for Thutmose II compared to Thutmose I and Hatshepsut respectively; for instance, Flinders Petrie's older study of scarab seals noted 86 seals for Thutmose I, 19 seals for Thutmose II and 149 seals for Hatshepsut while more recent studies by Jaeger estimate a total of 241 seals for Thutmose I, 463 seals for Hatshepsut and only 65 seals for Thutmose II. Hence, unless there was an abnormally low number of scarabs produced under Thutmose II, this would indicate that the king's reign was rather short-lived. On this basis, Gabolde estimated Thutmose I and II's reigns to be approximately 11 and 3 full years, respectively. Consequently, the reign length of Thutmose II has been a much debated subject among Egyptologists with little consensus given the small number of surviving documents for his reign.
Thutmose's reign is still traditionally given as 13 or 14 years. Although Ineni's autobiography can be interpreted to say that Thutmose reigned only a short time, it also calls Thutmose a "hawk in the nest," indicating that he was perhaps a child when he assumed the throne. Since he lived long enough to father two children--Neferure and Thutmose III--this suggests that he may have had a longer reign of 13 years in order to reach adulthood and start a family. The German Egyptologist, J. Von Beckerath, uses this line of argument to support the case of a 13-year reign for Thutmose II. Alan Gardiner noted that at one point, a monument had been identified by Georges Daressy in 1900 which was dated to Thutmose's 18th year, although its precise location has not been identified. This inscription is now usually attributed to Hatshepsut, who certainly did have an 18th year. von Beckerath observes that a Year 18 date appears in a fragmentary inscription of an Egyptian official and notes that the date likely refers to Hatshepsut's prenomen Maatkare, which had been altered from Aakheperenre Thutmose II, with the reference to the deceased Thutmose II being removed. There is also the curious fact that Hatshepsut celebrated her Sed Jubilee in her Year 16 which von Beckerath believes occurred 30 years after the death of Thutmose I, her father, who was the main source of her claim to power. This would create a gap of 13 to 14 years where Thutmose II's reign would fit in between Hatshepsut and Thutmose I's rule.
Upon Thutmose's coronation, Kush rebelled, as it had the habit of doing upon the transition of Egyptian kingship. The Nubian state had been completely subjugated by Thutmose I, but some rebels from Khenthennofer rose up, and the Egyptian colonists retreated into a fortress built by Thutmose I. On account of his relative youth at the time, Thutmose II dispatched an army into Nubia rather than leading it himself, but he seems to have easily crushed this revolt with the aid of his father's military generals.
Thutmose also seems to have fought against the Shasu Bedouin in the Sinai, in a campaign mentioned by Ahmose Pen-Nekhbet. Although this campaign has been called a minor raid, there is a fragment which was recorded by Kurt Sethe which records a campaign in Upper Retenu, or Syria, which appears to have reached as far as a place called Niy where Thutmose I hunted elephants after returning from crossing the Euphrates. This quite possibly indicates that the raid against the Shasu was only fought en route
Thutmose II's mummy was discovered in the Deir el-Bahri cache, revealed in 1881. He was interred along with other 18th and 19th dynasty leaders including Ahmose I, Amenhotep I, Thutmose I, Thutmose III, Ramesses I, Seti I, Ramesses II, and Ramesses IX.
The mummy was unwrapped by Gaston Maspero on July 1, 1886. There is a strong familial resemblance to the mummy of Thutmose I, his likely father, as the mummy face and shape of the head are very similar. The body of Thutmose II suffered greatly at the hands of ancient tomb robbers, with his left arm broken off at the shoulder-joint, the forearm separated at the elbow joint, and his right arm chopped off below the elbow. His anterior abdominal wall and much of his chest had been hacked at, possibly by an axe. In addition, his right leg had been severed from his body. All of these injuries were sustained post-mortem, though the body also showed signs that Thutmose II did not have an easy life, as the following quote by Gaston Maspero attests:
Media related to Thutmosis II at Wikimedia Commons
Amenhotep I (Amenhotep, sometimes read as Amenophis I and meaning "Amun is satisfied") (Egyptian jmn-ḥtp yamānuḥātap) was the second Pharaoh of the 18th dynasty of Egypt. His reign is generally dated from 1526 to 1506 BC. He was born to Ahmose I and Ahmose-Nefertari, but had at least two elder brothers, Ahmose-ankh and Ahmose Sapair, and was not expected to inherit the throne. However, sometime in the eight years between Ahmose I's 17th regnal year and his death, his heir apparent died and Amenhotep became crown prince. He then acceded to the throne and ruled for about 21 years.
Although his reign is poorly documented, it is possible to piece together a basic history from available evidence. He inherited the kingdom formed by his father's military conquests and maintained dominance over Nubia and the Nile Delta but probably did not attempt to keep power in Syrio-Palestine. He continued to rebuild temples in Upper Egypt and revolutionized mortuary complex design by separating his tomb from his mortuary temple, setting a trend which would persist throughout the New Kingdom. After his death, he was deified into the patron god of Deir el-Medina.
Amenhotep I was the son of Ahmose I and Ahmose-Nefertari. His elder brothers, the crown prince Ahmose Sapair and Ahmose-ankh, died before him, thus clearing the way for his ascension to the throne. Amenhotep probably came to power while he was still young himself, and his mother, Ahmose-Nefertari, appears to have been regent for him for at least a short time. This is evidenced because both he and his mother are credited with opening a worker village at the site of Deir el-Medina. Amenhotep took his sister Ahmose-Meritamon as his Great Royal Wife. Another wife's name, Sitkamose, is attested on a nineteenth dynasty stele.
Beyond this, his relation to all other possible family members has been questioned. Ahhotep II is usually called his wife and sister, despite an alternate theory that she was his grandmother. He is thought to have had one son by Ahhotep II, Amenemhat, who died while still very young. This remains the consensus, although there are arguments against that relationship as well. With no living heirs, Amenhotep was succeeded by Thutmose I, whom he married to his sister, Aahmes, although once again there is no definite proof that the two were related. Since Aahmes is never called "King's Daughter" in any inscription, some scholars doubt this relation as well.
In the ninth year of Amenhotep I, a heliacal rise of Sothis was observed on the ninth day of the third month of summer. Modern astronomers have calculated that, if the observation was made from Memphis or Heliopolis, such an observation could only have been made on that day in 1537 BC. If the observation was made in Thebes, however, it could only have taken place in 1517. The latter choice is usually accepted as correct since Thebes was the capital of early 18th dynasty Egypt; hence, Amenhotep I is given an accession date in 1526 BC, although the possibility of 1546 BC is not entirely dismissed.
Manetho's Epitome states that Amenhotep I ruled Egypt for twenty years and seven months or twenty-one years, depending on the source. While Amenhotep I's highest attested official date is only his Year 10, Manetho's data is confirmed by information from a passage in the tomb autobiography of a magician named Amenemhet. This individual explicitly states that he served under Amenhotep I for 21 Years. Thus, in the high chronology, Amenhotep I is given a reign from around 1546 to 1526 BC and, in the low chronology, from around 1526 to 1506 BC or 1525 to 1504 BC, though individual scholars may vary by a few years.
