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Amarna, Before and After


Wistman

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3 hours ago, Wistman said:

Referencing the current big discovery, I wonder when AIII's 'Golden City' of the Aten, on the west bank from Thebes, was finally dismantled. 

Did Akhetaten absorb all of AIII's city after his death and the court's move with Tiye?  Was it re-occupied at all after the fall of Amarna?  I read somewhere...I can't find it now....that Tutankhamen was put up in an older palace of Thuthmose IV on the return to Thebes, not at Malkata.  Sorry I can't verify that, could be BS.

Of course I'm guessing if it was Horemheb who ripped down any remaining buildings and any Aten references to the ground.  Perhaps it all reverted to agricultural fields and mortuary temples.  Ramesses III's temple at Medinet Habu seems built directly over the foundations of a vital part of the old city, including wavy walls as we've seen. 

 

 

 

It looks like Tutankhamun's movements after leaving Amarna are somewhat in flux with three different scenarios. I to have read that he was moved into a palace used by Thutmose IV at Thebes, but also cannot remember where I read it. I think it's one of those minor notes you read in an old book, say by Aldred, the fact, or "fact" sticks in your mind, but not where you picked it up. Then there is the generally accepted scenario of him moving to Memphis, which is of course where he eventually ended up, but the finds at the "new" site indicate he was there, and so was Ay. I think though that finding a name at a place does not mean that the king was there, and their names appear all over Egypt. I think it more likely that the capital was moved to Memphis directly from Amarna, but Tutankhamun may have been shipped down to Thebes for the sake of making a presence at the home of Amun, and probably the usual royal progress along the Nile to show off the new-ish king. I would not be surprised if he visited all the major temples to officiate.

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55 minutes ago, Aldebaran said:

I am far from convinced that the ghastly wound to the face of the Younger Lady is antemortem.

 

 

I'm going to sound like a naysayer again, but this post is just to show that different conclusions can be drawn from the same evidence. I'm going by the examinations, physical and by scan, of her. She has a lot of bone material missing where the wound is, which must have been picked out, but by the robbers, I doubt it, and why would this be done when she was dead anyway, and clearly no attempts had been made to make good her other obvious robber inflicted wounds, top of head, thorax and right arm, or those of Tiye and the boy. If it had occured when she was dead and wrapped, linen and packing materiel would have been driven deep into her mouth, but apart from a tooth loose inside, there were no remnants of wrapping or packing.

As regards robber inflicted damage as a whole, certainly they at times ripped mummies to pieces, but, apart from at times hacking into the top of the skull as part of the way they stripped the wrapping off, they left faces alone, and this is very clearly shown with Thutmose III who was dismembered, but still has a presentable face, as do all the 18th Dynasty kings, AIII being skeletonized, though intact, apart. In fact all the mummies found in both caches, and the son of Thutmose IV in KV43, all with chests smashed in as a minimum, but all with intact faces. The smashed heads of the two KV21 mummies occured after discovery in modern times.

Edited by Wepwawet
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Prof. Smith had nothing to say about the facial defect of the Younger Lady.  "Scanning the Pharaohs"  states that some bony fragments of the defect had been pushed into the antral cavity but that "most of the fractured bones are missing".  Then there was the linen packing inside the mouth, some of which escaped from the gap and was hanging down.  Looking up "antral" in association with the mouth, it seems to me that this has to do with the upper gums or maybe the roof of the mouth--as in an oro-antral fistula.  So that the bony fractures found did not have far to go.  They were not found in the throat.  As to the other fragments, they could not be shoved past the linen packing back into the throat and can have fallen out at any time during any type of handling.
 

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The University of York, with a team including Joanne Fletcher, concluded that the wound would have been the cause of death, or, if not the cause, had occured before mummification. They put forward the opinion that if not the cause of death, it may have been inflicted to prevent her soul from breathing, from negating the possibility of the magic perfomed at the opening of the mouth ceremony from working. They don't put it in exactly those terms, but it's clear that is what is implied. I still think it was the cause of death, though if they made good in some form or other a body before wrapping so that a damaged corpse had at least the outward semblance of being whole, an important element for them, so then could they deliberately damage a body to cripple the persons soul in death. If, whoever she was, spoke to much, or said things not liked, then they prevented her from speaking after death. Jabbering away to much, and, basically bad mouthing, were both included among the 42 negative confessions. Maybe they preempted judgement. I fear those of us who jabber away on forums may have some difficulty at judgement, but not to worry, just buy a spell to stop your heart lying, and these things work, don't they, really, oh.... er, hi there Ammit, what big teeth you have.

