Scribe palette of the chancellor Orkaukhety,
bearing the cartouche of Merikare
|Reign||c. 2075–2040 BCE (10th Dynasty)|
|Predecessor||Wahkare Khety ?|
|Successor||possibly an unnamed ephemeral successor, then Mentuhotep II (11th Dynasty)|
|Father||Wahkare Khety ?|
|Died||approximately 2040 BCE|
|Burial||Pyramid of Merikare|
Merikare (also Merykare and Merykara) was an ancient Egyptian pharaoh of the 10th Dynasty who lived toward the end of the First Intermediate Period. His name cannot be recognized in the Turin King List. The dates of his reign are uncertain and debated among scholars.
Ancient Egypt was a civilization of ancient North Africa, concentrated along the lower reaches of the Nile River in the place that is now the country Egypt. Ancient Egyptian civilization followed prehistoric Egypt and coalesced around 3100 BC with the political unification of Upper and Lower Egypt under Menes. The history of ancient Egypt occurred as a series of stable kingdoms, separated by periods of relative instability known as Intermediate Periods: the Old Kingdom of the Early Bronze Age, the Middle Kingdom of the Middle Bronze Age and the New Kingdom of the Late Bronze Age.
Pharaoh is the common title of the monarchs of ancient Egypt from the First Dynasty until the annexation of Egypt by the Roman Empire in 30 BCE, although the actual term "Pharaoh" was not used contemporaneously for a ruler until Merneptah, c. 1200 BCE. In the early dynasty, ancient Egyptian kings used to have up to three titles, the Horus, the Sedge and Bee (nswt-bjtj) name, and the Two Ladies (nbtj) name. The Golden Horus and nomen and prenomen titles were later added.
The Turin King List, also known as the Turin Royal Canon, is an ancient Egyptian hieratic papyrus thought to date from the reign of Pharaoh Ramesses II, now in the Museo Egizio in Turin. The papyrus is the most extensive list available of kings compiled by the ancient Egyptians, and is the basis for most chronology before the reign of Ramesses II.
According to many scholars, he ruled at the end of the 10th Dynasty in his middle-age,following a long reign by his father. The identity of his predecessor (the so-called "Khety III" who was the purported author of the Teaching for King Merikare ) is still a question of debate among Egyptologists. Some scholars tend to identify Merikare's predecessor with Wahkare Khety. These sebayt ("teachings", in ancient Egyptian) – possibly composed during the reign of Merikare and fictitiously attributed to his father – are a collection of precepts for good governance. The text also mentions the eastern borders, recently secured, but still in need of the king's attention. In the text, Merikare's unnamed father mentions having sacked Thinis, but he advises Merikare to deal more leniently with the troublesome Upper Egyptian realms.
Wahkare Khety was an Ancient Egyptian pharaoh of the 9th or 10th Dynasty during the First Intermediate Period.
Sebayt is the ancient Egyptian term for a genre of pharaonic literature. sbꜣyt literally means "teachings" or "instructions" and refers to formally written ethical teachings focused on the "way of living truly". Sebayt is considered an Egyptian form of wisdom literature.
Thinis or This was the capital city of the first dynasties of ancient Egypt. Thinis is, as yet, undiscovered but well attested by ancient writers, including the classical historian Manetho, who cites it as the centre of the Thinite Confederacy, a tribal confederation whose leader, Menes, united Egypt and was its first pharaoh. Thinis began a steep decline in importance from Dynasty III, when the capital was relocated to Memphis, which was thought to be the first true and stable capital after unification of old Egypt by Menes. Thinis's location on the border of the competing Heracleopolitan and Theban dynasties of the First Intermediate Period and its proximity to certain oases of possible military importance ensured Thinis some continued significance in the Old and New Kingdoms. This was a brief respite and Thinis eventually lost its position as a regional administrative centre by the Roman period.
Once crowned, around 2075 BCE,Merikare wisely resigned himself to the existence of two separate kingdoms (the Herakleopolite and the Theban ones) and tried to maintain the policy of peaceful coexistence achieved by his father. It seems that the period of peace brought a certain amount of prosperity to Merikare's realm. Some time later, the pharaoh was forced to sail up the Nile with his court on a great fleet. Once he reached Asyut, the king installed the loyalist nomarch Khety II, who succeeded his deceased father Tefibi; he also made restorations at the local temple of Wepwawet. After that, Merikare advanced farther upstream to the town of Shashotep, likely to quell a revolt, and at the same time as a show of force to the turbulent southern border areas.
Heracleopolis Magna or Heracleopolis is the Roman name of the capital of the 20th nome of ancient Upper Egypt. The site is located approximately 15 km (9.3 mi) west of the modern city of Beni Suef, in the Beni Suef Governorate of Egypt.