Amenhotep I's Horus and Two Ladies names, "Bull who conquers the lands" and "He who inspires great terror," are generally interpreted to mean that Amenhotep I intended upon dominating the surrounding nations. Two tomb texts indicate that he led campaigns into Nubia. According to the tomb texts of Ahmose, son of Ebana, Amenhotep later sought to expand Egypt's border southward into Nubia and he led an invasion force which defeated the Nubian army. The tomb biography of Ahmose Pen-Nekhebet says he also fought in a campaign in Kush, however it is quite possible that it refers to the same campaign as Ahmose, son of Ebana. Amenhotep built a temple at Saï, showing that he had established Egyptian settlements almost as far as the third cataract.
A single reference in the tomb of Ahmose Pen-Nekhebet indicates another campaign in Iamu in the land of Kehek. Unfortunately, the location of Kehek is unknown. It was long believed that Kehek was a reference to the Libyan tribe, Qeheq, and thus it was postulated that invaders from Libya took advantage of the death of Ahmose to move into the western Nile Delta. Unfortunately for this theory, the Qeheq people only appeared in later times, and Kehek's identity remains unknown. Nubia is a possibility, since Amenhotep did campaign there, and the western desert and the oases have also been suggested, since these seem to have fallen under Egyptian control once again.
Egypt had lost the western desert and the oases during the second intermediate period, and during the revolt against the Hyksos, Kamose thought it necessary to garrison them. It is uncertain when they were fully retaken, but on one stele, the title "Prince-Governor of the oases" was used, which means that Amenhotep's reign forms the terminus ante quem for the return of Egyptian rule.
There are no recorded campaigns in Syro-Palestine during Amenhotep I's reign. However, according to the Tombos Stela of his successor, Thutmose I, when Thutmose led a campaign into Asia all the way to the Euphrates, he found no one who fought against him. If Thutmose did not lead a campaign which has not been recorded into Asia before this recorded one, it would mean that the preceding pharaoh would have had to pacify Syria instead, which would indicate a possible Asiatic campaign of Amenhotep I. Two references to the Levant potentially written during his reign might be contemporary witnesses to such a campaign. One of the candidates for Amenhotep's tomb contains a reference to Qedmi, which is somewhere in Canaan or the Transjordan, and Amenemhet's tomb contains a hostile reference to Mitanni. However, neither of these references necessarily refer to campaigning, nor do they even necessarily date to Amenhotep's reign. The location of Amenhotep's tomb is not certain, and Amenemhet lived to serve under multiple kings who are known to have attacked Mitanni. Records from Amenhotep's reign are simply altogether too scant and too vague to reach a conclusion about any Syrian campaign.
Large numbers of statues of Amenhotep have been found, but they are mostly from the Ramessid period, made for his posthumous funerary cult. This makes study of the art of his reign difficult. Based upon his few authentic statues, it appears that Amenhotep continued the practice of copying Middle Kingdom styles. Art in the early 18th dynasty was particularly similar to that of the early Middle Kingdom, and the statues produced by Amenhotep I clearly copied those of Mentuhotep II and Senusret I. The two types are so similar that modern Egyptologists have had trouble telling the two apart.
It was probably Amenhotep I who opened the artisan's village at Deir el-Medina which was responsible for all the art which filled the tombs in Thebes' necropolis for the following generations of New Kingdom rulers and nobles. The earliest name found there is that of Thutmose I, however Amenhotep was clearly an important figure to the city's workmen since he and his mother were both its patron deities.
Two important pieces of literature were developed during this period. First, the Book of What is in the Underworld, an important funerary text used in the New Kingdom, is believed to have come into its final form during Amenhotep's reign, since it first appears in the tomb of Thutmose I. The Ebers papyrus, which is the main source for information on ancient Egyptian medicine, seems to date to this time (the mention of the Heliacal rise of Sothis by which the early New Kingdom chronology is usually calculated was found on the back of this document).
It appears that during Amenhotep I's reign the first water clock was invented. Amenhotep's court astronomer Amenemheb took credit for creating this device in his tomb biography, although the oldest surviving mechanism dates to the reign of Amenhotep III. This invention was of great benefit for timekeeping, because the Egyptian hour was not a fixed amount of time, but was measured as 1/12 of the night. When the nights were shorter in the summer, these waterclocks could be adjusted to measure the shorter hours accurately.
Amenhotep's building projects have been mostly obliterated by later construction projects, so it is difficult to appraise the scope of his building program. From written sources it is known that he commissioned the architect Ineni to expand the Temple of Karnak. Ineni's tomb biography indicates that he created a 20 cubit gate of limestone on the south side of Karnak. He constructed a sacred barque chapel of Amun out of alabaster and a copy of the White Chapel of Senusret III, however they were disassembled by Amenhotep III to fill his third pylon. Karnak also contains structures which were apparently built for his Sed festival, but he died before he could use them. A temple was constructed in Nubia at Saï, and he built structures in Upper Egypt at Elephantine, Kom Ombo, Abydos, and the Temple of Nekhbet, but did not build anything in Lower Egypt, like his father.
Amenhotep I was the first king of Egypt to separate his mortuary temple from his tomb, probably to keep tomb robbers from finding his tomb as easily. The remains of this temple are most probably to be found at the north end of Deir el-Bahri. Deir el-Bahri appears to have had some sort of funerary significance for Amenhotep, since Theban Tomb 358, the tomb of his queen Ahmose-Meritamon, was also found nearby. However, Amenhotep's temple was located where Hatshepsut intended to build her mortuary temple. Hatshepsut's first plan may have spared the temple, however when she added the lower terrace it was torn down, and only a few bricks inscribed with Amenhotep's name remain. The royal statues inside of the temple were then moved into the nearby funerary temple of Mentuhotep II.
The location of Amenhotep's tomb has not been identified yet. The tomb was known to be intact during the reign of Ramses IX, but its location was not disclosed. There are two possible sites for the location of Amenhotep I's undiscovered tomb, one high up in the Valley of the Kings, KV39 and the other at Dra' Abu el-Naga', Tomb ANB. Tomb ANB is considered the more likely possibility, because it contains objects bearing his name and the names of some family members. Excavations at KV 39 have indicated that instead it was used as a previous storage area for the Deir el-Bahri Cache and Dra' Abu el-Naga' ANB is considered the more probable location.
Certain scholars have argued that Amenhotep I may have appointed Thutmose I as coregent before his own death. Thutmose I's name appears next to Amenhotep's name on a barque which was used as fill for the third pylon at Karnak, and this is often used as evidence that Amenhotep had appointed Thutmose as coregent. This, however, has failed to convince most scholars who note that it may be a simple case of Thutmose associating himself with his royal predecessor. Alternatively, one text has been interpreted to mean that Amenhotep may have appointed his infant son as coregent, who then preceded him in death. However, the scholarly consensus is that there is too little evidence for either coregency.
