Ancient Egypt


Page by Anneke Bart

Kings and Queens

4th dynasty
Seneferu, Khufu, Khafre, Menkaure, Djedefre, etc.

11th dynasty
Kings named Mentuhotep and Intef

12th dynasty
Amenemhet I - IV,
Senusret I-III

18th dynasty
Amenhotep I-IV,
Tuthmosis I-IV, Akhenaten, Tutankhamen, Aye, Horemheb, etc.

19th dynasty
Sety I-II, Ramesses I-II, Merenptah, Amenmesses, Tawosret.

20th dynasty

Sethnakht, Ramesses III
Ramesses IV - XI

25th dynasty
Alara, Kashta, Piye,
Shabaka, Shabataka,
Taharqa, Tanutamun, etc.

Cleopatra VII Philopator

Queens (D1-6)- Old Kingdom
Queens (D11-13) Middle Kingd.
Queens (D16-20)- New Kingdom
Queens (D21-29)- Late Period

Officials, Priesthood etc.
Viziers (New Kingdom)
High Priests of Amun
God's Wives of Amun
High Priests of Ptah
Viceroys of Nubia
Who's who of New Kingdom

Amarna Period
Queen Nefertiti
inscriptions Queen Nefertiti.
Queen Kiya

Tombs at Amarna
Houses at Amarna

Valley of the Kings,
Valley of the Queens
Theban Tombs,
Tombs at Abydos
Tombs at El Kab
Tombs in Aswan
Early dynastic Saqqara
New Kingdom Saqqara
The Unis Cemetary

Mastabas at the Giza Plateau
Giza Mastabas 1000 cemetary
Giza Mastaba 2000 cemetary
Giza Mataba 2300 cemetary
Giza Mastaba 4000 cemetary
Giza Mastaba 5000 cemetary
Giza Mastaba 6000 cemetary
Giza Mastaba 7000 cemetary

Mummy Caches
Tomb DB320
Tomb KV35

Amenhotep IV / Akhenaten (Neferkheperure-Waenre)
ca. 1360 - 1343 B.C.



After year 5
Before year 5
Horus name:
Kanakht Qaishuty
Nebty name:
Golden Falcon name:


Akhenaten   pre year 5: Amenhotep (Heqa-Iunu)
         Prenomen: Neferkheperure Waenre

         Horus Name:  Kanakht - Meryaten


Golden Falcon Name:
Wetjesrenenaten             Nebty name: Wernesytemakhetaten



Akhenaten, Nefertiti, and the three eldest daughters Meritaten, Meketaten and Ankhesenpaaten.

Akhenaten was known as Prince Amenhotep when he was young. He was the son of Nebmaatre Amenhotep III and Queen Tiye. Prince Amenhotep was not the eldest royal son. He had an older brother named Prince Tuthmosis.  Crown Prince Thutmosis was the Eldest King's Son, High Priest of Ptah at Memphis, Sem-Priest of Ptah at Memphis, and Overseer of the Prophets of Upper and Lower Egypt.

The prince seems to have died during the third decade of the reign of Amenhotep III. Tuthmosis was not present during the Sed festival in year 30 of Amenhotep and indications are that he may have died shortly before the festival.

Princess / Queen Sitamen sister of Akhenaten.


Akhenaten grew up with several royal sisters as well. We know of the Princesses Sitamun, Iset, Henuttaneb, Nebetiah, and Beketaten. Sitamun and Isis became great royal wives to their father. Sitamen was raised to great wife in year 30 and her sister Isis in year 34.

Isis and Henuttaneb. From Sed Festival scene from time of Amenhotep III.

Amenhotep took the throne and was known as Amenhotep IV for several years. He changed his name to Akhenaten at some point and moved his capital to the newly designed city of Akhet-Aten.


The most important of his wives is the famous Nefertiti. After year 5 she is known as Neferneferuaten-Nefertiti.

Canopic jar from KV55; possibly depicts Kiya?


Akhenaten had a secondary wife named Kiya, whose title was great beloved wife.
The canopic jar depicted to the right is generally attributed to Kiya.


Akhenaten seems to have also married Tadukhipa. She is the daughter of Tushratta, King of Mitanni and Queen Yuni. It is possible that Tadukhipa and Kiya are one and the same person.

There is also evidence of a royal concubine by the name of Py (or Ipy)? It seems that van Dijk argues that the shabty of Ipy actually belongs to the Lady Tiy (wife of Aye). If this is the case  no concubines of Akhenaten are known by name.



Head of an Amarna Princess, possibly Meritaten.
Now in the Louvre.

