6 - New Kingdom & 18th dynasty

  • Created by: Pinksoda
  • Created on: 29-04-19 10:32


  • Ahmose Nebpehtire 1550-1525 BCE
  • Amenhotep I Djeserkare 1525 – 1504 BCE
  • Thutmose I Aakheperkare 1504 – 1492 BCE
  • Thutmose II Aakheperenre 1492 – 1479 BCE
  • Hatshepsut Maatkare 1479/1473-1458/57 BCE
  • Thutmose III Menkheperre 1479 - 1425 BCE
  • Amenhotep II Aakheperrure 1428 – 1397 BCE
  • Thutmose IV Menkheperure 1397 – 1388 BCE
  • Amenhotep III Nebmaatre 1388-1351/50 BCE
  • Amenhotep IV Neferkheperure-waenre (Akhenaten) 1351-1334 BCE
  • Semenkhkhare Ankheperure 1337 – 1334 BCE
  • Tutankhamun Nebkheperure 1333-1323 BCE
  • Ay Kheperkhperure 1323-1319 BCE
  • Horemheb Djeserkheperure-setepenre 1319 – 1292 BCE
    • General debate if beginning of 19th dynasty?
1 of 23

Start of New Kingdom

  • Kahmose tries to expel Hyksos in Delta who'd split Egyptian into 2 in (2nd I)
  • Theban Kings try to defeat Hyksos, mentioned in inscriptions.
  • Reunification under Ahmose 1550-1525BCE
  • Avaris (Tell el-Dab’a) was captured. 
  • Pushes the Hyksos fortress along Delta to Sharuhen (southern Israel), besieged for 3 years.
  • Early stratigraphic material names Ahmose until Amenhotep II - ongoing/active until this time
  • The defeat of the Hyksos is credited to Ahmose - seen in epigraphic material.
  • Constructs palace at Minoan Frescos by painted with someone with knowledge of Greek pictoral art - had contact with Aegean
  • Temple mnuments = traditional, honouring Ptah, Amun, Montu and Osiris (Bryan)
  • Tomb of Queen Ahtoep had axe with Neferneche (great god), Peteryos (all Egypt) Griffin = very Aegean (man with hammer = Egypt)
  • Capital Memphis (admin) repopulated - due to Nile shift creating new land
2 of 23

Thebes as the New Religious Capital

  • Memphis still important – the administration was divided into 2
    • Northern and Southern counterpart offices
  • Thebes = new religious capital - invested a lot of money here
    • Best known is temple to Amun-Ra at Karnak started previously in Middle Kingdom but expanded.
    • Does not survive. Every pharoh added to this temple.
  • The Various Names of Thebes 
    • Waset (Dominion)
    • Niwt (The City)
    • Iunu Shemau (Southern Heliopolis)
    • Thebes (Greek Name) 
3 of 23

The Cult and Power of Amun-Re in the New Kingdom -

  • The New Kingdom pharaohs placed an emphasis on the cult of Amun-Re. 
  • Amun is also identified with Re and Min
  • Amun-Re and Amun-Min Kamutef (bull of his mother) - composites 
  • Wife of Amun = Mut, had parts of Amun-Ra temple dedicated to her/son
  • The child of Amun and Mut was Khonsu
  • Large areas of land and spoils of war (included human prisoners) were donated to the Karnak temple of Amun causing the temple and its priesthood to become economically powerful.
  • Priests of Amun are often in high administrative offices - effectively took over and become on par with Pharaoh
4 of 23

The Cult of Amun-Re and Theban Festivals

  • Religious life and royal ideology were linked to festivals and processions. 
  • Sacred life meant to make most of passageways  - Opet and Valley festivals - royal rejuvenation from Karnak to Luxor. Connected by series of canals
  • Royal funerary cults on the Best bank were linked with the cult of Amun-Re
  • Creation of Mansions of Millions of Years on the Theban West Bank - mortuary temples, creation of Valley of Kings.
    • Behind mountains - secluded tombs of Kings of 18/19/20th dynasty.
  • Prior to this tombs always had connected temples.
    • Mortuary temple now on West bank not just going to temples, going to tomb in symbolic way.
    • Still for offerings, just separate to temples. Most heavily destroyed
  •  Most mortuary temples did not last as stone was expensive to quarry
    • Reused old ones
  • Amenhotep II = colossi.
5 of 23

