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Amarna, Before and After


Wistman

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, Aldebaran said:

The modern-day story of KV35 is here:

I have to say that I had just assumed that they had been taken to Cairo with the others, this sort of information is just not really out there in a clear fashion. There's also another issue with their movements in modern times, when and where were they X-Rayed, in KV35, or Cairo. Reading Harris and Wente in their 1980 publication, they state that the royal mummies as a group had been X-Rayed multiple times since 1912. The X-Rays published in their book were carried out starting in 1967, and while they do not state where they were carried out, what you can see in the backgrounds to photos of the equipement being set up suggests the Egyptian Museum. So as Tiye and the other two were X-Rayed, and the authors make no mention of expeditions to the VoK, I assume they were brought to Cairo. So as this was not the first time they were X-Rayed, I wonder how many times they had been moved since Loret found them, too many I would suggest, and then there was 2003 and 2007 to add, plus the final move out of KV35 to Cairo in, I think about 2016 ish, then the boy is taken back to Luxor in 2022 to be DNA tested, a frivolous exercise as far as moving him goes to create a "story" for the documentary cameras, I mean, they cannot do a DNA test in Cairo ?, no wonder his feet and other bits have fallen off.

I had read about KV57 and the possibility of other mummies being in there, but I couldn't come up with a scenario that puts Tiye and the others in there. Well, he could have had them there, and being "nice" to them by giving them a home, but why then chuck them out, which would probably have been Ramesses I, and if the YL is Nefertiti, would Horemheb have had her in his tomb at all considering what he did to KV55. But, like the arm, it's all just a deep tarpit.

Edited by Wepwawet
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Posted (edited)

This is something I should have done some time ago, but never too late. Years ago I started out thinking that the KV35 boy might be from the Amarna period, or crown prince Thutmose, but not Webensenu. Then I came to decide that he was probably too young to be Thutmose and may be a younger brother of Akhenaten. Then I began to believe that he may be a brother of Tutankhamun, and it looks like this will be confirmed in September. Full brother or half brother? by what Hawass has said, probably half brother, but with whoever his mother is being a cousin of whoever Tutankhamun's mother is, by name that is as the YL is his actual mother. They should look similar, shouldn't they. So without comment from me, here, and I think for the first time anywhere, X-rays of the skulls of both Tutankhamun on the left and the KV35 boy on the right, side by side for comparrison.

 

Skull comparison smaller.jpg

Edited by Wepwawet
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Posted (edited)
10 hours ago, Wepwawet said:

I have to say that I had just assumed that they had been taken to Cairo with the others, this sort of information is just not really out there in a clear fashion.

They were, as I wrote.  Victor Loret brought all the mummies from KV35 to Cairo because he wanted to have them x-rayed there.  But, the memoir of Howard Carter makes it clear that Loret was told "take them back to the tomb".  That's what happened  And Carter helped with that, as he described, but soon afterward the 9 mummies found in one chamber were taken to Cairo for good.  But the three in the other chamber were left there for decades.  I don't know who looked at them in the interim or where they were x-rayed.  I only know that, in 1999, after I wrote my online paper about the Younger Lady and Nefertiti, I received an email from someone associated with ZDF television in Germany.  My paper had prompted a documentary.  ZDF received permission to view the mummies in KV35.  I was told that a brick wall had been built to block off the chamber in which they lay, but that was knocked down and the Germans able to take their footage.  I was not notified, however, of the name of a documentary, nor have I seen one in German.

In my opinion, the skulls of Tutankhamun and the Young Prince don't have that much resemblance.  Where has Hawass announced this is a brother of Tut?  I have never seen anything like that in the media.  I don't like rumors of this sort, don't trust them.  Why is it always "come October" or "come September"?  Why always when the tourist season starts?  

To find out anything more about DNA testing of the royal mummies one will have to wait for a paper with the name of Dr. Yehia Z. Gad on it.  That will be official.  

Edited by Aldebaran
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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Aldebaran said:

In my opinion, the skulls of Tutankhamun and the Young Prince don't have that much resemblance.  Where has Hawass announced this is a brother of Tut?  I have never seen anything like that in the media.  I don't like rumors of this sort, don't trust them.  Why is it always "come October" or "come September"?  Why always when the tourist season starts?  

To find out anything more about DNA testing of the royal mummies one will have to wait for a paper with the name of Dr. Yehia Z. Gad on it.  That will be official.  

No, no resemblance at all. Very curious, but then Tiye and the YL have normal looking skulls so there is an issue specific to Tutankhamun and KV55, to a lesser extent. Another mystery.

I'll go through how I decipher Hawass's statement from 2022, so please take it not as what I say it is, but what I think is the reason for why Hawas said what he did. I'll lay it out in as best a manner I can for readers who do not necessarily follow all the twists and turns in this saga, not least because I know you know more than most, so please bare with me.

