Ancient Egypt Part I



TheTale of Two Brothers

Oneof the ancient Egyptian stories is the “Tale of Two Brothers,”which was previously preserved on the Papyrus D’Orbiney, andcurrently in the British Museum. The tale was written during KingSeti II reign (1209-1205 B.C) in the 19thcentury in Egypt. The tale tells of two brothers Anpu and Bata. Anpuwas the eldest while Bats was the youngest. Although Anpu wasmarried, he still considered his brother as one of his sons. Bata wasa hardworking man. He worked along with his brother in the fieldwhere they herded the cows, as well as plowed and reaped. The two hada good brotherly relationship until one day when Anpu wife tried toseduce Bata. It happened when Bata had gone home to collect somemore seeds. However, when Bata failed to fall into Anpu wife trap,the wife twisted the story and accused Bata of beating her. She madesome marked on her arms and legs that she would use as evidence. Shealso pretended to be in much pain. Anpu very angry and he tried tokill Bata by springing him a knife. Bata run away and he prayed tothe god Re-Harakhiti to save him. Re answered his prayer and hecreated a river of crocodiles to separate the two brothers. Later,Bata protested his innocence and proved he was not guilty until heconvinced Anpu. When he got home, Anpu found his wife washing theblack paint on her skin and he kills her. Eventually, the twobrothers reconciled and they ruled Egypt for the next thirty years.Sharing of the throne was a clear evident that filial relationshipswere important to the Egyptians.

Thestory has climax points that give it a fairly tale like quality. Theclimax occurred when Anpu almost killed his brother before knowingabout his wife’s evil deed. The other climax point is when Anpufound his wife washing away the paint on his skin and kills her.Further, the story also has a denouement hence, a fairly tale(Wilkinson105).This was when Anpu realized his mistake, as well as when Bata foundpeace in the Acacia Valley. The story represents an agriculturalperiod in the Egyptian history. The two brothers were farmers theyherded cows, plowed and reaped.


Defineand discuss the significance

  1. Ahmose

Ahmosewas a pharaoh of the ancient Egypt. He was the son of PharaohSeqenenre Tao and he succeeded his brother of King Kamose, thepharaoh of the Seventeenth dynasty. He was also the founder of theeighteenth dynasty. Ahmose played a significance role in making theEgypt history. He was a great warrior, and he managed to finalize awar that his father had initiated. Besides, he restored Theban rule,reasserted Egyptian power, begun massive constructions, and reopenedtrade, quarries, and trade routes.

  1. Seshat

Seshatwas an Egyptian royal goddess of measurement and writing. Inaddition, she was a patron of architecture, mathematics, and recordkeeping. She played an essential role in setting the dimension of thetemple. She calculated the king’s earthly days, and she recordedthem on a notched palm branch. She also wrote the king’s name on“tree of life” leaves (Wilkinson78).

  1. Hatshepsut

Hatshepsutwas a daughter of King Thutmose I and the queen of Egypt in theEighteenth dynasty. She expanded Egyptian trade expedition. As aresult, she brought back vast riches such as ebony, ivory, leopardskins, gold, and incense. In addition, she oversaw building projectssuch as the construction of Deir el-Bahri Temple, which is her mainachievement.

  1. Punt

Thepunt was a small boat with a square-cut bow and a flat bottom used byancient Egyptians. Due to its small size, the boats were only used insmall rivers. In the ancient Egypt, punt played a significant role ofshipping cargo from one point to another.

  1. Amarna period

Amarnaperiod occurred during the era of Akhenaten in the Eighteenth dynastyin the Egyptian history. Its main significance was marking of“Horizon of the Aten.” This was when the royal residence shiftedto Akhetaten, now known as Amarna.

  1. Nefertiti

Nefertitiwas an Egyptian queen and king Akhenaten’s wife. Together with herhusband, the two were devoted to religious revolution. They worshipedonly one god, and they created a new religion that changed otherreligions ways all over Egypt. She played a considerable role increating the cult of Aten, as well as promoting an artwork. Accordingto Wilkinson(50),Nefertiti legacy of power and beauty continues to intrigue up todate.

  1. Horemheb

Horemhebwas the last pharaoh of the Egyptian’s eighteenth dynasty. Some ofhis achievements include restoring the priesthood of Amun, reopeningof old temples, and splitting up the army into southern and northerncommand. Horemheb was also a commander in chief before he became apharaoh.

