Akhenaten (Box, Carter Archive 001K)

Ayrton

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
3,257
Bendigo
But this requires to reason about who was defending "Smenkhkare". We know that the Guard of Neferneferuaten was composed by Egyptians. Weren't they able to keep her safe? Far from the mercenaries who served under the husband?

Probably ... So?

The most simple and historically simple explanation is ... a traitor [a payed traitor].
There are clearly a few things to consider here, but I will begin with one question: what makes you think Smenkhkare planned to move the capital to Thebes?
 

AlpinLuke

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Oct 2011
24,688
Lago Maggiore, Italy
There are clearly a few things to consider here, but I will begin with one question: what makes you think Smenkhkare planned to move the capital to Thebes?
At this point I'm not sure at all that Smenkhkare wanted to leave Akhetaten. This would put the clergies at Thebes among the suspects of a possible murder. If a Horo dedicated to the traditional deities remained at Akhetaten transforming the city into Akhetra ... Thebes would have anyway never regained its previous status.

What was worse than a Horo building a new capital and imposing a new main deity?

A traditional Horo who decided to remain in the new capital ...
 

Ayrton

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
3,257
Bendigo
At this point I'm not sure at all that Smenkhkare wanted to leave Akhetaten. This would put the clergies at Thebes among the suspects of a possible murder. If a Horo dedicated to the traditional deities remained at Akhetaten transforming the city into Akhetra ... Thebes would have anyway never regained its previous status.

What was worse than a Horo building a new capital and imposing a new main deity?

A traditional Horo who decided to remain in the new capital ...
This raises the question about the timing of Tuts removal to Memphis. Was it immediately, or the approximately 4 Years after he ascended the Throne. In other words, was the removal part of the planning for Smenkhkares removal (from life?)
 

AlpinLuke

Ad Honoris
Oct 2011
24,688
Lago Maggiore, Italy
This raises the question about the timing of Tuts removal to Memphis. Was it immediately, or the approximately 4 Years after he ascended the Throne. In other words, was the removal part of the planning for Smenkhkares removal (from life?)
Tut introduces a different perspective in this scenario:

in any case the supporters and the followers of Akhenaten and Atenism wanted to survive to their Monarch, so that in Akhetaten there was a faction wanting an Atenist Monarch [let's keep in mind that on Tut's throne we also read "Tutankhaten", that was a throne prepared for an Atenist Sovereign].

So, actually, if Smenkhkare wanted to reform Akhetaten, transforming it into Akhetra, the clergies at Thebes could have even become allies of the Atenists at Akhetaten against Smenkhkare.

That move would have been a smart first step of a well projected strategy:

the clergies at Thebes weren't in a condition to be certain to be able to stop Smenkhkare and overall they weren't in a condition to face [if not starting a civil war, but with which army?] the administration and the Army ... were they still in the hands of the Atenists? May be not totally, with that "Smenkhkare" around and after that Neferneferuaten was returned to have relations with the traditional cults.

They needed time. Tut was extremely young and probably they understood that the high officers of Smenkhkare [Ay, Maya and Horemheb were already there for sure] were no more so happy with Atenism.

Once Smenkhkare was "out" it was a too great risk to ask to the administration and the Army to go back to Thebes. Better to wait, leaving an Atenist Monarch on the throne, controlled by a "friendly" Regency Council with the intention to go back to the tradition, to restore Ma'at. This would have meant a return to Thebes without doubts. It's clear that also the Big Three reasoned about keeping or not Akhetaten as capital, if they persuaded Tut not to remain there [we have already seen there were rational reasons to keep Akhetaten as capital], they had their own interests in Thebes, and their allies. It was a political game and probably Tut, at least in the early years of his reign, was a kind of puppet.
 

Ayrton

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
3,257
Bendigo
Tut introduces a different perspective in this scenario:

in any case the supporters and the followers of Akhenaten and Atenism wanted to survive to their Monarch, so that in Akhetaten there was a faction wanting an Atenist Monarch [let's keep in mind that on Tut's throne we also read "Tutankhaten", that was a throne prepared for an Atenist Sovereign].

So, actually, if Smenkhkare wanted to reform Akhetaten, transforming it into Akhetra, the clergies at Thebes could have even become allies of the Atenists at Akhetaten against Smenkhkare.

That move would have been a smart first step of a well projected strategy:

the clergies at Thebes weren't in a condition to be certain to be able to stop Smenkhkare and overall they weren't in a condition to face [if not starting a civil war, but with which army?] the administration and the Army ... were they still in the hands of the Atenists? May be not totally, with that "Smenkhkare" around and after that Neferneferuaten was returned to have relations with the traditional cults.