The DNA tests carried out in 2007 did not give conclusive results for female mummies KV21A and KV21B. The younger of the two, KV21A, is put forward by Hawass as being Ankhesenamun, daughter of Akhenaten and Nefertiti and wife of Tutankhamun and mother of the two fetuses found in his tomb. KV21B is put forward by Hawass as potentially being Nefertiti, and it was his intention in November 2022 to announce her as Nefertiti due to new DNA testing. This announcement was cancelled because Hawass said that they were having trouble getting DNA results.

When Hawass made his intial statement in 2022 he said that the KV35 boy was the key, therefore we need to understand why he would make this statement, and here I have to make presumptions, but hopefully realiistic ones.

In 2007 there was no difficulty in obtaining usuable DNA results from all the Amarna and related mummies bar KV21A and KV21B, that is, Yuya, Thuya, Amunhotep III, KV55, Tutankhamun, Tiye, the Younger Lady and the KV35 boy, who, if not tested then, was certainly tested in the Spring of 2022.

Both KV21A and KV21B were found, that is on their second discovery, to be in terrible condition, hacked up, KV21A missing her head, and both having been waterlogged at some point after their intitial discovery by Belzoni. That it has been difficult to obtain decent DNA results from these two mummies is not surprising.

I would find it very surprising if there had been any difficulty in getting a decent DNA result from the boy, he was after all found between Tiye and the YL, and robber damage and feet falling off aside, in excellent condition, for a 3,400 year old mummy.

How then can Hawass state that he is the key. In my opinion he can only say this if he knows which mummies, bar KV21A and KV21B, he is related to by blood.

How does this work. Well it comes from who Hawass wants KV21A and 21B to be, Ankhesenamun and Nefertiti. To prove KV21B as Nefertiti he first has to prove that KV21A, perhaps the real key, is the daughter of KV21B and KV55, Akhenaten, and the half, not full sister of Tutankhamun. He also needs to show that KV21A is the mother of the two fetuses, and it has already been established, not least because they were in KV62, that Tutankhamun is the father. As Nefertiti is his only known wife, bringing in the Kap at this point is a complication to far, then KV21A will be proven to be Ankhesenamun, and as her mother was without any doubt Nefertiti, then KV21B will be Nefertiti. This of course is what Hawass wants, not what I'm saying is, or will happen.

There, the DNA of the boy solved the entire thing, and I never even put him into the final equation, did I, so what's going on. Well what he does is show that despite everything else, the YL cannot be Nefertiti. Why, because if he is the son of KV55 and KV21B, and only the half brother of Tutankhamun, but full brother of KV21A, then, for Hawass please note, it knocks the final nail into the coffin of the YL being Nefertiti. It does though still leave a question mark as to who she would be, but obviously a daughter of Amunhotep III and Tiye. A full DNA result from KV21B will also show her relationship to the other mummies, for instance how close a relationship she has to Akhenaten, Amunhotep III, Tiye and Yuya and Thuya, but that is going too far ahead, and the results may of course go against what Hawass wants. However, I suspect that as he is making this announcement again, he does in fact have the results, otherwise he would not say a thing, ever again about this.

Just to reiterate, this is my take on deciphering Hawass's statements, they are not my opinion, not least because we have to wait for this statement, then the games begin.

One extra point. I will continue with the scenario that Hawass wants, and I welcome opinion contra, and will get them I'm sure. Look at the photo above of the skulls of Tutankhamun and the boy, think about Tutankhamun's other issues, the issues with the two fetuses and KV21A, if Ankhesenamun. They are linked, as I said, by congential issues, which would be expected of full siblings born of full siblings, and with Tutankhamun that is an established fact. I suggest that if the boy's mother is KV21B, and she is not a daughter of Amunhotep III and Tiye, but very closely related, first cousins, then if the mother of KV21A, perhaps a congential issue occured, but it was 50/50 if she was afflicted. If the KV35 boy is her son, then the 50/50 chance of him having a congential issue has been dodged, but for Tutankhamun, not a chance.

Edited by Wepwawet
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Posted (edited)
On 5/17/2024 at 1:55 PM, Aldebaran said:

Victor Loret brought all the mummies from KV35 to Cairo because he wanted to have them x-rayed there.  But, the memoir of Howard Carter makes it clear that Loret was told "take them back to the tomb".  That's what happened  And Carter helped with that, as he described, but soon afterward the 9 mummies found in one chamber were taken to Cairo for good.  But the three in the other chamber were left there for decades.  I don't know who looked at them in the interim or where they were x-rayed.  I only know that, in 1999, after I wrote my online paper about the Younger Lady and Nefertiti, I received an email from someone associated with ZDF television in Germany.  My paper had prompted a documentary.  ZDF received permission to view the mummies in KV35.  I was told that a brick wall had been built to block off the chamber in which they lay, but that was knocked down and the Germans able to take their footage.  I was not notified, however, of the name of a documentary, nor have I seen one in German.

