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Who was the Mother of Tut?
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astro3
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 11:09 am    Post subject: Who was the Mother of Tut? Reply with quote

For a hundred years people supposed that Neferttiti and Akhnenaten were Tut's parents. Hopefully no-one except Zawi Hawass still believes that. That royal couple had six daughters & no son.
The DNA study showed KV55 was the mummy of Tut's father, and (to quote Russell Jacquet) 'the mummy known as 'the Younger Lady' found in KV35 was the mother of Tutankhamun and this has to represent Merytaten.' ('Life & Death of the Boy king, Academia.edu). We accept that Smenkhare and Merytaten did rule briefly after the end of Akhenaten's reign. He adds, 'tut succeeded his mother Merytaten as a boy king of 10 years old'
Was she old enough for this? He has Tut 'Born in Akheneten's Year 11...' After taking on the throne, Akheneten (a) gets married to Nefertiti and then (b) conceives his eldest daughter Merytaten. So she is unlikely to have been born before his year 2. So she can't be old enough to (a) marry Smenkhare and (b) conceive Tut - can she?
Overall she does seem the best candidate for Tut's mother, but there is this intractable proplem!
If the new Cairo museum is just about to open, with its five thousand items from Tut's tomb all displayed in great splendour, it will look silly if no-one even knows who his mother is.
Anyone trying to answer this might like to peruse this Kate P. review of the 2010 DNA study: http://www.akhnaton.net/miroir/2010/20101110094700_ADN-Amarna_KatePhizackerley.htm
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm going with KV55 as Smenkhare (Tut's father) and KV35YL as Meritaten (Tut's mum/Smenkhare's wife).
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

While I do think KV55 is Smenchkkare, my 'intractible problem' with Meritaten as Tut's mother is that the DNA suggests KV35YL is a daughter of Amenhotep III - Meritaten was his granddaughter instead. We know Amenhotep III had many daughters and a marriage between one of them and his son Smenchkare is plausible - or, at least, more plausible than that daughter marrying Akhenaten and then seemingly never being mentioned again.

Also, you may be underestimating Meritaten's age: On the walls of the temple Akhenaten built in Karnak when he was still Amenhotep IV, Nefertiti appears with her oldest two daughters (with a third added at a later date), so clearly at least Meritaten and Meketaten were born whenever the temple reliefs were carved. Depending on how early the Karnak temple was, Meritaten (and even Meketaten!) could easily have been born before her father even became king and so have easily been old enough to give birth to Tutankhamun.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 11, 2020 8:36 pm    Post subject: Tut's parents Reply with quote

Meritaen may have been old enough to have given birth to a child when Tut was born but i do agree that DNA suggests that both parents were full siblings and as such children of Amenhotep III and Tiye. We know that Amenhotep made their two older daughters wives but there is so far no evidence that this elevation from daughter to wife also meant the marriages were consummated. Outside of Amenhotep III Achenaten and Ramses II made some of their daughters Great Royal Wifes yet we have no archeological evidence that any of those marriages resulted in a offspring. That might indicate that while marrying a sister or halfsister was perfectly acceptable but that a marriage with a daughter was more of providing her with an official status rather than a full blown marriage.

So if Tut's mother is a daughter of Amenhotep III and Tiye and the two elder sisters have married their father and we don't have examples of a Pharaoh inheriting a Great Royal Wife from his father the likely candidate is one of the two or three younger daughters. The age of the mummy also suggests she was probably born later in her fathers reign. Tut was born somewhere around year 11 or 12 of Achenaten and his mother died under that age of 25. Considering that Tut was very close to his nurse she may have had to replace his mother from a very early age.

Considering that the oldest daughter Sitamen was old enough to be elevated to Great Royal Wife at her father's first Sed Festival in the 30th year of his reign she was certainly too old. Iset/Isis married her father 4 years later so was likely also too old.

So the most likely candidate is one of the youngest daughters Henuttaneb or Nebetah. Beketaten if she was not a daughter of Achenaten with another wife or Nebetah under another name is another option.

