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Tut's Dating Inconsistencies

 
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xman
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 3:33 am    Post subject: Tut's Dating Inconsistencies Reply with quote

Most sources indicate that Tutankhamun came to the throne around 1336 and died around 1327 BC. Dr Hawass (and a few other very recent sources) indicate that he reigned earlier, around 1365-1354 or so. Some give dates in between these two extremes.

Can anyone indicate where this discrepancy has risen from? I'm interested in astronomical events for the period of Tut's life and this would sure make a difference. Does anyone have a lead on those events as well.

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VBadJuJu
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A lunar eclipse reference generally establishes Thutmosis III to have come to the throne in 1490BCE. A notation for lunar cycles in the time of Ramsses II allows his assension to be set with some degree of certainty to 1304BCE. In between it's a lot of guesswork.

You would think you could just start in either place and add or subtract, but it is not that easy. In the Middle Kingdom, kings are thought to have dated their reign from New Years Day (first day of the first month of innundation speason). But in the vainglorious 18th Dynasty, the kings seem to have dated their reign from whenever they ascend. Thus a day late in a king's 9th year, could be the day after New Years.

Then there is the problem of knowing exactly how long the king reigned or exactly when he died. For example, it is generally accepted that Amenhotep III ruled for 38 years. Wine jars dating to the last few months of his 38th yr establish this. But that late in the year, he could have lived on into his 39th regnal year by a month or two, but before new wine was delivered.

This is a sketchy way to try and establish an absolute timeline because 1 wine docket more or less spoils your whole project. Just ebcause there is no 39th yr docket doesnt mean he didnt make it that far. Tut's tomb contained dockets for years 1,2,3 (maybe 4 I forget exacly) but none for 5, 6, 7, 8 and one for 9 but not with his name on it. Without that 9th docket, we might think he had a 3-4 year reign.

Then there is the issue of coregencies. If AIII reigned for about (which should already make the problem evident) 38 years and his son for 17 does that cover a span of 55 years? What if Akhenten was coregent for 12 years? 8 Years? 3 years? If Akhenaten was coregant for 12 years, that would reduce the span to a mere 43 years.

What of Smenkh-ka-Re? How long did he rule? How long for Neferneferuaten? No one is certain who these jokers are, let alone how long (or if) they ruled alone.

Any assumptions would make a big difference working forwards from TIII or backwards from RtG and you'd have to solve some of the Big Mysteries before you could get a modern calendar date that was within a decade or more of accurate.

That's why you get varianes in absolute dates.

HTH
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anneke
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have read that the dating of the reigns before ca 600 BC is not too secure. People can disagree by as much as 50 years from what I have seen.
I think it's partially because they are working their way back to earlier dynasties and it's not always clear exactly how long certain kings reigned and a co-regency here and there can throw things off too.
Some of the info is derived from king-lists, but that information has holes in it as well.

For Tut I have seen the following:
1355-1346 (Redford)
1347-1339 (Gardiner)
1347-1338 (Hornung)
1343-1333 (Dodson)
1340-1331 (Aldred, kitchen)
1336-1327 (British Museum, Grimal, Málek, Shaw)
1332-1322 (Murnane)
1319-1309 (Helck)

I guess Hawass is going with Redford? Others have other years.
All seem to agree Tut reigned 9 to 10 years though Smile

Horemheb is a good example of a ruler who will cause problems. Some think he ruled for 28 years, others say 13 years, others think 32 years.
Those differences will throw off any of the preceding estimates. There are several rulers where different people will assign them different years.
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VBadJuJu
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tut will be especially difficult because some, like Gardinier are adamant that Akhenaten and AIII had no more than a few months coregency.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 5:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

It's great to read something about the differing dating for the Middle Kingdom and the New, something I've often thought about but not really come across much info on.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 10:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Laughing I just would like to say that when I read the title of this thread, I thought it would be about Tut's girlfriends...I'm dumb.
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xman
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2005 12:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Daniella wrote:
Laughing I just would like to say that when I read the title of this thread, I thought it would be about Tut's girlfriends...I'm dumb.

I kinda liked teh pun too. Laughing

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