Egyptian Pharaohs (what do we know?)
Our knowledge of the succession of Egyptian kings is based on king lists kept by the ancient Egyptians themselves. The most famous are the Palermo Stone, which covers the period from the earliest dynasties to the middle of Dynasty 5; the Abydos Kings list, which Seti I had carved on his temple at Abydos; and the Turin Canon, a papyrus that covers the period from the earliest dynasties to the reign of Ramesses II. All are incomplete or fragmentary. We also rely on the History of Egypt written by Manetho in the third century B.C. A priest in the temple at Heliopolis, Manetho had access to many original sources and it was he who divided the kings into the thirty dynasties we use today.
What do we know about who ruled prior to King Zanakht? Old Kingdom ca. 2649–2150 B.C. Dynasty 3 ca. 2649–2575 B.C. Zanakht ca. 2649–2630 B.C.
Did this culture make the “leap” from a disorganized group of farmers and herders to a sophisticated culture that was capable of constructing the step pyramid complex under the 2nd King Djoser in less than 30 years? Djoser ca. 2630–2611 B.C.
According to the most current “Kings List” there were about 150 Pharaohs from the first one until Alexander (the Macedonian Period) took over in circa 332 BCA.
According to this list, Pepi II Neferkare (the 25th Pharaoh) reigned for 94 years after assuming the throne at the age of six? ca. 2246–2152 B.C.
The average Pharaoh’s term only lasted about 15 years.
Considered the most powerful was Ramesses II who ruled for 66 years. ca. 1279–1213 B.C.
Interestingly, he is also listed as the 66th Pharaoh on the Kings List.
Among his many accomplishments was the archaeological complex of Abu Simbel. We had the opportunity to visit this site in 2019 and I plan to provide details in a future posting.