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What was a steward of Amun?

 
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anneke
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PostPosted: Sat Apr 23, 2005 3:26 pm    Post subject: What was a steward of Amun? Reply with quote

Looking at the statues from the Griffith institute, I noticed several individuals who held the title of Steward:

Some are listed as being the Steward of an individual:
Amenemhet Jmn-m-h. 3t Iuti Jwtj was Steward of the first prophet of Amun, etc., during the 1st half of Dyn. XVIII,
Djehutinufer Dh. wtj-nfr was a Steward of the God’s wife of Amun,(dated New Kingdom)
These people must have been associated with the High Priest and the God’s Wife (a type of High Prietess) respectively.
I’m not even sure what the responsibilities of such an individual would be. I imagine someone like a personal secretary.

There are also people listed as Chief Steward of Amun, of just Steward. Are these individuals still associated with the High Priest, and have they just omitted this part, or are they Stewards of the greater temple complex? Are they some high level administrator? Any ideas?

Here are some examples:
Amenemhab Jmn-m-h. b Mahu Mh. , Steward of Amun, etc., early Dyn. XVIII
Kaemweset K3-m-w3st , Steward of Amun, Overseer of cattle of Amun, etc., with cartouche of Tuthmosis IV
Neferhotep Nfr-h. tp, Steward of Amun, mid-Dyn. XVIII,
Djehutihotep Dh. wtj-h. tp , Steward, Leader of the festival of Amun, early Dyn.XIX,
Amenmosi Jmn-ms Reshpu Rs•pw , Chief steward of Amun, (Dyn. XIX)
Sebeknakht Sbk-nh.t , Steward of Amun, Dyn. XIX,
Amenhotep Jmn-h. tp , Steward, Leader of the festival of Amun (New Kingdom)
Harnakht H. rw-nh.t , Steward of Amun, Overseer of the two granaries of the lords of Thebes, Second prophet of Amun, etc. (probably TT 236) Dyn. XIX-XX,

Slightly different maybe is this person:
Yupa Jjwp3 , Chief steward in the Ramesseum in the domain of Amun, etc., temp. Ramesses II
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kmt_sesh
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 24, 2005 10:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Steward" is a fairly commonly seen title, but it was a person of considerable authority and responsibility. Your suggestion of "personal secretary" isn't far off, though that's a different position recognized by the title sesh-shat. A steward would be even farther up the food chain.

The title imy-r ("steward" or "overseer") is more of an administrator, which you also suggested. For instance, every wealthy houselhold had an imy-r pr, "overseer of the house" or "...estate." A chief steward of Amun would be one of the key secular administrators of an Amun precinct and would have indeed worked closely with the High Priest, though the steward himself probably woould not have been a priest but a political appointee (or just as likely, a generational family position, so long as the government approved). Your example of Harnakht shows that he was both a steward and a second prophet of Amun, so Harnakht must have been a busy and powerful fellow. Although in smaller or more modest temples I'd wager that the High Priest and steward were one and the same.

In short the steward would be in charge of all of the administrative and logistical operations of an estate or temple, kind of like a chief of staff in the American political system. Everyone working to support the operations of the temple would be answerable to him.
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anneke
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 24, 2005 10:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for clarifying that. I so often read these titles and then later realize that I don't know really what these people did Smile

I will have to take a note of the egyptian title as well.

Do you happen to know what a chancellor is/does?
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 26, 2005 12:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Do you happen to know what a chancellor is/does?


I'll admit to being a bit fuzzy about what a "chancellor" is in ancient Egyptian terms. There is a title called khry-tp that we translate as "first under the king." I'm sure you've come across it before in the literature, and it existed from the Old Kingdom on, I believe. It is also often translated as "chancellor," and the impression I get is that it is much like a vizier, though that title has numerous other expressions in ancient Egyptian.
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 26, 2005 12:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
There is a title called khry-tp that we translate as "first under the king."


Sorry, that should have been nsw khry-tp. Khry-tp just means "the first under," which could be taken to mean the first one to lose a drinking contest and collapse under the table. Surprised
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anneke
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 26, 2005 12:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I got curious about the titles and collected some:

Positions at Court:
Fan-bearer on the right of the King (tay hw) A high-ranking advisor.
Steward (imy-ro per) Someone in charge of all of the administrative and logistical operations of an estate or temple. Imy-ro per wer would be the Great Steward of the House.
Sole Companion (smr wa.ty) one of the chosen confidants of the king.
Executive (at the head of the Two Lands) (iry-pat (hery-tep tawy)) In the latter part of the New Kingdom a title borne by the Crown Prince. Perhaps implying a Chief Executive role outside normal government structure.
Chancellor (khry-tp) High Official, directly below the pharaoh (?)

