2012/08/30

Ancient Egyptian Poetry

 Ancient Egyptian Poems Poetry

Here is some interesting information on ancient Egyptian poetry:

"Poetry is perhaps the greatest forgotten treasure of ancient Egypt," said Richard Parkinson, an expert on ancient Egyptian poetry at London's British Museum, home to the largest collection of Egyptian artifacts outside of Cairo.

The earliest poetry in ancient Egypt was likely part of an oral tradition. Hymns, stories, and prayers were passed down from speaker to speaker. The ancient Egyptians left behind various love poems which relate the emotions felt all those thousands of years ago. And yet, they can be read as if they apply to us in the 21st century.

Ancient Egyptian Poetry



In poetry, and especially love poetry, the Egyptians and all their desires and fears come alive again. Although the Egyptians didn’t go in for roses and heart-shaped boxes of chocolates, they did have lots of love poetry. The love poems date back to the 13th-12th centuries BC but the sentiments that they express seem just as fresh today, verses filled with lust, longing, tenderness, and heartbreak.

An ancient Egyptian love poem-

O my beautiful one,
I wish I were part of your affairs, like a wife.
With your hand in mine
your love would be returned.
I implore my heart:
"If my true love stays away tonight,
I shall be like someone already
in the grave."
Are you not my health and my life?
How joyful is your good health
for the heart that seeks you!

Here is an example of one of the beautiful poems, sung by a woman secretly longing for the man she is in love with:

‘My brother overwhelms my heart with his words,
he has made sickness seize hold of me…
see how my heart is torn by the memory of him,
love of him has stolen me.
Look what a senseless man he is
- but I am just like him.
He does not realise how I wish to embrace him,
or he would write to my mother.
Brother, yes! I am destined to be yours,
by the Gold Goddess of women.
Come to me, let your beauty be seen,
let father and mother be glad.
Call all my people together in one place,
let them shout out for you, brother.’

Arius of Alexandria continued the ancient Egyptian tradition of hymals, popularising his theology by setting his ideas in verse. Not to be bested, Ephrem of Syria wrote 'orthodox' songs to counter the heretic Arius.

Ancient Egyptian Dynasties

A Brief summary of Ancient Egyptian Dynasties

Studying ancient Egyptian dynasties is one of the most exciting things for historians. Probably the most exciting era in human history, the Egyptian civilization was also an advanced one. Spread over three thousand years, ancient Greeks thrived in economic prosperity. Considering the amount of years the civilization lasted, it is important to note of the different rules or dynasties the civilization went through.

Ancient Egyptian Dynasties



Hundreds of Pharaohs ruled Egypt more than thousands of years ago. The civilization time is divided into periods, kingdoms and dynasties.

Periods of Ancient Egyptian Dynasties

A period is characterized by some sort of cultural and technological evolution that influenced how Egyptians lived in the subsequent years.

Kingdoms of Ancient Egypt Dynasties

These are politically purveyed societies that had law and order. The supreme constitution was the Pharaoh.

Dynasties in ancient Egypt

Political families continued their power brokerage across generations. Kith and kin of retired or demised kings were given kingship and other stately positions. Until Alexander the Great arrived, up to thirty one dynasties ruled Egypt.

Chronological order of the Ancient Egyptian Dynasties

Pre-dynastic period

This was the period between 5500 and 3100 BC. During this time settlements came about in the lower half of the Nile River.

Early Period Dynasties

The first two dynasties ruled Egypt between 3100 and 2686 BC. During this period, Memphis was designated as the capital city. The unification of upper and lower Egypt happened during this period. Amongst the rule of ancient Egyptian dynasties, this event set the trend toward a cultural evolution from both lands.

Old Kingdom Dynasties

During this period between 2686 and 2181 BC, three dynasties ruled Egypt. During this period a lot of events happened that set off a social revolution. The king was bestowed the status of God. The Sun was worshipped as the supreme life-giving divine source. The world famous step pyramid was built during this period.

It was again during this period that the pyramids of Giza were built. The dynastic rule during this time was ripe with social and cultural revolutions. The Pharaoh was considered God incarnate. The Pharaoh set the trend towards anything the Egyptians followed.

