The Info List - Amenemhat III

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Amenemhat III, also spelled Amenemhet III, was a pharaoh of the Twelfth Dynasty of Egypt. He ruled from c. 1860 BCE to c. 1814 BCE, the highest known date being found in a papyrus dated to Regnal Year 46, I Akhet 22 of his rule.[2] His reign is regarded as the golden age of the Middle Kingdom.[3] He may have had a long coregency (of 20 years) with his father, Senusret III.[4]

Statue from the Egyptian Collection of the Hermitage Museum

Pectoral of Amenemhat III, tomb of Mereret

or Capstone of Amenemhat III's pyramid

Sphinx statue of Amenemhat III

Toward the end of his reign he instituted a coregency with his successor Amenemhet IV, as recorded in a now damaged rock inscription at Konosso in Nubia, which equates Year 1 of Amenemhet IV
Amenemhet IV
to either Year 46, 47, or 48 of his reign.[5] His daughter, Sobekneferu, later succeeded Amenemhat IV, as the last ruler of the twelfth dynasty. Amenemhat III's throne name, Nimaatre, means "Belonging to the Justice of Re."


1 Pyramids 2 Military enterprises and expeditions 3 The Great Canal (Mer-Wer) 4 Sculpture 5 Other names 6 References 7 Further reading 8 External links

Pyramids[edit] He built his first pyramid at Dahshur
(the so-called "Black Pyramid"), but there were construction problems and it was abandoned.[6] Around Year 15 of his reign the king decided to build a new pyramid at Hawara, near the Faiyum.[7] The pyramid at Dahshur
was used as burial ground for several royal women. The mortuary temple attached to the Hawara
pyramid may have been known to Herodotus
and Diodorus Siculus
Diodorus Siculus
as the "Labyrinth".[8] Strabo praised it as a wonder of the world. The king's pyramid at Hawara contained some of the most complex security features of any found in Egypt and is perhaps the only one to come close to the sort of tricks Hollywood
associates with such structures. Nevertheless, the king's burial was robbed in antiquity. His daughter or sister, Neferuptah, was buried in a separate pyramid (discovered in 1956) 2 km southwest of the king's.[9][10] The pyramidion of Amenemhet III's pyramid tomb was found toppled from the peak of its structure and preserved relatively intact; it is today in the Cairo Egyptian Museum.[11] Military enterprises and expeditions[edit] There is very little evidence for military expeditions in the reign of the king. There is one record for a small mission in year nine of the king. The evidence for that was found in a rock inscription in Nubia, near the fortress of Kumma. The short text reports that a military mission was guided by the mouth of Nekhen Zamonth
who reports that he went north with a small troop and that nobody died when going back south.[12] Many expeditions to mining areas are recorded under the king. There are two expeditions known to the Wadi el-Hudi at the southern border of Egypt, where Amethyst
was collected. One of the enterprises dates to year 11, of the king.[13] Two further to year 20 and to year 28.[14] There were further mining expeditions to the Wadi Hammamat. These are dated to year 2, 3, 19, 20 and 33 of the king's reign.[15] The inscriptions of year 19 and 20 might be related to the building start of the pyramid complex at Hawara. They report the breaking of stone for statues. At the Red Sea coast, at Mersa was discovered a stela mentioning an expedition to Punt under Amenemhat III.[16] The highest official involved in the expedition was the high steward Senebef. Other people in charge were a certain Amenhotep and the chamberlain Nebesu.[17] The Great Canal (Mer-Wer)[edit] During his long rule Amenemhat continued the work probably started by his father to link the Fayum Depression
Fayum Depression
with the Nile. The area had been a mere swamp previously. A canal 16 kilometres (9.9 mi) long and 1.5 kilometres (0.93 mi) wide was dug, known as Mer-Wer (the Great Canal); it is now known as Bahr Yussef. The banks for the central deep side were at a slope of 1:10, to allow use of non-cohesive soil and rock fill. A dam called Ha-Uar run east-west and the canal was inclined towards the Fayum depression at the slope of 0.01 degrees. The resultant Lake Moeris
Lake Moeris
could store 13 billion cubic meters[18] of flood water each year. This immense work of civil engineering was eventually finished by his son Amenmehat IV and brought prosperity to Fayum. The area became a breadbasket for the country and continued to be used until 230 BC when the Lahun branch of the Nile silted up. The vizier Kheti held this office around year 29 of king Amenemhat III's reign. The Rhind Mathematical Papyrus
is thought to have been originally composed during Amenemhat's time.[19] The monuments of Amenemhat III
Amenemhat III
are fairly numerous and of excellent quality. They include a small but well decorated temple at Medinet Madi
Medinet Madi
in the Faiyum, which he and his father dedicated to the harvest goddess Renenutet. Sculpture[edit]