Edited by Wepwawet
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3 hours ago, Wepwawet said:

It looks like Tutankhamun's movements after leaving Amarna are somewhat in flux with three different scenarios. I to have read that he was moved into a palace used by Thutmose IV at Thebes, but also cannot remember where I read it. I think it's one of those minor notes you read in an old book, say by Aldred, the fact, or "fact" sticks in your mind, but not where you picked it up. Then there is the generally accepted scenario of him moving to Memphis, which is of course where he eventually ended up, but the finds at the "new" site indicate he was there, and so was Ay. I think though that finding a name at a place does not mean that the king was there, and their names appear all over Egypt. I think it more likely that the capital was moved to Memphis directly from Amarna, but Tutankhamun may have been shipped down to Thebes for the sake of making a presence at the home of Amun, and probably the usual royal progress along the Nile to show off the new-ish king. I would not be surprised if he visited all the major temples to officiate.

Memphis certainly makes the most sense.  After all, much of the nation's institutional bureaucracy/administration permanently resided there, even during the Amarna era.  It would likely have been the most commodious for the Royal court if exiting Akhetaten had become de regueur.  We can guess that Malkata had become at least somewhat run-down in the court's absence and the implications are that the golden city would have sharply degraded if not worse.  However, at Memphis, the Great Temple of Ptah had not been shut down during the Amarna episode, though under Akhenaten there was no HPP  (the temple had been administered by an Amarna appointed official resident at Memphis,) and in fact there had even been an Apis burial during Akhenaten's early reign (Apis II), but we can say now it could have been during the co-regency with his father (Dodsen, 1999), so stepping back into the traditional scheme of the old gods and Pharaoh's role would surely be smoother at Memphis than would be so with the shut-down Amun Temple and rickety palace situation at Thebes after Amarna's fall.

 

 

Edited by Wistman
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6 hours ago, Wepwawet said:

The University of York, with a team including Joanne Fletcher, concluded that the wound would have been the cause of death, or, if not the cause, had occured before mummification. They put forward the opinion that if not the cause of death, it may have been inflicted to prevent her soul from breathing, from negating the possibility of the magic perfomed at the opening of the mouth ceremony from working. They don't put it in exactly those terms, but it's clear that is what is implied. I still think it was the cause of death, though if they made good in some form or other a body before wrapping so that a damaged corpse had at least the outward semblance of being whole, an important element for them, so then could they deliberately damage a body to cripple the persons soul in death. If, whoever she was, spoke to much, or said things not liked, then they prevented her from speaking after death. Jabbering away to much, and, basically bad mouthing, were both included among the 42 negative confessions. Maybe they preempted judgement. I fear those of us who jabber away on forums may have some difficulty at judgement, but not to Tworry, just buy a spell to stop your heart lying, and these things work, don't they, really, oh.... er, hi there Ammit, what big teeth you have.

The reason why that somewhat works for me is the serenity on the YL's face, in spite of that horrific gash.  One expects to see stress on the face from that sort of thing, though the mummification process I'm sure can smooth things out, done properly, which hers apparently was.   Her brain wasn't removed, which is supposedly unique for the era.  And her heart was still in her chest cavity.  But the mouth smashed seems so personal an action, such an affront to her beautiful face. and if it at the same time is depriving Nefertiti of her immortality, well that smells like a cunning and personal post-mortem revenge, imo. 

Or her mummy got knocked around a lot by people in a hurry.  It sure did.  But what reason is there to attack the mouth if robbery is the motive.

Or... she died from the wound, which is what Fletcher et al concluded.  Hard to argue with the forensic scientists.  If that's Nefertiti, I think there has to have been a coup.

 

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10 hours ago, Wistman said:

Or... she died from the wound, which is what Fletcher et al concluded.  Hard to argue with the forensic scientists.  If that's Nefertiti, I think there has to have been a coup.

 

Which causes a problem for anybody, myself included, who doubts the YL is Nefertiti. If we are looking at evidence of a coup, then who is more likely to be the target as a female. There's Meketaten, who has utterly vanished along with Smenkhare, but the YL cannot be her. This, and we can only go on the names we have, leaves Nefertiti, or a horse dunnit and we can all drop the coup conspiracy theories. Beketaten is too ephemeral and has no recorded existance beyond childhood, so if she were a major player, I think there should be some record, as there is with Meritaten, but, so much is missing, and just one find could turn everything on it's head.

