Powerful Women of the Fourth Dynasty Around 2500 BCE, the Fourth Dynasty is ending. Menakaure (ep. 8) passes without heir, and the throne is unstable. So, a royal woman steps into the breach; her name is Khenty-Kaus, and she is a boss. Khenty-Kaus ("She is Foremost") places her son Shepses-kaf on the throne, and this gives [...]

Menkaure and the Third Giza Pyramid. The furious work at Giza continues, as Khafre's son Menkaure takes the throne. Opting for a smaller - but more exquisitely constructed - monument, the new king's reign heralds the more moderate phase of pyramid construction. The small size of this monument may reflect the strain being placed on the [...]

Khafre and the Second Giza Pyramid. Around 2565 BCE, the great Khufu passes into legend; now the throne comes to a new generation. His son Djed-ef-Re takes power (for a short while), but the next truly notable ruler is Khafre (2560 - 2535 BCE). This ruler is notable for two things: the second Giza pyramid, [...]