Pharaoh

Article

July 5, 2022

Pharaoh is the name for the supreme ruler in Ancient Egypt. It was believed that he does not die but "enters his eternal horizon". Pharaoh was "the source of life, health and joy." His name was not to be mentioned unnecessarily. As a result, the pharaoh was referred to as a "high house" (per-aa, from which the Greek word pharaoh comes). It was said, for example: "The High House" ordered. Pharaoh was greeted by falling on his face. It was a great honor for the one who could kiss his foot instead of the ground. At the very thought of the upcoming meeting with the pharaoh, many fainted. An old courtier, who was given the opportunity to see the pharaoh, died of happiness. Pharaoh had all state power (administrative, judicial and legislative). Law was an expression of his will, although he had advisors for the issuance of legal acts, the so-called. "counselors of imperial orders". The pharaoh was the guarantor of maat, the new order of the world, which means that before there was chaos, and with the pharaohs, order was established. Due to the way in which the unification of Egypt was carried out and the dualism that persisted for a long time, the pharaoh initially wore two crowns, the white crown of Upper Egypt and the red crown of Lower Egypt. Later they were combined into one, double crown. Also, as an expression of the original dualism, the pharaoh was initially buried in two tombs, one in the north, the other in the south. The empty one was called the cenotaph. Despite the divine status and the concentration of enormous power, some ancient writers claimed that the pharaoh's position was not enviable. According to them, the pharaoh was subjected to such a regime of life that he had no free time left in his strictly planned day. Pharaoh had to be vital enough to be able to provide Egypt with life, health and joy, and above all fertility. A sick or old man could not be pharaoh. In ancient Egyptian history - apparently until the unification - there was a custom to kill old, infertile rulers. This primitive custom was later replaced by the so-called The Heb-Sed festival, a celebration that remained in the time of the new empire.

Word origin

The word pharaoh comes from the Egyptian word "pra", which means "great house". In the beginning, "pharaoh" was the name for the royal palace, and from the eighteenth dynasty it became the name for the ruler. The oldest proven mention