  1. Taworset

QueenTaworsetwas the last pharaoh of the Egyptian’s nineteenth dynasty.Unfortunately, her reign ended in civil war. However, it is not knownwhether Taworset died peacefully or Setnakhte overthrew her. As aking wife, she played an important role in helping him with his dailyactivities.

  1. Battle of Kadesh

Thebattle of Kadesh occurred during the reign of Muwatalii II andRamesse II of the Hittite and Egyptian Empires respectively. Thebattle happened in the city of Kadesh, currently known as Syria. Thisbattle was marked as the as the first battle with a survivingtactical records of a battle. In addition, the battle led to peacetreaties negotiation.

  1. Ramse III

RamseIII was the second king in the Egyptian twentieth dynasty. Hisgreatest significance happened when he defended his people againstinvaders in three different great wars. In addition, he defended hiscountry against Libyans and sea people during his reign.

Identifyand Discuss (Pictures)

Thefirst image represents the statue of Akhenaten, who was an Egyptianpharaoh during the eighteenth dynasty. The statue signifies theliving spirit of Aten. In addition, the sculptor depicts a young kingbefore changing his name to Akhenaten and moving to Amarna (Wilkinson47). The second image represents the statue of Hatshepsut, who wasamong the most successful female rulers in Egypt. This statuesignifies the Egyptian pharaoh’s ceremonial attire. Despitedisplayed masculine attire, the statue also displays feminine air.Additionally, the statue signifies the subject of prime life, whichis eternally young, healthy, and strong.

Thethird image represents the Colannaded design of Hatshepsut temple.Hatshepsut temple was the most elegant temple in the entire ancientEgypt. According to Wilkinson(20),the main significance of Hatshepsut temple was to commemorate theachievement of Queen Hatshepsut, as well as serve as her funerarytemple. In addition, the temple was used as God’s sanctuary. Thefourth picture represents the sculptor of Thutmose, the bust ofNefertiti. This statue was normally displayed at the Neues Museum.The statue was also referred as Thutmosis or Djhutmose. According toWilkinson(25),the Thutmose sculptor signified the official court sculptor ofAkhenaten, as well as the beauty of a woman.

Thefifth picture represents the valley of the queens. This imagesignifies the place in Egypt where Pharaoh buried their wives in theancient times. The valley of the queens was also referred asTa-set-Neferu, which means “the place of beauty” or “Seat ofbeauty.” Additionally, this image signifies the tomb of Nefetari(Wilkinson56).The sixth picture represents two of the seated statues of Abu Simbel,the Temples of Ramesses. Abu Simbel was among the most recognizedEgypt’s ancient site. The statue depicts the Ramesses II. The mainsignificance of statue is to represent the Ramesses II, who wassometimes referred as “the great.” Ramesses II was a warrior kingwho expanded his territory far to the Levant during his era. Inaddition, Ramesses II also battled Hittites Empire during the Battleof Qadesh.



Hyksoshave an essential influence on the Egyptian history. Hyksos is agroup of people who played a significant role of mounding ancientEgypt to the country it is today. They belonged to a mixedSemitic-Asiatic group, also known as “shepherd kings” and theyimmigrated into Egypt during the 18thcentury. Although they were foreigners, they took over the Egypt, andthey started reigning as rulers. Eventually, they became so powerfuland ended up reigning for three consecutive dynasties that is, 15th,16th,and 17thcenturies. According to Wilkinson and Jones, Hyksos were a redeemingfactor in Egypt (Wilkinson102).However, ancient Egyptians thought otherwise. Correspondingly, themodern Egyptians do not as well acknowledge that Hyksos played avital role in Egypt civilization. Nonetheless, the deeds of Hyksosare still evident that they made Egypt succeed. Wilkinson and Jonesbelieve in the Hyksos innovative leadership during their term. Duringthe reign, Hyksos registered two primary innovations that facilitatedtransport revolution and agricultural revolution. For instance, theyintroduced chariot and horse as the major transportation mediumacross the land. The horse and the chariots also improved themilitaries activities.

Theyalso introduced farming equipment, which facilitated the agriculturalrevolution in Egypt. Up to date, agriculture is the backbone of Egypteconomy. Besides, Hyksos were proficient artisans and builders. Thisgroup of foreign rulers introduced irrigation system, shadoofirrigation, to boost up agricultural production. The shadoofcomprised of wooden tools with a weight on one side and a woodenbucket on the other side. Shadoof helped Egyptians to raise waterabove the river Nile level, as well as divert it into canals.Ultimately, ancient Egyptians started producing two crops annuallyrather than one. This also led to the introduction of new vegetablesand fruits.