But everything about the end of the Amarna episode screams coup, and even counter coup and counter counter coup. Coup by Smenkhare and Meritaten, counter coup by Nefertiti, and then coup against her by, Horemheb? Looking at the shenanigans indulged in by royal families down the ages, anything, no matter now far fetched, could be possible.

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1 hour ago, Wepwawet said:

Which causes a problem for anybody, myself included, who doubts the YL is Nefertiti. If we are looking at evidence of a coup, then who is more likely to be the target as a female. There's Meketaten, who has utterly vanished along with Smenkhare, but the YL cannot be her. This, and we can only go on the names we have, leaves Nefertiti, or a horse dunnit and we can all drop the coup conspiracy theories. Beketaten is too ephemeral and has no recorded existance beyond childhood, so if she were a major player, I think there should be some record, as there is with Meritaten, but, so much is missing, and just one find could turn everything on it's head.

But everything about the end of the Amarna episode screams coup, and even counter coup and counter counter coup. Coup by Smenkhare and Meritaten, counter coup by Nefertiti, and then coup against her by, Horemheb? Looking at the shenanigans indulged in by royal families down the ages, anything, no matter now far fetched, could be possible.

Nor am I convinced YL is Nefertiti, but it is possible.  The lack of epigraphic reference for her as full royal daughter of AIII and Tiye (which the DNA demands), with all her power, fame, and pride for so many years, argues strongly against it being her, imo.  But then how could her rise be so meteoric as wife of Akhenaten, from its outset.

I also think KV55's identity as Akhenaten isn't proved.  However, If we insert Smenkhkare, as half-brother of Akhenaten he's not a son of Tiye.  If Meritaten is YL, she's no daughter but granddaughter of AIII and Tiye.  Nefertiti and Akhenaten as YL and KV55 are so far the 'best' fit to the DNA, if we concede that Nefertiti was royal daughter as Amenhotep IV was royal prince, and Tut was their twilight child.

eta:  There is the possibility that Smenkhkare was not half-brother to Akhenaten but full brother, which might give further strength to his following Akhenaten on the throne.  If Tut were his son by Meritaten (YL...perhaps all the close breeding in the royal family has yielded confusing results in her case, as to AIII and Tiye being grandparents), the coup would have been against them to keep Nefertiti in power, but as king/regent, following Hatshepsut's precedent.  Once again, lack of epigraphic material to support this.

 

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3 hours ago, Wistman said:

ut were his son by Meritaten (YL...perhaps all the close breeding in the royal family has yielded confusing results in her case, as to AIII and Tiye being grandparents), the coup would have been against them to keep Nefertiti in power, but as king/regent, following Hatshepsut's precedent.  Once again, lack of epigraphic material to support this.

 

It wouldn't work unless Meritaten's parents were a full brother and sister.  See this.

https://www.academia.edu/38584809/The_Mother_of_Tutankhamen_is_Not_Meritaten_Contra_M_Traugott_Huber

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5 hours ago, Wepwawet said:

There's Meketaten, who has utterly vanished along with Smenkhare,

 

Nope, there's Meketaten dead in TA26 some years earlier, so where is Meritaten, and why are there so many names that trip you up...

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4 hours ago, Wistman said:

There is the possibility that Smenkhkare was not half-brother to Akhenaten but full brother, which might give further strength to his following Akhenaten on the throne.

I think the convention is that brothers of a reigning king have no claim on the throne, and that no king's brother ever became king, in fact they never even used the title of king's brother, perhaps because it implies that the king has an almost equal, and that it should always be a son following his father to confer religious legitimacy, and I think that @Aldebaran may have some thoughts on this, and the curious lack of surviving mummies of kings who where themselves never a king's son.

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1 hour ago, Wepwawet said:

I think the convention is that brothers of a reigning king have no claim on the throne, and that no king's brother ever became king, in fact they never even used the title of king's brother, perhaps because it implies that the king has an almost equal, and that it should always be a son following his father to confer religious legitimacy, and I think that @Aldebaran may have some thoughts on this, and the curious lack of surviving mummies of kings who where themselves never a king's son.

