Ancient Egypt

by Mandy Barrow

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Egyptian Pharaohs


Who were the Pharaohs?

Pharaohs were the king or Queen of Egypt. Most pharaohs were men but some well-known pharaohs, such as Nefertiti and Cleopatra, were women.

A Pharaoh was the most important and powerful person in the kingdom. He was the head of the government and high priest of every temple.The people of Egypt considered the pharaoh to be a half-man, half-god.

The Pharaoh owned all of Egypt.

Interesting fact
The ancient Egyptians did not refer to their Kings as Pharaohs. The word Pharaoh comes from the Greek language and was used by the Greeks and Hebrews to refer to the Kings of Egypt. Today, we also use the word Paraoh when referring to the kings of Egypt.

Who was the first king/pharaoh of Egypt?

The first true pharaoh of Egypt was Narmer (sometimes called Menes), who united Lower Egypt and Upper Egypt. He was the first king of the First Dynasty, the beginning of the Old Kingdom.

Egypt was once divided into two kingdoms. The kingdom in Lower Egypt was called the red crown and the one in Upper Egypt was known as the white crown.

Around 3100 B.C. the pharaoh of the north conquered the south and Egypt became united. The pharaoh's name was King Narmer (Menes). He founded the first capital of Egypt where the two lands met. It was called Memphis. (Thebes became the next capital of Egypt and then Amarna was made the capital during the reign of King Akhenaten.)

The story of Ancient Egypt begins from when the north and the south were united as one country under the first pharaoh Menes.

Which God did the people think their Pharaoh was?

The Ancient Egyptians believed that their Pharaoh was the god Horus, son of Re, the sun god. When a pharaoh died he was believed to be united with the sun and then a new Horus ruled on earth.

Where were Pharaohs buried?

In the Old and Middle Kingdoms (2628-1638 BC), Egyptian kings were buried in pyramids. About 50 royal pyramids have survived. They were built on the desert edge, west of the ancient capital of Memphis.
(Click here to find out more about pyramids)

In the New Kingdom (1504-1069 BC), Egyptian kings were buried in tombs in the Valley of the Kings at Thebes. These tombs were tunnels cut deep into the natural rock.

How many wives did a pharaoh have?

Pharaohs often had several wives but only one was queen.

Who is the most famous pharaoh of Egypt?

The most famous Egyptian pharaoh today is, without doubt, Tutankhamun.

Find out more about Tutankhmun (Tutankhamen)

Further Information

Make a paper model of a Pharaoh's Death Mask
This site has links to the instruction to make a paper model of a Pharaoh's Death Mask.

The Pharaohs Cleopatra VII, Akhenaton and Tutankhamen
by Mark Telford, Aged 8yrs

Akhenaton - pharaoh of Egypt from about 1350 to 1334 BC

Tutankhamen - was the son-in-law of Akhenaton.

Cleopatra VII - the last Queen of Egypt.

Read more ....


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I teach computers at The Granville School and St. John's Primary School in Sevenoaks Kent.

Woodlands Junior School, Hunt Road Tonbridge Kent TN10 4BB UK