Administrators
Vizier (taity sab tjaty, or tjaty) The Vizier was the King’s Deputy in administrative matters and Chief Justice.
Mayor or Governor: (hatya) Head of the local administration. It often refers to a nomarch. [ed., ie. governor of an egyptian nome (or province)]
Governor of Upper Egypt (imy-ro Shemau) Chief Official for the area around and South of Herakleopolis.
Overseer of the Treasury, (imy-r Pr HD) (In the middle Kingdom imy-rA xtmt) Official in charge of the office of the treasury.
Overseer of the Granaries, (imy-r snw.t) Official in charge of the granaries.
Overseer of the Storehouses, (imy-r wDA) Official in charge of the storehouses.
Overseer of Works (imy-r k3wt) Official in charge of the building projects and other public works.

Temples
Overseer of the Priests of Upper and Lower Egypt (imy-ro hemu-netjer nu Shemau) A senior official responsible for the priesthood of the various gods throughout Egypt

Army
Generalissimo (“Great General”) (imy-ro mesha wer) Overall commander of the military forces.
General (imy-ro mesha) Military Commander
Master of the Horse (imy-ro sesemet) Head of the Chariotry in the army.

epithet:
True of Voice = ma hrw
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 26, 2005 11:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Even in your interesting list the descriptions of Chancellor and Vizier seem to conflict, which is what I often find, too. That's why I'm not sure how exactly to pin down Chancellor.

You'll read in some books that Chancellor was directlt below the king, while in others you'll read the same for Vizier (aka Prime Minister). The latter was definitely the case under Senusret III, who created a three-man Vizier system that solidified the power of the monarchy.

Part of the problem may be how the terms applied from period to period. A chancellor could have possessed more power in the Old Kingdom, whereas Vizier came to mean the same thing by the Middle Kingdom. And your divisions of Court and Administration puts an interesting spin on it, too. Perhaps a chancellor was strictly a court position.

Another possibility altogether may be that at times the title "chancellor" was entirely honorific, as so commonly was the title "hereditary prince." The same seems to be true for the common term "governor," although in many cases that was a definite position of power. We often see "chancellor" (nsw khry-tp) on the stelae and tombs of Old Kingdom officials both royal and non-royal, where as "vizier" (tj3ty) was applied to people whom we knew exercised great legal authority.
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anneke
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2005 12:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Sorry, that should have been nsw khry-tp. Khry-tp just means "the first under," which could be taken to mean the first one to lose a drinking contest and collapse under the table.


I was going to make some joke about the first one under the king being the queen.....
But I'll leave that one alone Wink

You're right aboout the distinction between the Chancellor and the Vizier. There are a couple of titles that are indicating high power at court.
In Akhet-Aten for instance we find Ahmose who was "Overseer of the front hall of the Lord of the Two Lands (=court of justice?)". It's possible that the chancellor held some role in organizing government at court.

From what I have read from the description of the job of the Vizier (for instance Rekhmire), I get the impression that the vizier had his own offices and interacted with the overseers of the treasury and the granaries etc.
He would have to report to the court. Maybe via a chancellor???

I find your suggestion that the chancellor may be a high court position vs the Vizier who is a high administrator a pleasant theory. And since there is no evidence against it I think I will adopt this view for the time being Wink
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2005 2:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I was going to make some joke about the first one under the king being the queen.....But I'll leave that one alone


Laughing Laughing Laughing

Maybe this was a separate form of royal title used at the harims. The pharaoh would go along a line of his lovely ladies and say, "Okay, tongiht you'll be first under the king, and you over there will be second, and you with that Nubian wig will be third..."

And I will leave it at that!

Quote:
I find your suggestion that the chancellor may be a high court position vs the Vizier who is a high administrator a pleasant theory. And since there is no evidence against it I think I will adopt this view for the time being


Talk about deja vu! At our hieroglyphs class tonight we were studying the translation of the stela of a man named Shenay, and his title happened to be nsw khry-tp. That got Dr. Mudloff off on a description of what exactly nsw khry-tp was. He used "chamberlain" instead of "chancellor," but he clarified that the nsw khry-tp was indeed a very high court position, whereas a vizier was an administrator out away from the court. It would seem that the chancellor, with daily intimate contact with the king, also exercised more power than most viziers.

It just struck me as an awfully happy convenience that Mudloff spoke on this topic tonight. I immediately thought of this Egyptian Dreams discussion. Very Happy
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anneke
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PostPosted: Thu Apr 28, 2005 12:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very Happy That is a nice coincidence.
I had wondered also what a chamberlain was, and what the difference was between a chamberlain and a chancellor.

It does help a bit if the original egyptian titles are used.

I have added the info to my little file....
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