Who is King Akhenaten?
King Akhenaten is one of the kings in the 18th dynasty who ruled ancient Egypt from
“1353 B.C-1336 B.C“, his name means “Living spirit of Aten“, and also became known as Amenhotep IV,
Akhenaton, Ikhnaton, and Khuenaten. He ruled Egypt after his father Pharaohs Amenhotep III
death at the end of his 38-year reign, he was the second son of Amenhotep III and his wife Queen Tyee,
Akhenaten wasn’t next in line to be a successor king until the death of his older brother Thutmose
King Akhenaten was known as the Heretic king, he unified the old gods into only one god Aton (sun disk),
he left his capital Thebes that supports Amun to his new city that’s made it his new capital Horizon
of Aton in Modern Armarna and he orders to cut the name of Amun from his temples in all of Egypt,
he was ruled an empire that dominates Palestine, Phoenicia, and Nubia, he was busy with his new religion,
interested in poetry for his new god and ignored his empire and as a result, he lost some of it in Asia.
He was married to someone who helped him with his new religion they
considered themselves to be in-between god and people
King Akhenaten was known as a Heretic king, he declared monotheism
and banned polytheism as he unified the old gods into only one god Aton
“The Sun Disk“, he left his capital Thebes that worshipped Amun to his
new city Amarna which became the new capital Horizon of Aton and him
ordered to cut the name of Amun from his temples in all of Egypt. He
ruled an empire that dominates Palestine, Phoenicia, and Nubia, he was
busy with his new religious revolution, interested in writing poetry and
building temples for his new god and ignored his empire and as a result,
he lost a big portion of it in Asia. He was married to Queen Nefertiti who
helped him with his new religious revolution, which they considered themselves
to be the connection between the gods and the people
King Akhenaten Family
Many historians theorized that he suffered from Marfan Syndrome basically
a genetic defect that harms the body’s connective tissue and the face which would
explain his unique face features shown across all of his statues. His wife referred
to as one of the most beautiful women in the history of Egypt. He had six daughters
who also suffered from the same condition. Aside from his main wife and children,
there were many wives and children such as Smenkhkare, Tutankhamen,
Ankhesenamun was Tutankhamun‘s wife.
King Akhenaton Achievement
The main purpose of declaring monotheism by Akhenaton was to create
a cultural shift by uniting the Egyptian Public under the Sun Disk God Aton.
He wished to end 2,000 years of polytheism in order to end the growing power
of the Cult of Amun as they owned more land and had more power than the
kings himself. So in order to limit their power and achieve his political agenda,
in the 9th year of his reign, he outlawed the religion of Amun and declared
himself the living incarnation of a single all-powerful deity Aton, the loving,
supreme creator, and sustainer of the universe. He also closed all the temples
of Amun and the other gods and moved the main capital from Thebes to
Amarna plus he removed all the names of Amun from all over Egypt but this didn’t last for long.
Foreign Policy of King Akhenaton
He inherited a large kingdom that controlled lands in vast countries such as Palestine,
Phoenicia, and Nubia but failed in creating any diplomatic connection with other countries.
There is evidence of his negligence in maintaining any diplomatic and friendly
connection with his allies called Amarna letters. He paid no regard to develop
his kingdom and spent his time creating art and poetry for his new god.
His attempted to make Aton the only god in Egypt failed miserably and when his son
Tutankhamen took over he made Amun the main deity of Egypt and Thebes returned to act as the main capital.
When Did King Akhenaten Die?
He died in 1336 B.C in his new city in the tomb of Merya II. After his death,
they clear his city and all people left the city of Thebes and return to the
ancient again and to Amun. The statue of King Akhenaten located in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.