Thebes, known to the ancient Egyptians as Waset, was an ancient Egyptian city located along the Nile about 800 kilometers (500 mi) south of the Mediterranean. Its ruins lie within the modern Egyptian city of Luxor. Thebes was the main city of the fourth Upper Egyptian nome and was the capital of Egypt for long periods during the Middle Kingdom and New Kingdom eras. It was close to Nubia and the Eastern Desert, with its valuable mineral resources and trade routes. It was a cult center and the most venerated city of ancient Egypt during its heyday. The site of Thebes includes areas on both the eastern bank of the Nile, where the temples of Karnak and Luxor stand and where the city proper was situated; and the western bank, where a necropolis of large private and royal cemeteries and funerary complexes can be found.
Asyut is the capital of the modern Asyut Governorate in Egypt, which has one of the largest Coptic Catholic bishopric churches in the country; the ancient city of the same name, which is situated nearby. The modern city is located at, while the ancient city is located at .
Merikare died in c. 2040 BCE, a few months before the fall of Herakleopolis. Thus, the final defeat by the Thebans, led by Mentuhotep II of the 11th Dynasty, was likely inflicted upon an ephemeral, unnamed successor.
Nebhepetre Mentuhotep II was a Pharaoh of the 11th Dynasty who reigned for 51 years. Around his 39th year on the throne he reunited Egypt, thus ending the First Intermediate Period. Consequently, he is considered the first pharaoh of the Middle Kingdom.
Many sources suggest that Merikare was buried in a yet-undiscovered pyramid in Saqqara, called Flourishing are the Abodes of Merikare, that had to be near to the pyramid of Teti of the 6th Dynasty.The titles of the officials involved in its construction are documented, as his funerary cult endured into the 12th Dynasty; in fact, Merikare's cartouche appears on the stelae of at least four priests who were responsible for the funerary cult of Teti and Merikare during the Middle Kingdom. They include Gemniemhat who also held other important positions.
Saqqara, also spelled Sakkara or Saccara in English, is a vast, ancient burial ground in Egypt, serving as the necropolis for the Ancient Egyptian capital, Memphis. Saqqara features numerous pyramids, including the world-famous Step pyramid of Djoser, sometimes referred to as the Step Tomb due to its rectangular base, as well as a number of mastabas. Located some 30 km (19 mi) south of modern-day Cairo, Saqqara covers an area of around 7 by 1.5 km.
The Pyramid of Teti is a smooth-sided pyramid situated in the pyramid field at Saqqara in Egypt. It is historically the second known pyramid containing pyramid texts. Excavations have revealed a satellite pyramid, two pyramids of queens accompanied by cult structures, and a funerary temple. The pyramid was opened by Gaston Maspero in 1882 and the complex explored during several campaigns ranging from 1907 to 1965. It was originally called Teti's Places Are Enduring. The preservation above ground is very poor, and it now resembles a small hill. Below ground the chambers and corridors are very well preserved.
Teti, less commonly known as Othoes, sometimes also Tata, Atat, or Athath in outdated sources, was the first pharaoh of the Sixth dynasty of Egypt. He is buried at Saqqara. The exact length of his reign has been destroyed on the Turin King List but is believed to have been about 12 years.
Merikare is the most attested among the Herakleopolite rulers. His name appears on:
The Teaching for King Merykara, alt. Instruction Addressed to King Merikare, is a literary composition in Middle Egyptian, the classical phase of the Egyptian language, probably of Middle Kingdom date.
A scribe is a person who serves as a professional copyist, especially one who made copies of manuscripts before the invention of automatic printing.
The Treasurer in Ancient Egypt is the modern translation of the title imi-r ḫtmt. The office is known since the end of the Old Kingdom, where people with this title appear sporadically in the organization of private estates.
In 2003 the Egyptologist Arkadi F. Demidchik suggested that Merikare's placement within the dynasty should be reconsidered. According to him, if Merikare reigned during the campaign led by Mentuhotep II then the former's pyramid and its cult couldn't have survived the Theban conquest; again, Merikare likely would not be able to obtain granite from the South as mentioned in the Teachings. Demidchik also argued that the battles for Thinis mentioned by Tefibi and Merikare were the same, being fought in the opposite front by the Theban ruler Wahankh Intef II, thus suggesting that Merikare's reign should be placed some decades earlier than usually thought, when the 10th Dynasty's power was at its peak.
Unas or Wenis, also spelled Unis, was a pharaoh, the ninth and last ruler of the Fifth Dynasty of Egypt during the Old Kingdom. Unas reigned for 15 to 30 years in the mid-24th century BC, succeeding Djedkare Isesi, who might have been his father.