Further,Hyksos created an opportunity of marine activities by introducing seamode of transport such as the use of ships and boats that integrateda keel. Since kneels were flat, they made it easier for the ship andboat to move swiftly and be stable. As a result, the ancientEgyptians increased trade within Mediterranean island hence,boosting the economy.

Otherlegacy associated with Hyksos includes the introduction of improvedpotter wheels hence, flourishing pottery business (Wilkinson89).Also, Hyksos developed vertical loom in consequence, improving thetextile industry. Eventually, the Hyksos rule resulted in an era ofpeace and prosperity. Previously, Egyptians were isolated from therest of the world, its technological and cultural growth werestagnant. Luckily, Hyksos intervention broke this tradition. Despitethe fact that they were foreign invaders, their innovationcontribution to Egyptian warfare and technology created a way for theNew Kingdom, that until to date, it is regarded as the ancientEgypt’s golden age.

Anothergreat legacy that Hyksos left behind is the active preservation ofdocuments. The fifth Hyksos king, King Apophis, authorized thescribes to recopy Egyptians texts, as well as preserve them for thefuture purposes. The king himself preserved documents such as theWestcar Papyrus, the Edwin Smith Surgical Papyrus, and the RhindMathematical Papyrus.


Unlikeother women in the ancient civilization, an ancient Egypt womanenjoyed equal economic and legal right as an Egyptian man. Indeed, anancient Egyptian woman enjoyed many rights than any other womanelsewhere in the world. An Egyptian woman enjoyed many such rightsbecause, in one way of the other, they had a relation to the king andthe queen. In addition, the religious system of the God privilegedwomen to have more rights. Firstly, an Egyptian woman had enjoyedlegal rights. An Egyptian woman had a right to own, manage, anddispose of private property (Wilkinson102).This included portable goods, land, slaves, servants, livestock, andmoney. She would manage her property independently, without a manintervention and according to her free will. Similar to their malecounterparts, Egyptian women appeared as a contracting partner eitherin a marriage or divorce contract, purchase of property, engagementof wet-nurses, and arrangement for self-enslavement. Besides, anEgyptian woman has a right to free a slave, execute a testament, aswell as make adoptions. An Egyptian law was not gender-biased, and awoman had a right to bring a lawsuit against offenders in an opencourt. They also had access to legal documents such as land titledeeds, birth and death certificate, marriage and divorcecertificates.

Secondly,an Egyptian woman enjoyed property rights. An ancient Egyptian womancould attain possessions and real property through several ways. Forinstance, she would receive inheritance and gifts from her parents orhusband, or someone else, or she would purchase with her earnedmoney. Wilkinson(102) states that Egyptian women had a right to claim up to one-thirdof the community property after a divorce or the death of herhusband. Under the Egyptian property law, an Egyptian woman had aright to purchase private property, which apparently remained hers inthe case of a divorce.

Anancient Egyptian woman played an important role in the society. Forthe upper and middle class, women took care of their home andfamilies. The customary law entitled women to play the role ofmothers and children bearers. Hapshepsut is a good example of a womanwho was a royal wife and a mother to a king. Secondly, Egyptian womenplayed the role of professional mourners, musicians, and dancers.Further, some women played the professional role whereby some werebrewers and hairdressers. Women also functioned as leaders, forinstance, dowager queens and regents. They were also national heroes.For instance, Hatshepsut reign was prosperous. During her reign, shesuccessful in warfare and she had a peaceful era. She brought greatwealth to her nation, as well as established the internationaltrading relationship. Besides, women also played a significant rolein the religious matters. For instance, Akhenaten convinced Egyptianthat Aten was the only God. There was also female goddess such asIsis, Hathor, and Ma’at. Several images are evidence of the rolethat women played in the Ancient Egypt.


Wilkinson,Toby A. H.&nbspTheRise and Fall of Ancient Egypt: The History of Civilization from 3000Bc to Cleopatra.London: Bloomsbury, 2010. Print.

Ancient Egypt Part I




Worshipof a single deity in the ancient Egypt came with Akhenaten. The godAten was regarded as the only representative of God on earth.Akhenaten proposed the sun to be the representative of the powerfulgod. Atenism, therefore, surpassed other gods who were worshipedpreviously by the ancient Egyptians. This was according to theexpressed nature and power Aten held. It henceforth became amonotheist religion or single deity worship (William 3). Declarationof the sun as the single deity was made by Akhenaten and being theking led to abolishment of the development of the worship to othersgods. All the other people, however, were supposed to worshipAkhenaten. Akhenaten was referred to as the sun’s pharaoh. The hymnreveals sun as very powerful. It is also referred as the living Atenwho tends to initiate life. The sun was the sole god without anotherbeside. He is also the creator of the earth as per his wish.