Tut's father could be either Achenaten or Smenkhkare. What we do know is that the two foetuses in Tut's grave where his daughters and that KV 55 cannot have been their paternal and maternal grandfather. Meaning that they were not the children of Ankhesenamun if KV 55 is Achenaten or that if Tut's only known Great Royal Wife was the mother we know his father has to be Smenkhkare.

To me it makes sense if Queen Tiye wanted to secure her line around year 10 of Achenaten by marrying two of her younger children to each other because the Pharaoh had only had daughters up until that moment. As Tut was also not the immediate successor of Achenaten is another reason why i don't believe they are father and son. If a pharaoh had a son there is no reason for anyone other than that son to succeed. That makes the suggestion that Tut's parents were Smenkhkare and one of his sisters. Shortly after his birth the mother dies, possibly by accident or even murder. You could see how Achenaten and/or Nefertiti wanting to get rid of her especially if she boasted about having a son while they had only girls.

Any rift between two factions in the family was healed by marrying Smenkhkare to Meritaten and when Smenkhkare died young and without sons with Meritaten his son was married to his wife's sister. Ankhesenamun.

That would explain the Amarna succession going from Achenaten to his co-rule with Neferneferuaten-Nefertiti and she being his first successor. She dies or is replaced by her son-in-law and eldest daughter. When he dies one or two years later it was his son who became Tutankhamun.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 12, 2020 4:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

M. Traugott Huber had a compelling argument in Spring 2019 issue of KMT Journal. He presented the case for Meritaten, however, he also mentioned Baketaten as a candidate. The problem was lack of evidence, although, as I recall, being a younger daughter of Amenhotep III, the ages worked out ok to match with KY35YL.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 12, 2020 8:29 pm    Post subject: case for Meritaten Reply with quote

so what arguments does he have and most importantly how does he explain the DNA of Tut's parents resembling that of full siblings as we know KV 55 was a son of Amenhotep III and Tiye and KV35YL also has the DNA to be their child?
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 12, 2020 9:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

" A different take on Tut - Egyptian archaeologist shares theory on pharaoh’s lineage " (The Harvard Gazette - Alvin Powell, 11.02.2013)
Quote:
... French Egyptologist Marc Gabolde offered a different interpretation of the DNA evidence on Thursday. Speaking at Harvard’s Science Center, Gabolde said he’s convinced that Tut’s mother was not his father’s sister, but rather his father’s first cousin, Nefertiti.

Nefertiti was already known to be Akhenaten’s wife and in fact the two had six daughters. Gabolde believes they also had a son, Tutankhamun, and that the apparent genetic closeness revealed in the DNA tests was not a result of a single brother-to-sister mating, but rather due to three successive generations of marriage between first cousins.

“The consequence of that is that the DNA of the third generation between cousins looks like the DNA between a brother and sister,” said Gabolde, the director of the archaeological expedition of Université Paul Valery-Montpellier III in the Royal Necropolis at el-Amarna. “I believe that Tutankhamun is the son of Akhenaten and Nefertiti, but that Akhenaten and Nefertiti were cousins.” ...

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 13, 2020 12:30 pm    Post subject: Gabolde's theory Reply with quote

Gabolde's theory speaks of three generations but we only have two. Even if Yuya was Muttemwiya's brother and Amenhotep III and Tiye first cousins that only makes Achenaten and Nefertiti the second generation. To the best of my knowledge that would also require Nefertiti to be the daughter of a full brother of Amenhotep III and a sister of Tiye. I cannot think of an example of a Egyptian Princess marrying a commoner in the 18th dynasty and if i remember correctly genetically we might even require not just full siblings of Amenhotep III and Tiye but identical twins. Making it theoretically possibly but also quite unlikely.
From the grave of Thuya and Yuya we know they were the parents of Tiye and even granddaughter Sitamun is represented. We also have information of a son who had several children but no mention of another daughter married to the king's brother and a granddaughter married to the king's son.