Akhenaten and Nefertiti were known to have six daughters. Their names are Princess Merytaten, Meketaten, Ankhesenpaaten, Neferneferuaten Tasherit, Neferneferure, and Setepenre. Akhenaten also had a daughter with Kiya. Her name has not been preserved, and Egyptologists sometimes call her Kiya-tasherit ('Kiya-junior'). Two other names come to us from blocks from Hermopolis: Merytaten-Tasherit and Ankhesenpaaten-Tasherit. It is not known if these girls are daughters of Akhenaten and Kiya, or daughters of Smenkhare and Merytaten. It is possible that Kiya-Tasherit is the same little girl as Merytaten-Tasherit and/or Ankhesenpaaten-Tasherit. For a while it was though that these girls were the daughters of Merytaten and Ankhesenpaaten respectively, fathered by Akhenaten. All the evidence of these two little girls seems to come from monuments that used to belong to Kiya, but where reassigned to the royal daughters.


It is possible that Smenkhare and Tutankhuaten are sons of Akhenaten. A widely spread theory is that Tutankhuaten was the son of Akhenaten and Kiya. It is not so clear who the parents of Smenkhare were. It is possible that Smenkhare was a brother of Akhenaten, not a son.


Early Years:

Not much is known about the youth of pharaoh Akhenaten. He was born as Prince Amenhotep. Amenhotep was the second son of Amenhotep III and Queen Tiye. The older son, by the name of Thutmosis, was designated crown-prince.

There is much debate about a possible co-regency between Amenhotep III and his son Amenhotep IV. Assuming that Amenhotep made his son co-regent, then Amenhotep came to the throne sometime during the third or fourth decade of his father's reign. It is assumed that at that time Amenhotep married Nefertiti.


The Palace at Malqata was a magnificent palace complex erected by Amenhotep III on the westbank of Thebes for the celebrations of his sed-festivals. Akhenaten and Nefertiti must have spent time at this palace, and it may have been their main residence before the move to Akhetaten. The palace complex was known to have had special suites for Queen Tiye and Princess/Queen Sitamen. To the south of the palace a racetrack was erected for the racing of chariots and other sports. Akhenaten, Nefertiti and their daughters are known to have enjoyed chariot races in Akhetaten as well.

Talatat from Karnak showing Akhenaten worshipping in the temple

Akhenaten built several structures at Karnak (when he was still known as Amenhotep IV). The structures there include the Gempaaten which is a palace complex. It is believed that the royal family lived at the Gempaaten during the winter months (according to Aldred). A temple called the Rud-menu was erected (full name:Rud-menu-en-aten-er-neheh which means 'Enduring in monuments of Aten for eternity') . One of the structures within the Gempaaten the Hut-benben ('Mansion of the Benben'). Aldred mentions that the Mansion of the Benben was a temple exclusively devoted to Nefertiti. Yet another structure was named the Teni-mehu (full name Teni-menu-en-aten-er-nehehwhich means 'Exalted is the monument of Aten for eternity')


The remnants of these temples were found as filler in the 9th Pylon. The evidence shows that Horemheb broke down the temple of Aten at Karnak and use the stones - called talatats - as filler. Horemheb may not have dismantled the entire complex. Some of the structures may have remained until the time of Ramses II.


Akhenaten moves his court to Akhetaten in Year 6.

Akhenaten prostrate, worshipping in the temple. Notice the Baboons.

The Great Palace at Akhetaten is known for its wonderful decorations. There is even some evidence of gilding. The rooms they found were connected by pathways depicting bound captives. This part of the complex may have been part of the audience chambers of the King, who would then symbolically trample his enemies as he walked.

Many of these painting were destroyed in 1912. Sir Flinders Petrie recalled:

'the department [of Antiquities] provided no path for [visitors], and the fields were trampled; so one night a man went and hacked [the pavements] all to pieces to prevent visitors from coming  "I was never even informed or allowed to pick up the pieces."

The North Palace is now thought to have been the residence of Queen Kiya. It is also believed that Tutankhamen grew up there.


Akhenaten is often represented as somewhat of a passive ruler when concerned with the military. Most other rulers went on some military expedition during their reign, and there's no evidence that Akhenaten ever accompanied the army on any expedition.

In Year 12 there is a revolt in Nubia. Other pharaohs would have gone to Nubia to stamp out this rebellion. In this case it seems that Akhenaten ordered the Viceroy of Nubia Thutmose to deal with the rebellion.  On the Buhen Stela it says that

' his Person, l.p.h. was in Akhetaten when one came to tell his Person that the enemies of the foreign country of Ikayta were plotting rebellion and had even invaded the land of the Nilotic Nubians'

'Thereupon his Person charged the King's Son of Kush and overseer of the southern countries with assembling an army in order to defeat the enemies of the foreign country of Ikayta,É'

There's the famous tribute in year 12 (sometimes referred to as a durbar). In the private tombs of Huya and Meryre II we see depictions of foreign dignitaries presenting their tribute to the King and the Queen as they are seated in a kiosk.