After Amenhotep died, wherever his tomb was located, his body did not remain there. Amenhotep I's body was found in the Deir el-Bahri Cache above the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut and is now in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. His mummy had apparently not been looted by the 21st dynasty, and the priests who moved the mummy took care to keep the Cartonnage intact. Because of that exquisite face mask, Amenhotep's is the only royal mummy which has not been unwrapped and examined by modern Egyptologists.
Amenhotep was deified upon his death and made the patron deity of the village which he opened at Deir el-Medina. His mother, who lived at least one year longer than he did, was also deified upon her death and became part of his litany. As previously mentioned, the vast majority of Amenhotep's statuary comes in the form of a funerary idol from this cult during later periods. When being worshiped, he had three deific manifestations: "Amenhotep of the Town," "Amenhotep Beloved of Amun," and "Amenhotep of the Forecourt," and was known as a god who produced oracles. Some of the questions asked of him have been preserved on ostraca from Deir el-Medina, and appear to have been phrased in such a way that the idol of the king could nod (or be caused to nod) the answer. He also had a number of feasts dedicated to him which were held throughout the year. During the first month, a festival was celebrated in honor of the appearance of Amenhotep to the necropolis workmen, which probably means his idol was taken to Deir el-Medina. Another feast was held on the thirtieth of the fourth month, and then two more were held in the seventh month. The first was the "spreading of the funeral couch for king Amenhotep," which probably commemorated the day of his death. The second, celebrated for four days at the very end of the month, was the "great festival of king Amenhotep lord of the town." Later in Egyptian history, the seventh month was named after this festival, "Phamenoth." Another festival was held on the 27th of the ninth month, and the last known festival was held for several days between at least the eleventh and thirteenth days of the eleventh month, which in all probability commemorated the date of Amenhotep's accession to the throne.
Further light is shed upon Amenhotep's funerary cult by multiple documents which appear to detail the rituals dedicated to Amenhotep. Three papyri from the time of Ramesses II record the liturgy used by the priests, and reliefs at Karnak and Medinet Habu illustrate select rites and spells. The bulk of the rituals concern preparing for and conducting the daily offerings of libations for the idol, including a recitation of a ḥtp-dỉ-nsw formula, and purifying and sealing the shrine at the end of the day. The remainder of the rites concern how to conduct various feasts throughout the year. In these cases, Amenhotep's idol or a priest representing him is actually officiating the worship of Amun instead of being worshipped himself, which was not a typical cultic practice in ancient Egypt.
Thutmose I (sometimes read as Thothmes, Thutmosis or Tuthmosis I, meaning Thoth-Born) was the third Pharaoh of the 18th dynasty of Egypt. He was given the throne after the death of the previous king Amenhotep I. During his reign, he campaigned deep into the Levant and Nubia, pushing the borders of Egypt further than ever before. He also built many temples in Egypt and built a tomb for himself in the Valley of the Kings; he is the first king confirmed to have done this (though Amenhotep I may have preceded him). He was succeeded by his son Thutmose II, who in turn was succeeded by Thutmose II's sister, Hatshepsut. His reign is generally dated from 1506 to 1493 BC, but a minority of scholars, who feel that astrological observations used to calculate the timeline of ancient Egyptian records and thus the reign of Thutmose I, were taken from the city of Memphis rather than from Thebes, would date his reign from 1526 BC to 1513 BC.
It has been speculated Thutmose's father was Amenhotep I. His mother, Senseneb, was of non-royal parentage and may have been a lesser wife or concubine. Queen Ahmose, who held the title of Great Royal Wife of Thutmose, was probably the daughter of Ahmose I and the sister of Amenhotep I; however, she was never called "king's daughter," so there is some doubt about this, and some historians believe that she was Thutmose's own sister. Assuming she was related to Amenhotep, it could be thought that she was married to Thutmose in order to guarantee succession. However, this is known not to be the case for two reasons. Firstly, Amenhotep's alabaster bark built at Karnak associates Amenhotep's name with Thutmose's name well before Amenhotep's death. Secondly, Thutmose's first-born son with Ahmose, Amenmose, was apparently born long before Thutmose's coronation. He can be seen on a stela from Thutmose's fourth regnal year hunting near Memphis, and he became the "great army-commander of his father" sometime before his death, which was no later than Thutmose's own death in his 12th regnal year. Thutmose had another son, Wadjmose, and two daughters, Hatshepsut and Nefrubity, by Ahmose. Wadjmose died before his father, and Nefrubity died as an infant. Thutmose had one son by another wife, Mutnofret. This son succeeded him as Thutmose II, whom Thutmose I married to his daughter, Hatshepsut. It was later recorded by Hatshepsut that Thutmose willed the kingship to both Thutmose II and Hatshepsut. However, this is considered to be propaganda by Hatshepsut's supporters to legitimise her claim to the throne when she later assumed power.
A heliacal rising of Sothis was recorded in the reign of Thutmose's predecessor, Amenhotep I, which has been dated to 1517 BC, assuming the observation was made at Thebes. The year of Amenhotep's death and Thutmose's subsequent coronation can be accordingly derived, and is dated to 1506 BC by most modern scholars. However, if the observation were made at either Heliopolis or Memphis, as a minority of scholars promote, Thutmose would have been crowned in 1526 BC. Manetho records that Thutmose I's reign lasted 12 Years and 9 Months (or 13 Years) as a certain Mephres in his Epitome. This data is supported by two dated inscriptions from Years 8 and 9 of his reign bearing his cartouche found inscribed on a stone block in Karnak. Accordingly, Thutmose is usually given a reign from 1506 BC to 1493 BC in the low chronology, but a minority of scholars would date him from 1526 BC to 1513 BC
Upon Thutmose's coronation, Nubia rebelled against Egyptian rule. According to the tomb autobiography of Ahmose, son of Ebana, Thutmose traveled up the Nile and fought in the battle, personally killing the Nubian king. Upon victory, he had the Nubian king's body hung from the prow of his ship, before he returned to Thebes. After that campaign, he led a second expedition against Nubia in his third year in the course of which he ordered the canal at the first cataract—which had been built under Sesostris III of the 12th Dynasty—to be dredged in order to facilitate easier travel upstream from Egypt to Nubia. This helped integrate Nubia into the Egyptian empire. This expedition is mentioned in two separate inscriptions by the king's son Thure:
In the second year of Thutmose's reign, the king cut a stele at Tombos, which records that he built a fortress at Tombos, near the third cataract, thus permanently extending the Egyptian military presence, which had previously stopped at Buhen, at the second cataract. This indicates that he already fought a campaign in Syria; hence, his Syrian campaign may be placed at the beginning of his second regnal year. This second campaign was the farthest north any Egyptian ruler had ever campaigned. Although it has not been found in modern times, he apparently set up a stele when he crossed the Euphrates River. During this campaign, the Syrian princes declared allegiance to Thutmose. However, after he returned, they discontinued tribute and began fortifying against future incursions. Thutmose celebrated his victories with an elephant hunt in the area of Niy, near Apamea in Syria, and returned to Egypt with strange tales of the Euphrates, "that inverted water which flows upstream when it ought to be flowing downstream." The Euphrates was the first major river which the Egyptians had ever encountered which flowed from the north, which was downstream on the Nile, to the south, which was upstream on the Nile. Thus the river became known in Egypt as simply, "inverted water."
