Episode 99: Sakhmet’s Demons

Amunhotep III (Part 9): The Dark Years.

Between 1380 and 1370 BCE, Egypt may have suffered an outbreak of disease. In this decade, at least four royal family members died, and the political situation was irrevocably changed. It wasn’t all bad, though: around 1380, Queen Tiy went through the difficulties of childbirth and offered a new son to the lineage…

podcast episode 99 sakhmet statue (Met Museum)(1)

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podcast episode 99 birthing

The birthing process reconstructed (Wegner 2010).

98. Mutemwia shawabti (Vritual Egyptian Museum)

A funerary statue (shabti) of Queen Mother Mut-em-wia, probably from her tomb.

99 thutmose bier

The mummiform bier of prince Thutmose.

The mummies of Yuya (left) and Tjuyu (right).

podcast episode 99 sakhmet statue (Met Museum)

A statue to Sakhmet, one of 700+ created in the reign of Amunhotep III (Met Museum).


A section of the Edwin Smith Papyus, a medical text compiled around 1600 BCE.


James P. Allen, The Art of Medicine in Ancient Egypt, 2005.

Anne Austin, “Contending with illness in ancient Egypt: A textual and osteological study of health care at Deir el-Medina,” unpublished PhD Thesis (2014) (online)

Eric Cline and David O’Connor, Amenhotep III: Perspectives on His Reign, 1998 (Amazon).

Theodore M. Davis The Tomb of Iouiya and Touiyou, 2000 (reprint).

Aidan Dodson, Amarna Sunrise, 2014 (Amazon).

Aidan Dodson, “Crown Prince Djhutmose and the Royal Sons of the Eighteenth Dynasty,” Journal of Egyptian Archaeology (1990).

Hans Goedicke, “The Canaanite Illness,” Studien zur Altägyptischen Kultur (1984).

Erik Hornung, Conceptions of God in Ancient Egypt: the One and the Many, 1996 (Amazon).

Arielle P. Kozloff, Amenhotep III: Egypt’s Radiant Pharaoh, 2012 (Amazon).

Arielle P. Kozloff and Betsy M. Bryan, Egypt’s Dazzling Sun: Amenhotep III and His World, 1992.

Kathleen Kuckens, “The Children of Amarna: Disease and Famine in the Time of Akhenaten,” unpublished MA Thesis ( (online)

Eva Panagiotakopulu, “Pharaonic Egypt and the Origins of Plague,” Journal of Biogeography (2004).

James Quibell, The Tomb of Yuaa and Thuiu, 1908 (archive.org).

Donald B. Redford, Akhenaten: The Heretic King, 1984 (Amazon).

Josef Wegner, “Tradition and Innovation: the Middle Kingdom,” Egyptian Archaeology, 2010.


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