Ramesses I (r. 1307 - 1306) was probably a vizier
as well as an army officer.
image 2004 ©
He reigned for a short period, maybe for 2 years. His tomb
at the Valley
of Kings was hastily cut and remained unfinished when he died.
Despite his short reign, he is said to have followed his predecessors'
footsteps in maintaining the country's peace and stability.
Seti I (a.k.a. Sethos I) ascended the throne after the death of
Ramesses I, his father, and he was also a vizier and an army officer.
Seti I (r. 1306 - 1290) is indeed one of the greatest kings of this
dynasty. He took the title of "repeater of births," in
reference to his intention to restore Egypt's superpower after the
instability it went through in the 18th
Seti led military campaigns to Syria, aiming to curb rebellions
in its territories.
Mumified head of Seti I
He also led campaigns against the Libyans in the west. His achievements
include his capture for the then-strong city of Kadesh and meeting
in the battlefield.
He sent mining expeditions to the eastern deserts for quarries.
Seti I describes the details of his battles on the Karnak walls. He
also built a temple
and a mortuary temple in Thebes
(Luxor). Seti finally died after ruling for 16 years, and was
buried in his tomb in the valley of kings.
He was indeed one of those who restored Egypt's glorious past.
(r. 1290 - 1224) As son of King Seti I, he ascended the throne after
the death of his father. Ramesses himself was just another legacy
of ancient Egypt. Historians like to describe him as "the mightiest
of Egyptian kings". Others simply call him "Ramesses the
Ramesses reigned for about 67 years, during which Egypt observed
a big boom in every aspect of civilization at that time. No other
Pharaoh constructed so much monuments and temples as he did. Ramesses
took power when he was 25.
As a youth, he decided to just follow the same military tendency of
his ancestors. As before he began to march his army to the Syrian
territories in organized army divisions. He gathered thousands of
soldiers in four divisions, named respectively after the Gods Amun,
to meet the Hittite army.
In thriving battles, Egyptian army led highly organized battles
very similar to our modern times in terms of tactics, maneuvers
Kadesh, Syrian City and Egypt's arch-foe, was at these times too
strong to be defeated, but Egypt was also much stronger, so Kadesh's
king offered a peace treaty that Ramesses approved later.
Relations then improved between the 2 kingdoms to the extent that
a Hittite king offered his daughter to be a wife for Ramesses. Another
Hittite daughter was presented to Ramesses later.
Ramesses, showing loyalty to his ancestors, completed their unfinished
constructions. He also added to the great temples of Karnak
completed his father's mortuary temple at Thebes and built one of
his own at Luxor's west bank, better known as the Ramesseum.
A plan of a Hittite fortification
image 2004 ©
One of the greatest establishments of Ramesses is the incredible big
Simbel. It is indeed considered as a miracle of ancient engineering.
Ramesses ruled for 67 years and he proudly holds the highest record
of sons and daughters. He had 52 sons and 32 daughters and many
others from his concubines.
He died at his 92, and was buried in his tomb
in the Valley of the Kings.
He is the 13th son of Ramesses. Merenptah (r. 1224 - 1214) must
have been in his 60s when his long-lived father died. He ruled for
Merenptah had to carry out military campaigns to protect Egypt against
the Libyans and to crush Nubian
Merenptah rapidly built in his tomb
in the Valley of the Kings, feeling he's approaching his death. However,
he was never found there.
He didn't leave a legitimate heir so chaos followed his death for
some time during which the country was ruled by some weak rulers.
Some of those are Amenmesses, Seti II(a.k.a.
Merenptah and Sethos in Greek), Siptah (Merenptah), and finally Queen
Twosret (a.k.a. Tausert).