People often use the title of Pharaoh to refer to those rulers of Ancient Egypt who reigned or ruled after the unification of Lower Egypt and Upper Egypt. The Egyptian Pharaohs were great and mighty people. They have a fascinating history of Egyptian History. There were also female pharaohs such as Hatshepsut. Egyptian History is mainly divided into three periods: The Old Kingdom, the Middle Kingdom, and the New Kingdom. Each period had several Dynasties and Pharaohs.
In Ancient Egyptian History, the Old Kingdom is the era spanning 2686 BC to 2181 BC. It is also called the Age of the Pyramid Builders or Age of the Pyramids as it includes the reigns of the mighty or great pyramid -builders of the 4th Dynasty such as King Sneferu, who excelled in the art of Pyramid-building and the Pharaohs Khafre, Khufu, and Menkaure, who built the Pyramids at Giza. The Egyptian land got its 1st sustained climax of civilization during the Old Kingdom.
The Middle Kingdom of Egypt is also known as the Period of Reunification. The Middle Kingdom of Egypt is the era in the History of Ancient Egypt following an age of political division called the 1st Intermediate Period. The Period of Reunification lasted from 2050 BC to 1710 BC, stretching from Egypt’s reunion under the reign of Mentuhotep the 2nd in the 11th Dynasty to the end of the 12th Dynasty. The Pharaohs or Kings of the 11th Dynasty ruled from Thebes, and the rulers of the 12th Dynasty reigned from el-Lisht.
The New Kingdom is also called the Egyptian Empire. The New Kingdom is the period in Ancient Egyptian History between the 16th century BC and the 11th century BC, encompassing the 18th Dynasty, the 19th Dynasty, and the 20th Dynasty of Egypt. Radiocarbon dating positions or places the beginning of the new Kingdom between 1570 BC and 1544 BC. The New Kingdom followed the 2nd Intermediate Period, and the 3rd Intermediate Era succeeded it. It was Egypt’s most flourishing period and marked the climax of its power.
This article will discuss King Narmer, the 1st Egyptian Pharaoh, in detail. According to HisKing Narmer tory, the Pharaoh was the unifier of Egypt (Lower Egypt and Upper Egypt). His palette had a crown of Upper and Lower Egypt.
Description of King Narmer
was an Ancient Egyptian ruler or Pharaoh of the Early Dynastic Period. He was the successor to the Proto Dynastic King Ka. Several scholars consider him the unifier of the Egyptian land, as mentioned above, and the founder of the 1st Dynasty, and in turn, the 1st ruler or king of a unified Egypt. Many Egyptologists believe that King Narmer was the same person as Menes.
Reign: Possible Identification with Menes
Although highly related, the two questions of who Menes was and who unified Egypt are two different matters. People often credit King Narmer with Egypt’s reunion through the conquest of Lower Egypt by Upper Egypt.
Traditionally, people consider Menes, the 1st King of Ancient Egypt. The majority of Egyptologists have identified Narmer as the same individual or person as Menes. The dominant point of view or opinion is that Narmer was Menes. The matter is quite confusing because Menes is a Sedge and Bee name while Narmer is a Horus name. All of the King Lists who started to show in the New Kingdom period list the rulers’ names, and almost all start with Menes or start with divine rulers with Menes as the 1st human ruler. The challenge is aligning the modern archaeological proof, which lists Horus’ names, with the King Lists, which list personal names.
Two documents are out as evidence that Narmer was Menes. The 1st is the Naqada Label located at the site of Naqada, in the tomb of Queen Neithhotep, mother of Horus Aha. The label displays a serekh of Hor-Aha next to inclusion or enclosure inside of which are symbols which some scholars have interpreted as the name Menes. The 2nd document, the seal impression from Abydos, displays the serekh of Narmer interchanging with the gameboard sign, mn sign, together with its phonic complement, the n sign, which researchers show when they write the full name of Menes, again showing the name ‘Menes.’ At 1st look or glance, this would seem to be a strong proof or evidence that Narmer was indeed Menes.
More than one necropolis sealings, found in 1991 and 1985 in Abydos, near Qa’a and Den’s tombs, display Narmer as the 1st ruler on each list. The Qa’a sealing lists all eight rulers of what researchers call the 1st Dynasty in the correct order, beginning with Narmer. These necropolis sealings are proof that Narmer was the 1st king of the 1st Dynasty. Therefore, Narmer is the same person as Menes.