They needed time. Tut was extremely young and probably they understood that the high officers of Smenkhkare [Ay, Maya and Horemheb were already there for sure] were no more so happy with Atenism.

Once Smenkhkare was "out" it was a too great risk to ask to the administration and the Army to go back to Thebes. Better to wait, leaving an Atenist Monarch on the throne, controlled by a "friendly" Regency Council with the intention to go back to the tradition, to restore Ma'at. This would have meant a return to Thebes without doubts. It's clear that also the Big Three reasoned about keeping or not Akhetaten as capital, if they persuaded Tut not to remain there [we have already seen there were rational reasons to keep Akhetaten as capital], they had their own interests in Thebes, and their allies. It was a political game and probably Tut, at least in the early years of his reign, was a kind of puppet.
However we view the politics of Tuts childhood, the transition from to Tutankhaten to Tutankhamun surely needs an explanation and a time frame. This chair of his with ‘Tutankhaten’ on the back (the back, I think), is important. Was it a ‘throne’ or just a royal child’s ‘chair’? I seem to recall an item of furniture with both ‘Tutankhaten’ and ‘Ankhsenpaaten’ on it somewhere (as a couple?): is this a false memory of mine?

Edit: I might be having a flashback just now - too much perplexing Egyptian history in my veins, perhaps! - but I wondered again about Tut and the clear fact (IMO) he was an Aten-Child, born and bred. So who would likely produce a royal Aten child around Akhenaten’s year 8. Totally unrecorded! Akhenaten and a secondary wife would seem reasonable, more than than feasible. Now, Tuts mother and father were closely related, probably siblings, children of Tiye as we know. Viewed this way, Akhenaten has to be a candidate for the father. KV55 has references in it to only one male: Akhenaten. Smenkhkare’s presence (as male) can only be inferred. So Beketaten appears suddenly in my head: my flashback! But her murder? Why? Was Beketaten Tut’s mother after all? She is the only sibling mentioned (I think?) after Akhenaten becomes Pharoah. Was she killed subsequent to Akhenaten’s demise? Did she die at the and of hands of Smenkhare? Was Nefertiti behind it. Nefertiti as Ankhkheperure Neferneferuaten/Smenkhkare! A murder of Akhenaten’s sibling-wife seems more easily explainable. Nefertiti did it! But there was a response to it! Nefertiti, after all, was killed and her body thrown in a ditch! Mmmm.... Nefertiti as daughter of Sitamun or Thutmose or both? The only Hereditary Royal with enough Royal blood to claim the throne over little Tut! But she was never a kings daughter or sister, just a king’s granddaughter and cousin!
 
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AlpinLuke

Ad Honoris
Oct 2011
24,688
Lago Maggiore, Italy
The golden Throne of the new Atenist Monarc had found in Tut's tomb and it's possible to read what Carter wrote about it.

Griffith Institute: Carter Archives - 091

In particular we can appreciate the nature of the throne from this note:

Griffith Institute: Carter Archives - 091-08

What's curious, on that throne, is that, looking well, in the right part, on the bottom, the Royal Cartouche of Tutankhaten shows Tutankhaten enre. There are two signs more which genereate already a connection with Ra, an epithet of his atenist name. So, already at the beginning, he stayed in the middle, we can say. This is something to ponder: a clue that a passage was already in progress?

To be clear:

tutankhaten.jpg
 

Ayrton

Ad Honorem
Jan 2017
3,257
Bendigo
The golden Throne of the new Atenist Monarc had found in Tut's tomb and it's possible to read what Carter wrote about it.

Griffith Institute: Carter Archives - 091

In particular we can appreciate the nature of the throne from this note:

Griffith Institute: Carter Archives - 091-08

What's curious, on that throne, is that, looking well, in the right part, on the bottom, the Royal Cartouche of Tutankhaten shows Tutankhaten enre. There are two signs more which genereate already a connection with Ra, an epithet of his atenist name. So, already at the beginning, he stayed in the middle, we can say. This is something to ponder: a clue that a passage was already in progress?

To be clear:

View attachment 15527
I think as Corvidius has pointed out before the use of ‘re’ does not preclude it being associated with Atenism. So I’m thinking maybe this chair shows that when Tut became pharaoh, Atenism was still possibly still fully in place. It may not show a movement back toward tradition of itself, not like what a move to ‘Smenkhkhare’ suggests to me, anyway. That choice of ‘Smenkhkare’ seems a direct movement quantrary to the choice of an Atenist nomen.

