Horemheb ( " Choir in Celebration" ) - the ancient Egyptian dignitary and military leader, who later became Pharaoh of Ancient Egypt , who ruled around 1319 - 1292 BC. er  , the last of the XVIII dynasty (according to some researchers, it can be considered the first pharaoh of the XIX dynasty ), although it was not a descendant by descent. He destroyed the cult of Aton ( atonism ), established by pharaoh Akhenaten , and his capital Akhetaton , usurped the monuments of his predecessors Aye and Tutankhamun . Having no heirs, Horemheb handed over power to his associate Vizier Parames, the future Ramses I.
|Pharaoh of Ancient Egypt|
Fragment of a statue of Horemheb. Museum of Art History . Vein
|Historical period||New kingdom|
|Burial||Valley of the Kings (Tomb of KV57 )|
Major written sources
- The Leiden Fragments are blocks with images of Horemheb and texts relating to his career at Akhenaten .
- The 11-line Alexandria text tells about Horemheb's journey south for a tribute to one of Akhenaton's successors.
- The coronation decree is the most important written source of Horemheb's time, telling about his youth, his court career, accession and the first years of his reign.
- Edict of Horemheb 1300 BC on the pillar of the Karnak temple of 9 parts - a unique monument-stele, in the text of which Horemheb acts as a guarantor of the rights of the nemkha (“orphans”, i.e. destitute), reduces their taxes to the state, proclaims the “charter of defense” of the army, establishes a new order of palace services . The task was to stop the activities of corrupt officials, to reform the judicial system. Corrupt judges were cut off their noses and exiled to Suez.  Tightening the law for abusing the power, stealing peasants under the pretext of collecting taxes was reduced to punishment with 100 lashes or cutting off the nose. If the judge entered into an agreement with the tax collector, he was executed by Choir . 
Horemheb comes from a nomarch family of Ha-Nisa (Hutnisut; that is, the “King’s House”), the main city of the 18th nome of Upper Egypt . Ha-Nisa City in monuments is also called Ha-Bennu (“City of Phoenix”); This is the Hippon of the Greek writers, the Alabastropol of the geographer Ptolemy . In honor of the local god Choir , "the lords of Hutnisut", the future pharaoh was named Khor-em-cheb (literally, "Choir in Celebration" ), and he attributed to him his elevation. Horemheb's parents are unknown, they are not named anywhere.
Horemheb had two wives:
- Ameni . She died before Horemheb became a pharaoh, apparently at the beginning of the reign of Tutankhamun. In the Memphis tomb of Horemheb, where she was buried  , her high social position is emphasized in the reliefs.
- Mutnedzhmet . Perhaps Nefertiti 's younger sister, Mutbenrett  or daughter Aya , although she did not bear the title “Pharaoh’s Daughter”, which casts doubt on the version of her relationship with him   . She died in childbirth during the 13th year of Horemheb’s reign  and was buried in the unused tomb of Horemheb in Memphis, next to the mummy of a premature baby and Ameni. The study of the mummy showed that Mutnedzhmet gave birth not once, but there is no information about the children of Pharaoh Horemheb - they are not mentioned anywhere  .
Coming to power
On the Akhenaten Board
It is believed that Horemheb during the reign of Pharaoh Amenhotep III began his military career and in the reign of Ehnaton already held a number of administrative and military posts. Perhaps Horemheb appears in the documents of the Amarna period as Paatonemheb ( “ Aton present at the festival” ). This name, witnessed in KV24 in Ahetaton , according to a number of historians, was the new name of Horemheb, adopted by him in favor of the cult of Aton, preached by Akhenaten.
In the reign of Tutankhamen
Under Tutankhamen, he occupied a high military post, commanding troops during the Asian campaign. Perhaps during this period all the real power was in his hands. On the walls of his tomb at Saqqara , which was completed when he was still an official, Horemheb calls himself “the greatest of the great, most powerful of the powerful, the great sovereign of the people ... the elect of the king, dominating both Countries (ie, Lower and Upper Egypt ) in control, a military leader over the military leaders of the Two Countries . " His political influence at that time was significant, while one must take into account that the title of "sovereign" (literally "who is with the citizens" ) characteristic of the heirs to the most powerful temporary workers.