The last statement seems to be true.  What happened to the younger brothers of kings?  Nobody knows.  Did the pharaoh have them executed like the Sultans of Turkey did their brothers?   I hope not but....the thing is, though, that the word for brother "sn" also meant "equal" in Egyptian and, of course, the king could have no equal.  There is only one primary source that I can think of where a ruler has a "brother" and that is on the statue of Inebni in the British Museum.  On this piece Inebni, shown with the face of Hatshepsut, obviously considers her his primary sovereign but Thutmose III is also there as "sn=s" or "her brother".  [The cartouche of Hatshepsut was later erased]  However, this was not an ordinary reign by any means.  Thutmose III seems to have been the nephew of Hatshepsut and the word for that is "sn Sri" or "little brother".  However, can one really refer to a king as "little" in any context?  I doubt it--so maybe "sn" had to suffice, especially since these two were equals in the sense that they were coregents.

I think that in the 20th Dynasty era male relatives other than father and son succeeded one another once or twice but am not now sure how they were related. The very interesting Egyptian story, "Tale of the Two Brothers", written during the late part of Dynasty 19, even has an elder brother succeeding his younger brother who was made king.  But, since these brothers had been mere peasants in the first place, one can't conclude too much there.  

 

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20 hours ago, Wepwawet said:

I think the convention is that brothers of a reigning king have no claim on the throne, and that no king's brother ever became king, in fact they never even used the title of king's brother, perhaps because it implies that the king has an almost equal, and that it should always be a son following his father to confer religious legitimacy, and I think that @Aldebaran may have some thoughts on this, and the curious lack of surviving mummies of kings who where themselves never a king's son.

 

18 hours ago, Aldebaran said:

The last statement seems to be true.  What happened to the younger brothers of kings?  Nobody knows.  Did the pharaoh have them executed like the Sultans of Turkey did their brothers?   I hope not but....the thing is, though, that the word for brother "sn" also meant "equal" in Egyptian and, of course, the king could have no equal.  There is only one primary source that I can think of where a ruler has a "brother" and that is on the statue of Inebni in the British Museum.  On this piece Inebni, shown with the face of Hatshepsut, obviously considers her his primary sovereign but Thutmose III is also there as "sn=s" or "her brother".  [The cartouche of Hatshepsut was later erased]  However, this was not an ordinary reign by any means.  Thutmose III seems to have been the nephew of Hatshepsut and the word for that is "sn Sri" or "little brother".  However, can one really refer to a king as "little" in any context?  I doubt it--so maybe "sn" had to suffice, especially since these two were equals in the sense that they were coregents.

I think that in the 20th Dynasty era male relatives other than father and son succeeded one another once or twice but am not now sure how they were related. The very interesting Egyptian story, "Tale of the Two Brothers", written during the late part of Dynasty 19, even has an elder brother succeeding his younger brother who was made king.  But, since these brothers had been mere peasants in the first place, one can't conclude too much there.  

 

Sure, I agree (at least preceding dyn 19) most royal princes are unaccounted for and unnamed, and do not accede to the throne after the pharaoh dies.  .

But I can note that if a full brother cannot, cannot succeed his brother on the throne, it seems to me that then neither can a half-brother do so.  That leaves Smenkhkare out of the succession, at least in the scenario we've been discussing.  Akhenaten broke many traditions, customs, rules....if Tut weren't his own son but Smenkhkare's, he could have seen no acceptable alternative other than his half or full brother on the throne, and just named him as heir.  With political consequences to follow.

Meritaten's parents could have been full brother/sister, while Tut could have been her son.

Edited by Wistman
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2 hours ago, Wistman said:

Sure, I agree (at least preceding dyn 19) most royal princes are unaccounted for and unnamed, and do not accede to the throne after the pharaoh dies.  .

But I can note that if a full brother cannot, cannot succeed his brother on the throne, it seems to me that then neither can a half-brother do so.  That leaves Smenkhkare out of the succession, at least in the scenario we've been discussing.  Akhenaten broke many traditions, customs, rules....if Tut weren't his own son but Smenkhkare's, he could have seen no acceptable alternative other than his half or full brother on the throne, and just named him as heir.  With political consequences to follow.

Meritaten's parents could have been full brother/sister, while Tut could have been her son.

Well, some royal princes, other than the ultimate successor, are shown as children and even young adults [Amenmose and Wadjmose, sons of Thutmose I] in the tombs of their tutors.  As the pharaohs practiced polygamy, they usually had enough sons for one to be heir.  I'm far from sure that a full brother never succeeded.  But, if there was an actual son of the king existing, a brother would probably not be considered because that was not a part of the "Osiris and Horus" pattern.  Smenkhkare did succeed.  That is probably because he really was an older son of Akhenaten, older than Tutankhamun, certainly,  There is no evidence that would point toward him being an actual brother of Akhenaten.