Marc Gabolde's theory also has another complication. It does not explain how the foetuses in Tut's grave are clearly his daughters and paternal grandchildren of KV 55 and KV35YL but cannot be their maternal grandchildren. Yet the foetuses are clearly also related in the maternal line to both the Royal line and a mitochondrial line of Thuya but that latter one not being through Queen Tiye. Tut probably had a harem and might have had someone fitting that description in his harem but i find it odd that we have nothing of her in his grave. That was filled with items from various family members and even the two foetuses but no reference to their mother?

If you put those two things together the theory starts to fall apart especially as there is a likelier one.

The other theory seems to have Tut as the child of Smenkhkare and Meritaten. That complicates the DNA as Meritaten's parentage is clear but cannot have been the same as that of a daughter of Amenhotep III and Tiye. So im curious how that theory solves the issue of two people having DNA that suggests they are full siblings when the are either uncle and niece (assuming Smenkhkare is the third and youngest son of Amenhotep III and Tiye) or possibly uncle/niece as well as first cousins if Smenkhkare was the child of Amenhotep III with one of his daughter-wives. Although we have no evidence any of the known father-daughter marriages resulted in offspring. I simply don't see how that would work with the known DNA results.
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2020 12:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

At this point I'm veering towards the idea that Nefertiti was a relative of Tiye - possibly her niece - her father being Anen. I say that because of the similar reversed glyphs in their names. Anen was also dead later in the reign of Amenhotep III and was known to have at least 2 un-named daughters and a son. In this scenario you have Nefertiti and her acknowledged sister Mutenberet joining their nearest relatives household - Ay (who may be the older brother or uncle) and Tey. My thinking is that Nefertiti is not KV35 but in this scenario could work as KV21B, who is related to the royal family by way of Thuya. The problem is that we do not yet have the full DNA sequence for that mummy. What we do have also indicates she is related to Amenhotep III as well - I would propose through Mutemweia who may turn out to be a sister of Thuya.

Going back to the identity of KV35YL, my money is on it being one of Akhenaten's younger sisters. KV55, well, I'm back and forth on that one between Akenaten and Smenkhkare. It wouldn't be impossible he was Akhenaten's brother rather than son in terms of age (if KV55) and it doesn't have to mean that KV35 is Meritaten at all. After all, we know that most kings had multiple wives. Akhenaten marrying his brother to his eldest daughter makes a lot of sense in the absence of having a son. Smenkhkare having an infant son already makes him an even better option - full blooded royalty, an heir and a baby spare to keep the Atenist faith going. It's not that different to Horemheb picking Paramessu (a brother in arms if not by birth) who had an heir.
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2020 3:45 pm    Post subject: Anen Reply with quote

Anen could be the father of Nefertiti but for her daughter Ankhesenamun to be the mother of Tut's children Anen would have needed to marry a mitochondrial female relation of his mother. As a man he cannot pass mitochondrial DNA to his children and their offspring.

Aye could have been the brother of Anen's wife. If she was the maternal cousin of Anen and Tiye, Aye would also be their cousin. They idea of uncle Aye and his wife Tey taking on an important role after the death of Anen and his wife would explain his absence in the grave of Yuya and Thuya as well as his role later in the reign of Achenaten.
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 15, 2020 4:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seems reasonable, and it makes sense Mutenberet and Nefertiti being linked to their household in Amarna. Still means that Ay has an actual familial relationship to the royal family - an elder male uncle fits his role and status beyond his position as a courtier. It also gets over the issue of him not getting a mention in the tomb of Yuya and Thuya.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2020 1:46 am    Post subject: Re: Gabolde's theory Reply with quote

Thieuke wrote:
Gabolde's theory speaks of three generations but we only have two. ...

Cyril Aldred : Akhenaten - King of Egypt. - London : T & H Ltd., 1988. - ISBN : 0-500-27621-8. - 320 p.

... reconstructed on the basis of name and title analogies a family from Achmim, that had Egyptian royal mothers for several generations, possibly since Thutmose III. (through his wife Meritre-Hatshepsut, whom he sees as a sister of a certain Jej from Achmim, who may have been the father of Mutemwija and Juja).

