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|1991 BC – 1802 BC|
|Common languages||Egyptian language|
|Religion||ancient Egyptian religion|
|Historical era||Bronze Age|
|Periods and Dynasties of Ancient Egypt|
All years are BC
The Twelfth Dynasty of ancient Egypt (Dynasty XII) is often combined with the Eleventh, Thirteenth and Fourteenth Dynasties under the group title Middle Kingdom.
Known rulers of the Twelfth Dynasty are as follows:
|Name||Horus (throne) name||Date||Pyramid||Queen(s)|
|Amenemhat I||Sehetepibre||1991 – 1962 BC||Pyramid of Amenemhet I||Queen Neferitatjenen|
|Senusret I (Sesostris I)||Kheperkare||1971 – 1926 BC||Pyramid of Senusret I||Queen Neferu III|
|Amenemhat II||Nubkhaure||1929 – 1895 BC||White Pyramid||Queen Kaneferu |
|Senusret II (Sesostris II)||Khakheperre||1897 – 1878 BC||Pyramid at El-Lahun||Queen Khenemetneferhedjet I |
Queen Nofret II
|Senusret III (Sesostris III)||Khakaure||1878 – 1839 BC||Pyramid at Dahshur||Queen Meretseger |
Queen Khnemetneferhedjet II
|Amenemhat III||Nimaatre||1860 – 1814 BC||Black Pyramid; Pyramid at Hawara||Queen Aat |
Queen Khenemetneferhedjet III
|Amenemhat IV||Maakherure||1815 – 1806 BC||Southern Mazghuna pyramid (conjectural)|
|Queen Sobekneferu||Sobekkare||1806 – 1802 BC||Northern Mazghuna pyramid (conjectural)|
The chronology of the 12th dynasty is the most stable of any period before the New Kingdom. The Ramses Papyrus canon (1290 BC) in Turin gives 213 years (1991–1778 BC). Manetho stated that it was based in Thebes, but from contemporary records it is clear that the first king moved its capital to a new city named "Amenemhat-itj-tawy" ("Amenemhat the Seizer of the Two Lands"), more simply called Itjtawy. The location of Itjtawy has not been found, but is thought to be near the Fayyum, probably near the royal graveyards at el-Lisht. Egyptologists consider this dynasty to be the apex of the Middle Kingdom.
The order of its rulers is well known from several sources — two lists recorded at temples in Abydos and one at Saqqara, as well as Manetho's work. A recorded date during the reign of Senusret III can be correlated to the Sothic cycle, consequently many events during this dynasty can be frequently assigned to a specific year.
This dynasty was founded by Amenemhat I, who may have been vizier to the last pharaoh of Dynasty XI, Mentuhotep IV. His armies campaigned south as far as the Second Cataract of the Nile and into southern Canaan. He also reestablished diplomatic relations with the Canaanite state of Byblos and Hellenic rulers in the Aegean Sea. His son Senusret I followed his father's triumphs with an expedition south to the Third Cataract, but the next rulers were content to live in peace until the reign of Senusret III.
Finding Nubia had grown restive under the previous rulers, Senusret sent punitive expeditions into that land; he also sent an expedition into the Levant. These military campaigns gave birth to a legend of a mighty warrior named Sesostris, a story retold by Manetho, Herodotus, and Diodorus Siculus. Manetho claimed the mythical Sesostris not only subdued the lands as had Senusret I, but also conquered parts of Canaan and had crossed over into Europe to annex Thrace. However, there are no records of the time, either in Egyptian or other contemporary writings that support these claims.
Senusret's successor Amenemhat III reaffirmed his predecessor's foreign policy. However, after Amenemhat, the energies of this dynasty were largely spent, and the growing troubles of government were left to the dynasty's last ruler, Queen Sobekneferu, to resolve. Amenemhat was remembered for the mortuary temple at Hawara that he built, known to Herodotus, Diodorus, and Strabo as the "Labyrinth". Additionally, under his reign, the marshy Fayyum was first exploited.
