Assess Nefertiti’s Political Role

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  • Topic: Akhenaten, Smenkhkare, Amarna Period
  • Pages : 2 (564 words )
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  • Published : February 23, 2009
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Nefertiti was Akhenaten’s chief wife and consort for most of the Amarna period. The name Nefertiti means ‘the beautiful woman has come’, which has led to speculation that she was not of Egyptian birth. Though she may have not been Egyptian, Akhenaten often referred to Nefertiti as ‘the mistress of happiness’. All evidence suggests that their marriage was a happy one and that Akhenaten regarded her as his equal.

When the couple moved to Amarna, Akhenaten describes her of one of the boundary stelae at as; ‘Fair of face, Joyous with the Double Plume, Mistress of Happiness, Endowed with Favour, are hearing whose voice one rejoices, Lady of Grace, Great of Love, whose disposition cheers the Lord of Two Land’, this quote of Akhenaten just comes to show how much he doted on her. Nefertiti also acquired even more religious and political power than any queen in Egyptian history and may have ruled as Akhenaten’s co-regent in the 12th year of his reign. Evidence that proves this theory of Nefertiti is that her name was altered to include the name of the god Aten, she added Nefer-neferu-aten to her name Nefertiti, usually followed by ‘Beloved of Akhenaten’, also her name was written in double cartouche in the manner of the a pharaoh which symbolises her prominent power.

Towards the end of Akhenatens reign, Akhenaten had a co-regent, this may have been Nefertiti however it is a mystery because evidence shows that this co-regent was a male with the first name as Ankh-khepru-re and his second name was Nefer-neferu-aten, followed by the ‘beloved of Akhenaten’, which was the exact name of Nefertiti. Also Ankhkheperure Smenkhare was sometimes written in the feminine form of Ankhetkheperure. Also the body that was found in Tomb 55 was presumed to be Smenkhare but was initially identified as a female. It is also a matter of great controversy as to whether or not Smenkhkare continued to reign after Akhenaten died. According to Dr. Redford, a professor of Egyptology and the...
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