New Kingdom Birth Legend

  • The son of Amun Re 
  • ‘Birth Legend’ which is depicted in the Luxor Temple (reign of Amenhotep III). 
  • God Amun went to royal mother, slept with her and made new pharaoh. 
  • Alexander later uses it
6 of 23

Mortuary Temples

  • Most kings created temples.
  • Most didn't survive
    • Stone is hard to quarry so used bits from old temples.
  • Amenhotep III - was equivalent to size of Karnak but didn't survive.
  • Had tombs of nobles 
7 of 23

Amunhotep I (1525-1504 BCE) & Ahmose Nefertari

  • Possible co-regency between Amunhotep I and Ahmose
    • Not an adult at accession?, older brother designated heir 5 years before (Bryan)
  •  Ahmose Nefertari featured prominently in his reign.
  •  Continued the building projects of his father Ahmose (especially on west bank)
  • Deified on his death with his mother Ahmose Nefertari in Thebes, and worshipped at the tomb builders settlement at Deir el-Medina. 
    • Most houses had a scene honouring the two in the front room (Bryan)
    • Painted with blue or black skin (link to resurrection)
  • Amenhotep had military successes in Nubia that improved economy (Bryan)
    • Tomb of Ahmose, son of Ibana telling this story constructed 60/70 years later, unreliable.
  • Karnak featured a lot in building work (Bryan)
    • Limestone gateway with jubillee festival decoration - great gate of 20 cubits
      • Chapels depicting god's wife (Ahmose-Nefertari) performing ritual for Amun
      • Thutmose III dismantled this and rebuilt it in sandstone
    • Limestone jamb shows festival dates - linked to 12th dynasty (Spalinger)
      • Festival calendar suggests he wished to rework earlier calendars (Bryan)
8 of 23

The Tomb Builders Village at Deir el-Medina

  • Located behind western mountains.
  • Paths to valley of Kings.
  • Builders of royal tombs stationed here from 18th to 20th dynasties.
  • Excavated by French Mission.
  • Shows examples of domestic living.
  • Each home housed a family, enclosed by wall.
  • Luxury - water by donkey. 
  • Rations paid as building tombs.
  • Lots of textual evidence - lots of ostrica (e.g. laundry lists, love songs).
  • First strike protests in antiquity - no grain at end of New Kingdom.
  • Stone built - may be not an organic settlement
9 of 23

Significance of Royal Women of Early 18th Dynasty

  • Titles held by these women and abscence of husbands other than kings - limitations
  • Economic terms gains in war were not divided with other families
  • Political/religious terms - women always in closed royal family
    • Family of Seqenenra and Ahhtotep estblished that only kings could marry princesses
    • Married non-kings after Ramesses II
    • Kings could marry non-royals e.g. Tetisheri (grandmother of Ahmose)
  • Some were major Queens
    • Ahhotep - Ahmose's mother implicated de facto governance for pacifying Upper Egypt
      • Ahmose may have been a child on succession
    • Ahmose-Nefertari - Ahhotep's daughter?
      • Donation Stele Karnak - king's daughter, great wife & sister, mistress of U/L Egypt
      • God's wife of Amun - operated independently  (refelcts growing religious power)
10 of 23