It was during the twelfth dynasty that Ancient Egyptian literature was refined. Perhaps the best known work from this period is The Story of Sinuhe , of which several hundred papyrus copies have been recovered. Also written during this dynasty were a number of Didactic works, such as the Instructions of Amenemhat and The Tale of the Eloquent Peasant .
Pharaohs of Dynasties XII through XVIII are also credited with preserving for us some of the most remarkable Egyptian papyri:
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to 12th dynasty of Egypt .|
Amenemhat III, also spelled Amenemhet III, was a pharaoh of the Twelfth Dynasty of Egypt. He ruled from c. 1860 BC to c. 1814 BC, the highest known date being found in a papyrus dated to Regnal Year 46, I Akhet 22 of his rule. His reign is regarded as the golden age of the Middle Kingdom. He may have had a long coregency with his father, Senusret III.
Menes was a pharaoh of the Early Dynastic Period of ancient Egypt credited by classical tradition with having united Upper and Lower Egypt and as the founder of the First Dynasty.
The Middle Kingdom of Egypt is the period in the history of ancient Egypt following a period of political division known as the First Intermediate Period. The Middle Kingdom lasted from approximately 2050 to 1710 BC, stretching from the reunification of Egypt under the reign of Mentuhotep II in the Eleventh Dynasty to the end of the Twelfth Dynasty. The kings of the Eleventh Dynasty ruled from Thebes and the kings of the Twelfth Dynasty ruled from el-Lisht.
The history of ancient Egypt spans the period from the early prehistoric settlements of the northern Nile valley to the Roman conquest of Egypt in 30 BC. The pharaonic period, the period in which Egypt was ruled by a pharaoh, is dated from the 32nd century BC, when Upper and Lower Egypt were unified, until the country fell under Macedonian rule in 332 BC.
Manetho is believed to have been an Egyptian priest from Sebennytos who lived in the Ptolemaic Kingdom in the early third century BC, during the Hellenistic period. He authored the Aegyptiaca in Greek, a major chronological source for the reigns of the pharaohs of ancient Egypt. It is unclear if he wrote his work during the reign of Ptolemy I Soter or Ptolemy II Philadelphos, but no later than that of Ptolemy III Euergetes.
Sobekneferu reigned as pharaoh of Egypt after the death of Amenemhat IV. She was the last ruler of the Twelfth Dynasty of Egypt and ruled Egypt for almost four years from 1806 to 1802 BC. Her name means "the beauty of Sobek."
The Eleventh Dynasty of ancient Egypt is a well-attested group of rulers. Its earlier members before Pharaoh Mentuhotep II are grouped with the four preceding dynasties to form the First Intermediate Period, whereas the later members are considered part of the Middle Kingdom. They all ruled from Thebes in Upper Egypt.
Sesostris was the name of a king of ancient Egypt who, according to Herodotus, led a military expedition into parts of Europe.
Amenemhat I also Amenemhet I and the hellenized form Ammenemes, was the first ruler of the Twelfth Dynasty, the dynasty considered to be the golden-age of the Middle Kingdom of Egypt. He ruled from 1991 BC to 1962 BC.
Senusret I also anglicized as Sesostris I and Senwosret I, was the second pharaoh of the Twelfth Dynasty of Egypt. He ruled from 1971 BC to 1926 BC, and was one of the most powerful kings of this Dynasty. He was the son of Amenemhat I. Senusret I was known by his prenomen, Kheperkare, which means "the Ka of Re is created."
Khakheperre Senusret II was the fourth pharaoh of the Twelfth Dynasty of Egypt. He ruled from 1897 BC to 1878 BC. His pyramid was constructed at El-Lahun. Senusret II took a great deal of interest in the Faiyum oasis region and began work on an extensive irrigation system from Bahr Yussef through to Lake Moeris through the construction of a dike at El-Lahun and the addition of a network of drainage canals. The purpose of his project was to increase the amount of cultivable land in that area. The importance of this project is emphasized by Senusret II's decision to move the royal necropolis from Dahshur to El-Lahun where he built his pyramid. This location would remain the political capital for the 12th and 13th Dynasties of Egypt. The king also established the first known workers' quarter in the nearby town of Senusrethotep (Kahun).