Thereare various hymns which were developed in the ancient Egyptdescribing the sun and its power as god’s representative. The hymnin the consideration reflects the sun as all-loving, all powerful,supreme creator, deity and the universe sustainer. It describes thesun as the universal as well as the lord of all things that were inexistence. God transcended all the creation and hence could not berepresented or understood fully and hence Aten or sun was the perfectrepresentation of this god considering the role he plays in the lifeof human beings. The sun was described in three different formsnamely the daytime sun, sun in underworld as well as the sunrise(William 6). Sun’s energy being considered as the critical sourceof life describes why the sun was the perfect representative of godin the hymn.

Thehymn was meant solely for Akhenaten and his family. This is becauseit has only concentrated on him with respect to his role in thatsociety (Toby 4). Although there are people mentioned like Amenhotepthe III, the hymn was only revolving around Akhenaten and even thesepeople were used to explain something about Akhenaten. Akhenaten’slegacy includes works like construction of several temples at Karnak.These temples used the characteristic art of that era. He also builthis sacred city at the sun disc’s horizon. His legacy can alsorange from a villain to hero on the basis of the perspective onereviews the results of his actions with. One may depict him as weakpharaoh who tended to compromise the Egyptian economy and security.On the other hand he can be depicted as an idealist, enlightened manas well as a religious reformer.

Although,Akhenaten’s religious notion could be having some forerunners, itis worth noting that against all odds he managed to proclaim solegod’s worship. He also resisted this god’s visual depictions. Healso neglected the external affairs in order to concentrate on theinternal ones. His ideas stood and survived his successors’ zeal ofremoving his legacy from the records. In his monotheism idea, hisconcern for people to live in truth as well as his universal valuesof life is admirable. His legacy clearly depicts that Akhenatensucceeded as a king influencing the society of his time irrespectiveof revealing a sense of weakness in the way he handled severalissues.

1.Ahmose–he was an ancient Egypt’s pharaoh as well as the eightdynasty’s founder. His significance was that he completed theHykos’s expulsion.

2.Seshat– she was an ancient Egyptian goddess of wisdom. Hersignificance was a goddess who facilitated writing, arithmetic,architecture and reading.

3.Hatshepsut – she was king Thutmose I’s daughter and became anEgyptian queen after marrying her half-brother. Her significance isthat she is the woman who served the longest time and also a femalepharaoh meant a lot.

4.Punt – it is a land popularly known for the famous expedition ofQueen Hatshepsut in Egyptian 18thdynasty. Its significance was the expedition of Hatshepsut and becamethe first successful attempt of transplanting the foreign fauna.

5.Amarna Period (art, religion, etc.) – this was the latter half ofthe eighteenth dynasty when the pharaoh’s royal residence wasshifted to Akhetaten. The significance of the Amarna period was thereligion reformation when the solar gods surpassed the gods who werebeing worshiped earlier.

6.Nefertiti – she was an ancient queen of Egypt and the wife ofpharaoh Akhenaten. She is believed to take over the reign after thedeath of her husband. Her reign is linked with tremendous culturalupheaval.

7.Horemheb– he was the last pharaoh of the Egyptian eighteenthcentury. His significance is that he marks the beginning of the 19thdynasty. He was also trustworthy, convincing, and clever.

8.Taworset– she was an ancient Egyptian queen as well as the chiefwife of the Seti II. Her significance is that she played a pivotalrole in helping the king in his day to day activities.

9.Battle of Kadesh– it is a battle that took place between theHittite empire under Muwatalli II and the Egyptian empire underRamesses II. The significance of the battle is that it led tonegotiation of the first ever peace treaty.

10.Ramses III – he was the second pharaoh of the twentieth century.His significance was that he led in a time of a lot of upheavals butalso built a temple at karnak.

Thesculpture of Akhenaten. It has significance as a symbol of the onethey worship and their representative to their god Aten.

Thisis the statue of The Napoleon of Ancient Egypt, Thutmose III. Thesculpture represents a king and a military leader

Magnificenttomb. The magnificent tomb had a significance of showing anindividual’s status when he or she was alive.