Head of Amenemhat (Ammenemes) III. Mottled diorite, half life-size. 12th Dynasty. From Egypt. The Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology, London

Amenemhat III
Amenemhat III
is, together with Senusret III, the best-attested Middle Kingdom king by number of statues. About 80 statues or fragments of statues can be assigned to him. The sculpture of Amenemhat III continued the tradition of Senusret III. Many of his works no longer represent a young idealized king, but instead an expressive physiognomy, showing signs of age. There is an amazingly wide range of stones used for the sculpture of the king, not attested for any king before. Furthermore, the king introduced several new types of sculptures, many of these types inspired by older prototypes, dating back to the early Dynastic Period. There are two facial types that can be assigned to Amenemhat III.

realistic style: The face of the king shows its bone structure, furrows are clearly marked in the face. The face features are evidently inspired by those of the sculpture of Senusret III idealized style: The king is shown as young man, with a triangular face.[20]

Realistic style portrait of Amenemhat III.

"Idealized style" portrait of Amenemhat III.

Other names[edit]

Ammenemes Lamares, Ameres (According to Manetho) Moeris (According to Herodotus)


^ a b c d e Amenemhat (III) Nimaatre (1807/06-1798/97 BCE) accessed 4 January 2014 ^ Francis Llewellyn Griffith, The Petrie Papyri, London 1898, T. XIV (Pap. Kahun VI, 19) ^ Callender, Gae (2003). "The Middle Kingdom Renaissance". In Shaw, Ian. The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt. p. 156.  ^ Kim S. B. Ryholt, The Political Situation in Egypt During the Second Intermediate Period, C. 1800-1550 B.C., Museum Tusculanum Press 1997, pp.211f. ^ Kim S. B. Ryholt, The Political Situation in Egypt During the Second Intermediate Period, C. 1800-1550 B.C., Museum Tusculanum Press 1997, p. 212. ^ Miroslav Verner, The Pyramids: The Mystery, Culture, and Science of Egypt's Great Monuments, Grove Press, 2002, p. 427. ^ Lehner, Mark (2001). The Complete Pyramids: Solving the Ancient Mysteries. London: Thames & Hudson. p. 182. ISBN 0-500-05084-8.  ^ Miroslav Verner, The Pyramids: The Mystery, Culture, and Science of Egypt's Great Monuments, Grove Press, 2002, p. 428. ^ Nagib Farag, Zaky Iskander, The Discovery of Neferwptaḥ, 1971, p. 103. ^ Callender, Gae (2003). "The Middle Kingdom Renaissance". In Shaw, Ian. The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt. p. 158.  ^ Callender, Gae (2003). "The Middle Kingdom Renaissance". In Shaw, Ian. The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt. p. 157.  ^ F. Hintze, W. F. Reineke: Felsinschriften aus dem sudanesichen Nubien I, Berlin 1989, ISBN 3-05-000370-7, 145-147, n. 488 ^ Karl-Joachim Seyfried: Beiträge zu den Expeditionen des Mittleren Reiches in die Ost-Wüste, Hildesheim 1981, ISBN 3806780560, 105-16 ^ Ashraf I. Sadek: The Amethyst
Mining Inscriptions of Wadi el-Hudi, Part I; Text, Warminster 1980 ISBN 0-85668-162-8, 41-43 ^ Karl-Joachim Seyfried: Beiträge zu den Expeditionen des Mittleren Reiches in die Ost-Wüste, Hildesheim 1981, ISBN 3806780560, 254-256 ^ El-sayed Mahfouz (2010). Amenemhat IV
Amenemhat IV
au ouadi Gaouasis. BIFAO. 2010:110 pp. 165–173. ^ Kathryn A Bard, Rodolfo Fattovich, Andrea Manzo: The ancient harbor at Mersa/WadiGawasis and how to get there: New evidence of Pharaonic seafaring expeditions in the Red Sea, in Frank Förster and Heiko Riemer (editors): Desert Road Archaeology in Ancient Egypt
Ancient Egypt
and Beyond, Cologne 2013, ISBN 9783927688414, p. 539 ^ Chanson, Hubert (1999). Hydraulics of Open Channel Flow. Edward Arnold/Butterworth-Heinemann. ISBN 9780750659789.  ^ Marshall Clagett, Ancient Egyptian Science: A Source Book, 1989, p.113 ^ Simon Connor: The statue of the steward Nemtyhotep (Berlin ÄM 15700) and some considerations about Royal and Private Portrait under Amenemhat III, In: G. Miniaci, W. Grajetzki (editors): The World of Middle Kingdom Egypt (2000–1550 BC) Contributrions on Archaeology, Art, Religion, and Written Sources. Band 1, Golden House Publications, London 2015, ISBN 978-1-906137-43-4, 58-64.