Loret says that after Carter and he had removed the contents of the tomb, photographed and catalogued them, and crated them up: "Everything was well carried out, foreseen, organised. It only remained to leave. We nailed up the last planks on the last cases hastily, because the Nile was sinking and we were pressed for time-when I received from the Minister of Public Works the order to replace the mummies in their ancient place and to seal the tomb."  

In 1897 he'd been made Head of the Egyptian Antiquities Service - the year before his KV35 discovery, the same year that the cornerstone of the new Egyptian Museum in Cairo was laid.  The first artifacts weren't placed in the museum until 1900, under Maspero's direction.  Which means that in 1898 the entire collection was still stuffed into the Ismail Pasha Palace in Giza, which had been officially declared neither secure nor large enough in 1895.  Even with Loret's clout and the importance of his 1898 discovery, the Egyptian Museum was not ready to even provisionally house the KV35 mummies, and arrangements had to be made to accommodate them, which took time. 

If the mummies were going to Cairo, it was not to the Egyptian Museum as would seem self-evident, but maybe to a medical or scientific facility for the X-rays, or maybe to provisional housing, which would require special conditions to keep them safe and secure.

 

 

Edited by Wistman
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Posted (edited)
On 5/17/2024 at 12:11 AM, Wepwawet said:

I had read about KV57 and the possibility of other mummies being in there, but I couldn't come up with a scenario that puts Tiye and the others in there. Well, he could have had them there, and being "nice" to them by giving them a home, but why then chuck them out, which would probably have been Ramesses I, and if the YL is Nefertiti, would Horemheb have had her in his tomb at all considering what he did to KV55. But, like the arm, it's all just a deep tarpit.

Wepwawet,

For this scenario (i.e. Horemheb gave some Amarna era mummies a "home", by holding them hostage in his KV57) -- Ramsses II, instead of Ramesses I, is a more likely candidate to chuck out the Amarna hostage mummies, if they had been in KV57.  Here is why:


A few months ago in this topic about "after the Amarna era" -- we discussed that the cult of Aten continued in some form until the reign of Ramesses II, who terminated the Aten cult.  

I find it intriguing that Ramesses II "deified" himself as a "sun god" (in company with Amun-Ra, Ra-Horakhty and the builder-god Ptah) in the Abu Simbel Temple.  Perhaps that is why Ramesses II terminated the competing Aten cult. (Ramesses II continued to reign for approximately 40 years after "deifying" himself as, or perhaps as a son of, the Amun-Ra sun-god, at Abu Simbel; so he had plenty of time to suppress the previous Amarna era activities about a sun-god Aten).

 

from: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Abu_Simbel#Great_Temple

The Great Temple at Abu Simbel, which took about twenty years to build, was completed around year 24 of the reign of Ramesses the Great (which corresponds to 1265 BC). It was dedicated to the gods Amun, Ra-Horakhty, and Ptah, as well as to the deified Ramesses himself.[10] It is generally considered the grandest and most beautiful of the temples commissioned during the reign of Ramesses II, and one of the most beautiful in Egypt.


from:  https://spacemath.gsfc.nasa.gov/SED11/P1AbuSimbel.pdf

The interior of the temple is inside the sandstone cliff in the form of a manmade cave cut out of the rock. It consists of a series of halls and rooms extending back a total of 56 meters (185 feet) from the entrance. As you walk to the rear of the temple you come to the Holiest of Holies located at the back wall, where you will find four statues of Ptah, Amun-Re, Ramses II and Ra-Harakhte. This temple is unique, since the sun shines directly on the Holiest of Holies two days a year: February 21, the king's birthday, and October 22, the date of his coronation. Because of the precession of the equinoxes, the current dates are one day later than the original dates for which the temple alignment was designed.

Edited by atalante
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3 hours ago, atalante said:

For this scenario (i.e. Horemheb gave some Amarna era mummies a "home", by holding them hostage in his KV57) -- Ramsses II, instead of Ramesses I, is a more likely candidate to chuck out the Amarna hostage mummies, if they had been in KV57.  Here is why:


A few months ago in this topic about "after the Amarna era" -- we discussed that the cult of Aten continued in some form until the reign of Ramesses II, who terminated the Aten cult. 

Yes, you're quite right. I would think that Ramesses I, old and with less than two years to live, may have had other issues to deal with than moving mummies around.

I think it highly unlikely they would have been in KV57, something else was going on there. The problem is where might they have been that was an issue causing them to be moved to KV35 in the state they are.

Another scenario could be this. If they had been in a storeroom like KV63, and that was then needed for some other purpose, if they at this point they had been robbed already, though still in their original coffins, not unreasonable to assume, they were removed from their coffins, which were re-used, and, if by a "hostile" king, such as Ramesses II, just their unwrapped mummies placed in KV35, the nearest tomb ?

There is still the issue of their burial goods, particularly Tiye's, for if they bothered to move her shrine from Amarna to the VoK, I'm sure they would have moved other items, such as canopic jars and shabtis. It might still be possible that the place they were kept immediately before being moved in KV35 is yet to be found. I would think without coffins, but at least remnants of burial equipement with their names.