Queennefretete’s sculpture. It represents the queen as well as greatroyal wife of the Akhenaten.

Valleyof queens. It has significance in that all the pharaohs’ wives wereburied here.

AbuSimbal. It represents a sacred place and had two temples it hencesignified sacredness.



Inthe ancient Egypt women were depicted in various ways. They weretreated as young adults after they started menstruating. Girls orwomen in general were not attending school outside their home in theancient Egypt. There were women who possessed noble roles in thesociety like businesswomen and priestesses. These kinds of women wereused to have high level of training that was meant for practicalreasons. They were commonly referred to as the house’s mistresswhile their second name was the songstress (William 7). The main rolewomen were playing in the ancient Egypt was bearing as well asraising children. They would also take the responsibility of thedomestic relationships. In the grave scenes, the ancient Egyptianwomen were depicted often in the subservient roles of making beer andbaking bread.

Womenplayed a significant role in music. For instance they are displayedas the musicians at the tomb painting. They were regarded as thedancers, musicians as well as professional mourners (William 9).Other women were also doing the brewing work. The other role womenused to play in the ancient Egyptian culture was hairdressing. Womenwere treated with honor once they became mothers. The women of theancient Egypt can be considered to be ahead of time. They could bothrule the country and also possessed many basic rights similar tothose men had. Hatshepsut went against all odds and became a pharaohalthough she was a woman. She began ruling approximately 1500 B.C.E.

Shetook good care of her people and also built temples to gods as wellas several other public buildings. According to the Egyptian custom,a pharaoh who was termed as a god was not supposed to marry a mortalman (Toby 6). This custom forced them to choose spouses within theroyal family. Hatshepsut’s husband was Thutmose who was herhalf-brother. Nefertiti was another ruler of the ancient Egypt whomarried Amenhotep IV. She supported and preached monotheism of beliefin one god only.

Theancient Egyptian history clearly outlines the way members of thesociety were behaving and doing things. Portraits and other resourcesavailable in various libraries of women dancing, hair dressing, andeven brewing, acts as a primary source. People can refer to them andhence understand the way women were depicted in the ancient Egypthence providing enough proof that these were the things which weretaking place in the society. The women were, therefore, both homekeepers and also played various noble roles in the ancient Egyptiansociety.


TheLibyan king who was referred to as Maraye did not just lead histroops but nearly all people of his tribes. This was an unlikelyalliance although threat to Egyptians was not new. Similarly,multi-tribal alliances arose. They were not formed but were donepurposely to challenge the huge armies which were formed by empireslike Egyptian empire (Toby 9). The Egyptian fought the alliances onthe land and scattered them while the navy was continuing towards theeastern part of Nile delta. The Ramses lined at the shores witharchers ranks and kept continuous volleys of arrows in enemy shipsonce they tried to dock. The Egyptian army was attacking with thehelp of grappling hooks in hauling the ships of the enemy.

Theother strategy the Ramses III military employed to overcome theLibyan invasion was inhalation of many of their opponents and madethe rest slaves. Eventually the Egyptian empire was no more and theattempts of reviving it would follow but Ka had shifted to the landof the west and did not want to embody in the Egyptian rulersanymore. The attempt of killing Ramses III was plotted by at least by40 people. Among the group that were conspiring the king’sassassination were the harem officials. Many of them were very closeto the king. This group of people expressed their intention to killthe king and also incited a revolt near the palace so as tofacilitate their coup.

Theplot is believed to have started in Piramesses where conspirators hada house. This conspiracy is believed to have failed and the guiltywere charged as well as brought before a court that consisted of apanel of fourteen officials. The end of Ramses III was faced by asignificant intrigue and tragedy. The biggest tragedy was theeconomic problems which were evident when Deir el-Medina workmen hadnot been paid. This led to a strike which facilitated hatching of theplot against Ramses life. Attacks from various alliances became alsoa phenomenon in this era (William 8). The end of Ramses III’s reignwas coupled by a series of attacks from the foreign invaders whoincluded the Libyans and the sea people. The ultimate conspiracyagainst Ramses III that succeeded to execute him is believed to havefacilitated one of Ramses’ wives, queen Tiye and his son, PrincePentawere. The ancient texts suggested that Pentawere was foundguilty of killing his father. However, he took his own lifeeventually.


Toby,Wilkinson. TheRise and Fall of Ancient Egypt.New York: Wiley, 2010. Print

William,Simpson. TheLiterature of Ancient Egypt, 3rd edition.San Francisco: Polity Press, 2003. Print