There was a coregency between Akhenaten and Smenkhkare, albeit a brief one, and a coregency always has a purpose.  My theory is that because Smenkhkare was not a son of the Great Royal Wife and little Tut was--Akhenaten had to find the means to bypass Tut if he did not want a small boy to succeed him.  Otherwise--no need for a coregency and Tut simply succeeds.  But Smenkhkare was a better choice as he was about the same age as Meritaten and these two could make an adult [by oriental standards] king and consort.  Perhaps the situation of the royal family was shaky in those times and, if this family was going to continue to rule, someone other than a little boy would make a stronger showing.

Mertaten was the daughter of Akhenaten and Nefertiti.  If the parents would have to have been a brother and a sister, if the YL is Meriten, then why not simply Akhenaten and Nefertiti in the first place as the YL and the KV55 individual?  Also, if the KV55 person is Akhenaten, then the YL cannot be Meritaten for sure as she cannot be his daughter according to their DNA.

 

 

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22 hours ago, Aldebaran said:

Well, some royal princes, other than the ultimate successor, are shown as children and even young adults [Amenmose and Wadjmose, sons of Thutmose I] in the tombs of their tutors.  As the pharaohs practiced polygamy, they usually had enough sons for one to be heir.  I'm far from sure that a full brother never succeeded.  But, if there was an actual son of the king existing, a brother would probably not be considered because that was not a part of the "Osiris and Horus" pattern.  Smenkhkare did succeed.  That is probably because he really was an older son of Akhenaten, older than Tutankhamun, certainly,  There is no evidence that would point toward him being an actual brother of Akhenaten.

There was a coregency between Akhenaten and Smenkhkare, albeit a brief one, and a coregency always has a purpose.  My theory is that because Smenkhkare was not a son of the Great Royal Wife and little Tut was--Akhenaten had to find the means to bypass Tut if he did not want a small boy to succeed him.  Otherwise--no need for a coregency and Tut simply succeeds.  But Smenkhkare was a better choice as he was about the same age as Meritaten and these two could make an adult [by oriental standards] king and consort.  Perhaps the situation of the royal family was shaky in those times and, if this family was going to continue to rule, someone other than a little boy would make a stronger showing.

Mertaten was the daughter of Akhenaten and Nefertiti.  If the parents would have to have been a brother and a sister, if the YL is Meriten, then why not simply Akhenaten and Nefertiti in the first place as the YL and the KV55 individual?  Also, if the KV55 person is Akhenaten, then the YL cannot be Meritaten for sure as she cannot be his daughter according to their DNA.

Your theory about this is very compelling and once again I appreciate that you can be here to discuss the niceties with us.

In your theory, and seemingly due to Horemheb's interventions, what has to be accepted without supporting material is that Tut is Nefertiti's long awaited male child, and that she was full sister to Akhenaten.  But this scenario would fit the DNA evidence, which can't be gotten around.

However, I think this brings up certain questions.  Nefertiti was clearly no shrinking violet and played a power dynamic with her husband, ruling jointly, seemingly, from the beginning of their marriage.  Tiye may have been a role model for her to do this, but I think we can admit Nefertiti took it further than Tiye ever did (admittedly she may have been looking at Hatshepsut as well.)   It is curious to find Akhenaten, at any point, defying his formidable wife and appointing an adult, lesser prince as his heir when she could just as well rule as regent while her son was a minor.  I think she would have fought a substitute heir arrangement, hook line and sinker.  The declining Akhenaten suddenly finding a spine, disinheriting his own son and defying her is curious, breaking the overarching pattern of their long relationship.

I've highlighted in your answer above the supposition that concerns me.  That of Tut being Nefertiti's son.  If he wasn't her son, then she couldn't honorably object to Akhenaten's diligence in finding another suitable royal prince to follow him.  Supposing differently, if Akhenaten did have a younger brother, who already had a son by way of his wife the royal princess Meritaten, Akhenaten's own daughter, then that might have seemed a doable solution for the king without a crown prince of his own, although an unprecedented dynastic move.  As I mentioned previously, it is possible for this to fit the DNA evidence, and hence the reason for proposing Meritaten as being YL.  Yes, this would have to include Akhenaten and Nefertiti being full siblings, your point, for it to work...but it could work, based on a different mode of supposition.