Thutmose had to face one more military threat, another rebellion by Nubia in his fourth year. His influence accordingly expanded even farther south, as an inscription dated to his reign has been found as far south as Kurgus, which was south of the fourth cataract. During his reign, he initiated a number of projects which effectively ended Nubian independence for the next 500 years. He enlarged a temple to Sesostris III and Khnum, opposite the Nile from Semna. There are also records of specific religious rites which the viceroy of El-Kab was to have performed in the temples in Nubia in proxy for the king. He also appointed a man called Turi to the position of viceroy of Kush, also known as the "King's Son of Cush." With a civilian representative of the king permanently established in Nubia itself, Nubia did not dare to revolt as often as it had and was easily controlled by future Egyptian kings.
Thutmose I organized great building projects during his reign, including many temples and tombs, but his greatest projects were at the Temple of Karnak under the supervision of the architect Ineni. Previous to Thutmose, Karnak probably consisted only of a long road to a central platform, with a number of shrines for the solar bark along the side of the road. Thutmose was the first king to drastically enlarge the temple. Thutmose had the fifth pylon built along the temple's main road, along with a wall to run around the inner sanctuary and two flagpoles to flank the gateway. Outside of this, he built a fourth pylon and another enclosure wall. Between pylons four and five, he had a hypostyle hall constructed, with columns made of cedar wood. This type of structure was common in ancient Egyptian temples, and supposedly represents a papyrus marsh, an Egyptian symbol of creation. Along the edge of this room he built colossal statues, each one alternating wearing the crown of Upper Egypt and the crown of Lower Egypt. Finally, outside of the fourth pylon, he erected four more flagpoles and two obelisks, although one of them, which now has fallen, was not inscribed until Thutmose III inscribed it about 50 years later. The cedar columns in Thutmose I's hypostyle hall were replaced with stone columns by Thutmose III, however at least the northernmost two were replaced by Thutmose I himself. Hatshepsut also erected two of her own obelisks inside of Thutmose I's hypostyle hall.
In addition to Karnak, Thutmose I also built statues of the Ennead at Abydos, buildings at Armant, Ombos, el-Hiba, Memphis, and Edfu, as well as minor expansions to buildings in Nubia, at Semna, Buhen, Aniba, and Quban.
Thutmose I was the first king who definitely was buried in the Valley of the Kings. Ineni was commissioned to dig this tomb, and presumably to build his mortuary temple. His mortuary temple has not been found, quite possibly because it was incorporated into or demolished by the construction of Hatshepsut's mortuary temple at Deir el-Bahri. His tomb, however, has been identified as KV38. In it was found a yellow quartzite sarcophagus bearing the name of Thutmose I. His body, however, may have been moved by Thutmose III into the tomb of Hatshepsut, KV20, which also contains a sarcophagus with the name of Thutmose I on it.
Thutmose I was originally buried and then reburied in KV20 in a double burial with his daughter Hatshepsut rather than KV38 which could only have been built for Thutmose I during the reign of his grandson Thutmose III based on "a recent re-examination of the architecture and contents of KV38." The location of KV20, if not its original owner, had long been known since the Napoleonic expedition of 1799 and, in 1844, the Prussian scholar Karl Richard Lepsius had partially explored its upper passage. However, all its passageways "had become blocked by a solidified mass of rubble, small stones and rubbish which had been carried into the tomb by floodwaters" and it was not until the 1903-1904 excavation season that Howard Carter, after 2 previous seasons of strenuous work, was able to clear its corridors and enter its double burial chamber. Here, among the debris of broken pottery and shattered stone vessels from the burial chamber and lower passages were the remnants of two vases made for Queen Ahmose Nefertari which formed part of the original funerary equipment of Thutmose I; one of the vases contained a secondary inscription which states that Thutmose II "[made it] as his monument to his father." Other vessels which bore the names and titles of Thutmose I had also been inscribed by his son and successor, Thutmose II, as well as fragments of stone vessels made for Hatshepsut before she herself became king as well as other vessels which bore her royal name of 'Maatkare' which would have been made only after she took the throne in her own right.
Carter, however, also discovered 2 separate coffins in the burial chamber. The beautifully carved sarcophagus of Hatshepsut "was discovered open with no sign of a body, and with the lid lying discarded on the floor;" it is now housed in the Cairo Museum along with a matching yellow quartzite canopic chest. A second sarcophagus, was found lying on its side with its almost undamaged lid propped against the wall nearby; it was eventually presented to Theodore M. Davis, the excavation's financial sponsor as a gesture of appreciation for his generous financial support. Davis would, in turn, present it to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. The second quartzite sarcophagus had originally been engraved with the name of "the King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Maatkare Hatshepsut." However, when the sarcophagus was complete, Hatshepsut decided to commission an entirely new sarcophagus for herself while she donated the existing finished sarcophagus to her father, Thutmose I. The stonemasons then attempted to erase the original carvings by restoring the surface of the quartzite so that it could be re-carved with the name and titles of Tuthmose I instead. This quartzite sarcophagus measures 7 feet long by 3 feet wide with walls 5 inches thick and bears a dedication text which records Hatshepsut's generosity towards her father:
Thutmose I was, however, not destined to lie alongside his daughter after Hatshepsut's death. Thutmose III, Hatshepsut's successor, decided to reinter his grandfather in an even more magnificent tomb, KV38, which featured another yellow sarcophagus dedicated to Thutmose I and inscribed with texts which proclaimed this pharaoh's love for his deceased grandfather. Unfortunately, however, Thutmose I's remains would be disturbed late during the 20th dynasty when KV38 was plundered; the sarcophagus' lid was broken and all this king's valuable precious jewellery and grave goods were stolen.
Thutmose I's mummy was ultimately discovered in the Deir el-Bahri Cache above the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut, revealed in 1881. He had been interred along with those of other 18th and 19th dynasty leaders Ahmose I, Amenhotep I, Thutmose II, Thutmose III, Ramesses I, Seti I, Ramesses II, and Ramesses IX, as well as the 21st dynasty pharaohs Pinedjem I, Pinedjem II, and Siamun.
The original coffin of Thutmose I was taken over and re-used by a later pharaoh of the 21st dynasty. The mummy of Thutmose I was thought to be lost, but Egyptologist Gaston Maspero, largely on the strength of familial resemblance to the mummies of Thutmose II and Thutmose III, believed he had found his mummy in the otherwise unlabelled mummy #5283. This identification has been supported by subsequent examinations, revealing that the embalming techniques used came from the appropriate period of time, almost certainly after that of Ahmose I and made during the course of the Eighteenth dynasty.
