Reflections on Egypt and Akhenaten during Amarna Period


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Learn about Akhenaten in Ancient Egypt. The ruler who moved the capital to Middle Egypt.

Famous Canadian Egyptologist Gayle
Gibson shares her views and ideas on Akhenaten.

You can join Gayle on her Archaeology Alive trip in Sep 2012.

Find out more on our Archaeology Alive Face book page

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  • Egypt where nothing changes – time laughs at all human endeavours but the pyramids laugh at time
  • Churchill, Nixon, Agatha Christie
  • Time may get the last laugh
  • Even pyramids were not all allike . . . A period of experimentation
  • Even in Egypt – change A period of decay
  • How old is the king?
  • Androgengy
  • Tables full of food
  • Only the visible exists
  • Plague - rats
  • Hymn to the sun – no Osiris
  • Changes – a thousand years separate these imags which are not a hundred steps apart in the Cairo Museum.
  • Reflections on Egypt and Akhenaten during Amarna Period

    1. 1. Timeless Reflections on Egypt and Akhenaten - and an Invitation Gayle Gibson September 2011
    2. 3. Mena House <ul><li>1869, a hunting lodge for Ismail Pasha </li></ul><ul><li>A hotel since 1886 </li></ul><ul><li>First swimming pool in Egypt </li></ul><ul><li>Golf course! </li></ul><ul><li>Great music and restaurants </li></ul>
    3. 4. Cairo: many histories modern lives
    4. 5. Modern times get in your eyes
    5. 6. Over 125 pyramids in Egypt Dashur Meidum
    6. 7. Sakkara : Teti Not all pyramids appear to be great .
    7. 8. Kings and Gods Khafre 2520 - 2494
    8. 9. S akkara <ul><li>Sakkara is the ancient </li></ul><ul><li>necropolis at the </li></ul><ul><li>place where the two </li></ul><ul><li>lands meet. </li></ul><ul><li>Memphis was the </li></ul><ul><li>capital city throughout </li></ul><ul><li>most of the Egyptian </li></ul><ul><li>history </li></ul>Day 5
    9. 10. SAKKARA <ul><li>Step Pyramid of </li></ul><ul><li>King Djoser, </li></ul><ul><li>circa 2650 bce </li></ul><ul><li>First large scale stone </li></ul><ul><li>building in the world </li></ul><ul><li>Architect Imhotep </li></ul><ul><li>Remained a sacred site </li></ul><ul><li>until the end of Egyptian civilization. </li></ul>
    10. 11. The Memphite Theology <ul><li>Through the heart </li></ul><ul><li>and through the tongue </li></ul><ul><li>something developed </li></ul><ul><li>into Atum’s image. </li></ul><ul><li>And great and important is Ptah </li></ul><ul><ul><li>who gave life to all the gods and their kas as well </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>through his heart and through his tongue. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>. . . The teeth and the lips in his mouth pronounced the name of everything . . . So were all the gods born. </li></ul></ul>Atum, the Creator
    11. 12. The Fayuum
    12. 13. Amenemhet III 1844-1794 bce
    13. 14. Osiris <ul><li>King of the Dead </li></ul><ul><li>Judge who guarantees justice in the next life </li></ul><ul><li>During the night, the Sun god’s body rests in the body of Osiris and arises refreshed and renewed. </li></ul><ul><li>He guarantees eternal life to all just souls, rich or poor, powerful or humble. </li></ul>Tomb of Horemheb
    14. 15. Karanis – Kom Aushim Founded by Ptolemy II Philadelphus, abandoned circa 500 ce.
    15. 16. Lake Qarun
    16. 17. Wadi el Hitan Basilosaurus
    17. 18. Seth / Sutekh The god of the wild, rich deserts: powerful, violent, unpredictable.
    18. 19. Wadi el Rayan
    19. 20. Middle Egypt
    20. 21. Akhetaten (Amarna) <ul><li>A site that belonged to no god </li></ul><ul><li>Far from usual centers of power </li></ul>
    21. 22. Eighteenth Dynasty 1570 - 1293 <ul><li>Ahmose I 1570 – 1546 </li></ul><ul><li>Amenhotep I 1551 – 1524 </li></ul><ul><li>Tuthmosis I 1524 – 1518 </li></ul><ul><li>Tuthmosis II 1518 – 1504 </li></ul><ul><li>Hatshepsut 1498 - 1483 </li></ul><ul><li>Tuthmosis III 1504 – 1450 </li></ul><ul><li>Amenhotep II 1453 – 1419 </li></ul><ul><li>Tuthmosis IV 1419 – 1386 </li></ul><ul><li>Amenhotep III 1386 – 1349 </li></ul><ul><li>Amenhotep IV / Akhenaten 1350 – 1334 </li></ul><ul><li>Tutankhamun 1334 - 1325 </li></ul>
    22. 23. Heroes (but not gods) <ul><li>Occupation and The War of Liberation 1663 – 1555 </li></ul>Sekenenre Ta’a II c. 1574 Tuthmosis I Sekenenre Tao
    23. 24. Tuthmosid Family and Amun-Re