Thutmose I

  • First succession not from father to son (Bryan)
  • Thutmose I crushed resistance in Nubia at the capital of Kerma
  • Expanded the southern campaigns into Nubia, and into Syria-Palestine
    • Led to later important role of trade/diplomacy in Late Bronze Age Near East (Bryan)
  • Avoided direct confrontation with Mettani, went to Niy after local successes (Bryan)
    • Only mentionned years later, in tomb of Ahmose son of Ibana.
    • Overall contact limited, only conquered NE under Thutmose III
      • Could be due to technology, but Ahmose had chariots 
      • Not mentionned a lot so must have been superior military powers
  • Building projects (Bryan)
    • At Kenisa and Napata - small in scale with stone elements in brick structures
    • Giza - linked to sphinx (god = Horemakhet (Horus of horizon))
    • Abydos - stele recording contributions to temple of Osiris
      • Linked himself to earth deities linked to this Geb & Tantjen rather than 2 previous monarchs, was not part of Ahmosid family - god descendance now common theme
  • Fathered future Queen Hatshepsut with Ahmose Nefertari
    • Venerated Thutmose I - ancestral worship showing union of Amun/King since Ahmose
11 of 23

Thutmose II

  • Very short lived reign - 3 years
  • Mentioned in few New Kingdom tomb autobiographies
    • Ahmose Pa-en-Nekheb at el-Kab, Ineni at Thebes, & Nebamun at Thebes. 
  • For a short reign he is attested at Elephantine, Karnak, Coptos, and Helipolis. 
  • Half sister, Hatshepsut acted as great royal wife & the gods wife of Amun. 
    • Hatshepsut commonly appeared on monuments of as a Gods Wife of Amun (Bryan)
  • Only major monuments were from Karnak (Bryan)
    • Pylon shaped limestone gateway at front of 4th Pylon court
    • Actually finished Thutmose III, ha[shet also put hername  in cartouches upon her succession
  • There is no identifiable tomb made for Thutmose II. 
  • Mortuary temple of Hatshepsut at Deir el-Bahri may have begun in reign of Thutmose II. 
  • Deir el-Bahri may have even been the funerary temple of both Thutmose II and Hatshepsut. 
  • Thutmose II conducts an expedition to Nubia in his first year (Bryan)
    • Local uprisng where all but 1 ruler of Kush punished with death
    • Ended major probbems with Kush
    • Ahmose Pennekhbet refers to shasu prisoners (ethic term for Nubia?) but years after 
12 of 23

Hatshepsut (1479/1473-1458/57 BCE)

  • Reigned on behalf of nephew Thutmose III, but soon took control herself. 
    • After her death Thutmose III became sole ruler. 
  • Legitimisation
    • Her name was Maatkare (prenomen) 
    • Emphasised her bloodline back to Akhmose
    • Scenes at Deir el-Bahri claim Thutmose I had proclaimed her as heir before his death. 
  • Building Projects
    • Mortuary temple at Deir el-Bahri - Influenced by temple of Monthepotep II. 
      • Chapels for ancestors and to Anubis
    • Includes places Ahmosid rulers favoured Kom Obo, Nekhen (Hierankopolis) and Elkab
    • Karnak - Oddlist - later disguised by other Pharaohs.
    • Chapel Rouge shows importance of her Sed festival
  • Foreign Relations - Primarily Peaceful (Bryan)
    • Some Nubian uprisings but no interruption of overall administration of the south
    • Punt -  lots of insence. Start of consistent reports of Nubian tribute
    • Little contact with Aegean but some imported pottery from Cyprus/Levant
13 of 23

Thutmose III

  • Thutmose took sole kingship in 20th or 21st year of Hatshepsut’s reign. 
    • Hapshepsut disappeared: Neferu (Thutmose III's wife became god's wife - Bryan)
  • Began to usurp the monuments of Hatshepsut in the latter years of his reign. 
  • Covered her monuments with own, began building program- doesn't just hack name away.
    • Thutmose III = broader shoulders and wider torso  than Hapshepsut  (Bryan) 
  • Also builds extensively at Karnak (Bryan)
    • Removed Amenhotep I's cult chapels in limestone, replaced them with sandstone 
    • Effective of Monuments - akh menu - them of renewal of kingship - sed festival at year 30
    • Annals in 42nd year of reign - lists king's conquests
  • Also built small temple of Amun and memorail temple to father at Medinet Habu
  • Campaigns in Syria-Palestine
    • Known for aggressive military policy
    • Set his sites of significant territorial gains in Levant - pushes out toward Euphrates area
    • 17 years of campaigning began almost immediately upon his sole rule. 
    • Contact with Mittani. Took control of NE Syrian cities & large parts of Levantine region. 
    • Warfare changes to chariots, Thutmose III smites enemies through holding hair.
      • Lavishes spoils on temple at Karna
14 of 23