The First Intermediate Period, often described as a "dark age" in ancient Egyptian history, spanned approximately one hundred and twenty-five years, from c. 2181–2055 BC, after the end of the Old Kingdom. It comprises the Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, Tenth, and part of the Eleventh Dynasties. Very little monumental evidence survives from this period, especially from the beginning of the era. The First Intermediate Period was a dynamic time where rule of Egypt was roughly equally divided between two competing power bases. One of those bases was at Heracleopolis in Lower Egypt, a city just south of the Faiyum region. The other was at Thebes in Upper Egypt. It is believed that during this time temples were pillaged and violated, artwork was vandalized, and the statues of kings were broken or destroyed as a result of the postulated political chaos. These two kingdoms would eventually come into conflict, leading to the conquest of the north by the Theban kings and the reunification of Egypt under a single ruler, Mentuhotep II, during the second part of the Eleventh Dynasty. This event marked the beginning of the Middle Kingdom of Egypt.
Userkare was the second pharaoh of the Sixth Dynasty, reigning briefly, 1 to 5 years, in the late 24th to early 23rd century BC. Userkare's relation to his predecessor Teti and successor Pepi I is unknown and his reign remains enigmatic. Although he is attested in historical sources, Userkare is completely absent from the tomb of the Egyptian officials who lived during his reign. In addition, the Egyptian priest Manetho reports that Userkare's predecessor Teti was murdered. Userkare is often considered to have been a short-lived usurper. Alternatively, he may have been a regent who ruled during Teti's son's childhood who later ascended the throne as Pepi I.
The Eighth Dynasty of ancient Egypt is a poorly known and short-lived line of pharaohs reigning in rapid succession in the early 22nd century BC, likely with their seat of power in Memphis. The Eighth Dynasty held sway at a time referred to as the very end of the Old Kingdom or the beginning of the First Intermediate Period. The power of the pharaohs was waning while that of the provincial governors, known as nomarchs, was increasingly important, the Egyptian state having by then effectively turned into a feudal system. In spite of close relations between the Memphite kings and powerful nomarchs, notably in Coptos, the Eighth Dynasty was eventually overthrown by the nomarchs of Heracleopolis Magna, who founded the Ninth Dynasty. The Eighth Dynasty is sometimes combined with the preceding Seventh Dynasty, owing to the lack of archeological evidence for the latter which may be fictitious.
Sehertawy Intef I was a local nomarch at Thebes during the early First Intermediate Period and the first member of the 11th Dynasty to lay claim to a Horus name. Intef reigned from 4 to 16 years c. 2120 BC or c. 2070 BC during which time he probably waged war with his northern neighbor, the Coptite nomarch Tjauti. Intef was buried in a saff tomb at El-Tarif, known today as Saff el-Dawaba.
Wahankh Intef II was the third ruler of the Eleventh Dynasty of Egypt during the First Intermediate Period. He reigned for almost fifty years from 2112 BC to 2063 BC. His capital was located at Thebes. In his time, Egypt was split between several local dynasties. He was buried in a saff tomb at El-Tarif.
Setut or Senen... was a pharaoh of the 9th Dynasty of ancient Egypt.
Meryibre Khety, also known by his Horus name Meryibtawy, was a pharaoh of the 9th or 10th Dynasty of Egypt, during the First Intermediate Period.
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The Headless Pyramid is an ancient Egyptian pyramid in Saqqara. It was most likely built by the Fifth Dynasty Pharaoh Menkauhor.
Khety II was an ancient Egyptian nomarch of the 13th nomos of Upper Egypt during the reign of pharaoh Merykare of the 10th Dynasty.
Tefibi was an ancient Egyptian nomarch of the 13th nomos of Upper Egypt during the 10th Dynasty. In addition, he also was hereditary prince, count, wearer of the royal seal, sole companion and high priest of Wepwawet. The main source about his life came from his biography, inscribed on the "tomb III" in Asyut.
Khety I was an ancient Egyptian nomarch of the 13th nomos of Upper Egypt during the 10th dynasty. Like many other local governors, he also was a priest of the native deity Wepwawet.
The Pyramid of Merikare is an ancient Egyptian pyramid that remains unidentified, but is attested by inscriptions on funerary steles and possibly is located in Saqqara. The pyramid is presumed to be the burial place of the Herakleopolitan pharaoh Merikare, who ruled toward the end of the Tenth Dynasty c. 2040 BC during the First Intermediate Period. Sometimes, the Headless Pyramid in North Saqqara is identified as the pyramid of Merikare, although the latter is more likely to belong to pharaoh Menkauhor.
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