I remember reading that the conclusions about the family relationships based on the results of the dna investigations by Hawass et.al before us courts would not hold up. The dna sections determined are simply too short and incomplete. Maybe one should also keep that in mind ...
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2020 11:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

We also have to remember that Amenhotep III and Yuya also appear to be related, but we can't yet tell if that is through his father Tuthmosis IV or his mother Mutemweia.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2020 8:35 pm    Post subject: king's brother Reply with quote

it always comes back to the fact that we know about the king's wives, daughters, granddaughters and sons but his brothers, uncles and cousins are never referred to as such.
I don't think it means a new Pharaoh had a major family clean out (read murder) to get rid of male relatives. Yet we don't hear about male line relatives of Kings other than their sons.

What we do know is that Amenhotep III made it clear he married the daughter of commoners. So whatever the relationship of Yuya and Thuya to the main royal line was, they were no longer seen as royal.
That does not have to mean not related. There has always been the theory of female line descendants of Ahmose Nefertari (first queen and made goddess of the 18th dynasty) having an important role.
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2020 9:00 pm    Post subject: Re: king's brother Reply with quote

Thieuke wrote:
it always comes back to the fact that we know about the king's wives, daughters, granddaughters and sons but his brothers, uncles and cousins are never referred to as such.
I don't think it means a new Pharaoh had a major family clean out (read murder) to get rid of male relatives. Yet we don't hear about male line relatives of Kings other than their sons. ...

Jean Revez : The Role of the Kings' Brothers in the Transmission of Royal Power in Ancient Egypt and Kush - A Cross-Cultural Study. - In: The Fourth Cataract and Beyond - Proceedings of the 12th International Conference for Nubian Studies. - Leuven / Paris / Walpole, MA: Peeters, 2014. - pp. 537 - 544.
Quote:
Some important studies dealing with the role of royal brothers in Kushite kingship have been published in the past couple of decades. While we have acquired valuable knowledge into the patterns of royal transmission of power in Nubia due to recent research - thanks notably to the academic work of R. Morkot, A. Lohwasser and D. Kahn -, there is in the author's view still additional insight to be gained in the field by making a more thorough comparative analysis of the role of the kings' brothers in Ancient Egypt and Kush.

At no other time in Pharaonic history (except during the Nubian 25th Dynasty) do kings' brothers come to the fore to such an extent as in the 13th Dynasty. Diverse written and iconographic material evidence (genealogical scarabs, statues, reliefs) clearly points to four king's brothers living under the reign of Sobekhotep III (around 1750 B.C.) and his successor Neferhotep I. Two of them (Sahathor and Sobekhotep) were later to rule as pharaohs.

Of particular interest is the fact that these kings' brothers actually never hold the title sn nsw "King's brother", but are always simply referred to individually as sA nsw "King's son". This shows that the patrilineal mode of succession was not fundamentally put into question in Ancient Egypt, since it had been customary for the future king to be chosen among the sA nsw "the king's sons".

Quite different was the advent of the Kushite dynasties which necessitated structural changes in both royal phraseology and mythology. For the first time, candidates for the royal succession were prominently displayed as sn nsw, "King's brothers" on important monuments; fratrilineal succession had become the norm, if not always in practice, at least ideologically speaking, and was no longer understood as circumstantial. Two important paradigm shifts had by that time taken place: the rivalry between brothers, on the theological plane, was no longer understood stricto sensu as a fight between Horus and "his brother" Seth for the heritage of Osiris as was the case in Ancient Egypt, but more as a struggle between "brothers" for the status of the "primus inter pares".

From a more political point of view, one can postulate that in the Napatan kingdom where royal power was less centralized than in Egypt, the Kushite ruler could be surrounded by a group of men called "King's brothers" who were almost his equals, a fact that would have been inconceivable in highly hierarchical Egypt where the pharaoh was literally nn snw.f "peerless".

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