Gaston Maspero described the mummy in the following manner:
What has been thought to be his mummy can be viewed in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. However, in 2007, Dr. Zahi Hawass announced that the mummy which was previously thought to be Thutmose I [is] that of a thirty-year-old man who had died as a result of an arrow wound to the chest. Because of the young age of the mummy and the cause of death, it was determined that the mummy was probably not that of King Thutmose I himself.
Satiah (also, Sitiah, Sitioh; “Daughter of the Moon”) was an Ancient Egyptian queen, the Great Royal Wife of Thutmose III.
Satiah was the daughter of the royal nurse Ipu. It is possible that her father was the important official Ahmose Pen-Nekhebet. No children of Satiah are known, though there is a possibility that Prince Amenemhat – Thutmose's eldest son, who died before his father – was her son. Satiah died during her husband's reign and Thutmose's next Great Royal Wife was Merytre-Hatshepsut.
Satiah's titles include: King’s Wife (hmt-nisw), Great King’s Wife (hmt-niswt-wrt) and God’s Wife (hmt-ntr).
Satiah is attested in several places. In Abydos the text on an offering table mentions her mother, the “nurse of the god” Ipu. The offering table was dedicated by the lector priest Therikiti. A bronze votive axe-head(?) (now in the Cairo Museum), inscribed with the name of Queen Sitiah, was also found in Abydos.
At the temple of Monthu at El-Tod a statue of the queen was dedicated by Tuthmosis III after her death (the statue is now in the Cairo Museum).
Queen Sitiah is depicted behind Queen Merytre-Hatshepsut and Tuthmosis III on a pillar in the tomb of the king (KV34). Behind Queen Sitiah we see the King's Wife Nebtu and the King's Daughter Nefertari.
Satiah is depicted before Tuthmosis III in a relief from Karnak. A stela in the Cairo Museum shows Queen Satiah standing behind Tuthmosis III.
12 Satiah, 1ª Gran Esposa Real; Meritre, 2ª Gran Esposa Real; Isis, la madre del Rey - Las mujeres en la vida de Tutmosis III - Los Nobles de Egipto (by Alexandre Herrero Pardo)
Thutmose III (sometimes read as Thutmosis or Tuthmosis III, Thothmes in older history works, and meaning Thoth is born) was the sixth Pharaoh of the Eighteenth Dynasty. During the first twenty-two years of Thutmose's reign he was co-regent with his stepmother, Hatshepsut, who was named the pharaoh. While he is shown first on surviving monuments, both were assigned the usual royal names and insignia and neither is given any obvious seniority over the other. He served as the head of her armies.
After her death and his later rise to being the pharaoh of the kingdom, he created the largest empire Egypt had ever seen; no fewer than seventeen campaigns were conducted, and he conquered from Niya in North Syria to the fourth waterfall of the Nile in Nubia.
Officially, Thutmose III ruled Egypt for almost fifty-four years, and his reign is usually dated from April 24, 1479 BCE to March 11, 1425 BCE; however, this includes the twenty-two years he was co-regent to Hatshepsut—his stepmother and aunt. During the final two years of his reign, he appointed his son and successor, Amenhotep II, as his junior co-regent. When Thutmose III died, he was buried in the Valley of the Kings as were the rest of the kings from this period in Egypt.
Thutmose III was the son of Thutmose II by a secondary wife, Iset. His father's great royal wife was Queen Hatshepsut. Her daughter Neferure was Thutmose's half-sister.
When Thutmose II died Thutmose III was too young to rule, so Hatshepsut became his regent, soon his coregent, and shortly thereafter, she declared herself to be the pharaoh while never denying kinship to young Thutmose III. Thutmosis III had little power over the empire while Hatshepsut exercised the formal titulary of kingship. Her rule was quite prosperous and marked by great advancements. When he reached a suitable age and demonstrated the capability, she appointed him to head her armies.
Thutmosis III had several wives:
Thutmose III reigned from 1479 BCE to 1425 BCE according to the Low Chronology of Ancient Egypt. This has been the conventional Egyptian chronology in academic circles since the 1960s, though in some circles the older dates 1504 BCE to 1450 BCE are preferred from the High Chronology of Egypt. These dates, just as all the dates of the Eighteenth Dynasty, are open to dispute because of uncertainty about the circumstances surrounding the recording of a Heliacal Rise of Sothis in the reign of Amenhotep I. A papyrus from Amenhotep I's reign records this astronomical observation which, theoretically, could be used to perfectly correlate the Egyptian chronology with the modern calendar; however, to do this the latitude where the observation was taken must also be known. This document has no note of the place of observation, but it can safely be assumed that it was taken in either a Delta city such as Memphis or Heliopolis, or in Thebes. These two latitudes give dates twenty years apart, the High and Low chronologies, respectively.
The length of Thutmose III's reign is known to the day thanks to information found in the tomb of the court official Amenemheb. Amenemheb records Thutmose III's death to his master's fifty-fourth regnal year, on the thirtieth day of the third month of Peret. The day of Thutmose III's accession is known to be I Shemu day 4, and astronomical observations can be used to establish the exact dates of the beginning and end of the king's reign (assuming the low chronology) from April 24, 1479 BCE to March 11, 1425 BCE respectively.
Widely considered a military genius by historians, Thutmose III made 16 raids in 20 years. He was an active expansionist ruler, sometimes called Egypt's greatest conqueror or "the Napoleon of Egypt." He is recorded to have captured 350 cities during his rule and conquered much of the Near East from the Euphrates to Nubia during seventeen known military campaigns. He was the first Pharaoh after Thutmose I to cross the Euphrates, doing so during his campaign against Mitanni. His campaign records were transcribed onto the walls of the temple of Amun at Karnak, and are now transcribed into Urkunden IV. He is consistently regarded as one of the greatest of Egypt's warrior pharaohs, who transformed Egypt into an international superpower by creating an empire that stretched from southern Syria through to Canaan and Nubia. In most of his campaigns his enemies were defeated town by town, until being beaten into submission. The preferred tactic was to subdue a much weaker city or state one at a time resulting in surrender of each fraction until complete domination was achieved.
Much is known about Thutmosis "the warrior", not only because of his military achievements, but also because of his royal scribe and army commander, Thanuny, who wrote about his conquests and reign. The prime reason why Thutmosis was able to conquer such a large number of lands, is because of the revolution and improvement in army weapons.][ He encountered only little resistance from neighbouring kingdoms, allowing him to expand his realm of influence easily. His army also had carried boats on dry land. These campaigns (17 in 20 years), are inscribed on the inner wall of the great chamber housing the "holy of holies" at the Karnak Temple of Amun. These inscriptions give the most detailed and accurate account of any Egyptian king.