New Kingdom Dynasties in ancient Egypt

This period witnessed the eighteenth and twentieth dynastic rule. Probably the second golden age for Egypt, the New Kingdom period was used to propagate the empire’s footprints wider. Considering that ancient Egyptian dynasties were not keen on expanding, this era actually changed that attitude.

A lot of conquests were made by the rulers as the kingdom spread far and wide. It was during this time that Tutakhamen, at the age of nine became the ruler of the kingdom.

Late Dynastic Period

Between 525 and 332 BC, the might of the Egyptian civilization was weakening. The Persian monarch Cambyses invaded the kingdom. Around 525 BC, Egyptians got a taste of invasion. But the Persian monarch was eventually defeated and turned away.

The invasion of Alexander the Great

This is one of the most notable events of history considering that Egypt’s culture and social fabric took a turn with the invasion of Alexander the Great. The Macedonian kingdom set up its base in Egypt, and eventually the era of ancient Egyptian dynasties perished.

Ancient Egypt Words

Ancient Egypt Words and Meanings

Civilization is incomplete without its language. A language is what connects to each other and if the language is in Egypt, then the connections become stronger.
Ancient Egyptian language is a language breathtaking. The Egyptian words and meanings, symbols, indications so precisely the sheer brilliance of the Egyptians.

Ancient Egypt Words and Meanings

  
The hieroglyph is one of the oldest writings developed around 4000 BC The pictorial representations are so fun to watch. They create a sense of mysticism around them when they are read. These symbols were printed on almost all forms of art and architecture of Egypt. They were considered the verses of the Almighty.

Here are some common words in ancient Egypt and their meanings :

1. Abtu
 This place is known by the common name Abydos meaning the seat of the adulation of Osiris. In addition, it can be described in the agreement as the Egyptian sunset when the sun passed and entered the underworld.

2. AKER
It represents divinity binary lion was considered the godfather of dawn and dusk, the peaks kissed the sky is the western and eastern Manu being Bakhu.
 

3. AKH
Akh meant the characteristic of the deceased who have links with the god of the underworld eternaland being consistent. Once the deceased is on his way to hell, and evil epitaphic transcripts were formed which further developed the ankh not allow the individual to die for the next time.
 

4. Amenta
This meant hell. It was the place of twilight.
 

5. AMULET
This meant charisma and magic, was represented in the form of animals sacrosanct, also carved out of precious stones. They were worn as an ornament through life and after death too.
 

6. BASTET
It was the feline deity heads was known under the common name of the sun goddess. It depicts the life and warmth.
 

7. BAKHU
It was thefabledmount from which the light came at dawn.
 

8. BOAT
It was a dinghywhich sailed deities.
 

9. BOOK OF THE DEAD
It is one of the famous and prominent ancient Egyptian words and meanings is an assortment of hexagons charmed written on papyrus. He belonged to Egyptian tombs and was maintained near death as it was assumed that helped the dead around them to hell.
 

10. Canopic
Canopic jars were 4 in number, each representing the son of Horus. In these jars organsof base lifeless have been preserved.
 

11. CARTONNAGE
That was the cloth soaked in plaster that was used for the facades of mummified bodies and sarcophagi.
 

12. CENOTAPH
This meant empty tomb. It was built for toughness ritual.
 

13. Deshret
This meant tingeddiadem red.
 

14. DJEW
He represented mountains. Egyptians were convinced of the existence of a peak extraterrestrial held dream or heaven. Djew was also used in tombs that symbolized the deceased is here in his future life.
 

15. DROMOS
This is an amount cementedboulevardskirted by sphinx.
 

16. DUAT
It is known that the plot of the deceased.
Some of Egyptian words and meanings. They represented how cabalistic Wizard Egyptian civilization was!


Ancient Egypt Proverbs

Ancient Egypt  Proverbs and Ancient Egypt Sayings

A very important part of Ancient Egyptian religion was the Ancient Egyptian Sayings. “Knowing Oneself!” was the most important religious ideas of Ancient Egyptians. The religious aspect of this idea is that within man live the god and the heavens.




