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Hatchepsut Obese?
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Naunacht
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2012 2:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ankhetmaatre wrote:
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Well she certainly wasn't deceiving ministers of state who'd known her since she was a child and the common folk were probably pretty clear that Thutmose II's former spouse was a female as well!


True! Even more so because she'd had a child. Very Happy

I didn't know that Sobekneferu also adopted male regalia. That's very interesting.

Is there any evidence of any sort of military action during Hatshepsut's reign? I don't recall any, and if there were none it begs the question how necessary were all those forays into Nubia and Asia that almost every other Pharaoh seemed to boast of? I wonder what percentage of those "mighty battles" were simply state propaganda. Hatshepsut seemed to be able to manage well enough with diplomacy and trade...


There's a graffito of the Treasurer Ty which describes a campaign in Nubia undertaken by Hatshepsut, apparently in person. There are also descriptions of military campaigns, sadly very much destroyed in both in both Nubia and Asia at Deir el Bahri which show Hatshepsut as a sphinx trampling her enemies and also what in two very damaged inscriptions iis apparently traditional smiting (head bashing) mode. Check out the ever helpful site by Karl Leser http://www.maat-ka-ra.de/english/start_e.htm for more information.

That's not a huge amount of information but it does seem that Hatshepsut whatever else she may have been was no pacifist. We don't have any cool private inscriptions describing these campaigns which have survived. Senenmut apparently had a depiction of soldiers and some sort of an account of a battle or battles in his tomb but only fragments exist and there's no way of knowing whether this military action--if that's what it was--took place under Hatshepsut or one of her predecessors.

I have a feeling that the traditional view that Hatshepsut did not engage in war may have been due more to the attitudes of mid-20th century (mostly) male scholars. Perhaps having seen female leaders like Golda Meir, Indira Gandhi and Margaret Thatcher in action in the latter part of the century we're more willing to accept that a female ruler can be pretty aggressive.
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Ankhetmaatre
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2012 12:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the link, Naunacht. So there was military activity. And your point is well made about female rulers. Military activity is not the sole domain of male leaders.

I do wonder who her her generals were. I've read that when Thutmose III was old enough( probably by the age of ten since it wasn't uncommon for princes to be exposed to battle on the sidelines, as it were) he was being groomed to lead the army. Given that, Hatshepsut must have been a very compelling ruler, indeed, if the elite of Egypt continued to support her even with a vital and clearly effective prince as an up and comming general in the army. Or was there even a professional army yet? Was it Thutmose that first created one? Also, is it possible that the Hatshepsut-Thutmose period was considered a co-regency at the time? Certainly Hatshepsut's failing health at the end would have made something like that politically expedient.
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Meretseger
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2012 3:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hat was a co-regent, an old Egyptian tradition in full accordance with Ma'at. It was never a case of usurpation whatever earlier Archaeologists thought. Thutmose remained pharaoh in his own right, if the junior partner. There are indications the balance of power shifted as he grew up and Hatshepsut aged - as one might expect. For example the kings are depicted as equals in the reliefs of the red chapel.

Thutmose, growing up with the arrangement, probably considered it completely normal and appropriate and was quite willing to wait for his co-regent's natural death before asserting himself as sole ruler. For some reason he changed his mind a couple of decades later (at least) but at the time there was no problem.
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karnsculpture
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PostPosted: Fri Aug 24, 2012 8:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I believe Hatchepsut was grooming Tuthmosis to take power from the beginning. However, because it was unknown for a Pharoah to leave the throne except in death or in cases of usurpation, it was probably the correct protocol for her to stay in power for as long as she did.

Hatchepsut's role was upgraded by Year 7 of their joint rule, it seems logical that she must have proven herself and gained vast support, so to maintain Maat it must have made sense to keep her in power rather than placing a 9 or 10 year old boy on the throne. With nobody we know of to oppose Hatchepsut, once she took Kingly titles she will have gained the right to stay on the throne until death. Pharoahs did not abdicate. So, upon her death Tuthmosis was sole ruler and had been left with a very strong kingdom to rule. Tuthmosis' success as Pharoah is justification for Hatchepsut and Egypt's decisions in previous decades.

Paul
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Robson
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 4:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

karnsculpture wrote:
With nobody we know of to oppose Hatchepsut


Maybe the issue was not exactly about her, but about the guys behind her, like Senenmut, Hapuseneb, Ineni, Djehutiy, etc.
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Meretseger
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 8:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The real question is why Hatshepsut felt it necessary to take on the title and regalia of a pharaoh when previous queens had served as regents for their sons and her title of God's Wife gave her an independent power base. Even more interestingly why did the men around her agree to such a startling move? Possibly the fact she wasn't the boy king's mother allowed his blood relatives to challenge her rights, or maybe the apparent troubles in Nubia had something to do with it but the reason had to have been an obvious emergency requiring drastic action to secure the throne for the dynasty. Thutmose III's smooth succession to sole power proves that Hatshepsut's measures were a complete success.
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Meretseger
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 8:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Robson wrote:

Maybe the issue was not exactly about her, but about the guys behind her, like Senenmut, Hapuseneb, Ineni, Djehutiy, etc.