And I can't see either of these dynastic 'solutions' suiting the mighty Nefertiti.  She would have plotted a turnabout, I'm sure.

Edited by Wistman
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Another angle could be an intent by Akhenaten to create another Shu and Tefnut brother/sister pairing. Well we do have this with Tutankhamun and Ankhesenamun, I think, because we don't have her mummy. Let's say that Nefertiti ordered this marriage, then it would be difficult to understand why she would create a second level of inbreeding, which they did know was bad, other than for religious reasons dictated by Atenism. I suspect that other known brother sister marriages were more as show, and not consumated, and no 18th Dynasty king is the result of inbreeding except Tutankhamun. However, Smenkhare and Meritaten would fit the bill for a new Shu and Tefnut, provided Smenkhare was the first born son of Akhenaten, and born early in the reign, perhaps in the several year gap between Meritaten and Mechano Meketaten, damn these names. The fact of this marriage suggests to me that they were in fact full brother and sister, not uncle and niece. This reign failed for unknown reasons, and I presume that both died at this time, and Nefertiti, now sole ruler, has tried to continue with "the plan" with herself in the role occupied, not by Akhenaten, but by Amunhotep III as Ra-Horakhty/Aten, and able to do so due to the Aten being both male and female, how very modern. A male king becoming a god is one thing, and a female king was accepted from time to time, but perhaps a female king becoming "God", may be a step too far, chop!.

So, was Nefertiti actually returning to orthodoxy, as is sort of believed but without any firm evidence, or maybe doing some  things to try to prevent discontent getting out of hand, while still being a full on Atenist.

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There is no Geb, and there isn't really a Tefnut in a tangible form, and neither is there much of a cosmology beyond the Great Hymn, which does not mention any god except the Aten and Maat, who is not so much an actual goddess, but a concept, which is why she was only ever depicted as just the feather in Atenism. There is a, I think, ring bezel that has Akhenaten and Nefertiti as Shu and Tefnut, but other than this, Tefnut is not present in either visual or textual form. It may have been taken at the time that Nefertiti took on the role of Tefnut, but it seems somewhat vague.  I would have thought that this may be at least hinted at at the Hwt-bnbn, but she is just GRW to Akhenaten worshipping the Aten and assisted by Meritaten.

As Hornung points out, the early name of the Aten sounds not so much an actual name, more like a credo, and I'll give the full name for reference.

Ra-Horakhty, who rejoices in the horizon in his name Shu, who is Aten.

This is one god without a female counterpart as in Ra and Raet, Amun and Amunet. There is no "Shu-et", and there is no evidence for Tefnut other than one piece of non liturgical evidence. If Nefertiti were a god, Tefnut, in her own right, I think there would be some evidence, so that is why I suggested that when she became sole ruler, she may have taken on the role of if not actually the Aten, but one of the elements that make up the Sungod, but in masculine form as these female counterparts are what you could call non executive and rairly depicted, Amun and Amunet being the only couple depicted that I can think of, and they were in the guise of Tutankhamun and Anhkesenamun.

Edit: To associate Shu and Tefnut so directly in the way that is commonplace, is a case of us in modern times not just joining up dots, but creating dots in large blank areas to suit what we think should be there. Essentially, Shu and Tefnut are part of Atum, and when the Aten took the place of Atum, then they were also Shu and Tefnut, and so would be a mortal with a huge god complex. Akhenaten could be both Shu and Tefnut as there is no place for Nefertiti in the cosmolgy and liturgy other than the role of GRW, as seen on all depictions of her with Akhenaten worshipping the Aten, at least until year 17 when Nefertiti becomes Ankhetkheprure Neferneferuaten.

To be mischevious I'll throw this suggestion into the ring. Neferneferuaten is not Nefertiti, it is also Akhenaten who, by now being the Aten, can be both Shu and Tefnut at the same time, the epithets of Neferneferuaten just adding to the facade. This makes Meritaten GRW to just the one male monarch. Hey, if Norman Bates can also be Norma, anything is possible, isn't it, mother.  :)

Edited by Wepwawet
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:D   Thanks for that.  I think. 

I suppose the hermaphroditic portrayal of Akhenaten has something to do with the simultaneous male/female aspect of Aten.

And, it follows, the interchangeability of the two monarchs?