Narmer in Canaan
According to Manetho, Menes made a foreign journey and achieved fame and popularity. If this is right and assuming it refers to King Narmer, it was undoubtedly to the Canaan land where researchers or archaeologists have identified Narmer’s serekh at nine sites. An Egyptian presence in Canaan precedes Narmer, but after about two centuries of active existence in Canaan, Egyptian presence climaxed during Narmer’s rule and declined afterward. The association between Canaan and Egypt started around the end of the 5th millennium and came to an end during the 2nd Dynasty. It climaxed during Dynasty zero through Narmer’s rule. Dating to this time are over 30 Egyptian serekhs, which researchers have found in the Canaan land, among which they have attributed over 18 to King Narmer.
Before Narmer, researchers have found only a single serekh of Ka and a single inscription with Iry-Hor’s name in Canaan. The serekhs earlier than Iry-Hor are either generic serekhs that don’t refer to a specific ruler or are for kings that people have not attested in Abydos. Indicative of the fall of Egyptian presence in the area after Narmer, archaeologists have found only one serekh connected to Narmer’s successor in the Canaan land. However, this is questionable as Wilkinson doesn’t believe that there were any serekhs of Narmer’s son, Hor-Aha, outside the Egyptian land.
The presence of pottery created from Egyptian Nile clay found in Canaan and pottery made from local clay in the Egyptian style best show the Egyptian presence in Canaan.
The nature of Egypt’s role in Canaan has been on a debate between scholars who propose a military invasion and others suggesting that only colonization and trade were involved. Although colonization and trade have gained predominance, fortifications at Tell es-Sakan dating to the Dynasty zero via early Dynasty 1 era demonstrate that there must have also been some Egyptian military incidence.
Irrespective of Egypt’s existence in Canaan, control of the exchange or trade to the Canaan land was vital to Ancient Egypt. King Narmer didn’t establish Egypt’s initial influence in Canaan by an army or military incursion. Still, Narmer’s military campaign to re-assert the Egyptian government or add its sphere of influence in Canaan is credible.
Who was Neithhotep?
Researchers found Narmer and Hor-Aha’s names in Neithhotep’s tomb, which led the Egyptologists to conclude that Neithhotep was Narmer’s Queen and the mother of Hor-Aha. The name of Neithhotep means ‘Neith is satisfied.’ This proposes or suggests that she was of the royal family, a princess of Lower Egypt and that this was a marriage (Narmer and Neithhotep) to consolidate the two Egyptian regions. The fact that Neithhotep’s tomb is in Naqada, in Upper Egypt, has led some people to the conclusion that she was a successor of the predynastic rulers of Naqada. The latter reigned before its incorporation into a united Upper Egypt. There have been suggestions that the Narmer Macehead celebrates or commemorates the engagement. The discovery in 2012 of rock writings in Sinai (Pierre Tallet) raise doubts about whether Neithhotep was Narmer’s better half.
The Tomb of Narmer in Umm el-Qa’ab near Abydos in Upper Egypt comprises two combined chambers, B17 & B18, lined in mud brick. Although Petrie and Emile Amelineau excavated tombs B18 and B17, it was only in the late 20th century (1964) that Kaiser identified them as King Narmer’s. The Tomb of Narmer is next to Ka, who ruled Upper Egypt before King Narmer, and Narmer’s successor and son (Hor-Aha).
People certify King Narmer throughout Egypt, the southern region of Canaan and Sinai, altogether 98 writings or inscriptions at more than 23 sites. At Hierakonpolis and Abydos, Narmer’s name appears within a serekh and without reference to a serekh. At every other place apart from Coptos, the name of Narmer shows in a serekh. In Egypt, researchers have found his name at more than ten sites. Four in Upper Egypt (Coptos, Abydos, Naqada, and Hierakonpolis). Ten in Lower Egypt (Helwan, Tarkhan, Zawyet el Aryan, Ezbet el-Tell, Tell Ibrahim Awad, Minshat Abu Omar, Buto, Saqqara, Tell el-Farkha, and Kafr Hassan Dawood). A single one in the Eastern Desert, Wadi el Qaash and two in the Western Desert (Gebel Tjauti and Kharga Oasis).
People have found more than 14 serekhs in Canaan that may belong to King Narmer. However, seven of those are controversial or debatable. These serekhs came from eight sites.
They are Tel Arad, En Besor, Tel es-Sakan, Nahal Tillah, Tel Erani, Small Tel Malhata, Tel Lod, and Tel Ma’ahaz.