Standing in front of the Mummy wrapped in a beige linen cloth exposing only feet, arms, and the head, it was hard for me to think of this small, shrunken person as one of Egypt’s greatest pharaohs, Queen Hatshepsut. Her last resting place is in the Cairo Museum, where she shares a temperature controlled room with other mummies, like Ramses II.
Hatshepsut was the longest reigning female pharaoh in Egypt and one of the most successful – reining over 22 years she brought economic prosperity and peace to her country.
How did she become Pharaoh? She was born circa 1508 B.C. When she was 12 years old her father Thutmose I died. She married her half-brother Thutmose II. He died after being pharaoh for 15 years, making her a widow before the age of 30. Since she had no sons. the male heir Thutmose III was an infant born to a concubine named Isis. Too young to take the throne Hatshepsut served as his regent. In the beginning she filled this role in a traditional way, but then, while never denying Thutmose III kinship, she took on the role of pharaoh for the next 22 year. When he reached a suitable age he was put in charge of her armies.
Her legacy to us is her mortuary temple
….of the second one only the top still exist. These obelisks were made of a single piece of pink granite, 29 meters high and weighing 343 tons.They were the tallest obelisks ever build in Egypt.
After her death, she died in February 1458 B.C., Thutmose III became pharaoh and created the largest empire Egypt had ever seen. Unfortunately for us he also defaced Hatshepsut’s monuments, erasing many of her inscriptions.
Did he hold a grudge, or was it done for political reasons? We will never know!
More from Egypt soon