Maybe that's too literal of me.  :)        

@Wepwawet

Edited by Wistman
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33 minutes ago, Wistman said:

:D   Thanks for that.  I think. 

I suppose the hermaphroditic portrayal of Akhenaten has something to do with the simultaneous male/female aspect of Aten.

And, it follows, the interchangeability of the two monarchs?

Maybe that's too literal of me.  :)        

@Wepwawet

A Spanish grad student I worked with once thought the somewhat bizarre interpretations of Akhaenaten came from an artist who had the temperament of Picasso.

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There is debate as to whether the early "Osirid" statues of Akhenaten are all of him, or of him and Nefertiti, but this I think is driven by the female hips on all of them.

Going back a generation we see that Queen Tiye was represented as Tefnut, as well as other goddesses, so I don't want to make it seem that it was not possible for Nefertiti to be seen as Tefnut, if not depicted as her. A GRW could always be depicted as a goddess, so it's not unusual at all, but what is unusual is Akhenaten getting rid of all the other gods and zeroing in on the core, at first Ra-Horakhty, Shu and the Aten, then just the Aten, but, though nothing is written that survives, it has to be implicit that all the aspects of the Sungod are within the Aten, and so probable that there is no room for more than Akhenaten as the son of the Aten, and Nefetiti is never the "daughter of the Aten", almost everything, from the perspective of Akhenaten, is me me me.

However, because it is Amarna and therefore ridiculously complicated and contradictory, I shall contradict myself, to an extent. Tiye is depicted as Hathor and Tefnut at her temple at Sedeinga, and as Tefnut she is shown as a human headed sphinx with the epithet "Great of Fearsomeness", fitting for an "Eye goddess". She wears a crown, and it is flat topped, just like Nefertiti's, which we are always told is unique to her, so, maybe not and Nefertiti is following Tiye. Then we have the "smiting" depiction of Nefertiti, a pose always reserved for kings, not a GRW. But could the origin of Nefertiti in this pose also go back to Tiye as Tefnut, "Great of Fearsomeness", and for that insight I'll reference Dodson in "Amarna Sunrise", though he does not make any mention of Tiye's Nefertiti like flat topped crown. So, Nefertiti could be shown as Tefnut, but in a rather cryptic fashion, not unusual for the Ancient Egyptians, and it with Tutankhamun that the first of the cryptographic "Enigmatic books of the Underworld" appear.

Edited by Wepwawet
lots of typos
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Tiye is at Sedeinga as Tefnut, and Amunhotep III is at nearby Soleb as Khonsu, because they are representing the myth of the "distant goddesses", the two Solar Eyes who wandered off during the Rebellion against Ra, as told in the Book of the Heavenly Cow and had to be brought back. In this case Tefnut who wandered to distant Nubia, and Khonsu who went to bring her back as that far South would be considered the "domain" of the Lunar eye, while far to the North is the "domain" of the solar eye, or respectively the Eye of Horus and the Eye of Ra, represented by Sekhmet, the other "distant goddess". There should be two temples in Lower Egypt to provide a mirror image, but likely long destroyed. Given what the image of Tiye as Tefnut is representing, I don't see that the Nefertiti smiting image should be considered to show her as Tefnut as it does not fit into the mythology, or geography of where the Egyptians saw the myth taking place.

Is there a pattern here with the eye goddesses, Tiye as Tefnut and Sekhmet appearing in considerable force at Thebes, and seeming to supplant the resident, but parvenue eye goddess, Mut, later consigned, at least for a while, to oblivion. And those Lunar necklaces of Tutankhamun and the Book of the Heavenly Cow on his outer shrine. But don't mind me as I'm just thinking aloud, and there's Prince Thutmose as HPP, whose wife is Sekhmet, and so many of them in massed ranks at Karnak, so very very many.

Edited by Wepwawet
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W. Raymond Johnson (UoC) in 1996 had this to say in Amenhotep III and Amarna:

Quote

Just as Queen Tiye participated in the deification ritual of her husband, became the living manifestation of all of Egypt's goddesses, and was represented thereafter in the tripartite wig and plumed/horned crown of the sun god's consort Hathor in numerous reliefs and statuary, even at Amarna, so might the presence of Shu, the firstborn child of the creator god, have been ritually required in Amenhotep III's deification programme in order to complete his own divine triad. The iconography of Akhenaten's monuments, particularly in the earlier work, stresses the king's role as the god Shu, the embodiment of air, light, sunbeams, and all life. On an early Amarna relief from Brooklyn, 41.82, Nefertiti offers to the Aten a figure of Shu crowned with his distinctive four feathers.  A number of the sandstone colossi of Akhenaten found at East Karnak were originally crowned with these same four feathers of Onuris-Shu, while Akhenaten's exaggerated female characteristics in his sculpture and relief work underscore Shu's dual nature at creation as inherently both male and female. Nefertiti shared this role as Tefnut, the female counterpart of Shu.