Further reading[edit]

W. Grajetzki, The Middle Kingdom of Ancient Egypt: History, Archaeology and Society, Duckworth, London 2006 ISBN 0-7156-3435-6, 58-61

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Amenemhat III.

Amenemhat (III) Nimaatre The Pyramid of Amenemhet III from Talking Pyramids

v t e


Protodynastic to First Intermediate Period  (<3150–2040 BC)



Pharaohs  (male female ) uncertain

Protodynastic (pre-3150 BC)


Hsekiu Khayu Tiu Thesh Neheb Wazner Mekh Double Falcon


Scorpion I Crocodile Iry-Hor Ka Scorpion II Narmer
/ Menes

Early Dynastic (3150–2686 BC)


/ Menes Hor-Aha Djer Djet Merneith
Den Anedjib Semerkhet Qa'a Sneferka Horus Bird


Hotepsekhemwy Nebra/Raneb Nynetjer Ba Nubnefer Horus Sa Weneg-Nebty Wadjenes Senedj Seth-Peribsen Sekhemib-Perenmaat Neferkara I Neferkasokar Hudjefa I Khasekhemwy

Old Kingdom (2686–2181 BC)


Nebka Djoser Sekhemkhet Sanakht Khaba Qahedjet Huni


Snefru Khufu Djedefre Khafre Bikheris Menkaure Shepseskaf Thamphthis


Userkaf Sahure Neferirkare
Kakai Neferefre Shepseskare Nyuserre Ini Menkauhor Kaiu Djedkare Isesi Unas


Teti Userkare Pepi I Merenre Nemtyemsaf I Pepi II Merenre Nemtyemsaf II Netjerkare Siptah

1st Intermediate (2181–2040 BC)


Menkare Neferkare II Neferkare III Neby Djedkare Shemai Neferkare IV Khendu Merenhor Neferkamin Nikare Neferkare V Tereru Neferkahor Neferkare VI Pepiseneb Neferkamin
Anu Qakare Iby Neferkaure Neferkauhor Neferirkare Wadjkare Khuiqer Khui


Meryibre Khety Neferkare VII Nebkaure Khety Setut


Meryhathor Neferkare VIII Wahkare Khety Merykare

Middle Kingdom and Second Intermediate Period  (2040–1550 BC)



Pharaohs  (male female ) uncertain

Middle Kingdom (2040–1802 BC)


Mentuhotep I Intef I Intef II Intef III Mentuhotep II Mentuhotep III Mentuhotep IV


Segerseni Qakare Ini Iyibkhentre


Amenemhat I Senusret I Amenemhat II Senusret II Senusret III Amenemhat III Amenemhat IV Sobekneferu

2nd Intermediate (1802–1550 BC)


