• Hatshepsut was born during the beginning of the New Kingdom around 1504 BCE, a time of Egyptian growth and prosperity.

  • As a young girl, she was given the role of god’s wife of Amun, which came with estates and enormous wealth.

  • She married her half-brother, Thutmose II, who became Pharaoh upon their father’s death when she was about 12.

  • When Thutmose II died, Hatshepsut became regent for the next king, her step-son and nephew Thutmose III.

  • The Egyptologists who initially discovered Hatshepsut viewed her as a power-hungry usurper, who stole the throne from its rightful heir, but Thutmose III was a baby who, according to tradition, required a regent.

  • By the seventh year of her regency, Hatshepsut was depicted in statues and drawings as a man, with broad shoulders and a false beard. In writing, she continued to refer to herself as a woman.

  • Hatshepsut transformed herself into a senior king, who traditionally would lead and teach the younger king how to rule Egypt.

  • She took on the kingship formally (rather than just as a regent), according to recent evidence, in order to ensure stability and to maintain the throne for Thutmose III.

  • She created some of the most elaborate and expensive monuments in ancient Egypt, including two 100-feet tall obelisks and an enormous burial complex for herself.

  • Hatshepsut transformed monuments from mud brick to expensive sandstone and granite.

  • She also spent money on infrastructure, building roads around the capital city of Thebes.

  • Her memorial complex contains reliefs that show expeditions to foreign lands like Punt (possibly modern-day Eritrea), where Egyptians obtained luxury goods

  • Towards the later years of Thutmose III’s reign, a few decades after Hatshepsut’s death, Thutmose III began to systematically remove Hatshepsut’s name and image from her monuments.

  • Some theories say that he erased her from history because of a long-standing hatred for denying him the kingship, but others think he was trying to make sure his son Amenhotep II’s legitimacy would be secure.

  • Thutmose III also cut back on the power given to the god’s wife of Amun, removing some of the wealth and property that came with the title and ensuring that a future god’s wife of Amun would not be able to rise to the throne, according to Dr. Kara Cooney.

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