A quite informative article, I think, at least for me.

https://faculty.uml.edu/ethan_spanier/teaching/documents/amenhotepiiiandamarna.pdf

 

 

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That's a good article and goes into detail about AIII and Tiye, and that she was certainly portrayed as Tefnut, though primarily as Hathor, another "eye goddess" of course. Where the Amarna brick wall appears is in the comment "Nefertiti shared this role as Tefnut, the female counterpart of Shu". This is something that I had always taken as a given and never questioned, until looking closer. In 001K this was not looked into, just assumed to be fact. The same type of statement as the one I've quoted above is not uncommon, but never fleshed out. Shu is obviously present at Amarna, and as Atum, Shu and Tefnut are one and the same, then Tefnut is also there, but is Nefertiti ever clearly shown as Tefnut as Tiye was, and is she ever referred to, even obliquely, as Tefnut, for instance, does she ever use any of Tefnut's epithets. Can any depiction of Akhenaten and Nefertiti be said to represent Shu and Tefnut, other than this made up example, "Oh, Shu and Tefnut are the son and daughter of Atum, who is also the Aten, so any scene of them must represent Shu and Tefnut" This type of statement, or implication, swirls around all this, but is there any substance, not that I can find. Maybe somebody has discerned some real evidence and I've not yet come across it, only assumptions, or like the case of the Byblos god discussed in another thread, one author references another, who references another, who references another, and on it goes until the trail ends up at needing to access a physical book long out of print, not online, and held in a university library.

In retrospect it's a pity that this was not dug into on 001K, as we might have a ready made answer and case closed on if Nefertiti was Tefnut, or not. I'm quite happy for it to be proven that she was Tefnut, it does seem to be a thing given the presense of Shu, but the answer just seems out of reach, like it's written on a scrap of paper being blown by the wind, and just as you think you can grap it, a gust blows it further away. Is this not true of Amarna as a whole though, and what Churchill said about Russia comes to mind, "A riddle wrapped in mystery inside an enigma".

Edited by Wepwawet
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On 9/3/2021 at 10:20 AM, Wistman said:

Nefertiti was clearly no shrinking violet and played a power dynamic with her husband, ruling jointly, seemingly, from the beginning of their marriage.

We don't know anything about the true personality of Nefertiti.  But one thing is clear in my mind, at least.  Nefertiti began her queenship as a goddess--Tefnut--due to Amenhotep III starting the propaganda that he was to be considered the living embodiment of the sun around his Year 30.  The sun needed a Shu and a Tefnut, from whom he could not be separated.  That was the basis for the entire Amarna Age.

Tefnut was a powerful goddess as she was sometimes shown with the head of a lioness. Nefertiti was depicted as a powerful woman occasionally. as well.  She was even a coregent with her husband at some point for a short duration.  Although I can't deny the capability of a wife exerting influence over her husband/king, there is no proof of it ever in ancient Egypt.  Usually, queens and princesses are shown holding sistra and menats, instruments of supplication.  In a story, "The Tale of Sinuhe", the royal daughters hold them while begging their father, the pharaoh, to be lenient to Sinuhe.  In a polygamous lifestyle, the queens were perhaps not even loved by their husbands.  Nefertiti was the chief wife but, for all we know, one of Akhenaten's other wives, Kiya, [styled greatly beloved] might have been his favorite.  Or someone else.  There is still polygamy in Utah in the US.  If you see a man with his wives in a documentary, you will see him holding hands with the youngest one while the others hover helplessly.  It becomes plain that, in polygamy, only the youngest and newest wife is the obsession, though perhaps only temporarily.  

So it can't be known how much influence Nefertiti had over Akhenaten, if any.  He did as he pleased because he was the king and not simply an ordinary husband whose wife could hold him hostage in some ways.  Giving ones husband the cold shoulder in polygamy is useless as he has warm ones to turn to.  However, once Akhenaten was dead and Smenkhkare, too, that was a different story.    .  

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