Akhenaten and Nefertiti, now in the Louvre. Painted limestone, 22 cm tall.
The later form of the Aten's name is used on the back, so it must date to later than year 9.


End of an era:

Not long after the celebrations in year 12 tragedy struck. The royal tomb in Amarna shows evidence of several burials. It seems that Akhenaten and Nefertiti's second daughter Meketaten died sometime between years 12 and 14. In that time period Kiya may have also passed away, and it's likely that the Queen-Mother Tiye also passed away.

In the mourning scene for Meketaten is a nurse holding a royal baby. This has often been interpreted as Meketaten dying in childbirth. There is an alternative theory (by M. Gabolde) that this child is actually a young child of Nefertiti. Dodson mentions in his book about royal families that some think that the vague outlines of the inscription may show that this child was a boy. It may just be that the child in the mourning scene then is a depiction of Tutank(u)aten.



Court Officials:

Ahmose, real King's Scribe, Fan-bearer on the right of the King, Master of the Judgement Hall, Steward of the estate of Neferkkheperure-Waenre (Akhenaten).

Ahmose, Steward of the estate of Akhenaten

Apy (Ipy?) King's scribe, the overseer of the large inner palace of the pharaoh, the steward

Aye, Fan-bearer on the right of the King, Master of All the Horses of his Majesty, God's Father (it netjer), Chief of Archers. This wife Tey was the great nurse and later tutor of Nefertiti. Aye would later become Pharaoh.

Huy(a), Overseer of the Royal Harem, Overseer of the White House (treasury) of Queen Tiye, Steward in the House of the Great King's Wife Tiye.

Pentu, Royal scribe, King's chief, First servant of the Aten in the mansion of the Aten in Akhetaten, Chief physician, The two legs of the Lord of the Two Lands, Chamberlain

One who approaches the person of the king, Chief of Chiefs, Noble of the first rank among the sole companions

Tutu His many titles include 'Chamberlain', 'Chief Servant of Neferkheperure-Waenre (Akhenaten) in the House of the Aten', 'Chief Servant of Neferkheperure-Waenre in the Wia-Barque', 'Overseer of all Craftsmen of the Lord of the Two Lands', 'Overseer of all the Works of His Majesty', 'Overseer of Silver and Gold of the Lord of the Two Lands', 'Overseer of the Treasury of the Aten' and 'Chief Spokesman of the Entire Land'


Government Officials

The Vizier Ramose from his tomb in Thebes

, Vizier of Lower Egypt. Aperel, also called Aperia was buried with his wife Tauret and son Huy, a General in Saqqara. Also mentioned in the tomb are Aperel's sons Seny and Hatiay. Aperel was a child of the kap (royal nursery) and became vizier under Amenhotep III.

Mahu, Chief of Police of Akhetaten

Meryre II, Overseer in of the double treasury, Royal Scribe, Steward, Overseer of the royal harem of the Great Royal Wife [Nefertiti], Chief of the menesh-boat

Nachtpaaten: Chancellor and Vizier.

Neferkheprehersekheper, Mayor in Akhetaten

Parennefer    pure handed cupbearer of the king's Person,

His wife (name lost)  a favorite of the King's Chief Wife Neferneferuaten Nefertiti.

Ptahmay, Guardian of the treasury. Ptahmay probably lived in Memphis. A stela is known showing Ptahmay, his wife Takhert, his son Paatenemheb and his daughter Meryt. Also shown are Huy and his wife Wabt with son Hat and daughter Wadj. Another pair on the stela is Ramessu and Iwy, who are identified as 'his son' and 'his daughter' (maybe referring to Ptahmay?).

Ramose, Vizier, Wearer of the royal Seal, Chief of the Prophets of the North and the South. He was buried in Sheikh abd-el-Kurna (Thebes) in tomb 108. His tomb and its inscriptions provide proof that Akhenaten was previously known as Amenhotep IV.

Sutau, Overseer of the double treasury of the Lord of the Two Lands


Army Officials

Aye, Fan-bearer on the right of the King, Master of All the Horses of his Majesty, God's Father (it netjer), Chief of Archers. This wife Tey was the great nurse and later tutor of Nefertiti. Aye will later become Pharaoh.

May, Wearer of the Royal Seal, Commander of the Army of the Lord of the Two Lands, Overseer of the 'House of Sending Aten to Rest', King's Attendant in his august barge., Chief of all the works of the King [Breasted]

Nekhu-em-pa-Aten, chief bowman, master of the horse, royal cupbearer. From a lintel of his house in Amarna.