When Hatshepsut died on the tenth day of the sixth month of Thutmose III's twenty first year — according to information from a single stela from Armant -- the king of Kadesh advanced his army to Megiddo. Thutmose III mustered his own army and departed Egypt, passing through the border fortress of Tjaru (Sile) on the twenty-fifth day of the eighth month. Thutmose marched his troops through the coastal plain as far as Jamnia, then inland to Yehem, a small city near Megiddo, which he reached in the middle of the ninth month of the same year. The ensuing Battle of Megiddo probably was the largest battle in any of Thutmose's seventeen campaigns. A ridge of mountains jutting inland from Mount Carmel stood between Thutmose and Megiddo, and he had three potential routes to take. The northern route and the southern route, both of which went around the mountain, were judged by his council of war to be the safest, but Thutmose, in an act of great bravery (or so he boasts, but such self-praise is normal in Egyptian texts), accused the council of cowardice and took a dangerous route through the Aruna mountain pass which he alleged was only wide enough for the army to pass "horse after horse and man after man."
Despite the laudatory nature of Thutmose's annals, such a pass does indeed exist (although it is not quite so narrow as Thutmose indicates) and taking it was a brilliant strategic move, since when his army emerged from the pass they were situated on the plain of Esdraelon, directly between the rear of the Canaanite forces and Megiddo itself. For some reason, the Canaanite forces did not attack him as his army emerged, and his army routed them decisively. The size of the two forces is difficult to determine, but if, as Redford suggests, the amount of time it took to move the army through the pass may be used to determine the size of the Egyptian force, and if the number of sheep and goats captured may be used to determine the size of the Canaanite force, then both armies were around 10,000 men. However most scholars do believe that the Egyptian army was more numerous. According to Thutmose III's Hall of Annals in the Temple of Amun at Karnak, the battle occurred on "Year 23, I Shemu [day] 21, the exact day of the feast of the new moon" – a lunar date. This date corresponds to May 9, 1457 BCE based on Thutmose III's accession in 1479 BCE. After victory in battle, however, his troops stopped to plunder the enemy and the enemy was able to escape into Megiddo. Thutmose was forced to besiege the city instead, but he finally succeeded in conquering it after a siege of seven or eight months (see Siege of Megiddo).
This campaign drastically changed the political situation in the ancient Near East. By taking Megiddo, Thutmose gained control of all of northern Canaan, and the Syrian princes were obligated to send tribute and their own sons as hostages to Egypt. Beyond the Euphrates, the Assyrian, Babylonian, and Hittite kings all gave Thutmose gifts, which he alleged to be "tribute" when he recorded it on the walls of Karnak. The only noticeable absence is Mitanni, which would bear the brunt of the following Egyptian campaigns into Asia.
Thutmose's second, third, and fourth campaigns appear to have been nothing more than tours of Syria and Canaan to collect tribute. Traditionally, the material directly after the text of the first campaign has been considered to be the second campaign. This text records tribute from the area which the Egyptians called Retenu, (roughly equivalent to Canaan), and it was also at this time that Assyria paid a second "tribute" to Thutmose III. However, it is probable that these texts come from Thutmose's fortieth year or later, and thus have nothing to do with the second campaign at all. If so, then so far, no records of this campaign have been found at all. This survey is dated to Thutmose's twenty-fifth year. No record remains of Thutmose's fourth campaign whatsoever, but at some point in time a fort was built in lower Lebanon and timber was cut for construction of a processional barque, and this probably fits best during this time frame.
The fifth, sixth, and seventh campaigns of Thutmose III were directed against the Phoenician cities in Syria and against Kadesh on the Orontes. In Thutmose's twenty-ninth year, he began his fifth campaign where he first took an unknown city (the name falls in a lacuna) which had been garrisoned by Tunip. He then moved inland and took the city and territory around Ardata, the town was pillaged and the wheat fields burnt. Unlike previous plundering raids, however, Thutmose III subsequently garrisoned the area known as Djahy, which is probably a reference to southern Syria. This subsequently permitted him to ship supplies and troops between Syria and Egypt. Although there is no direct evidence for it, it is for this reason that some have supposed that Thutmose's sixth campaign, in his thirtieth year, commenced with a naval transportation of troops directly into to Byblos, bypassing Canaan entirely. After the troops arrived in Syria by whatever means, they proceeded into the Jordan river valley and moved north from there, pillaging Kadesh's lands. Turning west again, Thutmose took Simyra and quelled a rebellion in Ardata, which apparently had rebelled once again. To stop such rebellions, Thutmose began taking hostages from the cities in Syria. The cities in Syria were not guided by the popular sentiment of the people so much as they were by the small number of nobles who were aligned to Mitanni: a king and a small number of foreign Maryannu. Thutmose III found that by taking family members of these key people to Egypt as hostages, he could drastically increase their loyalty to him. However, Syria did rebel yet again in Thutmose's thirty-first year, and he returned to Syria for his seventh campaign, took the port city of Ullaza and the smaller Phoenician ports, and took even more measures to prevent further rebellions. All the excess grain which was produced in Syria was stored in the harbors he had recently conquered, and was used for the support of the military and civilian Egyptian presence ruling Syria. This furthermore left the cities in Syria desperately impoverished, and with their economies in ruins, they had no means of funding a rebellion.
After Thutmose III had taken control of the Syrian cities, the obvious target for his eighth campaign was the state of Mitanni, a Hurrian country with an Indo-Aryan ruling class. However, to reach Mitanni, he had to cross the Euphrates river. Therefore, Thutmose III enacted the following strategy. He sailed directly to Byblos and then made boats which he took with him over land on what appeared to otherwise be just another tour of Syria, and he proceeded with the usual raiding and pillaging as he moved north through the lands he had already taken. However, here he continued north through the territory belonging to the still unconquered cities of Aleppo and Carchemish, and then quickly crossed the Euphrates in his boats, taking the Mitannian king entirely by surprise. It appears that Mitanni was not expecting an invasion, so they had no army of any kind ready to defend against Thutmose, although their ships on the Euphrates did try to defend against the Egyptian crossing. Thutmose III then went freely from city to city and pillaged them while the nobles hid in caves (or at least this is the typically ignoble way Egyptian records chose to record it). During this period of no opposition, Thutmose put up a second stele commemorating his crossing of the Euphrates, next to the one his grandfather Thutmose I had put up several decades earlier. Eventually a militia was raised to fight the invaders, but it fared very poorly. Thutmose III then returned to Syria by way of Niy, where he records that he engaged in an elephant hunt. He then collected tribute from foreign powers and returned to Egypt in victory.
Thutmose III returned to Syria for his ninth campaign in his thirty-fourth year, but this appears to have been just a raid of the area called Nukhashshe, a region populated by semi-nomadic people. The plunder recorded is minimal, so it was probably just a minor raid. Records from his tenth campaign indicate much more fighting, however. By Thutmose's thirty-fifth year, the king of Mitanni had raised a large army and engaged the Egyptians around Aleppo. As usual for any Egyptian king, Thutmose boasted a total crushing victory, but this statement is suspect. Specifically, it is doubted that Thutmose accomplished any great victory here due to the very small amount of plunder taken. Specifically, Thutmose's annals at Karnak indicate he only took a total of ten prisoners of war. He may simply have fought the Mitannians to a stalemate, yet he did receive tribute from the Hittites after that campaign, which seems to indicate the outcome of the battle was in Thutmose's favor.
