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Old Kingdom
(2649 - 2150 BC)
3rd Dynasty       5th Dynasty
4th Dynasty       6th Dynasty
5th Dynasty
(2465 - 2323 BC)

The worshiping of the God RaWho is this deity? or Re was strengthened in this dynasty. As we can see from the syllable Re attached to several names of the kings who ruled Egypt in that period.

During his short rule, Userkaf (a.k.a. Weserkaf) (r. 2465 - 2458) built a pyramid attached to a mortuary temple at Saqqara. He also built a temple for sun god Re at Abu Ghurab. Historians tend to believe that he established trade with south Europe, especially Greece, as traces of his name was found there.

Sahure' (r. 2458 - 2446) was the first of the fifth dynasty to build a pyramid complex at Abu Sir. He also erected a Re temple in the same area at Abu Ghurab. He sent fleets to Syrian coast bringing cedar wood. He also sent a punitive campaign to fight nomad tribes in Sinai and another campaign to NubiaWhat does it mean? to fight Nubians. His campaign to the Punt (now Somalia or Ethiopia) brought him ebony, incense and gold. Sahure is believed to have married queen Khentkawes who apparently ruled by the 4th dynasty.

Kakai (r. 2446 - 2426), probably Sahure' s brother, followed his ancestor's steps in building a tomb complex at AbuWhat does it mean? Sir including an unfinished pyramid.


Few are known about the following kings; Shepseskare and Raneferef. However Raneferef erected a small pyramid at Abu Sir.

Niuserre built a pyramid for himself at Abu Sir and a solar temple (for Re) at Abu Ghurab (north of Saqqara). He also fought Libyans and Asiatics.
Menkauhor, according to inscriptions, built a pyramid and a solar temple. Nonetheless, they were not found.

Djedkare (r. 2388 - 2356) then built a pyramid complex south of Saqqara. Inscriptions mentioned his mining expedition to WadiWhat does it mean? Maghara. He is also said to have sent a trade expedition to Punt.

Unas (a.k.a. Wenis) (r. 2356 - 2323) also sent trade expeditions. A famine struck the country in his reign. He made a pyramid-tomb for himself at Saqqara. They found for the first time what they call the "pyramid texts" (Special prayers and advises about the afterlife, the texts including magical spells).

images of Userkaf and Raneferef are courtesy of The Egypt Archive

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