Paatenemheb, Royal scribe, General of the Lord of the Two Lands, Overseer of the works in Akhetaten

Ramose, Scribe of Recruits, General of the Lord of the Two Lands, the king's scribe, Steward of the house of Nebmaatre (Amenhotep III)

Ramose, standard bearer of the company called 'Aten is caused to be satisfied'.

Ranofer, the first charioteer of his Person, the master of the horse of the entire stable, the great favorite.

Suty, Standard-bearer of the bodyguard of Neferkheprure- Waenre (Akhenaten)



Meryre and his wife Iniuia

  True king's scribe, scribe of the offering table of the Lord of the Two Lands,  Scribe of the Aten's offering table on behalf of the Aten in the house of Aten in Akhet-Aten, Steward of the House of Aakheprure [Amenhotep II]

Hatiay, scribe, Overseer of the granary in the house of Aten. His tomb was found in Thebes

Maya, High Priest of Amen until year 4.

Meryre I, High Priest or Great Seer of Aten. His wife Tenro is named Great Favorite of the Mistress of the Two Lands (Nefertiti).

Meryre, the cupbearer of the house of Aten in Akhet-Aten, the cupbearer of Neferkheperure (Akhenaten). Meryre was married to Nubnefer (Nubnefret). They had two sons, Huy and Yuny, and two daughters, Hetepy and Itiat. The text indicates that the son Huy was a (ritual) dancer (?) of Neferkheperure (Akhenaten)

Meryneith  (Meryre), greatest of seers of the Aten, steward of the temple of Aten, scribe of the temple of Aten in Akhet-aten (and) in Memphis, and first prophet of the temple of Neith, His tomb was found in 2001. His wife was named Anuia (or Iniuia)

Panehesy, First servant of the Aten in the house of the Aten in Akhetaten, Second prophet of the Lord of the Two Lands Neferkheprure-waenre (Akhenaten), Overseer of the double granary of the Aten in Akhetaten, Overseer of cattle of the Aten

Panehesy, First servant of the Aten in the house of the Aten

Pawah, Greatest of Seers of the Aten in the house of Re. From a doorpost of his house in Amarna..

User, the overseer of the front hall, overseer of the courtyard(?) of Aten in the House of Rejoicing of the Aten.



Bek, Architect and Master-Sculptor. Bek was the son of the Chief of Sculptors, Men and the lady Royenet.

Hatiay, the overseer of the works projects and confidant of the Lord of the Two Lands.

Maanakhtef, the overseer of successful building projects in Akhet-Aten.

Men, Chief Sculptor in the big and important monuments of the king, son of Baimyu.

Parennefer Royal craftsman, pure of hands, Overseer of all the craftsmen of the king, Overseer of all the works of the king in the house of the Aten, Foremost of commoners, One who accompanies the Lord of the Two Lands in every place
Overseer of the prophets of all the gods

Parennefer receiving reward from Akhenaten and Nefertiti.


Amenemopet , Overseer of necropolis-workers in Memphis, with text which mentions the Aten, Hathor, [Ptah-Sokari-]Osiris lord of Shetyt, etc., in Berlin, Ägyptisches Museum, 4/65. (Probably from Memphis.)

[A]menemopet , Overseer of peasants, etc.,  in Florence, Museo Archeologico, 6312. (Acquired in Luxor.)

Khay, Scribe of the altar of the Lord of the Two Lands, ‘Beloved of his god lord of Heliopolis’, son of Panehesi , Overseer of the cattle of the temple of Re, wab priest, and wife Tuy. Remains of scene with [Panehesi and wife] before hawk-headed Re-Harakhti, Musée National du Louvre, C 321. (dated to the time of Akhenaten)

Bibliography / Suggested Reading

1. Breasted, J.H. Ancient Records of Egypt, Vol2, The eighteenth dynasty. Chicago 1906 (reprinted in 2001)

2. Dodson A. and Hilton D. The Complete Royal Families of Ancient Egypt, London 2004

3. Martin, G.T.  The Hidden Tombs of Memphis, London 1991

4. Malek J., Magee D., Miles E., Topographical Bibliography of Ancient Egyptian Hieroglyphic Texts, Statues, Reliefs and PaintingsVolume VIII: Objects of Provenance Not Known: Statues  (Published online by the Griffith Institute)

5. Murnane, W.J. , Texts from the Amarna Period in Egypt, Atlanta 1995

6. Reeves, N., Ancient Egypt, The Great Discoveries, London 2000

7. Tyldesley, J., Nefertiti: Unlocking the Mystery Surrounding Egypt's Most Famous and Beautiful Queen, 2000
8. The Saqqara Online website maintained by Leiden University (the Netherlands)

9. The Waseda University (Japan) Website.


Last edited: January 2007

Some of the illusttrations courtesy of  Jon Bodsworth

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