But all these men, even Senenmut, had served her father and her brother before her. You might say they were the 'establishment' and they clearly approved of her assumption of the co-regency.
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 25, 2012 9:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My point is that they not only approved, but also invented her.
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Ankhetmaatre
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 2:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was just re-reading Nicholas Reeves' book; Akhenaton, Egypt's False Prophet. In chapter two, ps 32-39 he makes the case that Hatshepsut weakened the monarchy by relying upon the Amun priesthood to prop up her co-regency but it seems that the evidence equally supports her personal contributions to the wealth and stability of ancient Egypt. As Karnsculpture and Meretseger observe Hatshepsut was the sponsor of two decades of prosperity and stability that Thutmose III inherited. It should be remembered that the Battle of Kadesh was just after his aunt's death and his own sole rule began. it wouldn't be unusual for foreign powers to test the strength of the new ruler. In fact, that seemed to be the norm.

Thutmose, of course, played to his own strength by becoming the empirialist conquering king as he was an excellent general by both training and nature. I really don't see that much evidence that he was shoring up a weakened monarchy as Reeves seems to imply. Though if Hatshepsut was very ill in the last years of her reign there may have been some insecurity there. But I've read in a number of places that many scholars are not too sure about the designation of that particular mummy as the queen after all.

Meretseger: this site is not allowing me to c/p from my mobile so I can't quote you but your Question about her assuming male regalia despite the fact that she had a president to rule as regent for the hier is a good one. As Great Royal Wife and God's Wife with the full support of the Amun priesthood she would not only outrank a harem wife but certainly be perferable to an infant. Perhaps the male regalia WAS an attempt to cover up the fact that the heir was a cradle king - an insecure situation for any monarchy.

Robson: you could say that they invented her but as God's Wife (high priestess) the argument could be equally made that she invented herself.
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Meretseger
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 26, 2012 3:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It seems clear that for some reason - we may never know what - an adult with full pharaonic powers was considered necessary for the security of the two lands and Hatshepsut, an effective queen regent, was considered the obvious candidate. The early 18th dynasty thought highly of the 12th and to precedent of Sobekneferu may have been of great value to Hat and her supporters.

Possibly the one person with serious reservations was Hatshepsut herself, hence the insistence on Amun as her father and the claim that her earthly father nominated her as his heir. Everybody of course remembered perfectly well what really happened but 'writing it made it so' in AE thought and maybe it was comforting to Hatshepsut to feel she had both her heavenly and earthly father's blessings.

Hat's monuments suggest a thoroughly conventional woman, devoted to her duties as God's Wife, and a stickler for propriety. For example she ALWAYS depicted herself standing behind the infant Thutmose III as queen regent taking the first place only after her promotion to senior co-regent. her misgivings, if she had them, clearly didn't keep her from being a very effective ruler and bringing up her stepson-nephew to be a credit to her but maybe she wouldnt have disapproved of his later erasure of her reign as 'king'.
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Ankhetmaatre
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 27, 2012 12:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Merestseger, I couldn't agree more, though it never occurred to me to wonder whether or not she had any reservations about assuming the role of pharaoh.

There have been some Egyptologists who have painted Hatshepsut as a usurper, but I have to ask; a usurper of what? A toddler king? Throughout history infant kings have faired poorly and many did not even survive. I would argue that Hatshepsute has less a usurper than a rescuer.[/quote]
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Ankhetmaatre
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 27, 2012 12:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

PS, Sorry about all the typos... mobile, autocorrect, ect.
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Meretseger
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 27, 2012 1:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with you. Hatshepsut probably saved her nephew's throne for him and preserved their dynasty. In other words what Sobekneferu tried and failed to do Hatshepsut did.
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 27, 2012 5:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Meretseger wrote:
I agree with you. Hatshepsut probably saved her nephew's throne for him and preserved their dynasty. In other words what Sobekneferu tried and failed to do Hatshepsut did.


Actually, is possible (according to Ryholt, for example) that Sobekneferu's immediate successors and founders of the Thirteenth Dynasty (Sebekhotep I [Wegaf] and Sonbef) were her nephews, maybe not fully qualified to pose as legitimate successors of the Amenemhats and Senusrets.
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2012 10:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One missing piece in this puzzle is that we know absolutely nothing about the origins of Thutmose III's mother Isis.

She's usually portrayed as a sort of low-ranking harem girl but it's also entirely possible that she came from an influential family with a whole host of relatives whose goal may have been to control and influence the young king.

Keeping Thutmose III out of the hands of his mother's relatives might have been one of the things driving Hatshepsut to take more direct power.
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