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16 hours ago, Wistman said:

Loret says that after Carter and he had removed the contents of the tomb, photographed and catalogued them, and crated them up: "Everything was well carried out, foreseen, organised. It only remained to leave. We nailed up the last planks on the last cases hastily, because the Nile was sinking and we were pressed for time-when I received from the Minister of Public Works the order to replace the mummies in their ancient place and to seal the tomb."  

You're right.  There is no indication there that the crates were taken onto the Nile.  Actually, I relied more on Carter and I don't know now what he wrote that made me think the crates were already loaded onto a boat.  I don't have Carter's memoirs at hand currently.

But here is something from Loret that makes me believe he never meant to take the three other mummies, which is very odd:

"I contented myself with taking the measurements of the coffins and I gave the order to the Luxor carpenter for nine new cases . . ."

Only nine...

 

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Exactly the number of kings in the cache, so maybe they were left behind, at that point, and moved to Cairo some years later for X-Raying, umpteen times it seems, yet only the ones from Harris and Wente ever being published, as far as I can tell, and in their book the YL is missing. I guess though that back in the days the kings were what was important, yet today it's the "spares" that have assumed far more importance. Makes me wonder what evidence may have been not seen for what it is and discarded, or tucked away in some magazine.

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Posted (edited)
20 hours ago, Wepwawet said:

Yes, you're quite right. I would think that Ramesses I, old and with less than two years to live, may have had other issues to deal with than moving mummies around.

I think it highly unlikely they would have been in KV57, something else was going on there. The problem is where might they have been that was an issue causing them to be moved to KV35 in the state they are.

Another scenario could be this. If they had been in a storeroom like KV63, and that was then needed for some other purpose, if they at this point they had been robbed already, though still in their original coffins, not unreasonable to assume, they were removed from their coffins, which were re-used, and, if by a "hostile" king, such as Ramesses II, just their unwrapped mummies placed in KV35, the nearest tomb ?

There is still the issue of their burial goods, particularly Tiye's, for if they bothered to move her shrine from Amarna to the VoK, I'm sure they would have moved other items, such as canopic jars and shabtis. It might still be possible that the place they were kept immediately before being moved in KV35 is yet to be found. I would think without coffins, but at least remnants of burial equipement with their names.

Wepwawet,

Yes, an original storage area seems likely for the group of Amarna mummies, since a few unoccupied places have been discovered in the Kings Valley,  

My hunch for the original burial place of Amarna mummies is KV53, which contained ostraca items with cartouches of Ramesses II.  The KV53 chamber is about 20 feet long, and was "undecorated". 

Akhenaten apparently did not believe in the Amduat type of afterlife, which had been prominently displayed in KV burials of Egyptian kings for more than a century before the reign of Akhenaten.  Thus an undecorated burial chamber for the Amarna mummies would be fitting.  KV53 is simple enough for Nefertiti to commission and create it in a approximately a year -- in her presumed short reign after Akhenaten's death.  If the Amarna royals had received a suitably honorable burial place in the Kings Valley, then boy king Tut could feel confident about Tut's transition into the more conventional king Tutankhamun.  And of course, the modern discovery (2009-2010) of items containing cartouches of Ramesses II in KV53 tends to connect Ramesses II's termination of the cult of Aten to this KV53.   In other words, Ramesses II had both the opportunity and motive to remove and relocate any mummies that were originally in KV53. 

https://thebanmappingproject.com/tombs/kv-53-unknown

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/KV53#/media/File:KV53.jpg

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/KV53#2009–10_excavations
[3] in this Wikipedia article, about discovering the cartouches of Ramesses II in KV53, lists as the following reference:
 Spencer, Patricia (Autumn 2010). "Digging Diary 2009-10". Egyptian Archaeology. 37: 26. Retrieved 17 September 2021.

Edited by atalante
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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Aldebaran said:

This KMT article, about which I'd forgotten, indicates the crated mummies had already been loaded onto a boat.  Perhaps his source was Carter and I wish I had a copy of his memoirs to be able to check now.

https://www.academia.edu/17195907/Moving_the_KV35_Royal_Mummies_In_KMT_A_Modern_Journal_of_Ancient_Egypt_23_4_Winter_2012_13_pp_18_31

Yes I vaguely remember it being referenced as such in that article.  And so the mummies didn't go to Cairo, at least initially.

And about the nine (shades of Tolkien), from the article:

Quote

 It was Gaston Maspero who, recalled to Egypt for a second term as director of the Antiquities Service [1899], soon afterwards decided to transfer the nine mummies found in the “Room IV” of the Tomb of Amenhotep II to Cairo, leaving in KV35 the mummy of the tomb owner, the “Mummy on a Boat” and the three anonymous bodies found in Side-room 1. He justified the removal by positing that the nine Royal Mummies of Side-room 4 were not in their original burial place, so could therefore be taken out of KV35. In contrast, he decided that the body of Amenhotep II should continue to lie in his final resting-place, together with the remaining four bodies, provisionally and as a test case  In this operation Maspero was assisted by newly appointed Chief Inspector Howard Carter — a twenty- five-year-old Carter, two decades before making the most famous discovery in the history of Egyptian archaeology.