Now - and I don’t know why it popped into my head just now - I wonder what the choice of the Throne Name ‘Nebkheperure’ might suggest. It has for awhile been of note to me that ‘Neb’ was part of Amenophis III’s Throne Name (Nebmaatre, as we know). ‘Kheperure’ seems to be Akhenaten’s thing, followed by other Pharaohs after him, though I might be indulging here in false memories.
 

AlpinLuke

Ad Honoris
Oct 2011
24,688
Lago Maggiore, Italy
Neb meant literally "Lord". It was how common Egyptians made reference to the Horo. And his Wife was just Nebt [actually Nb and Nbt], "Lady".

So that Nebkheperure meant Lord of the Forms of Ra [Nebmaatre meant "Lord of the Order of Ra", here I tend not to agree with the translation you can read on WIKI: "The Lord of Truth is Re", I see a name applied to the person who carries it, not a sentence explaining something about a deity].

In any case, Tut's throne name looks like a composition of the previous two:

Neb-Maat-re
Nefer-Kheperu-re

Neb-Kheperu-re
 

Corvidius

Ad Honorem
Jul 2017
2,195
Crows nest
The name could be a form of spell showing that the king commands, to an extent, Ra. While they of course worshipped the gods, they wanted to control the magic of the gods for their own use, and there was a certain fear of the gods, Ra after all did command Sekhmet/Hathor to destroy humanity.

Neb, translated as "lord", could perhaps also be used in the sense of being the master of something, like the master of a ship or having mastery over a trade or skill. So Nebkheperure could mean that the bearer of the name was master of all the manifestations of Ra. So in a throne name beginning with the word neb, no matter what comes after it, ma'at for instance, it means that the king is the master, or even controller, of whatever it is.

There is the phrase in English "Lord and master", meaning that the person, or deity, is both the absolute power with nobody above them, and has, let's say, the skill and means to exercise that power. So in some contexts the word neb may mean both lord and master in the sense I have shown, but I don't know if they did, it just looks like it might be a thing.

I've often seen Nebkheperure translated as "Lordly are the manifestations of Ra", or "The lordly manifestations of Ra" and just about all other translations more or less say the same thing, but as Luke points out, this describes the god and not the person bearing the name. Perhaps it should be "Lord over the manifestations of Ra". I prefer manifestation to form as a god manifests itself in a form, usually a cult statue, and as far as can be seen, no gods had any form that we can discern, all statues and other images being attempts to portray a god in a way that we can understand.
 

AlpinLuke

Ad Honoris
Oct 2011
24,688
Lago Maggiore, Italy
The name could be a form of spell showing that the king commands, to an extent, Ra. While they of course worshipped the gods, they wanted to control the magic of the gods for their own use, and there was a certain fear of the gods, Ra after all did command Sekhmet/Hathor to destroy humanity.

Neb, translated as "lord", could perhaps also be used in the sense of being the master of something, like the master of a ship or having mastery over a trade or skill. So Nebkheperure could mean that the bearer of the name was master of all the manifestations of Ra. So in a throne name beginning with the word neb, no matter what comes after it, ma'at for instance, it means that the king is the master, or even controller, of whatever it is.

There is the phrase in English "Lord and master", meaning that the person, or deity, is both the absolute power with nobody above them, and has, let's say, the skill and means to exercise that power. So in some contexts the word neb may mean both lord and master in the sense I have shown, but I don't know if they did, it just looks like it might be a thing.

I've often seen Nebkheperure translated as "Lordly are the manifestations of Ra", or "The lordly manifestations of Ra" and just about all other translations more or less say the same thing, but as Luke points out, this describes the god and not the person bearing the name. Perhaps it should be "Lord over the manifestations of Ra". I prefer manifestation to form as a god manifests itself in a form, usually a cult statue, and as far as can be seen, no gods had any form that we can discern, all statues and other images being attempts to portray a god in a way that we can understand.
Well, we can say that "Lordly", so an adjective, is the most odd translation in this context. It's more a modern interpretation, they preferred to say "Great" than "Lordly", when they wanted to use an adjective ... they indicated greatness. And actually "wr" was used with deities. So they would have written something like "Werkheperure" if they wanted for real to indicate something "Lordly", at least this is what I can understand from what I can see around.

Manifestation referred to a God is suitable [I read also "image" as a substitute of "form"].

Regarding "nb" [Neb], we can translate it also as "master", in the sense of "owner", in fact the female term "Nebt" wasn't used only with reference to the Royal Lady, but also to the Nebt of the Home [the "nbt pr"].
 

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