kemetic history


Thutmose IV’s Peristyle Hall
Originally built by Thutmose IV - 1401 BCE to 1391 BCE.
Destroyed by: Amenhotep III - 1390 BCE to 1352 BCE.

“Only four of the pillars composing the peristyle of Thutmose IV remain in situ at Karnak today.  A large section of the peristyle was removed in ancient times during the dismantling of the Thutmose II “festival hall.”  Today, the remains of the structure found during modern work at Karnak have been reconstructed at the temple’s Open Air Museum.  Many of the recovered blocks still have relief scenes accented with vivid red, yellow, green-blue and blue paint.  The raised relief scenes on the pillars depict the king embracing the god Amun.  The inscriptions reference the jubilee (heb-sed) festival of Thutmose IV.”

Photographs taken by kairoinfo4u in Karnak, El-Karnak, Luxor Governorate, Egypt


Statue of Lady Sennuwy (Nubia/Kush/ Modern day Sudan)
Middle Kingdom, Dynasty 12, reign of Senwosret I
1971–1926 B.C.

This elegant seated statue of Lady Sennuwy of Asyut is one of the most superbly carved and beautifully proportioned sculptures from the Middle Kingdom. The unknown artist shaped and polished the hard, gray granodiorite with extraordinary skill, suggesting that he was trained in a royal workshop. He has portrayed Sennuwy as a slender, graceful young woman, dressed in the tightly fitting sheath dress that was fashionable at the time. The carefully modeled planes of the face, framed by a long, thick, striated wig, convey a serene confidence and timeless beauty. Such idealized, youthful, and placid images characterize the first half of Dynasty 12 and hark back to the art of the Old Kingdom. Sennuwy sits poised and attentive on a solid, blocklike chair, with her left hand resting flat on her lap and her right hand holding a lotus blossom, a symbol of rebirth. Inscribed on the sides and base of the chair are hieroglyphic texts declaring that she is venerated in the presence of Osiris and other deities associated with the afterlife.

Sennuwy was the wife of a powerful provincial governor, Djefaihapi of Asyut, whose rock-cut tomb is the largest nonroyal tomb of the Middle Kingdom. Clearly, the couple had access to the finest artists and materials available. It is likely that this statue, along with a similar sculpture of Djefaihapi, was originally set up in the tomb chapel, although they may also have stood in a sanctuary. Both statues were discovered, however, far to the south at Kerma in Nubia, where they had been buried in the royal tumulus of a Nubian king who lived generations after Sennuwy’s death. They must have been removed from their original location and exported to Nubia some three hundred years after they were made. Exactly how, why, and when these pieces of sculpture, along with numerous other Egyptian statues, found their way to Kerma, however, is still unknown


The Fayum Portraits.

The Faces of Fayium Egypt 1st century BCE or the early 1st century CE onwards.

Under Greco-Roman rule, Egypt hosted several Greek settlements, mostly concentrated in Alexandria, but also in a few other cities, where Greek settlers lived alongside some seven to ten million native Egyptians. Originally called Shedet in Ancient Egypt, the Greeks called the city of Fayium, “Crocodilopolis” or “Krocodilopolis”.
It is estimated that as much as 30 percent of the population of Faiyum was Greek during the Ptolemaic period, with the rest being native Egyptians. By the Roman period, much of the “Greek” population of Faiyum was made-up of either Hellenized Egyptians (Egyptians who took on the Roman/Greek culture) or people of mixed Egyptian-Greek origins.

While some believed the Fayum portraits represented Greek settlers in Egypt, this has been proved otherwise. The dental morphology of the Faiyum mummies was compared with that of earlier Egyptian populations, and was found to be “much more closely akin” to that of ancient Egyptians than to Greeks or other European populations. So in simple terms; the large majority of the Faiyum mummies ARE Egyptian, and share the same biological make up as the Egyptians from dynasty’s before, the  Egyptians living under Roman rule really were not any racially or biologically different to the even Ancienter Egyptians.

About 900 mummy portraits are known at present.The majority were found in the necropoleis of Faiyum. Due to the hot dry Egyptian climate, the paintings are frequently very well preserved, often retaining their brilliant colours seemingly unfaded by time.

Ancient Egyptian mummies of Yuya & Thuya.
The mummy of King Tutankhamun’s great grandfather, Yuya, is a stunning example of ancient Egyptian embalming.  He and his wife were probably between 50 and 60 years old at the time of death. Like her husband, Tuyu was identified by inscriptions on funerary equipment. Hieroglyphs spell out her name and titles, which include “dresser to the king, chantress of the god Amun”, and “lady of the harem of the god Min”.

The Papyrus of Djer-Djet Hotepsekhemenedji Nefer VII

Also known as Papyrus DD17c in the British Museum, the Papyrus of Djer-Djet Hotepsekhemenedji Nefer VII is just over 4000 years old but was not considered significant until recently, when an intern at the museum noticed that it resembles the circuit diagram for a transistor.

Transistors are critical electronic “switches” that form the basis of most modern technology, including computers and phones. The hieroglyphics around the center read, “base,” “collector,” and “emitter” in Ancient Egyptian, further suggesting that the ancients may have had an understanding of basic computing.

According to Egyptologist Robert Hawa, “This is surprising but not entirely unexpected. We knew that the ancients had used something like a battery to electroplate gold onto ritual objects, but this is quite a bit more advanced than we had previously assumed. I’m hesitant to say that this was a transistor diagram yet, but the evidence is building.”

With the recognition of the diagram, other papyri from the same expedition are currently under heavy analysis. According to Hawa, three other significant illustrations have been identified: One resembles the circuit diagram for a cathode ray tube, one resembles a keyboard, and the third is hieroglyphs only but seems to read, “Change thy provider to Timit-Warnotep Cable for $35 off your first month.”

If true, this would be the most significant archaeological find since the Carburetor of Nejed-Nefer Hedjkheperresetepenre, or the Antibiotic Pills of Khepermaatre-setpenptah Ramesses XII.