The details about his next two campaigns are unknown. His eleventh is presumed to have happened in his thirty-sixth regnal year, and his twelfth is presumed to have happened in his thirty-seventh, since his thirteenth is mentioned at Karnak as happening in his thirty-eighth regnal year. Part of the tribute list for his twelfth campaign remains immediately before his thirteenth begins, and the contents recorded (specifically wild game and certain minerals of uncertain identification) might indicate that it took place on the steppe around Nukhashashe, but this remains mere speculation.
In his thirteenth campaign Thutmose returned to Nukhashashe for a very minor campaign. The next year, his thirty-ninth year, he mounted his fourteenth campaign against the Shasu. The location of this campaign is impossible to determine definitely, since the Shasu were nomads who could have lived anywhere from Lebanon to the Transjordan, to Edom. After this point, the numbers given by Thutmose's scribes to his campaigns all fall in lacunae, so campaigns can only be counted by date. In his fortieth year, tribute was collected from foreign powers, but it is unknown if this was considered a campaign (i.e. if the king went with it or if it was led by an official). Only the tribute list remains from Thutmose's next campaign in the annals, and nothing may be deduced about it, except that it probably was another raid to the frontiers around Niy. His final Asian campaign is better documented, however. Sometime before Thutmose's forty-second year, Mitanni apparently began spreading revolt among all the major cities in Syria. Thutmose moved his troops by land up the coastal road and put down rebellions in the Arka plain and moved on Tunip. After taking Tunip, his attention turned to Kadesh again. He engaged and destroyed three surrounding Mitannian garrisons and returned to Egypt in victory. However, his victory in this final campaign was neither complete, nor permanent, since he did not take Kadesh, and Tunip could not have remained aligned to him for very long, certainly not beyond his own death.
Thutmose took one last campaign in his fiftieth regnal year, very late in his life. He attacked Nubia, but only went so far as the fourth cataract of the Nile. Although no king of Egypt had ever penetrated so far as he did with an army, previous kings' campaigns had spread Egyptian culture that far already, and the earliest Egyptian document found at Gebel Barkal, in fact, comes from three years before Thutmose's campaign.
Thutmose III was a great builder pharaoh and constructed over fifty temples, although some of these are now lost and only mentioned in written records. He also commissioned the building of many tombs for nobles, which were made with greater craftsmanship than ever before. His reign was also a period of great stylistic changes in the sculpture, paintings, and reliefs associated with construction, much of it beginning during the reign of Hatshepsut.
Thutmose's architects and artisans showed great continuity with the formal style of previous kings, but several developments set him apart from his predecessors. Although he followed the traditional relief styles for most of his reign, after his forty-second year, he began having himself depicted wearing the red crown of Lower Egypt and a šndyt-kilt, an unprecedented style. Architecturally, his use of pillars also was unprecedented. He built Egypt's only known set of heraldic pillars, two large columns standing alone instead of being part of a set supporting the roof. His jubilee hall was also revolutionary, and is arguably the earliest known building created in the basilica style. Thutmose's artisans achieved new heights of skill in painting, and tombs from his reign were the earliest to be entirely painted, instead of painted reliefs. Finally, although not directly pertaining to his monuments, it appears that Thutmose's artisans had learned glass making skills - developed in the early eighteenth dynasty - to create drinking vessels by the core-formed method.
Thutmose dedicated far more attention to Karnak than any other site. In the Iput-isut, the temple proper in the center, he rebuilt the hypostyle hall of his grandfather Thutmose I, dismantled the red chapel of Hatshepsut, built Pylon VI, a shrine for the bark of Amun in its place, and built an antechamber in front of it, the ceiling of which was supported by his heraldic pillars. He built a temenos wall around the central chapel containing smaller chapels, along with workshops and storerooms. East of the main sanctuary, he built a jubilee hall in which to celebrate his Sed festival. The main hall was built in basilica style, with rows of pillars supporting the ceiling on each side of the aisle. The central two rows were higher than the others to create windows where the ceiling was split. Two of the smaller rooms in this temple contained the reliefs of the survey of the plants and animals of Canaan which he took in his third campaign.
East of the Iput-Isut, he erected another temple to Aten where he was depicted as being supported by Amun. It was inside this temple that Thutmose planned on erecting his tekhen waty, or "unique obelisk." The tekhen waty was designed to stand alone, instead as part of a pair, and is the tallest obelisk ever successfully cut. It was not, however, erected until Thutmose IV raised it, thirty five years later. It was later moved to Rome by Emperor Constantius II and is now known as the Lateran Obelisk.
Another Christian Roman Emperor Theodosius I re-erected another obelisk from the Temple of Karnak in the Hippodrome of Constantinople, in AD 390. Thus, two obelisks of Tuthmosis III's Karnak temple stand in Papal Rome and in Caesaropapist Constantinople, the two main historical capitals of the Roman Empire.
Thutmose also undertook building projects to the south of the main temple, between the sanctuary of Amun and the temple of Mut. Immediately to the south of the main temple, he built the seventh pylon on the north-south road which entered the temple between the fourth and fifth pylons. It was built for use during his jubilee, and was covered with scenes of defeated enemies. He set royal colossi on both sides of the pylon, and put two more obelisks on the south face in front of the gateway. The eastern one's base remains in place, but the western one was transported to hippodrome in Constantinople. farther south, alone the road, he put up pylon VIII which Hatshepsut had begun. East of the road, he dug a sacred lake of 250 by 400 feet, and then placed another alabaster bark shrine near it. He commissioned royal artists to depict his extensive collections of fauna and flora in the Botanical garden of Thutmosis III.
Thutmose's tomb, discovered by Victor Loret in 1898, is in the Valley of the Kings. It uses a plan which is typical of eighteenth dynasty tombs, with a sharp turn at the vestibule preceding the burial chamber. Two stairways and two corridors provide access to the vestibule which is preceded by a quadrangular shaft, or "well". The vestibule is decorated with the full story of the Book of Amduat, the first tomb to do so in its entirety. The burial chamber, which is supported by two pillars, is oval-shaped and its ceiling decorated with stars, symbolizing the cave of the deity Sokar. In the middle lies a large red quartzite sarcophagus in the shape of a cartouche. On the two pillars in the middle of the chamber there are passages from the Litanies of Re, a text that celebrates the later sun deity, who is identified with the pharaoh at this time. On the other pillar is a unique image depicting Thutmosis III being suckled by the goddess Isis in the guise of the tree.
Thutmose III's tomb in the Valley of the Kings, (KV34), is the first one in which Egyptologists found the complete Amduat, an important New Kingdom funerary text. The wall decorations are executed in a simple, "diagrammatic" way, imitating the manner of the cursive script one might expect to see on a funerary papyrus rather than the more typically lavish wall decorations seen on most other royal tomb walls. The colouring is similarly muted, executed in simple black figures accompanied by text on a cream background with highlights in red and pink. The decorations depict the pharaoh aiding the deities in defeating Apep, the serpent of chaos, thereby helping to ensure the daily rebirth of the sun as well as the pharaoh's own resurrection.