Another famous saying from ancient Egypt is “The kingdom of heaven is within oneself and the person who knows himself shall find it”. In Ancient Egypt, these sayings were used as a teaching for a man to understand the universe. These sayings were thus emblazoned on the walls of tombs and temples in Egypt.

Some Ancient Egyptian Proverbs in outer temples of Luxor

1. Nature is the best and the shortest route towards knowledge.

2. A price should be paid for every joy.

3. It is better not to know things rather than knowing things which we do not know.

4. While searching the laws of harmony, we will discover knowledge.

5. The inner light glows in peace and meditation.

6. “Man know yourself” is said as the Egyptians believed that the body is the house of god.

7. The man that helps others will be helped by others in his time of need.

8. A man runs the risk of shipwreck if he travels unknown waters.

9. True sages are those who give all they have without cruelty.

10. If one is searching for Neter he should observe nature.

11. People carry their own downfall through their own tongues.

12. Love is one thing, knowledge is another.

13. If the Master teacher his disciple what is error, the disciple’s compliance will be slavery but if he teaches reality the submission is ennoblement.

14. Understanding develops by degrees.

Some Ancient Egyptian Sayings in inner temples of Luxor

The initiates of Ancient Egypt who had proven themselves worthy and ready to obtain advanced knowledge and insights were rich with their philosophical thoughts and practices, which had a direct impact over their sayings. Some of them are given below:

1. Listen to your conviction even if it seems absurd to your reason.

2. To teach one must know the ones who he is teaching.

3. The way of knowledge is narrow.

4. The nut doesn’t reveal the tree it contains.

5. Characters of moral order are measured by actions.

6. Our wits serve to affirm, not to know.

7. Always observe and follow nature.

8. All seeds reply to the light, but the color is diverse.

9. The plant shows what is inside the seed.

These are some of the important Ancient Egyptian Sayings.

Message Received from these Sayings in ancient Egypt

Throughout these sayings we can see knowledge is compared with stupidity. These sayings have come from the father to son and then to his son and so on. These are concerned with the realities of human experience in his day to day life.

These messages encrypted on the walls of the buildings and monuments also give us an insight on the Ancient Egyptian society. Hence we can conclude by saying that the Ancient Egyptian Sayings can be used as source of wisdom even in today’s modern society.

Aegyptus

Here are some facts about the Roman province of Egypt Aegyptus.The Roman province of Egypt (Aegyptus) was established in 30 BC.
The leaders of ancient Egyptian dynasties lost control of Egypt in the late first millennium BC. Egypt became a Roman province during the reign of Augustus in 30 BC, after his victory over Mark Antony and Cleopatra queen. The capital of Egypt was Alexandria. According to Greek mythology, Aegyptus name is derived from the name of an ancient Greek sovereign known Aegyptus. Ancient Egyptians Aegyptus was a Roman province of Egypt named after him.




Augustus Gaius Cornelius Gallus was appointed the first governor of Egypt. The use of a governor put an end to political influence in Egypt. The governor was at the top of the hierarchy, followed by the administration of justice. He was appointed chief of military security, assisted by the legions and cohorts to ensure peace and order. Roman law governed the business. Romans from huge amounts of income in Egypt.
For the proper functioning of the administration, Egypt was divided into smaller provinces with the establishment of municipal councils. In the third century, mayors and officials received administrative responsibility. The Greeks had a council of elders, independent council. The centralized management system of administration was followed until the 4th century AD.
The Romans developed a complex tax system in Egypt. Taxes were levied on land and can be paid in cash or in kind. Officials collected taxes in small species. In Egypt, a person was allowed to own property and it was necessary that the owner of a property to perform a public service.
In addition, an agent has been appointed, who was required to inquire about the property when no one claims ownership. People who do not own land as tenants lived on land owned by the state, the rich or the king. Poll tax was introduced by the Romans. Citizens of cities paid less tax than the Egyptians.
The system of social hierarchy was introduced by the Romans when the Romans and Greeks were in the lead, followed by the Metropolitan and finally the people staying in the villages. In Egypt, people could apply for citizenship by joining either the army or be part of the legions. To become a citizen of Alexandria, a person must demonstrate that his parents were citizens. Alexandrians were only allowed to have Roman citizenship.
Egypt was a key source of food for the Romans. The food was transported from Egypt to Rome. During the 1st and 2nd century, business in the thriving Roman province. Goods were traded against coins. Egyptians revolted against excessive taxation levied to cover the loss of revenue during the third century. This revolution has led to the gradual decline of the Egyptian economy.
The Roman province (Aegyptus Ancient Egypt) was a center for Christianity. It is also the place where Coptic Christian sect is believed to have originated. As Christianity spread throughout Egypt, Christians began to settle here. Not much is known about exactly how Christianity was introduced in Egypt. Alexandria was the largest center of Christianity.
Supported the Roman province of principles such as Arianism, Gnosticism, Manichaeism and monasticism. After the partition of the Roman Empire into two parts, Egypt was part of the Byzantine Empire and Constantinople was his new capital. However, Greek remained the language of the people of Egypt. However, Alexandria remained the religious and economic center. He also continued to be the main source of food for the Romans.

