Middle Kingdom period

Written by Sonja Hanousková on .

The Middle Kingdom Period of ancient Egypt (2055 – 1650) is primary characterised by political unity. This famous period consist of two main phases. The first one is called 11th dynasty ruling in Thebes (Veset) in upper Egyptian area. The second one represent 12th dynasty settled in oasa Fájjum.

At first, the historians thought the Middle Kingdom Period consist only two dynasties - 11th and 12th. The latest researches turned out the Middle Kingdom Period count with the first half of 13th dynasty (which lacks legally political appearances) too. The first half of 13th dynasty definitely belongs to the Middle Kingdom Period. It is not mistake. In this part of evolution did not happen following situations:

  • displace a capital city or royal residence
  • decrease of royal activities
  • decline the arts.

The other way around we are witness many awesome arts handicrafts. The 13th dynasty was not strong enough as the 12th one. We appreciate the 12th dynasty for the great thoughts, beautiful big monuments, which were created by the pharaohs of this noteworthy period. Decline of 13th dynasty was probably caused by short pharaohs reign. They did not have many possibilities to assert themselves.

11th dynasty pharaohs

The first ruler is called Mentuhotep II. (2055 – 2004 BC). He probably followed Antef III. (2063 – 2055) and after that he became an integral constituent of 11th dynasty. Mentuhotep's huge success is connected with reunification Upper and Lower Egypt. He was admitted by ancient Egyptians in his time and in 20th dynasty celebrated as a founder of Middle Kingdom Period. In many private tombs we can find his successful acts written on wall inscriptions. The great and meaningful results of his successful reunification were projected to the ancient architecture, to the all form of arts, etc. Now we face the irony of fate. The start of this period was very well, but suddenly extinct only 19 years after Mentuhotep's death.

12th dynasty pharaohs

In connexion with 12th dynasty we speak about two controversial reigns of Senusret II. and Senusret III. In case 12th dynasty is more difficult to anchor true data. It is in phase of many changes. Further confusion concerning the chronology of 12th dynasty connect with discovering hieratic controls engrave to monuments of Senusret III. For example Josef Wagner brings very strong proofs for 39 years reign of Senusret III. It was considered as royal anniversary. Here exist assumptions about reigns of Senusret II. We think his reign probably hold for 19 years, not shorter (papyrus which was discovered in Lahún). Many explorers bring proofs which disprove cooperations of rulers - Amenemhet I. with Senusret I., Senusret I. with Amenemhet II. and Senusret III. with Amenemhet III.

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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