Sekhemrekhutawy Sobekhotep Sonbef Nerikare Sekhemkare
Amenemhat V Ameny Qemau Hotepibre Iufni Ameny Antef Amenemhet VI Semenkare Nebnuni Sehetepibre Sewadjkare Nedjemibre Khaankhre Sobekhotep Renseneb Hor Sekhemrekhutawy Khabaw Djedkheperew Sebkay Sedjefakare Wegaf Khendjer Imyremeshaw Sehetepkare Intef Seth Meribre Sobekhotep III Neferhotep I Sihathor Sobekhotep IV Merhotepre Sobekhotep Khahotepre Sobekhotep Wahibre Ibiau Merneferre Ay Merhotepre Ini Sankhenre Sewadjtu Mersekhemre Ined Sewadjkare Hori Merkawre Sobekhotep Mershepsesre Ini II Sewahenre Senebmiu Merkheperre Merkare Sewadjare Mentuhotep Seheqenre Sankhptahi


Yakbim Sekhaenre Ya'ammu Nubwoserre Qareh Khawoserre 'Ammu Ahotepre Maaibre Sheshi Nehesy Khakherewre Nebefawre Sehebre Merdjefare Sewadjkare III Nebdjefare Webenre Nebsenre Sekheperenre Djedkherewre Bebnum 'Apepi Nuya Wazad Sheneh Shenshek Khamure Yakareb Yaqub-Har


Semqen 'Aper-'Anati Sakir-Har Khyan Apepi Khamudi


Djehuti Sobekhotep VIII Neferhotep III Mentuhotepi Nebiryraw I Nebiriau II Semenre Bebiankh Sekhemre Shedwast Dedumose I Dedumose II Montuemsaf Merankhre Mentuhotep Senusret IV Pepi III


Senebkay Wepwawetemsaf Pantjeny Snaaib


Rahotep Nebmaatre Sobekemsaf I Sobekemsaf II Sekhemre-Wepmaat Intef Nubkheperre Intef Sekhemre-Heruhirmaat Intef Senakhtenre Ahmose Seqenenre Tao Kamose

New Kingdom and Third Intermediate Period  (1550–664 BC)



Pharaohs  (male female ) uncertain

New Kingdom (1550–1070 BC)


Ahmose I Amenhotep I Thutmose I Thutmose II Thutmose III Hatshepsut
Amenhotep II Thutmose IV Amenhotep III Akhenaten Smenkhkare Neferneferuaten
Tutankhamun Ay Horemheb


Ramesses I Seti I Ramesses II Merneptah Amenmesses Seti II Siptah Twosret


Setnakhte Ramesses III Ramesses IV Ramesses V Ramesses VI Ramesses VII Ramesses VIII Ramesses IX Ramesses X Ramesses XI

3rd Intermediate (1069–664 BC)


Smendes Amenemnisu Psusennes I Amenemope Osorkon the Elder Siamun Psusennes II


Shoshenq I Osorkon I Shoshenq II Takelot I Osorkon II Shoshenq III Shoshenq IV Pami Shoshenq V Osorkon IV


Harsiese A Takelot II Pedubast I Shoshenq VI Osorkon III Takelot III Rudamun Menkheperre Ini


Tefnakht Bakenranef


Piye Shebitku Shabaka Taharqa Tanutamun

Late Period and Hellenistic Period  (664–30 BC)



Pharaohs  (male female ) uncertain

Late (664–332 BC)


Necho I Psamtik I Necho II Psamtik II Wahibre Ahmose II Psamtik III


Cambyses II Petubastis III Darius I Xerxes Artaxerxes I Darius II




Nepherites I Hakor Psammuthes Nepherites II


Nectanebo I Teos Nectanebo II


Artaxerxes III Khabash Arses Darius III

Hellenistic (332–30 BC)


Alexander the Great Philip III Arrhidaeus Alexander IV


Ptolemy I Soter Ptolemy II Philadelphus Ptolemy III Euergetes Ptolemy IV Philopator Ptolemy V Epiphanes Ptolemy VI Philometor Ptolemy VII Neos Philopator Ptolemy VIII Euergetes Ptolemy IX Soter Ptolemy X Alexander I Ptolemy XI Alexander II Ptolemy XII Neos Dionysos Berenice IV Cleopatra
Ptolemy XV Caesarion

Dynastic genealogies

1st 4th 11th 12th 18th 19th 20th 21st to 23rd 25th 26th 27th 30th 31st Ptolemaic