Ancient and Classical Egypt – 10 Jaw-Dropping Facts about Egyptian Pharaohs

The Egyptian Pharaohs
Cleopatra committed suicide. Twitter Images

About 3000 years, approximately 170 Egyptian pharaohs governed the ancient and classic Kingdom of the Nile – from Narmer, who reigned in the 3100 years before Cleopatra, who committed suicide in the 30 BC. Undeniably, the position of the Pharaoh was highly significant, accentuating a traditional ruler who encompassed religion and politics.

Likewise, people perceived pharaohs as near gods with whom the strictly human duty of great leaders was nevertheless burdened. Also, the ancient Egyptians’ incredible wealth, which is still unearthed today, continues to reflect the lifestyle of the Pharaohs somewhat strongly. Ten incredible facts about Egyptian pharaohs are;

1. Egyptian Pharaohs; Both Religious and Political

The archeologists wondered what secret treasures were in the shifting desert sands of the valley of the Kings while discovering where Alexander the Great and Cleopatra’s remains might be. In religious and political matters, it was a Pharaoh’s duty to govern Egypt. The “High Priest of Every Temple” and “Lord of the Two Lands,” Upper and Lower Egypt-these double responsibilities came with the distinction of titles.

The Egyptian Pharaohs
The Cobra and the Falcon Egyptian symbols. Cleopatra, the political queen of intelligence. Twitter Images

The Egyptian pharaohs performed holy ceremonies as a spiritual guide and to serve consistently as the mediator between the gods and the humans. Political leadership has, therefore, covered more strategic topics like laws, negotiations, and providing their communities with food and resources.

2. Only Pharaohs Offered Sacrifices to the gods

The pharaohs offered divine sacrifices to the gods in their duties as high priests daily. Only the Pharaoh could approach the sacred sanctuary and interact with the spirits of the deities.

3. The Pharaohs were Considered Horus Incarnations

Egyptian pharaohs were also considered Horus as either a falcon or a man with a head like a falcon. In reality, the Egyptians assumed the pharaohs to be the embodiment of the god Horus before their deaths. They became the deity of the hereafter, Osiris. Furthermore, they regarded each successive pharaoh as Horus’ prevailing incarnation.


4. Akhenaten (Reign 1351–1334 BC) Introduced Monotheism but Rarely Lasted

Egyptian Pharaoh
Akhenaten introduced Monotheism. Twitter Images

Akhenaten’s rule marks a slight deviation from Ancient Egypt polytheism. Akhenaten was named at birth, Amenhotep IV, then, following his extreme monotheistic convictions, modified his name. His new name, “He who serves Aten,” reflects on what he considered the one true god – Aten, the god of the Sun. Egypt soon switched back to polytheism upon Akhenaten’s death and the conventional gods that he had rejected.

5. Makeup was Mandatory

The pharaohs, both males and females, wore makeup, mainly black kohl, which they applied around their eyes. The claim was it fulfilled multiple objectives: cosmetic, functional (as a means to minimize reflected light), and spiritual, as the almond eyes strengthened their relationship with the god, Horus.

Egyptian Pharaohs
Makeup was a Must. Twitter Images

6. Pharaoh’s Major Symbols: The Crook and the Flail

This depicts Osiris, the god of the afterlife, carrying a crook in his left hand. The crook and flail were traditional artifacts of Ancient Egypt’s strength, frequently portrayed in Pharaoh’s hands. Moreso, they created an emblem of the divine right of kings, which the pharaohs traditionally presented together and held near their chests. The crook (heka), a cane with a hooked handle, reflected the shepherd-like task of the Pharaoh in taking care of his people, while his flail’s (nekhakha) significance was interpreted differently.

crook and flail
The Crook and Flail

A rod with three threads of beads fixed at the top was one of the herdsman’s weapons of protection or a tool to thresh grain. If the previous information is valid, then it may signify the stable leadership and the duty of a Pharaoh to sustain peace. As a thresher, it may represent the task of the Pharaoh as a supplier.

7. Incest Reigned Among the Egyptian Pharaohs

As other royals in history, to retain the royal family lineage, Egyptian pharaohs married within their dynasty. It was not uncommon for sisters, brothers, cousins, and so on to marry each other. Findings of the mummified body of Tutankhamun show the body was the product of incest; it has without question contributed to health complications and unhealthy traits like overbite, female hips, disproportionately broad breasts, and a club foot. At nine years old, Tutankhamun took over the throne and reigned ten years, then died at the age of 19.

8. Tutankhamun: The Most Famous, yet Unfortunate Pharaoh

Tutankhamun’s fame comes mainly from the 1922 discovery of his tomb – one of the 20th century’s major archaeological discoveries. The English archaeologist Howard Carter relieves the moments under which they opened Tutankhamun’s shrine. However, “King Tut” became well-known after they found his magnificent buried site with all the gold and other treasures intact. ‘Tutmania’ is a term of obsession related to Tutankhamun’s grave discovery.

Tutankhamun; His Golden Chest was intact.

9. Artificial Beards

The pharaohs had fake braided beards. They were specifically neatly trimmed more than expected. The Pharaohs falsified the beards in emulation of the god Osiris, who has a stunning beard. More so, facial hair was so necessary that Hatshepsut, the first female pharaoh, also wore the phony beard.

Egyptian fake beard
Egyptian fake beard, neatly braided and trimmed

10. Khufu’s Great Pyramid

The Great Pyramid of Giza is undoubtedly the largest and the only intact mystery of the Seven Ancient World Wonders. The Pharaoh Khufu of the fourth dynasty established this pyramid for 10 to 20 years around 2580 BC. He also intended it to be his tomb. Particularly, pharaohs built these pyramids so that they can still live in splendor in life after death. It is the first of three pyramids in the Giza complex, where the Menkaure Pyramid, the Khafre Pyramid, and the Great Sphinx are located. The Great Pyramid remains an astonishing tribute to the architectural aspirations and creativity of the ancient Egyptians Pharaohs.

About Faith Sanyu

I write about world economies and business, the humorous and sarcastic side of politics and world events, lifestyle, religion/beliefs and culture, health, agriculture, history, people's well-being, entertainment, fashion, and humanitarian works.

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