Three queens with the same name - Chentkaus II.

Written by Felgr Pavel on .

Nearby south side Neferirkare´s pyramid in Abusir are situated ruins. German egyptologist Ludwig Burchardt did the sonde, but he found it was not something interesting for him. That was a mistake. It were not two mastabas, how he thought, but the tomb of Chentkaus II. The ruins are situated nearby Neferirkare´s pyramid. That is the reason why the egyptologists thought that it could be the pyramid complex Neferirkare´s wife. 

Indication of the owner

In 30th years of the 19th century Perring found a block made of limestone, where was written "royal wife Chentkaus". In 30th years of the 20th century was found another block made of limestone in village Abusir Ghazulim. In the low relief was a scene including pharaoh Neferirkare, his son Raneferef with a sign of "royal wife Chentkaus". That was the reason why the Czech egyptologists started the researches in this ruins. It was obvious it is going about Chentakus´s little pyramid complex. The firsts days of the excavations this fact confirmed.  

Pyramid komplex of Chentkaus II.

Obviously it was going about pyramid complex with the burial temple too. It confirmed really fast. Another researches showed the pyramid complex was completely rebuilt for many times.

Pharaoh Neferirkare gave a permission to build. Although the pharaoh Neferirkare gave a permission to build pyramid complex, the works were stopped very early. Cause was probably Neferirkare´s death. After this pause (which lasted for few months) the Egyptians continued with works. On the block made of limestone was the title "royal wife" refilled by title "royal mother". Obviously it was reign of pharaoh Raneferef, her son. Later was discovered title "mother of two kings of Upper and Lower Egypt".   

Base of Chentkaus´s tomb measured 25 metres, high was 17 metres and angle of walls was 52°. In current time, ruins of this pyramid did not cover any remains of the queen. On the other hand here were discovered few scraps of bandages which were removed off the mummy.    

Burial temple was situated in front of east side Chentkaus´s pyramid. The works passed in two phases. In the first one, the burial temple was built modestly but with blocks made of limestone. In the second one, was made of stone. Unfortunatelly, the stones were stolen. That is the reason why we can not to reconstruct it. 

What connects Chentkaus I. and Chentkaus II.?

The most important result of the excavations in pyramid complex of Chentkaus II. was existence of two royal mothers with the same name and the same title - "mother of two kings of Upper and Lower Egypt". Both were great. In half of 90th years egyptologist Zahi Hawass decided to clean up upward way to Sahure pyramid. He discovered few blocks. This blocks were from Sahure´s palace and reliefs with Sahure´s family. This blocks are interesting, because two of six royal sons, whose Sahure had with his royal wife, had the same title - "the oldest royal son". 

El-Awady  (Zahi Hawass co-worker) concluded, both were twins. After this discovery we can be able to understand the changes in decoration of Sahure´s burial complex. With regards to the twins  in Sahure´s family  it explains , that in the all history of the ancient Egypt were only two queens wit title „Mother of two kings of Upper and Lower Egypt“. Chentkaus I. gave birth twins – Shepseskaf and Veserkaf. Chentkaus II. gave birth twins – Raneferef and Niusser.

Message from the Nile

  • History of Czech institution of egyptology

    The Czech egyptology founder is Frantisek Lexa, the author of up to now evaluated work about ancient Egypt magic and Demotic grammar. Seminar for egyptology started thanks to him in Faculty of Philosophy and Arts of Charles University in Prague in 1925. Two years later Lexa became the first regular professor of egyptology in then Czechoslovakia.

  • Abusir - outstation of Czech egyptology expedition

    Abusir is an archaeological locality in Egypt named after nearby recent village Abusir. It is situated on western Nile bank on the edge of Libyan tableland approximately 20 kilometers to the south-west of Cairo. The name of this locality is derived from ancient Egypt god Osiris, from Per Usir (Busiris), "(cult) place of Osiris" (Busiris in Greek).

  • Researches in Western desert

    Czech egyptology is successful in researching not only on pyramidal fields in Abusir recently, but also in supporting and organizing smaller expeditions into egyptian Western desert. Czech expedition has been working even in slowly evanescent oasis El-Hajez since 2003, which is situated about 400 km to the south-west from Cairo.

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