Amenhotep II

  • Amenhotep II was co-regent of Thutmose III in the 51st year of his reign
    • Shared the monarchy for two years. 
  • Amenhotep II completed the usurpation of Hatshepsut’s monuments
    • Then Sed festival. Pavillion, relief carved square pillars @ 8th pylon, new gateway (Bryan)
  • Amenhotep was a celebrated athlete
    • Emphasises this as couldn't really campaign anymore
  • Peaceful reign = Amenhotep II conducted vast building program (Bryan)
    • Small temple to Horemakhet important to history of Sphinx as focus of worship
    • Also built temple to Amun, North Karnak - reused in Amenhotep III period
      • Developing north-south akis of central part of Karnak?
    • Campaign in Levant years 7-9 - change to setjetyu (genric Asiatic term) = peace (Bryan)
      • Nahrin offering gifts requesting breath of life between 4th/5th pylons where Thutmose III recieved divine oracle about kingship - appropriate place
  • Made use of administration using men who had served his father (Bryan)
  • Art style = more individualistic in non-royal contexts  (Bryan)
15 of 23

Royal Wives in Mid 18th Dynasty (Bryan)

  • Different to earlier part of the dynasty, pricesses no longer attested
    • Amenhotep, Thutmose, Ahmose few of those princes in Amenhotep II's reign
    • Scarcity of princes may have been due to preference for princess sisters as Queens
    • Lack of princess = rejection of role of gods wife of Amun - Dangerous Queens
16 of 23

Thutmose IV

  • Dream stelae - Sphinx. Told if he cleared away sand he would be pharaoh
  • Not originally meant to be pharaoh? - Legitimisation process 
    • But due to inceased warfare with Asiatics divine authority could have been needed even to ensure a legitimate heir's cause (Bryan)
  • Monuments (Bryan)
    • Began construction at major temple sites and at 4 sites in Nubia
    • Worshipped all main gods
    • Interest in sun gods
      • Horemakhet (Heliopolis) but no reference to Amun-Ra on Sphinx stele
      • Northern gods dominated - reflects the politics?
      • Precursor to Amarna?
    • Shifted axis at Karnak back to east-west
      • Obelisk became focus on solar cult from Thutmose III
  • Syria Palestine/Nubia (Bryan)
    • Scene in tomb of standard bearer Nebamun shows Egyptian superiority
      • Could be for marriage of Thutmose IV's marriage to Syrian princess rather than war
    • No clear atteststion for Nubia
17 of 23

Amenhotep III

  • Golden Age - primarily a period of peace in Egypt  (Bryan)
    • Granary official Khamhet boast crops in year 30, remembered 1k years for fertility but bias
  • Extensive building programmes across Egypt (Bryan)
    • Space for eternal divinity, focus on sun god - amun and Thoth became solarised
    • Focus on Thebes - Colossi of Memnon and palce of gleaming Aten
    • Luxor temple - birth room born of union of Amun-Ra and mother - focus on original gods
  • Develops international relations through scarabs
    • Mail with inscriptions (been married, gone hunting)
    • Year 5 Nubian campaign, fortress of Khaemmaat at Soleb to stop U nubia attacks (Bryan)
    • Names of Aegean cities including Mycenae plus letters from Babylon, Mittani
  • Divinity
  • May have been deified during his lifetime in Egypt and Nubia - constructs temple at Soleb
  • Link to sun god = deification, later transformed into solar disc Aten by son (Johnson)
    • From 1st jubilee festival, scenes show him taking place of god Ra in solar boat. (Bryan)
    • No text/imagery from Egypt identifying a cult of Amenhotep III during his lifetime.  (Bryan)
  • Amarna shows Amenhotep recieving food offerings  (Bryan)
    • Against Johnson's thesis that Amenhotep was the Aten
    • But in late years of reign - deceased? Marks start of intercession?
18 of 23

