Looking Back (Episode 107)

Amunhotep III (Part 14): The End.

It is time to wrap up the great king’s reign. From 1363-1362 BCE, Neb-ma’at-Re Amunhotep III suffered a decline in health, achieved a notable diplomatic victory, and celebrated one last Sed-Festival.

In this episode, we explore the last years of the legendary pharaoh: his achievements, his pathology (preserved in his mummy) and the magnificent tomb constructed for his burial.

  • Time Period: c. 1363 – 1362 BCE.
  • Kings: Neb-ma’at-Re Amunhotep III; Kadashman-Enlil I of Babylon.
  • Locations: Waset (Thebes); Malqata Palace; Babylon.


107. Logo (1) Listen

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Kheruef 1
Raising the Djed-Pillar at Amunhotep’s Third Sed-Festival (Tomb of Kheruef).
107. Tomb
The tomb of Amunhotep III (KV22 / WV22) (Theban Mapping Project).
107. Amunhotep III - Copy
The skull of Amunhotep III, showing his terrible dental condition at the end of his life (Smith, Royal Mummies).
107. Amunhotep III mummy
The wrapped mummy of Amunhotep III – reburied in the KV35 cache in a different coffin (Smith, Royal Mummies).
107.2 Well Chamber (1) North Wall
The decoration in Amunhotep III’s tomb: well-shaft (Osiris.net).
107.4 Burial Chamber North Wall (2)
The Book of the Hidden Chamber (Amduat) in the burial hall (Osiris.net).
107.4 Burial Chamber Pillar (3)
The King before Hathor – burial hall (Osiris.net).

Select Bibliography

Dieter Arnold, The Monuments of Egypt, 2009.

Lawrence M. Berman (ed.), The Art of Amenhotep III: Art Historical Analysis, 1987.

Norman G. Bisset (et al.), “Was Opium Known in 18th Dynasty Ancient Egypt? An Examination of Materials from the Tomb of the Chief Royal Architect Kha” Ägypten und Levante / Egypt and the Levant (1996): 199-201.

Aidan Dodson, Amarna Sunrise, 2014.

Aidan Dodson and Dyan Hilton, The Complete Royal Families of ancient Egypt, 2010.

The Epigraphic Survey, The Tomb of Kheruef: Theban Tomb 192, 1980 (Digital Edition).

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

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

Marc van de Mieroop, A History of the Ancient Near East ca. 3000 – 323 BC, 2016.

William L. Moran, The Amarna Letters, 1992.

David O’Connor and Eric Cline (eds.) Amenhotep III: Perspectives on His Reign, 2001.

Nicholas Reeves and Richard H. Wilkinson, The Complete Valley of the Kings, 2008.

G.E. Smith, The Royal Mummies, 1912 (Chicago Digital Edition).

Richard H. Wilkinson, The Complete Gods and Goddesses of Ancient Egypt, 2003.


The Theban Mapping Project: KV22 (Amunhotep III)

Osiris.Net: WV22 (Amunhotep III)

Website of The Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Joe says:

    Have you heard about the study showing the well shaft was a means for tomb excavators to see the geological strata to ensure the growing tomb will not hit a shale layer as it is carved downwards. The theory is based on the claim that no tombs in the Valley of the Kings ever go below the level of the well shaft base. This is apparently common practice for miners, engineers etc. The well shaft was then decorated in later years with the antechamber at the bottom.

    1. DominicPerry says:

      Hi Joe, I’m not aware of that study but it sounds very interesting. Do you have a reference or link?

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