Ancient Egypt’s Most Famous Royal Family

Review :

An Excellent and Informative Biography!!!

:Book Review Written January 9, 2020
Ancient Egypt's Most Famous Royal Family: The Lives and Deaths of Akhenaten, Nefertiti, and Tutankhamun, By Charles River Editors
Kindle Edition (98 Pages)

This is a historical study of the lives and deaths of Pharaoh Akhenaten, his Queen, Nefertiti, and their son, Pharaoh Tutankhamun who together are arguably Ancient Egypt's most famous royal family. The narrative is conversational in style and extremely well written. It is augmented with images of important people, places, and events associated with the subject matter. The text is extensively footnoted, includes expert testimony from many noted Egyptologists, as well as translated excerpts from contemporary sources in ancient Hieroglyphic writings, all which aid in ensuring the accuracy of the narrative. In addition an extensive bibliography is provided to aid readers seeking additional information.

One of the mysteries of Ancient Egypt is the archeological site known as Amarna, which is actually the name of the modern village that is closest to the site of the ancient Egyptian city of Akhet-Aten. Akhet-Aten was built during the reign of one of Egypt's most enigmatic pharaohs, Akhenaten (ruled ca. 1364-1347 BCE). Modern archaeological studies have shown that Akhet-Aten was hastily built and almost as quickly abandoned. Although the city had a brief lifespan, it was vitally important at the time, so much so that the late Eighteenth Dynasty has been named the Amarna Period by modern scholars. The importance is reflected in the changes that Akhenaten attempted to make to Egyptian religion, art, architecture, and society, all of which can be found among the ruins of Amarna, from texts that described the Aten as the one true god to the depictions of the royal family that were like nothing seen before or after in ancient Egyptian art. An examination of Akhenaten's rule and the life of the city of Akhet-Aten has helped modern scholars unravel some of the mysteries of the Amarna Period, but many still remain. Akhenaten's most famous successor was his son, Tutankhamun "he who is the living image of the god Amun, the image of rebirth, one of perfect laws, who pacifies the two lands, one who has raised the crowns, the pacifier of the gods, the god Ra is the possessor of forms; Tutankamun, Tut-mesut, Neferhepu-segerehtaui, Wetjes-khau-sehetep-netjeru, Nebkheprure". These are the names and titles of a king who died at a young age, but the mere mention of his name brings to mind visions of gold and splendor, and thoughts of a majestic kingdom. The reality of this once king is something quite different, as his fame has less to do with his position and mark on history and nearly everything to do with his death and the serendipitous discovery of his tomb by Howard Carter in 1922.

This book provides a balanced, factual narrative regarding the so called "Heretic King" Akhenaten's, his Queen Nefertiti, and their famous successor son, Pharaoh Tutankhamun and their impact on the Ancient Egyptian civilization and the world. The results is a fascinating glimpse at the culture and people of Ancient Egypt. I particularly enjoyed the descriptions of Akhenaten's efforts to change Egypt's religions beliefs and practices and the discussions regarding Howard Carter's discovery of the tomb of the "Boy King", Pharaoh Tutankhamun. Readers who like ancient history in general, and Ancient Egyptian history in particular will certainly enjoy this book.

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