Monday, January 23, 2006


She was, as far as we know, one of the most important women in ancient Egypt. Now a Johns Hopkins University archaeological team has discovered a "mostly intact" statue of Queen Ti, wife of Pharaoh Amenhotep III.

The statue was found in Luxor, in what was the Karnak Temple. The Associated Press reports:
Ti was the first queen of Egypt to have her name appear on official acts alongside that of her husband. She was known for her influence in state affairs in the reigns of both her husband (1417-1379 B.C.) and of her son, Akhenaton, (1379-1362 B.C.) during a time of prosperity and power in the 18th dynasty. Her son is remembered for being the first pharaoh to advocate monotheism.

Ti, of Nubian heritage, is believed to be the grandmother of Tutankhamun, perhaps the most famous ruler of ancient Egypt.

Amenhotep III, who ruled for 38 years, made a basic change in the history of ancient Egypt when he named his wife, Ti, as queen against the tradition that his sister should be queen.
No photo we can yet find of the statue; previous Ti imagery is largely confined to drawings made at her tomb site.

Sacred Texts cites Ti as coming from humble roots. Yet she rose to become a co-ruler with Amenhetep. The back story is fascinating and worth the read. A sample:
To please her Amenhetep caused a great lake to be made on her estate called Tcharukha in Western Thebes. This lake was about 1 1/8 mile (3,700 cubits) long and more than 5/8th of a mile (700 cubits) wide, and its modern representative is probably Birkat Habu. On the sixteenth day of the third month of the season Akhet (October), in the 11th year of his reign, His Majesty sailed over the lake in the barge called ATHEN-TEHEN i.e. "Aten sparkles." And in following years this day was celebrated as a festival.
Can't wait to see this statue.


Anonymous said...

Whatever she looked like, I'm sure she had a really fine asp.

Michael Cody said...

If it is known that Queen Ti is of Nubian descent why are Egyptologists and other so-called scholars and experts still refusing to acknowledge her as being a black woman in Africa (Egypt) who reigned during this time?