Ptolemaic Period

After the death of Alexander of malarial fever in 323 BC, the Macedonian commander in Egypt, Ptolemy the son of Lagos, one of the seven bodyguards of Alexander, succeeded in obtaining for himself the satrapy (provincial governor) of Egypt.

According to the first Ptolemies, Greek culture was exclusively. Greek was the language of the court, the army and administration. The Ptolemies founded the university, the museum and library of Alexandria and the Pharos lighthouse built. A canal from the Red Sea was opened, and Greek sailors explored new trade routes.


  
The Ptolemies were able to assimilate the Egyptian culture and thus respect the native population, but the new Roman rulers who came after them made little effort to do so. Certainly, they have adopted the pharaonic titles and temples built in the traditional style, but that his country was ruled by Rome in absentia, the indigenous population, yet deeply rooted in their ancient religion and beliefs, refused to honor the leaders who are no longer part of the ceremonial roles of divine kingship.
The Ptolemies tried to emphasize their willingness to support the "Egyptian" things and many temples were constructed during this period. Egyptian gods Osiris, Isis and Horus became the symbol of the ideal family, but the cult of the goddess Isis was particularly popular and spread outside Egypt.
It was under the dynasty of the Ptolemies of Alexandria truly became the cultural and economic center of the ancient world. Egypt was ruled by Ptolemy of Alexandria descendants until the death of Cleopatra VII in 30 BC. The early Ptolemies improved the quality of Egyptian agriculture by the recovery of farmland through irrigation and introduced crops such as cotton and best producers of wine grapes.
Literature flourished, focusing on the Library of Alexandria. It is at this time that Manetho composed his history of Egypt, and the trilingual decree was inscribed on the Rosetta Stone.
It was literally a golden age for citizens of Alexandria and Egypt as a whole. Although Alexander never lived to see his glory, he nevertheless became the crucible racial, he is said to have wanted for his capital. Ptolemy decided early on that Alexandria is not just another port city, but the home of a new era in Greek science and art. It may seem surprising to find such a pulse a military man, but Ptolemy was more than just another general.
With the death of Cleopatra VII, the last Ptolemaic Rule, and the defeat of the once-mighty navy Ptolemaic Actium in 31 BC Egypt became part of the Roman Empire under Augustus Caesar. His main concerns were to preserve the independence of Egypt, to extend its territory if possible, and to secure the throne for her children. After disastrous defeat at Actium in 31 BC, Cleopatra was unable to continue the fight against Rome.

Third Intermediate Period

Third Intermediate Period  (1069–653 B.C.)

The Third Intermediate Period covers the centuries between the New Kingdom (about 1550-1069 BC) and the Late Period. During the course of the Third Intermediate Period, the capitol of Egypt moved from Tanis to Nubia, to Thebes, to Sais and back to Nubia and Thebes. Obviously, there was some confusion as to who was ruling Egypt, and the succession of competing dynasties in this kingdom ruled mostly concurrently.

