Episode 20: Expeditions and Explorers

Weni the Elder (Part II): Service in the South

Following his admirable service to Pepy I thus far, Weni the Elder is then dispatched south to Upper Egypt, to serve as the royal Overseer.

Pepy I soon passes into the West (dies), and is succeeded by Mer-en-Re who keeps Weni as a prominent official. He sends Weni into Nubia, in order to acquire a sarcophagus for the king’s tomb – a prestigious task, giving Weni an intimate connection with his king’s fortunes in the Afterlife.

In the South, Weni builds ships and canals, expanding royal influence in Northern Nubia.

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MesehtisoldiersEgyptian soldiers of the 11th Dynasty, similar to those Weni would have led (Source: Cairo Museum via Wikipedia).

A ship built by Thor Heyerdhal in 1970, according to ancient practices (Source: Wikipedia).

Ships of the 18th Dynasty, perhaps similar to those used by Weni the Elder in his expeditions (Source: Debello.ca)


Kelsey Museum Newsletter – Abydos and the Tomb of Weni the Elder.

Renée Friedman, Egypt and Nubia: Gifts of the Desert, 2002.

William Kelly Simpson (editor), The Literature of Ancient Egypt, 2003.