History documents that some of the greatest queens in medieval times in Africa came from the Nubian state. Perhaps it is because it was a homeland for great Africa women. These women had a great sense of confidence; thus, they gained popularity, and their status escalated in their territories. One of the greatest Egyptian queens was of Nubian descendent. Her name was Abar, the great Nubian queen. She was the queen of the Kingdom of Kush, which was in Egypt. Many knew her as the niece of King Alara of Nubia because she had appearances that resembled his.
However, in this article, we will talk about queen Tiye, the great Nubian queen. Some scholars dispute the idea that queen Tiye was entirely of Nubian ethnicity. However, since most scholars agree that she was not a native Egyptian, people assume she was a Nubian. Queen Tiye was one of the greatest queens of Egypt and one of the prominent monarchs of world history. This was because of the power she portrayed during both her husband’s and son’s rule. Her level of diplomacy and the love she had for her people was on another level.
The Early Life of the great Nubian Queen
Some scholars believe that Tiye is a member of the Nubian Ethnic group, which initially interacted with the Africans from the further south, who played a primary role in Egyptian society. Tiye was the daughter of both Yuya and Tjuyu, who were not from the royal family, but were wealthy landowners in Akhmim town. Yuya, Tiye’s father, worked as a priest and the master of the charioteers. As such, the people respected him.
Her mother, however, performed a variety of tasks in the palace, which resulted in her having numerous titles. The titles included Singer of Hathor, Chief of Entertainers of both Amun and Min. As such, she was partly a member of the royal family. Egyptologists believed that Tiye father was not of Nubian origin because his name had different spellings, and also, the features of his corpse did not look like that of deceased Nubians. Some suggested that since Tiye’s father was a foreigner, it contributed to the strong character Tiye possessed as a queen.
Tiye was not the only child in her household. She had a younger brother who served as the second prophet of Amun. She also had another brother called Ay. However, there was no exact date nor monument to affirm the relationship between Tiye and her siblings. Later history indicated that Ay succeeded the previous King after he died.
Even though Tiye did not come from the royal family, she enjoyed a luxurious lifestyle and lived a comfortable life. And because her mother served the royal queen, Tiye grew up in the palace. As such, the castle was like her second home. Therefore, her family enjoyed a high status. As Tiye grew, she transformed into a beautiful woman, making a perfect marriage candidate for the King’s son (Amenhotep the III). It was during this time that Tiye’s journey to leadership began.
The Rise of Tiye To Power
Tiye or Tiyi was the name of the great Egyptian queen. The name means ancient Egyptian queen, the mother of Akhenaten. People with this nemesis always have a great urge to travel and go for adventures. They are powerful beings who believe in setting their own goals without being governed by traditions to determine their course in life.
When Amenhotep rose to power, he chose Tiye to become his wife. Amenhotep was the son of the second wife of the King. Therefore he needed a stronger tie to ensure the continuity of his lineage in the royal family. The people commemorated Amenhotep and Tiye’s marriage through the issuing of scarabs. Amenhotep rose to power when he was still a young boy. Following their marriage, they had seven children. Sitamun, Isis, Henuttaneb, Nebetah, Crown Prince Thutmose, Amenhotep IV/ Akhenaten, Smenkhkare. Besides having the queen title, the Egyptians also referred to Tiye as the mistress of upper and lower Egypt.
Amenhotep the III genuinely loved and adored Tiye. He built her a new palace and a temple in Nubia where the people worshiped her as a goddess. During his 12th year in power, he made for her an artificial lake where she could extend her pleasures
Tiye ruled with the same authority as a man and exercised her power in equal measure with the ancient world’s great kings. She was a significant figure during court proceedings because she was an intelligent and diligent leader. And she was also the first queen of Egypt to have her name engraved on the official acts.
Queen Tiye’s power was one of a kind, for even foreign rulers respected and valued her presence. She communicated to them directly, as they were willing to work now with her. On several occasions, she led festivals, interacted directly with foreign rulers, and even directed domestic and foreign policies. It is not every day that a kingdom allows a foreign ruler to communicate with his wife over foreign matters. Therefore, queen Tiye’s participation in such affairs shows the great respect both Egypt and other foreign nations had for her.
The reign of queen great Nubian queen (Tiye) and her husband is an excellent account in the Egyptian territory as it was during the same time that Egypt’s popularity had spread across many domains. During those times, Egypt was benefitting tremendously from trading with other territories. Tiye’s husband respected and considered her as an equal. She even had a statue of herself, which was of the same height as her husband. This is in contrast to other kings, whose sculptures showed that they were superior to their wives.
Most of the time, Tiye solved some of the problems that the Kingdom faced. Claims related to gold, conflicts are but some of the issues which she had the final say. She also listened to the foreign suitors who wanted her daughter’s hand in marriage. Generally, she took part in close to all decisions influencing the Kingdom. Throughout her queenship, she became her husband’s advisor and confidant. This is what two American Egyptologists who conducted research on her concluded:
“The remarkable thing about Tiye is not where she came from, but what she became. No previous queen ever figured so prominently in her husband’s lifestyle. Tiye regularly appeared before Amenhotep III in statuary, tomb and temple reliefs, and stelae while her name paired with his on numerous small objects like vessels and jewelry, even the large commemorative scarabs.”
Besides assisting her husband in the ruling, Tiye continued to advise her son Akhenaten when he succeeded his father. In the Amarna letter, Tiye expressed the excellent relations he had with her husband and how she enjoyed working with her. She hoped to have such good relations with his son while they worked together.
Tiye’s husband had passed away during his 39th year of power. Tiye organized a unique burial to commemorate her lover. They buried him in a place called the valley of the kings. As the name suggests, people buried the previous rulers to rest there.
The Later Life and Demise of the great Nubian Queen
Together with her son, Tiye helped to rule the Egyptian Kingdom. She was passing to her son the excellent problem-solving skills she had. However, after 12 years of helping her son, she died. The Egyptians buried her in the Royal Tomb of Amarna. The latter is the same place both her son and granddaughter were laid to rest after dying. Today, pieces of destroyed decorations on the walls of the burial chamber and remains of her sarcophagus indicate that the queen indeed was lain there. Later, when Thebe became the new capital of the Kingdom, the Egyptians transferred Tiye’s body with other royal bodies to the Valley of the Kings. To date, the mummy of the great Egyptian queen lies in the Egyptian museum. They lay safe in Egypt’s museum, as their government desires to preserve the Egyptian culture.
The women who ruled during ancient times in Africa signified that women could also exercise power and make beneficial decisions. Hence that dismisses the idea that women could only do household chores. In fact, queens like Tiye are a great example. Some might say that everything worked out for her because the King and she understood each other. Nevertheless, she had the attributes of a great leader, presiding over official matters. Therefore women should not allow anyone to disgrace or look down on them because they can achieve a lot through determination.
Even in contemporary societies, women have proven that they can enroll in male-dominated fields and make it. For instance, there are some women who have joined politics and made it. An example is the newly elected vice president of the United States. America is a world superpower country, and yet she did it, defeating her opponents. What we learn from this is that there is no profession meant for a specific gender. Every single person can always achieve what they set their mind on accomplishing.