What Were the Radical Changes That King Akhenaten Made?

Topics: Akhenaten, Ancient Egypt, Monotheism Pages: 4 (1572 words) Published: March 21, 2012
What were the radical changes that King Akhenaten made?
Akhenaten was known as a “heretic” pharaoh due to the radical changes he made during his reign as an Egyptian pharaoh. The people of Egypt had been worshipping many different deities all the time and Akhenaten was the first pharaoh to break the tradition by introducing monotheism, which was the worship to only one god. Other than reforming the religious beliefs, he also introduced arts of different styles to worship the Sun god, Aten. The changes made during Akhenaten’s reign had no doubt brought some effects to the lives of the Egyptians and also people from other countries later on. Life

Akhenaten, formerly known as Amenhotep IV, was the pharaoh of the eighteenth dynasty of ancient Egypt. His period of reign was also known as the Amarna Period. He started his reign in Egypt around 1353 BC and it lasted for 18 years. His father, Amenhotep III, had a long and prosperous reign of about 37 years. Amenhotep III died and left Egypt under the hands of his son, Akhenaten, who was then crowned as Amenhotep IV. Back then, Thebes was the religious capital of Egypt and the state god was Amen. The name of Amenhotep IV literally means “Amen is content”. Within the first few years of Amenhotep IV’s reign, he introduced a religious conversion. He decided to eliminate all gods and worshipped only the sun-disk god, Aten. He built temples of Aten with different artistic styles. His actions led to the rebellion of Amen priesthood in the city of Thebes.

During the fifth year of his reign, Amenhotep IV decided to leave Thebes because of the corrupting power of the priests. He found a virgin land on the east side of the Nile surrounded by high cliffs. This land was religiously pristine and there he created the city of Akhetaten, which was also known as “Horizon of the Sun Disk”. The city was built very quickly and the royal family moved to Akhetaten, along with his fellow citizens. At the same time,...
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