Khakaure Senusret III was a pharaoh of Egypt. He ruled from 1878 BC to 1839 BC during a time of great power and prosperity, and was the fifth king of the Twelfth Dynasty of the Middle Kingdom. He was a great pharaoh of the Twelfth Dynasty and is considered to be, perhaps, the most powerful Egyptian ruler of the dynasty. Consequently, he is regarded as one of the sources for the legend about Sesostris. His military campaigns gave rise to an era of peace and economic prosperity that reduced the power of regional rulers and led to a revival in craftwork, trade, and urban development. Senusret III was among the few Egyptian kings who were deified and honored with a cult during their own lifetime.
The Late Period of ancient Egypt refers to the last flowering of native Egyptian rulers after the Third Intermediate Period in the 26th Saite Dynasty founded by Psamtik I, but includes the time of Achaemenid Persian rule over Egypt after the conquest by Cambyses II in 525 BC as well. The Late Period existed from 664 BC until 332 BC, following a period of foreign rule by the Nubian 25th dynasty and beginning with a short period of Neo-Assyrian suzerainty, with Psamtik I initially ruling as their vassal. The period ended with the conquests of the Persian Empire by Alexander the Great and establishment of the Ptolemaic dynasty by his general Ptolemy I Soter, one of the Hellenistic diadochi from Macedon in northern Greece. With the Macedonian Greek conquest in the latter half of the 4th century BC, the age of Hellenistic Egypt began.
The Thirteenth Dynasty of ancient Egypt is often combined with Dynasties XI, XII and XIV under the group title Middle Kingdom. Some writers separate it from these dynasties and join it to Dynasties XIV through XVII as part of the Second Intermediate Period. Dynasty XIII lasted from approximately 1803 BC until approximately 1649 BC, i.e. for 154 years.
Lisht or el-Lisht is an Egyptian village located south of Cairo. It is the site of Middle Kingdom royal and elite burials, including two pyramids built by Amenemhat I and Senusret I. The two main pyramids were surrounded by smaller pyramids of members of the royal family, and many mastaba tombs of high officials and their family members. They were constructed throughout the Twelfth and Thirteenth Dynasties. The site is also known for the tomb of Senebtisi, found undisturbed and from which a set of jewelry has been recovered. The pyramid complex of Senusret I is the best preserved from this period. The coffins in the tomb of Sesenebnef present the earliest versions of the Book of the Dead.
The majority of Egyptologists agree on the outline and many details of the chronology of Ancient Egypt. This scholarly consensus is the so-called Conventional Egyptian chronology, which places the beginning of the Old Kingdom in the 27th century BC, the beginning of the Middle Kingdom in the 21st century BC and the beginning of the New Kingdom in the mid-16th century BC.
Hawara is an archaeological site of Ancient Egypt, south of the site of Crocodilopolis at the entrance to the depression of the Fayyum oasis. It is the site of a pyramid built by the Pharaoh Amenemhat III in the 19th century BC.
Instructions of Amenemhat is a short ancient Egyptian poem of the sebayt genre written during the early Middle Kingdom. The poem takes the form of an intensely dramatic monologue delivered by the ghost of the murdered 12th Dynasty pharaoh Amenemhat I to his son Senusret I. It describes the conspiracy that killed Amenemhat, and enjoins his son to trust no-one. The poem forms a kind of apologia of the deeds of the old king's reign. It ends with an exhortation to Senusret to ascend the throne and rule wisely in Amenemhat's stead.
The Loyalist Teaching, or The Loyalist Instructions, is an ancient Egyptian text of the sebayt ('teaching') genre. It survives in part from a stela inscription of the mid Twelfth dynasty of Egypt. The whole text can be found in papyrus scrolls of the New Kingdom period. Its authorship is uncertain, although it has been suggested that it was written by the vizier Kairsu of the early Twelfth dynasty. The text emphasizes the virtues of loyalty to the ruling pharaoh and the responsibilities one must maintain for the sake of society.
| Dynasty of Egypt |
1991 − 1802 BCE