    24. 25. Amun –Re: The Hidden and the Visible <ul><li>You are the creator, the one who brings forth those who are born, </li></ul><ul><li>with your mouth, your eyes and your arms </li></ul><ul><li>The Nile is seething in its cave waiting to come forth from you. </li></ul><ul><li>King of endless time, highest of gods, they see and live by you. </li></ul><ul><li>The heavens carry your ba and raise your shining light, </li></ul><ul><li>The underworld receives your corpse and shelters your body, </li></ul><ul><li>The land bears your image. </li></ul><ul><li>People rejoice and praise your name. </li></ul>
    25. 26. <ul><li>May you let me see your beauty in the morning </li></ul><ul><li>Let your rays spread out over my breast </li></ul>
    26. 27. The Royal Underworld KV 34 Tuthmosis III Theology and Tradition
    27. 28. The Woman King: Hatshepsut
    28. 29. Thutmosis III
    29. 30. Thutmosis IV – pyramid envy?
    30. 31. Thutmosis IV
    31. 32. Amenhotep III <ul><li>Became king at 11 years of age </li></ul><ul><li>Ruled for 38 years </li></ul><ul><li>No major wars </li></ul><ul><li>Tremendous wealth </li></ul>
    32. 33. Massive, continuous building projects
    33. 34. Amenhotep III The Magnificent A god among the gods 1391-1353
    34. 35. Kom el Heitan
    35. 36. The largest temple ever built all in one go, for one god
    36. 38. Amenhotep sa Hapu <ul><li>Sage and architect </li></ul>
    37. 39. Fear and Sickness? <ul><li>720 statues of </li></ul><ul><li>Sakhmet carved. </li></ul><ul><li>palace relocated </li></ul><ul><li>to Malkata, a site south of Thebes, on the West Bank. </li></ul>
    38. 40. The problem of sons . . . Crown Prince Djutmose
    39. 42. Amenhotep IV Another boy-king, with his mother 1353 - 1335
    40. 43. Nefertiti The beautiful woman has come
    41. 44. TheAten
    42. 45. Akhetaten (Amarna) <ul><li>A site that belonged to no god </li></ul><ul><li>Far from usual centers of power </li></ul><ul><li>Far from temples of Amun </li></ul><ul><li>Far from disease? </li></ul><ul><li>- An asylum for a mad teenaged king? </li></ul>
    43. 46. Barry Kemp, C.B.E.
    44. 47. <ul><li>Two boundary stele, North and South to address Thebes and Memphis </li></ul>A Ceremonial Capital and a Political Capital
    45. 48. <ul><li>As for the western stela, I shall not go past it to the west forever and ever. </li></ul><ul><li>As for the north-eastern stela . . . I shall not go past it downstream forever and ever. </li></ul>
    46. 50. The King would have been in his early twenties.
    47. 52. Amarna - Akhetaten <ul><li>One generation </li></ul>
    48. 53. The Great Aten Temple
    49. 54. The Religion of Light
    50. 55. The Hymn to the Sun <ul><li>You create millions in your own image, you the One, </li></ul><ul><li>. . . All eyes observe you facing them, </li></ul><ul><li>whilst as the sun of the day you stand over the earth. </li></ul><ul><li>. . . You are in my heart, </li></ul><ul><li>and there is no other who knows you </li></ul><ul><li>except your son, Akhenaten. </li></ul><ul><li>You make him feel your love and care. </li></ul><ul><li>The world comes into being at your command, you create everything. </li></ul><ul><li>When you have dawned, they live, </li></ul><ul><li>when you set, they die. </li></ul>
    51. 56. The Royal Family
    52. 57. Amarna princesses
    53. 58. <ul><li>The Waters said to Atum: </li></ul><ul><li>Kiss your daughter Order, </li></ul><ul><li>Put her to your nose and your heart will live. </li></ul><ul><li>Coffin Text 80 </li></ul>
    54. 59. Royal chariot rides replace processions of the gods
    55. 60. Innovations <ul><li>Changes in art, especially in the portrayal of the king and the introduction of scenes of royal domesticity. </li></ul><ul><li>Changes in written language to make it conform more closely to the spoken language. </li></ul><ul><li>Changes in religion, with a renewed emphasis on the uniqueness of the sungod, and of the king’s relationship with him. </li></ul><ul><li>Change in the role of the king’s Great Royal Wife. </li></ul>
    56. 61. Heaven on Earth? The Workers’ Village: All neat & tidy . . .?
    57. 62. Lives of the Have-Nots
    58. 63. Jessica Galea & Osteology Team
    59. 64. Workers’ Cemetery <ul><li>&quot;the impact of the deaths among the teenagers doesn't have an equivalent in any other place of Egypt, and at no other historic period [... ] By the age of 20, two thirds had died&quot;. And again: the size of Egyptians men has &quot;never been found as low during all the history of the country&quot;. </li></ul>
