Episode 24: Lamentations


The First Intermediate Period (Part I): Collapse?

We jump slightly in time. By 2100 BCE Pepy II is gone, and with him the last securely-documented reign of the Old Kingdom. A succession of short-reigning kings (and a ruling queen?) see out the Sixth, Seventh and Eighth Dynasties. The last two are so ephemeral that we know little of the rulers beyond their names, and a few scattered decrees – and one pyramid by Kha-ka-Re Iby.

Egypt becomes disunited, ruled by provincial governors. A nominally “royal” family, the House of Khety, dominates the North. But the South is in the hand of independent families.

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Capture-FIPThe divided kingdom (Source: Google Earth).

edf1-07-View-of-western-FIP-enclosure-wall-from-north-quarry-temple-of-edfuThe First Intermediate Period walls (fortifications?) at Tell Edfu, currently excavated by the University of Chicago (Source: emhotep.net).


Love’s Labours Lost by Edwin Longsden Long (1829-1891); given Neith-Ikrety (Nitocris’) reputation for murder, her sanguine attitude seems appropriate (Source: Echoes of Egypt – Peabody Museum).


Nicolas Grimal, A History of Egypt, 1994.

Ian Shaw (editor), The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt, 2004.

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

The University of Chicago – Tell Edfu Project.

EgyptSites – Edfu.

Reshafim – Lamentations of Ipuwer.