Merenre Nemtyemsaf I

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Merenre Nemtyemsaf I (reigned 2287–2278 BC) was the fourth king of the Sixth Dynasty of Egypt. His nomen, theophorically referring to Nemty, was formerly read as Antyemsaf, a reading now known to be incorrect.

The Sixth Dynasty of ancient Egypt along with Dynasties III, IV and V constitute the Old Kingdom of Dynastic Egypt.

Contents

Biography

Merenre was a son of Pepi I and Ankhesenpepi I, and grandson of the female vizier Nebet and her spouse Khui.

Ankhenespepi I or Ankhenesmeryre I was a queen consort during the sixth dynasty of Egypt.

Nebet (“Lady”) was created vizier during the late Old Kingdom of Egypt by Pharaoh Pepi I of the Sixth dynasty, her son-in-law. She is the first recorded female vizier in Ancient Egyptian history; the next one was in the 26th Dynasty.

While Merenre Nemtyemsaf was once believed to have served as a brief co-regent to his father Pepi I Meryre before ruling in his own right, the publication of the South Saqqara Stone annal document in 1995 by Vassil Dobrev and Michel Baud shows that Merenre directly succeeded his father in power with no interregnum or coregency. The badly damaged document preserves the record of Pepi I's final year—his 25th Count and proceeds immediately to the first year count of Merenre [1] Merenre shared his father's fascination with Nubia and continued to explore deep into the region. He also began a process of royal consolidation, appointing Weni as the first governor of all of Upper Egypt and expanding the power of several other governors. While he was once assumed to have died at an early age, recent archaeological discoveries discount this theory. Two contemporary objects suggests that Merenre's reign lasted slightly more than a decade. The South Saqqara Stone Annals preserves his Year after the 2nd Count [2] whereas Merenre's Year after the 5th Count (Year 10 if the count was biennial) is attested in a quarry inscription from Hatnub Inscription No.6, according to Anthony Spalinger. [3]

Pepi I Meryre Egyptian pharaoh

Pepi I Meryre was the third king of the Sixth dynasty of Egypt. His first throne name was Neferdjahor which the king later altered to Meryre meaning "beloved of Rê".

South Saqqara Stone

The South Saqqara Stone is the lid of the sarcophagus of the ancient Egyptian queen Ankhenespepi which was inscribed with a list for the reigns of the pharaohs of the 6th dynasty from Teti, Userkare, Pepi I, Merenre to the early years of Pepi II under whom the document was likely created. It is essentially an annal document which records events in each year of a king's reign; unfortunately, it was reused in antiquity for Ankhesenpepi I's burial and many of its invaluable inscriptions have been erased.

Nubia region along the Nile river, which is located in northern Sudan and southern Egypt

Nubia is a region along the Nile river encompassing the area between Aswan in southern Egypt and Khartoum in central Sudan. It was the seat of one of the earliest civilizations of ancient Africa, with a history that can be traced from at least 2500 BC onward with the Kerma culture. The latter was conquered by the New Kingdom of Egypt under pharaoh Thutmose I around 1500 BC. Nubia was home to several empires, most prominently the kingdom of Kush, which conquered Egypt during the 8th century BC during the reign of Piye and ruled the country as its Twenty-fifth Dynasty.

The same South Saqqara Stone which was created during Pepi II's reign credits Merenre with a minimum reign of 11 to 13 years, however (based on a strictly biennial count), which would increase Merenre's reign length from the more traditional figure of 5 to 6 years. [4] The British Egyptologists Ian Shaw and Paul Nicholson in a 1995 book raised Merenre I's reign from the traditional 6 year figure to 9 years. [5] However, they were unaware of the contents of the South Saqqara Stone which was published in the same year by Baud & Dobrev and shows that Merenre had a minimum reign of 11 years with no co-regency with his father, Pepi I. One must note that cattle counts were not always biennial; for example, 18 had been performed by the 30th year of Pepi I's reign. It is therefore entirely possible that Merenre ruled for fewer than 11 years.

Sixth dynasty royal seals and stone blocks found at Saqqara demonstrate that Merenre's aunt, Queen Ankhesenpepi II, was the wife of both Pepi I and then Merenre himself. Since the South Saqqara Stone shows Merenre's reign intervened between Pepi I and Pepi II and lasted for a minimum of slightly over a decade, this indirectly indicates that Merenre I was actually Pepi II's father, rather than Pepi I as was traditionally assumed. Merenre's daughter was Ankhesenpepi III, the future wife of Pepi II.

Ankhesenpepi II Egyptian queen consort

Ankhesenpepi II or Ankhesenmeryre II was a queen consort during the sixth dynasty of Egypt. She was the wife of Kings Pepi I and Merenre Nemtyemsaf I, and the mother of Pepi II. She was buried in a pyramid in Saqqara.

Ankhesenpepi III was an ancient Egyptian queen of the Sixth dynasty. She was named after her grandmother, Ankhesenpepi I. Ankhesenpepi III was a daughter of Nemtyemsaf I and she became the wife of Pepi II.

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Merenre Nemtyemsaf II Egyptian pharaoh

Merenre Nemtyemsaf II was an Ancient Egyptian pharaoh, the sixth and penultimate ruler of the 6th Dynasty. He reigned for 1 year and 1 month in the first half of the 22nd century BC, at the very end of the Old Kingdom period. Nemtyemsaf II likely ascended the throne as an old man, succeeding his long-lived father Pepi II Neferkare at a time when the power of the pharaoh was crumbling.

Neferkare Neby Egyptian pharaoh

Neferkare Neby was an ancient Egyptian pharaoh of the Eighth Dynasty during the early First Intermediate Period. According to egyptologists Jürgen von Beckerath and Darrell Baker, he was the fourth king of the seventh dynasty, as he appears as the fourth king in the Abydos King List within the list of kings assigned to this dynasty.

Pyramid of Merenre smooth-sided pyramid

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References

  1. Michel Baud, Vassil Dobrev, De nouvelles annales de l'Ancien Empire égyptien. Une "Pierre de Palerme" pour la VIe dynastie, BIFAO 95 (1995), pp.23-92
  2. Baud & Dobrev, BIFAO 95 (1995), pp.23-92
  3. Anthony Spalinger, Dated Texts of the Old Kingdom, SAK 21 (1994), p.307
  4. Baud & Dobrev, BIFAO 95 (1995), pp.23-92
  5. Ian Shaw and Paul Nicholson, The Dictionary of Ancient Egypt, London, 1995, p.220