Amenhotep IV (Akhenaten)

  • Focuses on sun disk - Aten
  • Construction of an Aten Temple at Karnak outside enclosure of Aten
  • Cult of the sun disk did not start with Akhenaten 
  • Movement of the Capital to Akhetaten (Amarna in Middle Egypt)
    • Bounded by boundary stelae. 
  • Built new temples, houses, but not straight away.
  • Exclusivity of the cult to the royal family (no other gods worshipped)
    • Monotheism

Amarna Revolution

  • Political agenda? Coercion necessary? Remained for less than 20 years?
  • Akhenaten buried in Thebes?
  • Art = strange. Did Akenaten have Marfans?
19 of 23

Aftermath of the Amarna Revolution

  • Movement of capital back to Thebes 
  • Development of tomb architecture (Dijk)
    • Memphis acquired free standing rock tombs 
    • Osiris - nocturnal manifestation of Ra, tombs focussed on adoring Ra not career
    • Book of the dead dominated post Amarna tombs
    • Reactions against Akhenaten's monopolisation of the funerary cult
    • Theban theocracy - Amun himself ruled Egypt with intervention via oracles
20 of 23


  • Originally called Tutankhaten changed to Tutankhamun (Karnak as centre of cult of sun god Amun-Ra added to it - Dijk)
  • Restoration stelae - presents Akhenaten's reforms as cause for gods leaving
  • Horemheb (military regent) - renowned in land of Hittites - must have had confrontations (Dijk)
  • Attempts to re-establish dominance in Nubia = successful (Dijk)
  • Treasurer Maya sentfrom Delta to Elphantine to levy taxes on temples (Dijk)
    • Also destruction of Akhenaten's temples
  • Unexpected death of Tutankhamun 
21 of 23


  • Senior court advisor Ay ascended the throne
    • Was old when he took the crown but reigned for only 3years
    • Ay may have usurped Tutankhamun's tomb as well
  • Onwards = Dijk
  • Ay may have been an interim king for Tuntankhamun's widow Ankhesenarnun was trying to negotiate a peace with the Hittites (offered marriage so they could be one country)
    • But prince murdered en route - Ay denied all responsibility
22 of 23

Horemheb from General to Pharaoh

  • Horemheb was a army general under Tutankhamun, but not involved with the burial arrangements for Tutankhamun 
  • He had started a tomb for himself at Saqqara. 
  • Horemheb succeeded to throne after Ay, despite Ay trying to prevent this. 
    • Appointed army commander Nakhtmin as heir (Dijk)
  • Defaced the monuments of Ay 
  • Uneventful reign 
    • Ruled for only 13 years - unfinished tomb at Valley of Kings suggests short reign (Dijk)
    • Trouble with Hittites unsuccessful attempt to reconquer Qadesh and Amurru (Dijk)
    • Came to agreement? Text mentions treaty that was broken from Sety I (Dijk)
  • Several builds - including Great Hypostle Hall at Karnak
  • Great Edict - legal measure to remove abuses such as unlawful requisitioning of boats (Dijk)
  • Legitimisation - chosen by god Horus of Hetnessu (prepared through being Tutankhamun's regent) presented to Amun during Opet Festival and crowned King
  • Horemheb elected a non-royal heir (general of the army)
    • Was named prince during his lifetime. 
    • The man he chose was the vizier Ramesses comes from Delta
23 of 23


No comments have yet been made

Similar Classical Civilization resources:

See all Classical Civilization resources »See all Egypt resources »