 

Edited by Wistman
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Posted (edited)

I have been thinking about Kiya, the second wife of Akhenaten.  I feel pretty certain that her "erasure" coincides with the death of Akhenaten and didn't happen while he lived.  But I also think this removal had to occur rather soon afterward.  One of Kiya's images was changed to that of Meritaten.  It is difficult for me to tell whether or not an uraeus was added to the image.  But the text beside it does not say "queen".  So even though Meritaten has her head covered with a wig, meaning she was already considered an adult at the time--how can she still not have been married to anyone by Year 17?  Actually, Meritaten should, herself, have been about 17 years old when her father died.  The image looks strange because the wig of Kiya had been altered to accommodate the elongated skull of an Amarna princess.  The black has come off because it was inferior to the original paint of Kiya's portrait.  It seems to me the eye has been deliberately defaced, regardless.

The next daughter who became the substitute for Kiya should be Ankhesenpaaten by default.  The image, below, has no text beside it and was a purification scene.  Since Meketaten died before Akhenaten, this should be Princess Ankhesenpaaten by default.  It makes sense that she is still shown with a shaved head and single lock of hair because Ankhesenpaaten had probably not yet reached puberty when Akhenaten died.  Since she is not shown near the boundary stela of Year 6, she can't have been born until late in Year 6--at very least.  In the tomb of Huya, she is depicted as being considerably shorter than Meritaten and Meketaten.  So, let us suppose that Ankhesenpaaten was still considered a child of eleven or younger in Akhenaten's final year.  

I also wonder why some people have surmised the KV55 coffin and canopic jars to have once belonged to Kiya.  I have a great many Egyptological facts stored in my head--but I can't remember everything.

 

Kiyacropped.jpg

princessimmature.JPG

Edited by Aldebaran
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12 hours ago, Aldebaran said:

I also wonder why some people have surmised the KV55 coffin and canopic jars to have once belonged to Kiya.

I think it's just due to there not being another named female in this period who might be a fit other than Nefertiti. It's easier to hang a name on these obejcts than not to, it makes a better story. These objects could just as well have once belonged to Sitamun, or any other daughters of Amunhotep III, or even another secondry wife of Akhenaten who has left no trace in the record.

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Here are some things that bug me about Meritaten:  Thus far, in my papers, I have adhered to the general trend to view her as the wife of Smenkhkare Djeserkheperu.  It makes sense to all those who view Smenkhkare as a male that the eldest princess should have been married to him--that it was her due.  But on each of two occasions their names are coupled the name of the queen is spelled "Meryaten"!  What is with that?  

Then there is Box 001 from KV62.  Akhenaten's name is on it. Ankhkheperure Neferneferuaten as a coregent, and Queen Meritaten--this time name spelled as usual.  I can't at all agree that a female pharaoh required a consort, so now Meritaten must be married to her own father--nominally or otherwise.  How old was she at this time?  I find it hard to believe that Meritaten is mentioned as the widow of Smenkhkare because it would be so unusual for two coregents to have somebody's widow appended to their own cartouches.  So, logically, Meritaten is the GRW of Akhenaten now that his older one has become his coregent for some reason.  Amenhotep III had previously married his eldest daughter because, in my opinion, she was too old for his heir, Akhenaten.  If that is why Akhenaten made Meritaten his queen--that she was far too old for Tutankhaten--then where does Smenkhkare fit into this picture?  If Smenkhkare was already dead, it doesn't seem likely that Akhenaten would have wanted his widow for a queen.  But who knows?  Ay was willing to marry Ankhesenamen, even though he already had a wife.  The name "Smenkhkare" is never mentioned in KV62.  Where this king's cartouches were coupled with those of Akhenaten on the globular vase, everything was erased as if this particular coregency had never occurred.  But the name of Meritaten was apparently okay.  Still, just how she fits into all this is not so cut and dried.  It would have been simple to say that with Meritaten Akhenaten finally got a son--but DNA put paid to that possibility.  In eight markers, there is one that makes it impossible for the Younger Lady to have been the daughter of KV55.  Reeves recently proposed that could be a "glitch" but he is so wrong.  The numbers at the marker are, In fact, an "expected result", given the DNA of Amenhotep III and Queen Tiye.

I don't see how the KV55 coffin can have been made for a woman.  It has a long face on it that reminds one of the face of Akhenaten, even though the wood has decayed and the sheet gold that once covered it missing.  The dedication on the foot of this coffin was originally supposed to have been a speech made by a woman--not a male.  I have studied this text carefully and it is apparent that, later, certain of the feminine determinatives were changed so that the speech became a dialogue between a dead king and his daughter.  I wrote a paper explaining all.  So, if this coffin was originally intended for a female, a dedication by another female makes no sense.  Some, apparently, had a problem with a pharaoh's coffin having a wig.  But why not?  Kings wore them.

