Hatshepsut

Only available on StudyMode
  • Download(s) : 785
  • Published : August 25, 2008
Open Document
Text Preview
A)In what ways did Hatshepsut portray herself as a male pharaoh?

While the concept of a female ruler as a Queen Regent or Co- regent was not foreign to New Kingdom practices there was no provision for a female pharaoh in Egyptian tradition. Hatshepsut’s portrayal as male was unprecedented. ‘After Hatshepsut regency for about seven years the political situation apparently changed and a bomb shell exploded’ . Hatshepsut dressed herself in the clothes of a man, put on the false beard that pharaohs traditionally wore and proclaimed her self ‘king of Egypt’. Hatshepsut portrayed her self as male not only in her physical appearance. But also in her Royal title, inscriptions and in monuments.

At first during her image transformation, she was depicted with feminine facial features and a slender waist. Later she was fitted with accessories of king including a nemes headdress and symbols of Egypt’s enemies inscribed beneath feet much like the seated limestone statue from Deir el Bahri. After her image included full kingly regalia. This included the image ‘wearing shendyet kilt, Nemes headdress, false beard, formal standing pose, kneeling before the gods, making offerings, depicted as a sphinx and depicted as Osiris’ e.g. red granite sphinx from Deir el Bahri.

Hatshepsut’s image and titles had to be adopted to suit those of a male since a female king was unheard of which is seen in representations of her. Scribes used masculine and feminine pronouns like he/she, and masculine and feminine titles like ‘her majesty and King Maat-ka-re’ as they couldn’t decide whether she was female or male. Titles including ‘king of upper and lower Egypt’ and ‘mighty of kas’ gave Hatshepsut a more masculine image, where over time she gained a more kingly identity. Hatshepsut strived to be remembered as a strong male pharaoh that continued to rule Egypt through prosperity.

Hatshepsut’s titles altered over time to reflect her changing status and increasing power. Her full titulary as king was known as the five great names. Two of these names were inclosed in cartouches when inscribed. These were her throne name maat-ka-re and her personal name Khnemet-Amun-hatshepsut. When she a queen consort, her titles included kings daughter, kings sister, kings great wife and gods wife of Amun while as a regent for Thutmosis III, her titles included king’s daughter, king’s sister, king’s great wife, gods wife of amun and mistress of the two lands. Then when she was king of Egypt, she was Horus: mighty of kas, two ladies: flourishing of years, Horus of gold: divine of diadems, king of upper and lower Egypt, lord of the two lands: maat-ka-re and daughter of re, khnemet-amun-hatsheposut. It is through her many titles change of physical appearance and portrayal on monuments that Hatshepsut strived to be recognised as a male pharaoh. B)How did Hatshepsut show her devotion to Amun?

Throughout Hatshepsut’s reign she strongly emphasised her close relationship and devotion with the god Amun. According to Lawless, ‘Hatshepsut did more than any other Pharaoh to raise the status of Amun beyond all other gods’ . She achieved this by emphasising her filial relationship with the god, most evident in the divine birth scene in her mortuary temple at Deir El Bahri and through the Oracle, which was later inscribed on the walls of the Red Chapel at Karnak. These pieces of evidence are vital in explaining Hatshepsut’s devotion to Amun. However, the relationship between Hatshepsut and Amun was a reciprocal arrangement as through the glorification of her father she promoted the priesthood and rewarded them for their support towards her legitimacy which led to their growth in wealth and political power during her reign.

Hatshepsut’s mortuary temple, also known as Djeser-Djeseru clearly displays propaganda used to justify her claim to the throne and also her devotion to the god Amun. She not only shared this temple with him, the top level being dedicated to the god as...
tracking img