How to Make Friends and Rule the Nile Valley The pharaoh Amunhotep II (c.1430 BCE) has a reputation for cronyism. He promoted friends and confidants to positions of influence and power, seemingly on the basis of familiarity rather than merit. This contrasts sharply with his father, making Amunhotep appear to be a shift in the [...]

Amunhotep II (Part 4): Worshiping the Sphinx Before he became King, Amunhotep II made a promise to revitalize worship at the Giza necropolis. Once Pharaoh, he fulfilled that promise in spectacular fashion... Direct Download (Save As mp3) The Sphinx Temple of Amunhotep II (GizaPyramids.org) The Sphinx Temple of Amunhotep II, with limestone gateway and the [...]

ANNOUNCEMENT: the History of Egypt Podcast presents "Syrian Tales," a 3-part miniseries recounting stories from Bronze Age Syria (c.2400 to 1500 BCE). These episodes are available only by donation (here), and will release on July 01st (EST). When you donate, 100% of your donation will go to the International Rescue Committee fund for aiding victims [...]

Amunhotep II (Part 2): The Pharaoh's Servant. The Vizier Rekh-mi-Re was a powerful and influential man. Serving Thutmose III, and then Amunhotep II, Rekhmire was the mayor of Thebes, and the Vizer (tjaty) of Upper Egypt. In his day, he dealt with judicial matters, administration, economics, petitions, and power politics. To his enduring credit, he [...]

Amunhotep II (Part 1): The Early Years 1459 to 1440 BCE. Amunhotep II enjoyed a privileged upbringing. He rode chariots, competed in sports activities, and even trained horses. When he ascended to power, he continued many of these habits. From the battle-field to the sports-field, Amunhotep II immediately set out to carve a distinct niche [...]

Thutmose III (Part 10): The End of Days. 1450 to 1441 BCE. Thutmose enjoyed the last nine years of his rule with a spate of activity. He commanded a final expedition; oversaw construction work at many sites; brought his tomb to completion; and made arrangements for the succession. Finally, the day came when Thutmose would face [...]

Thutmose III (Part 9): Supremacy and Insecurity. 1455 to 1450 BCE. In his last decade, Thutmose III demonstrated a cruel streak, born of insecurity and anxiety over power. The King's insecurities centered on issues of legitimacy (his own) and security (for his son). What stimulated these? What else: the lingering question of Queen Hatshepsut and her [...]

The Religious Year (2/12). In the month of Pa-Opet ("Phaophi") the Egyptians continued their long re-enactment of the myth of Osiris. They also celebrated a huge festival in honour of the Pharaoh. And they mummifed a bunch of rams, for some reason... Direct Download (Save As mp3) The processional way from Karnak (top, off-screen) to [...]

February 2017. There have been some exciting discoveries in the recent archaeological season! We find out what they were. Direct Download (Save As mp3) Children's footprints in mortar, Qantir (Ahram.org) Entrance to the tomb of Khonsu, discovered at Luxor (Luxor Times) The legs that may belong to Queen Nefertari (LiveScience) Sources: Ahram.org - 'Monumental' Building [...]