 

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On 5/25/2024 at 7:46 PM, Aldebaran said:

Here are some things that bug me about Meritaten:  Thus far, in my papers, I have adhered to the general trend to view her as the wife of Smenkhkare Djeserkheperu.  It makes sense to all those who view Smenkhkare as a male that the eldest princess should have been married to him--that it was her due.  But on each of two occasions their names are coupled the name of the queen is spelled "Meryaten"!  What is with that?  

On balance, these must be erroneous writings.  After all, "Meryaten" is a masculine name and the consort of Smenkhkare is obviously a female--even on the sequins.  Here are the two images:

 

 

Smenkhkare_and_Meritaten_from_Meryre_II.jpg

sequinnote_phixr.jpg

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On 5/26/2024 at 2:46 AM, Aldebaran said:

Some, apparently, had a problem with a pharaoh's coffin having a wig.  But why not?  Kings wore them.

The issue I see with the wig is that it does not fit, imo, into the iconography of the dead king. On the walls of their tombs we do see a king wearing a wig, shabtis can have wigs as well, but the majority of images of the king in his tomb show him wearing the nemes, the wigs seeming to belong to the first images in the tomb, for instance in the tomb of Seti I he is only once shown wearing a wig, and it is at the top of the descending passage where he is show with Ra along with texts from the Litany of Ra. Allthough Seti is of course dead, the image in this part of the tomb seems liminal, as if he were shown moving from the world of the living to that of the dead. While we have only the KV62 and Tanis royal coffins to go by, apart from one with the head of Sokar, they all have the nemes. Likewise with the royal coffins made for the caches, none have a wig.

So, to me, it's not a case of just not wanting the KV55 coffin to be original to Akhenaten, it's not seeing the wig as being applicable for a king in his core burial equipment, for instance none of the core burial equipment in KV62, mask, coffins, canopic jars, have a wig, only the nemes, the primary headress of a king, the symbol only of a king, while anybody can, and did, wear a wig.

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On 5/25/2024 at 8:46 PM, Aldebaran said:

Here are some things that bug me about Meritaten:  Thus far, in my papers, I have adhered to the general trend to view her as the wife of Smenkhkare Djeserkheperu.  It makes sense to all those who view Smenkhkare as a male that the eldest princess should have been married to him--that it was her due.  But on each of two occasions their names are coupled the name of the queen is spelled "Meryaten"!  What is with that?  

My guess would be 'scribal error'.  Does it occur on something that wouldn't be seen by the royals (or seen very often?)  Could it have been a gift from another ruler?

Quote

Then there is Box 001 from KV62.  Akhenaten's name is on it. Ankhkheperure Neferneferuaten as a coregent, and Queen Meritaten--this time name spelled as usual.  I can't at all agree that a female pharaoh required a consort, so now Meritaten must be married to her own father--nominally or otherwise.

A woman could be a queen without being married to the king.

"Nbt" is translated as "queen" but can also mean "lady/mistress."  "Nbt-r-djr" is "Mistress of all"...also translated as queen.  "Hmt-ntr" is also queen.  "Ityt" is "queen-regnant" (literally 'queen of thousands') -- so there are a number of titles that might be possible.  A daughter might be designated "Mistress of all" and implies that she does a lot of the female administrative stuff but would not be a "queen regnant."  

So... I think you'd have to know which of these titles were applied.

 

 

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6 hours ago, Kenemet said:

So... I think you'd have to know which of these titles were applied.

On Box 001K Meritaten is titled as Hemet-nisut-weret, King's Great Wife, or Great Royal Wife. The context is that her title and name, in a cartouche, appear alongside that of Ankhenaten and Neferneferuaten, not Smenkhkare, her husband as shown in the tomb of Meryre II detailed above by Aldebaran. It's difficult, even for Amarna, to understand why her name and title would appear like this unless she was, as the box suggests, being specifically connected to Akhenaten and Neferneferuaten, and beyond her being their first child.

As Neferneferuaten was Nefertiti, and such GRW to Akhenaten, she cannot continue in this function now she is a co-ruler with him, and by that I mean not in matrimonial duties, but at the level of state functions. As Neferneferuaten is now co-ruler it must mean that Smenkhkare is now dead and his wife widowed, therefore, IMO, Meritaten has been co-opted into the ceremonial role of GRW, but not to Neferneferuaten, as has been suggested at times, and that does not make sense and Aldebaran is perfectly correct in this, but  primarily to Akhenaten with the possibility that she may have been seen as GRW for Akhenaten and Neferneferuaten jointly.