    60. 66. Death in High Places
    61. 67. Tombs of the Nobles : Ay
    62. 68. Tomb of Mahu
    63. 69. Nefertiti and Six Daughters
    64. 70. A death in the family
    65. 71. The King’s Wife, His Greatly Beloved, Kiya
    66. 72. Tutankhaten
    67. 73. King Tut’s mother An unknown princess, full sister of Akhenaten. Kiya? Brutally murdered?
    68. 74. The Common Enemy
    69. 75. Hittite plague prayers <ul><li>O Stormgod of Hatti, my Lord, and gods of Hatti, </li></ul><ul><li>Mursilis your servant has sent me, saying . . . </li></ul><ul><li>“ What is this that you have done? </li></ul><ul><li>You have let loose plague in the interior of the land. </li></ul><ul><li>And the land of Hatti has been sorely, greatly oppressed by </li></ul><ul><li>the plague. Under my father and under my brother, there was constant dying. . . </li></ul><ul><li>Behold, it is twenty years since people have </li></ul><ul><li>been dying continually. </li></ul><ul><li>Will the plague never be eliminated . . .? </li></ul><ul><li>I cannot overcome the worry from my heart. </li></ul><ul><li>I cannot over come the anguish in my soul. </li></ul>
    70. 76. Amenhotep sa Hapu and the King <ul><li>Memories in Josephus </li></ul><ul><li>The king conceived a desire to see the gods, as Or, one of his predecessors had done, and he communicated his desire to his namesake, Amenophis, Paapis’ son, who in virtue of his wisdom and knowledge of the future was reputed to be a partaker in the divine nature. </li></ul>
    71. 77. <ul><li>The Namesake replied that he would be able to see the gods if he cleansed the whole land of lepers and other polluted persons . . . </li></ul><ul><li>The king was delighted and assembled all those whose bodies were wasted by disease and they numbered 80,000. These he cast into the stone quarries to the east of the Nile, there to work segregated from the other Egyptians. Among them were learned priests . . . Then the wise seer was filled with dread for himself and the king if the outrage should be discovered. . . . He left a full account of it in writing, and took his own life. </li></ul>
    72. 79. Akhenaten “ The First Individual in History” The Criminal
    73. 80. <ul><li>The prayers of Pawah: </li></ul><ul><li>My wish is to see you, O Lord of persea trees! May your throat take the north wind, that you may give fullness without eating and drunkenness without drinking. </li></ul><ul><li>My wish is to look at you, that my heart might rejoice, O Amun, protector of the poor man; you are the father of the one who has no mother and the husband of the widow. </li></ul><ul><li>Pleasant is the utterance of your name: it is like the taste of life; it is like the taste of bread to a child, a loincloth to the naked, like the taste of cucumber in the hot season. </li></ul>
    74. 81. <ul><li>You are like the taste of favour from the ruler, the breeze of freedom to him who was in prison, peace to the troubled man . . . </li></ul><ul><li>Come back to us, O Lord of Continuity! You were here before anything had come into being, and you will be here when they are gone. As you have caused me to see the darkness that is yours to give, make light for me so that I can see you. As your ka endures, and as your handsome, beloved face endures, may you come from afar and allow this servant, the scribe Pawah, to see you. </li></ul>
    75. 82. The Heretic’s Fate
    76. 83. Was Nefertiti King ?
    77. 84. Tutankhamun’s Restoration Stele <ul><li>The country was suffering from a disease </li></ul><ul><li>The gods no longer cared about this country. </li></ul><ul><li>If an army was sent to Syria to expand the borders of Egypt, </li></ul><ul><li>it was denied any success. </li></ul><ul><li>If one prayed to a god to ask his council, he did not appear at all. </li></ul><ul><li>If one prayed to some goddess, she too did not appear at all. </li></ul><ul><li>Their hearts themselves had grown tired: </li></ul><ul><li>They destroyed their creation. </li></ul>
    78. 85. Tutankhamun + Ankhesenamun
    79. 86. <ul><li>Archaeological missions, who often discover new antiquities in the course of their work, are a worry to the regional police. But at the same time the officers assured me that they had no concerns about tourists visiting Amarna and neighbouring sites, and that is the opinion I have formed, too. If you are planning a visit, do come. </li></ul><ul><li>Barry Kemp, Summer 2011 </li></ul>
    80. 88. Rahotep and Nefret Meryre and Anuy