 


Like the 21st Dynasty, the 22nd Dynasty was split between Upper and lower Egypt. Upper egypt was ruled by Horsiese, a high priest of Amun at Karnak. He was appointed by his cousin, Osorkon II, and while Osorkon ruled in the north, Horsiese took control of the south of Egypt. The rest of the 22nd Dynasty was as series of Libyan kings ruling in Tanis and Bubastis They were recognized over all of Egypt until the rival dynasty in Thebes and Leontopolis rose around 828.

During this time another branch of the family at Thebes took the title high priest of Amun, and ruled almost independently in Upper Egypt. Around 945 BC another military man of 'Libyan' origin, from Bubastis, established direct control over the entire country as king Sheshonq I, marking the beginning of the 22nd Dynasty.

Egypt lost its control over Israel and Lebanon (this is the story of Moses) and was again ruled by different kings in the north and the south. Nubia got back its independence altogether, and had its own kings, and so did the Egyptian territories in Israel and Syria (this is the time of King David and King Solomon in the Bible).

Relatively little building took place during the Third Intermediate Period, but the creation of stylistically and technologically innovative bronze and precious temple statuary of gods, kings, and great temple officials flourished. Temple precincts, with the sanctity and safety they offered, were favored burial sites for royal and nonroyal persons alike. Gold and silver royal burial equipment from Tanis shows the highest quality of craftsmanship. Nonroyal coffins and papyri bear elaborate scenes and texts that ensured the rebirth of the deceased.

Around 715 BC, a black Sudanese (or Kushite) king from south of Egypt, named Piankhy, invaded and conquered most of Egypt and founded Dynasty 25 of the Pharaohs.

Preoccupied with internal rivalries during the Third Intermediate Period, Egypt gradually lost its traditional control of Nubia, located to its south. About 760 B.C., an independent native dynasty began to rule Nubia, or Kush, from Napata in what is now the Sudan and extended its influence into southern Egypt. In 729 B.C., the Egyptian rulers Namlot and Tefnakht joined forces to extend their control farther into Upper Egypt.

Second Intermediate Period

Second Intermediate Period of Ancient Egypt (1650 - 1550 BCE)

Although the Second Intermediate period is generally considered to start at the beginning of the Thirteenth Dynasty, it is now thought that central authority was maintained until the later part of the dynasty. However, by the end of the dynasty, the obscure Fourteenth Dynasty had established an alternative power centre in the eastern delta.



It is believed to have started when the Hyksos, who were invaders from West Asia, took over the eastern part of the Nile Delta (North-Eastern Egypt, the part closest to Asia), having their capital at Memphis. Nobody knows for sure who the Hyksos were, but they seem to have been Amorites, who spoke a Semitic language (related to Hebrew and Arabic) and came from the area around Syria and Israel, an area which had traded extensively with the Egyptians during the Middle Kingdom.

At an indeterminate point, the Middle Kingdom crumbled and control in the Delta broke apart into many smaller units centred on towns while another dynasty sprung up once more in Thebes. Perhaps as a result of the fragmentation of political power, the Thirteenth Dynasty lost control over Nubia and there is evidence to show that even Buhen was deserted at this point.

It was when the government center moved to Thebes following Merneferra Ay (c. 1695-1685). The 2nd Intermediate Period ended when an Egyptian monarch from Thebes, Ahmose, having driven the Hyksos from Avaris into Palestine, reunified Egypt, and established the 18th Dynasty, the start of the period known as the New Kingdom of Ancient Egypt.

This period saw the decline of the past thirteenth and fourteenth dynasties and the great increase in number of the Asian population whom, bit by bit started to settle and spread in the whole land of Egypt. Through a number of fifty years, the Asians started to join force and with their new skills, like ironwork and mastery of horses, invade Egypt.

The last rules of the Seventeenth Dynasty at Thebes began a campaign against the northern Hyksos rulers. King Seqenenre Tao’s bodily remains have been found with a fatal wounding to the head, which may have been suffered during a battle against them. The following rulers were Kamose and Ahmose, who continued the battle against the Kingdom of Avaris. Ahmose I finally ended the Hyksos rule and as the instrument of the reunification of Egypt, he is credited wsith the founding of the Eighteenth Dynasty and thus the New Kingdom.