I suspect that the reason Meritaten has been seen as GRW to Neferneferuaten is because of the order of names on the box, Meritaten's coming after Neferneferuaten. If so, this is very simplistic and ignores seniority where the order must be Akhenaten, Neferneferuaten as joint ruler and then Meritaten.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Wepwawet said:

the possibility that she may have been seen as GRW for Akhenaten and Neferneferuaten jointly.

The reasons for this are.

In normal circumstances a king will have a GRW and subsiduary queens. In the case of a co-regency each king will have his own GRW. As women were not seen as legitimate monarchs in their own right they could not have a GRW, but they did need another woman to carry out some of the state functions of a GRW. Hatshepsut had been GRW to Thutmose II, and one of the functions, titles, of that role was God's Wife of Amun. On making herself king, and she did portray herself as a king not a queen regnant, Hatshepsut made her daughter Neferure God's Wife of Amun, and so solved the issue of not being able to have a GRW.

The situation at Amarna was different, and totally unique in AE history. With Akhenaten co-ruling for a brief time with Smenkhkare we have a normal situation, Akhenaten is senior king with his GRW Nefertiti and Smenkhkare is junior king with his GRW Meritaten. As Nefertiti is named in a graffito still as GRW in Akhenaten's year 16, then it can be reasonably assumed that Smenkhkare was either still alive, or only recently dead, it depends on how long Akhenaten waited until deciding he needed another co-ruler. The situation then occurs at some point later in year 16 or early year 17, Akhenaten's last known year, when Nefertiti as GRW dissapears and a new co-ruler known as Ankheperure Neferneferuaten appears, the female determinative and epithets showing clearly that this is in fact Nefertiti.

The problem for Akhenaten in making his GRW his co-ruler is that he needs a new GRW, and this is solved by marrying his eldest daughter Meritaten, the widow of Smenkhkare. This leaves Neferneferuaten as co-ruler without her own GRW, however, as a woman she is not entitled to one, as was the case with Hatshepsut. Does she then have one of her daughters, and Ankhesenpaaten being next oldest, by a margin at this time, would be the best fit, become God's Wife of Amun. Well certainly not of Amun, it would have to be God's Wife of the Aten, but did such a position exist, I have no idea, I've never seen any information to suggest that such a position existed. With no evidence to show that Nefertiti was, as GRW, also God's Wife of the Aten, or something similar, and no evidence giving any title to Ankhesenpaaten other than king's bodily daughter until she became GRW to Tutankhaten, I think such an arrangement cannot be seen to have been a reality.

Therefore I believe that in the first instance Meritaten was GRW to Akhenaten, and that either her role was soley to Akhenaten, or that for this purpose Akhenaten and Neferneferuaten were viewed as a single entitiy, but that Meritaten was never GRW to Neferneferuaten.

Edited by Wepwawet
typo
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5 hours ago, Wepwawet said:

The reasons for this are.

In normal circumstances a king will have a GRW and subsiduary queens. In the case of a co-regency each king will have his own GRW. As women were not seen as legitimate monarchs in their own right they could not have a GRW, but they did need another woman to carry out some of the state functions of a GRW. Hatshepsut had been GRW to Thutmose II, and one of the functions, titles, of that role was God's Wife of Amun. On making herself king, and she did portray herself as a king not a queen regnant, Hatshepsut made her daughter Neferure God's Wife of Amun, and so solved the issue of not being able to have a GRW.

The situation at Amarna was different, and totally unique in AE history. With Akhenaten co-ruling for a brief time with Smenkhkare we have a normal situation, Akhenaten is senior king with his GRW Nefertiti and Smenkhkare is junior king with his GRW Meritaten. As Nefertiti is named in a graffito still as GRW in Akhenaten's year 16, then it can be reasonably assumed that Smenkhkare was either still alive, or only recently dead, it depends on how long Akhenaten waited until deciding he needed another co-ruler. The situation then occurs at some point later in year 16 or early year 17, Akhenaten's last known year, when Nefertiti as GRW dissapears and a new co-ruler known as Ankheperure Neferneferuaten appears, the female determinative and epithets showing clearly that this is in fact Nefertiti.

The problem for Akhenaten in making his GRW his co-ruler is that he needs a new GRW, and this is solved by marrying his eldest daughter Meritaten, the widow of Smenkhkare. This leaves Neferneferuaten as co-ruler without her own GRW, however, as a woman she is not entitled to one, as was the case with Hatshepsut. Does she then have one of her daughters, and Ankhesenpaaten being next oldest, by a margin at this time, would be the best fit, become God's Wife of Amun. Well certainly not of Amun, it would have to be God's Wife of the Aten, but did such a position exist, I have no idea, I've never seen any information to suggest that such a position existed. With no evidence to show that Nefertiti was, as GRW, also God's Wife of the Aten, or something similar, and no evidence giving any title to Ankhesenpaaten other than king's bodily daughter until she became GRW to Tutankhaten, I think such an arrangement cannot be seen to have been a reality.