Until recently, a general theory has been that after the death of her husband Thutmose II, Hatshepsut 'usurped' the throne from Thutmose III. Although Thutmose III was a co-regent during this time, early historians have speculated that Thutmose III never forgave his stepmother for denying him access to the throne for the first two decades of his reign. However, in recent times this theory has been revised after questions arose as to why Hatshepsut would have allowed a resentful heir to control armies, which it is known she did. This view is supported further by the fact that no strong evidence has been found to show Thutmose III sought to claim the throne. He kept Hatshepsut's religious and administrative leaders. Added to this is the fact that the monuments of Hatshepsut were not damaged until at least twenty years after her death in the late reign of Thutmose III when he was quite elderly and in another coregency—with his son who would become Amenhotep II—who is known to have attempted to identify her works as his own. Additionally, Thutmose III's mortuary temple was built directly next to Hatshepsut's, an act that would have been unlikely to occur if Thutmose III bore a grudge against Hatshepsut.
After her death, many of Hatshepsut's monuments and depictions were subsequently defaced or destroyed, including those in her famous mortuary temple complex at Deir el-Bahri. Traditionally, these have been interpreted by early modern scholars to be evidence of acts of damnatio memoriae (condemning a person by erasure from recorded existence) by Thutmose III. However, recent research by scholars such as Charles Nims and Peter Dorman, has re-examined these erasures and found that the acts of erasure which could be dated, only began sometime during year forty-six or forty-seven of Thutmose's reign (c. 1433/2 BCE). Another often overlooked fact is that Hatshepsut was not the only one who received this treatment. The monuments of her chief steward Senenmut, who was closely associated with her rule, were similarly defaced where they were found. All of this evidence casts serious doubt upon the popular theory that Thutmose III ordered the destruction in a fit of vengeful rage shortly after his accession.
Currently, the purposeful destruction of the memory of Hatshepsut is seen as a measure designed to ensure a smooth succession for the son of Thutmose III, the future Amenhotep II, as opposed to any of the surviving relatives of Hatshepsut who had an equal, or better, claim to the throne. It also may be likely that this measure could not have been taken earlier—until the passing of powerful religious and administrative officials who had served under both Hatshepsut and Thutmose III had occurred. Later, Amenhotep II even claimed that he had built the items he defaced.
According to the American Egyptologist, Peter Der Manuelian, a statement in the tomb biography of an official named Amenemheb establishes that Thutmose III died on Year 54, III Peret day 30 of his reign after ruling Egypt for 53 years, 10 months, and 26 days. (Urk. 180.15) Thutmose III, hence, died just one month and four days shy of the start of his fifty-fourth regnal year. When the co-regencies with Hatshepsut and Amenhotep II are deducted, he ruled alone as pharaoh for just over thirty of those years.
Thutmose III's mummy was discovered in the Deir el-Bahri Cache above the Mortuary Temple of Hatshepsut in 1881. He was interred along with those of other eighteenth and nineteenth dynasty leaders Ahmose I, Amenhotep I, Thutmose I, Thutmose II, Ramesses I, Seti I, Ramesses II, and Ramesses IX, as well as the twenty-first dynasty pharaohs Pinedjem I, Pinedjem II, and Siamun.
While it is popularly thought that his mummy originally was unwrapped by Gaston Maspero in 1886, it was in fact first unwrapped by Émile Brugsch, the Egyptologist who supervised the evacuation of the mummies from the Deir el-Bahri Cache five years previously in 1881, soon after its arrival in the Boulak Museum. This was while Maspero was away in France, and the Director General of the Egyptian Antiquities Service ordered the mummy re-wrapped. So when it was "officially" unwrapped by Maspero in 1886, he almost certainly knew it was in relatively poor condition.
The mummy had been damaged extensively in antiquity by tomb robbers, and its wrappings subsequently cut into and torn by the Rassul family who had rediscovered the tomb and its contents only a few years before. Maspero's description of the body provides an idea as to the magnitude of the damage done to the body:
Of the face, which was undamaged, Maspero's says the following:
Maspero was so disheartened at the state of the mummy, and the prospect that all of the other mummies were similarly damaged (as it turned out, few were in so poor a state), that he would not unwrap another for several years.
Unlike many other examples from the Deir el-Bahri Cache, the wooden mummiform coffin that contained the body was original to the pharaoh, though any gilding or decoration it might have had had been hacked off in antiquity.
In his examination of the mummy, the anatomist Grafton Elliot Smith stated the height of Thutmose III's mummy to be 1.615m (5 ft. 3.58in.). This has led people to believe that Thutmose was a short man, but Smith measured the height of a body whose feet were absent, so he was undoubtedly taller than the figure given by Smith. The mummy of Thutmose III now resides in the Royal Mummies Hall of the Cairo Museum, catalog number 61068.
Iset (or Isis) was a queen of the eighteenth dynasty of Egypt, and she was named after goddess Isis. She was a secondary wife or concubine of Thutmose II.
Iset was the mother of Thutmose III, the only son of Thutmose II. Her son died in 1425 BC and her name is mentioned on his mummy bandages and a statue found in Karnak.
Although in these later instances Iset is referred to as Great Royal Wife, during the reign of Thutmose II the great royal wife was Hatshepsut. Thutmose II died in 1479 BC and, after his death, Hatshepsut became regent for the young king Thutmose III. Thutmose III became the head of the armies of Egypt as he grew up.
Hatshepsut ruled as pharaoh until her death in 1458 BC when her co-regent, Thutmose III, became pharaoh. At that time Iset received the title of "King's Mother" (since her son had become pharaoh) and she may then have been designated as a royal wife if she had not been previously when he was the co-regent.
At the time Thutmose III became pharaoh Neferure, the daughter of Hatshepsut and Thutmose II, was the God's Wife. She had served in this role throughout the reign of her mother as pharaoh. Neferure may have married Tuthmosis III but the sole evidence for this marriage is a stela showing Queen Satiah whose name may have been carved over that of another queen. The great royal wife, Hatshepsut-Meryetre, became the mother of his successor.
Her son Tuthmosis III depicts his mother several times in his tomb in the Valley of the Kings. In KV34 there are depictions of the king with several female family members on one of the pillars. His mother Queen Isis is prominently featured.
Queen Isis is depicted behind her son on the boat. She is labeled as the King's Mother Isis. In the register below the boat Tuthmosis III is shown approaching a tree which is a representation of his mother Isis. Behind the king we see three of his wives: Queens Merytre, Sitiah, Nebtu and his daughter Nefertari.
It is not certain whether Iset was a concubine or a secondary wife of Thutmose II. She also received the title "God's Wife", but probably only posthumously.The mummy of queen Iset was found in DB320, and is now located in the Cairo Egyptian Museum.
Eighteenth dynasty of Egypt
Karnak temple complex
2nd millennium BC