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No sign of Queen Tut as tomb reveals 3,000-year-old secret
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kmt_sesh
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 19, 2006 1:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ELISE wrote:
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But unless there is evidence of a deliberately inflicted injury/illness (and how you would conclude an injury had occurred 'with malice', goodness only knows) the assumption must be that he died a natural death.


Yes, you've got a point there. Infection is a natural cause of death...but an unnatural injury generally has to occur for such a death to result. Ergo his ruined knee. In any case I guess I was referring to illnesses that so plagued the ancient world, like schistosomiasis or turburculosis. For some reason, a long time ago, the latter was believed by some to have been the cause of death. How they figured that one I don't know, but it was abandoned as a candidate long ago.

Osiris II wrote:
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All in all, the Royals seem to have been a rather evil lot! We really don't know how many Pharaohs were "assisted" into their journey to the stars...


So true. This "evil" nature reached new heights during the Ptolemaic Period, but one must wonder how much untidy history among the royals was deeply buried by ancient spin doctors. Whether Ramesses III was actually killed in this harim conspiracy is still debated, but many believe the conspirators were successful. Almost certainly successful was the assassination of Amenemhat I, in Dyansty 12, at the hands of an earlier harim conspiracy.

Still, that's only two out of more than 3000 years of kings. We know so little about many of these ancient rulers (especially in the turbulent intermediate periods), much less how they met their ends.

To a point I would have to argue against your message about the royals having been exceptions to the diseases and defects suffered by commoners. The royals tended on average to live longer and healthier, to be sure, but they were susceptible to the same diseases as everyone else. We need only turn to Ramesses II, who outlived many of his own sons before Merenptah was able to succeed him on the throne. And then there's Akhenaten, who was never meant to be a king, until his older brother (crown prince Tuthmosis) met an untimely end. And there's always the king Siptah, whose grossly deformed foot reminds us that the royals were no exception to diseases like polio or multiple sclerosis. Wink

Daughter_Of_SETI wrote:
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Compare them to the Roman Emperors that came later! They can't have been that bad.


That's a tough one to assess. Emperors like Nero and Caligula were truly sick and twisted people, but that particular line of Roman rulers comprises only a few out of many in their history. And many emperors were widely beloved.

Also, Rome was an entirely different time and place from the empire of ancient Egypt. In the days of Egypt far fewer people were literate, and the scribal class was a tiny elite that generally owed its livelihood to the state. In all of the literature and records of ancient Egypt that have so far been found, only a trifle few can be regarded as unkindly to the king.

The Roman civilization was quite different. Though literacy was still confined, by percentages far more people could read and write in Roman times--and plenty of these historians and authors owed nothing personal to the emperor. The Romans were consumate gossips, and one's reputation was everything among these effete snobs. Laughing Some writers found themselves in serious trouble for what they wrote, but plenty of Roman writers left us all kinds of juicy gossip about their rulers.
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Robson
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 19, 2006 3:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kmt_sesh wrote:
Some writers found themselves in serious trouble for what they wrote, but plenty of Roman writers left us all kinds of juicy gossip about their rulers.


All Egyptians rulers had were Manetho's dubious anedoctes written centuries later. Wink
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Daughter_Of_SETI
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 19, 2006 1:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kmt_sesh wrote:
Daughter_Of_SETI wrote:
Quote:
Compare them to the Roman Emperors that came later! They can't have been that bad.


That's a tough one to assess. Emperors like Nero and Caligula were truly sick and twisted people, but that particular line of Roman rulers comprises only a few out of many in their history. And many emperors were widely beloved.

Also, Rome was an entirely different time and place from the empire of ancient Egypt. In the days of Egypt far fewer people were literate, and the scribal class was a tiny elite that generally owed its livelihood to the state. In all of the literature and records of ancient Egypt that have so far been found, only a trifle few can be regarded as unkindly to the king.

The Roman civilization was quite different. Though literacy was still confined, by percentages far more people could read and write in Roman times--and plenty of these historians and authors owed nothing personal to the emperor. The Romans were consumate gossips, and one's reputation was everything among these effete snobs. Laughing Some writers found themselves in serious trouble for what they wrote, but plenty of Roman writers left us all kinds of juicy gossip about their rulers.


Think OK, but my only point that I was trying to make was that, I personally don't consider the Egyptian pharaohs to have been particularly 'evil' rulers. Smile
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kmt_sesh
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2006 12:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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OK, but my only point that I was trying to make was that, I personally don't consider the Egyptian pharaohs to have been particularly 'evil' rulers.


No, you consider them to be cuddly bunnies. bunny

Kidding. I just wanted an excuse to use that emoticon myself.

My point is that we know next to nothing concretely about a single pharaoh's personality. What we have is the official record only, which was based on skillful public relations, so it's nearly impossible to know what any one pharaoh may have been like as an individual. Wink
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Meritaten
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2006 3:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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What we have is the official record only, which was based on skillful public relations, so it's nearly impossible to know what any one pharaoh may have been like as an individual.

That's a good point. The Egyptian dynasties sort of stretch on forever as a parade of serene monarchs with the odd blank space where someone has been omitted - a bit like the processions of gods and godesses on tomb walls. There are some flashes of character that jump out - every now and then a striking utterance, or something like the name of a pharoanic pet, stands out in sharp contrast to the standardised, stylised presentations...now wonder we're drawn to these.

That's part of what makes Akhenaten so striking and, I believe draws so many to him, regardless of what they make of his personal creed. Both in art and fragmentary records, he steps away from the stylised procession...although that often leads to representations and interpretations of him that go even beyond styalisation and into caricature.

The intricacies of the thousands of years of formula and established procedure are fascinating enough...but when a little deviation to the formula escapes down through time to us, it's all the more intriguing.
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2006 5:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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In all of the literature and records of ancient Egypt that have so far been found, only a trifle few can be regarded as unkindly to the king.


Maybe that is one of the reasons why the Egyptians made sure not people were literate? so, the one's who objected to them couldn't write there feelings, and later passed on to future generations? I'm sure during any ruler there are always always people who disagree, with what the ruler is doing? but perhaps those people were illiterate? Evil or Very Mad
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kmt_sesh
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2006 12:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Maybe that is one of the reasons why the Egyptians made sure not people were literate? so, the one's who objected to them couldn't write there feelings, and later passed on to future generations? I'm sure during any ruler there are always always people who disagree, with what the ruler is doing? but perhaps those people were illiterate?


Yes, it's quite possible. Literacy was a tool of power in the ancient world. For most people in the population of ancient Egypt--the farmers, herdsmen, laborers--there simply was no practical need to know how to read or write. For the women of ancient Egypt it's an even more gray area: we have very little evidence to deduce any reliable literacy figures among the fairer sex. When one could boast that he was a scribe (and most everyone who was literate, boasted of it ad nauseam on their own monuments), he was virtually assured a job of high position involving little to no labor, and lots of prestige. So you can bet literacy was something jealously guarded, and that in the ancient world, the old cliché "knowledge is power" was especially true.
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