Therefore I believe that in the first instance Meritaten was GRW to Akhenaten, and that either her role was soley to Akhenaten, or that for this purpose Akhenaten and Neferneferuaten were viewed as a single entitiy, but that Meritaten was never GRW to Neferneferuaten.

I think this makes perfect sense.

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Posted (edited)
On 5/27/2024 at 6:40 PM, Aldebaran said:

On balance, these must be erroneous writings.  After all, "Meryaten" is a masculine name and the consort of Smenkhkare is obviously a female--even on the sequins.  Here are the two images:

I think the issue is that with these two examples of her name we are looking at transcriptions, not the original. The image from the tomb of Meryre II has the cartouches in the bottom right, but as you know, and not too many others, this has been inserted by Norman de Garis Davies from a transcription made by Lepsius decades earlier, and he had to use this transcription because by the time he properly recorded the tomb nearly all the cartouches had disintegrated, except for most of Meritaten's. Both examples in that image show N37 alone with the name of the Aten, missing the "t", though should it not be N36, which gives the "mr" sound, N37 being "s". The  name on the sequin shows the same spelling, with, for the readers, the female determinative at the bottom of the cartouche, which just looks like a squiggle.

I've not been able to find a decent clear example of her name in the original hieroglyphs, only transcriptions, and I've found that in all the ones I've seen her name is spelt N37 + X1 + Aten, which is not mr-it-itn, it's s-it-itn, Sitaten. Now clearly this is wrong, it's Meritaten, so have the AE used N37 in place of N36, or have the transcribers just been lazy and drew a strightforward rectangle instead of indenting the sides, I don't know. According to my "enigmatic writing lexicon" N36 is not substituted by N37 but by other signs that are nothing like N37 and would be easily spotted. I also went through the boundary stelae by Murnane and Van Siclen, which has many examples of Meritaten's name, all transcribed, and all spelt N37+X1+Aten, so I'm presuming that this is a convention to use N37 and not N36, for ease? Or, did the AE do this themselves, the correct reading being obvious by the context?

Edit: I realise that by throwing in the "name" "Sitaten" I might cause some confusion, and wild theories, confusing this with the real name Sitamun, a sister of Akhenaten. Her name is spelt G39 +Amun. G39 is the duck sign and is most common as the "sa" in "sa Ra", son of Ra epithet with the cartouche of the king's nomen. So why is her name rendered in English as Sitamun and not Satamun, well, why is there Tutankhamun, Tutankhamen and Tutankhamon, take your pick, the AE would laugh at all of our pronunciations

Edited by Wepwawet
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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, Wepwawet said:

T, Akhenaten is senior king with his GRW Nefertiti and Smenkhkare is junior king with his GRW Meritaten. As Nefertiti is named in a graffito still as GRW in Akhenaten's year 16, then it can be reasonably assumed that Smenkhkare was either still alive, or only recently dead, it depends on how long Akhenaten waited until deciding he needed another co-ruler. The situation then occurs at some point later in year 16 or early year 17, Akhenaten's last known year, when Nefertiti as GRW dissapears and a new co-ruler known as Ankheperure Neferneferuaten appears, the female determinative and epithets showing clearly that this is in fact Nefertiti.

Wonderful post, but did you not mean to include a 't' as the female determinative here, or is it something else?

Edited by Wistman
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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Wistman said:

Wonderful post, but did you not mean to include a 't' as the female determinative here, or is it something else?

In this case the "t" X1, is used as a T, otherwise the name would be Meraten and not Meritaten, and the female determinative is used with her name anyway, at times. Difficult to find a photo of her name inscribed in the original except for murky ones where the detail is too small. Should have done this in yesterday's post, but here is her name in hieroglyphs taken from the wiki. The top image is how it should be spelt with N36, phonetic value "mr", the bottom image I altered to make it N37, phoneteic value "s". I'm probably missing something obvious, but I really don't get what is going on with the transcriptions, are they just assuming that everybody will take N37 as being N36, and it is very similar. Really do need to see her name in the original.

 

 

 

Meritaten.jpg

Meritaten 2.jpg

Edited by Wepwawet
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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Wepwawet said:

In this case the "t" X1, is used as a T, otherwise the name would be Meraten and not Meritaten, and the female determinative is used with her name anyway, at times. Difficult to find a photo of her name inscribed in the original except for murky ones where the detail is too small. Should have done this in yesterday's post, but here is her name in hieroglyphs taken from the wiki. The top image is how it should be spelt with N36, phonetic value "mr", the bottom image I altered to make it N37, phoneteic value "s". I'm probably missing something obvious, but I really don't get what is going on with the transcriptions, are they just assuming that everybody will take N37 as being N36, and it is very similar. Really do need to see her name in the original.

 

 

 

Meritaten.jpg

Meritaten 2.jpg

Thanks, yes I see.  And what about Ankheperure, I thought that it is sometimes represented with a 't' as Ankhetperure.  Perhaps I'm misremembering.  Now that I look at it I suppose the 'kheper' element would be split with a 't' so maybe not.

Edited by Wistman
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