After the death of Tutankhamen
It is believed that after the death of Tutankhamen, the widowed queen Anhesenamon , known by the Bogazkoy archive under the name Dakhamunts , received an offer to marry from a certain subject  . Pharaoh's proud daughter considered it offensive to herself to enter into an unequal marriage and wrote a request to the Hittite ruler Supppilulium I to send one of her sons to her husband  . The relations between the Hittite kingdom and Egypt, brought to military confrontation, worsened with the death on the border of the fiancé of Queen Zannanza  . Scientists argue about this controversial event in ancient Middle Eastern history, looking for motives and perpetrators of the diplomatic scandal. According to some Egyptologists, the assassination of Zannanza could be the work of those forces who "were unprofitable strengthening the power of Ankhesenpaamun, and above all Eye, as well as the commander Horemheb, who led the struggle of Egypt against the Hittite expansion in Syria during the years of Tutankhamun"  . Suppilulium I accused the murder of the son of the Egyptians, speaking allegorically - "the falcon tore a little chicken ." In this expression, a number of scholars see a hint of the guilt of Horemkheb, whose name contains the name of the False-god God Horus  .
The absence of Khoremkheb who fought with the Hittites made it possible for Vizier Aye to marry Ankhesenamon and become a pharaoh through this marriage. There are suggestions that his successor, Ey, chose his native or adopted son Nachtmin , who bore the titles rpat (crown prince) and zA nzw (son of Pharaoh )   .
After a 4-year reign, Aye Horemheb, relying on the army, occupied the throne of the pharaohs, in which the priesthood of the god Amon , who wanted to restore his influence, could help him. After becoming in power, Horemheb wrote that "the heart ... of God ... wished to raise his son to his eternal throne, and so God proceeded with exultation to Thebes ... with his son in his arms ... to bring him to Amon to make him king of the king . " He destroyed the traces of Aye’s presence, usurped his funeral temple in Medinet-Abu , rubbed Aya’s cartouches , putting his name on top.
To strengthen his position, Horemheb married Mutnedzhmet , which some historians call Nefertiti's younger sister, Mutbenreth  . Other scientists adhere to the view that Mutnedzhmet is not identical to Muttenreth  , and a marriage with Mutnedzhmet would not affect Horemheb’s legitimacy, since a woman is not royal in blood  . Perhaps she was the daughter of Aye  .
Horemheb pursued supporters of atonism , erasing from memory the evidence of the rule of the heretic pharaoh Akhenaten and the erected new capital, Achetaton. Fragments of city palaces and temples — talatat — went to the construction of 2.9 and 10 pylons in the hypostyle hall of the Karnak temple . 
Despite returning to veneration as the main god Amon , Horemkheb stopped the priesthood’s attempt to seize the full power - Pharaoh appointed his comrades who had left the army as the main priests and could rely on them  .
Horemheb calls Pharaoh Thutmosis III "the father of his fathers" , and himself the immediate successor to Amenhotep III , excluding other pharaohs, and ranked them in his reign as the years of their rule. In the 8th year of the reign, Horemheb ordered the architect Maya to rebuild the tomb of Thutmose IV , disturbed by robbers in troubled times. By this, he sought to emphasize his direct connection with the pharaohs of the eighteenth dynasty .
“ He resumed the homes of the gods from the shallow waters of the marshy country of Nata (swamps near the Mediterranean Sea adjacent to the Mendezian estuary) to Nubia itself. He ordered to sculpt all their images, each of them in the image as it was before. And the solar god Ra rejoiced, seeing that what had been destroyed in the previous time was renewed. He visited the cities of the gods, which lay in ruins in this country, and ordered them to be restored as they were from the beginning of all things. He took care of their daily sacrificial festivals and all the temple utensils made of gold and silver. He supplied their temples with holy people (that is, priests) and singers and the best guardians, he gave them arable land and cattle and supplied them with all the utensils they needed. ”
For subsequent generations, Horemheb became the first legitimate king after Amenhotep III. Acheathon , with its magnificent palaces, villas and temples, was destroyed by order of Horemheb. Sanctuary Aton demolished. Aye's tomb was ravaged and erased the names of him and his wife. So did the tombs of Aye and Tutankhamen's confidants. Why Tutankhamen’s tomb remained untouched - it remains a mystery.
Horemheb carried out a number of transformations in the army, distinguishing the legal duties of Upper and Lower Egypt between the viziers of Thebes and Memphis  . This is evidenced by the record at the Karnak temple at the foot of the tenth pylon, as well as near Abydos . The great edict of Horemheb governed the abuse of power that had grown over the years of instability (cutting off noses, being referred to the border desert fortress of Jaru (Charu), the death penalty)  . The protection of the middle service layer, and especially the warriors, is declared the constant care of Pharaoh, and their material support is guaranteed by all the wealth of the palace and its breadbasket.
Horemheb reorganized the tax system, took measures against the looting of soldiers and bribery of officials. When the royal court still many of the highest positions occupied by people from the medium and small serving people, officials who are not associated with the old hereditary nobility, the place of concentration of which, as before, was Thebes. But the Egyptian kings of the post-reform time were not inclined to linger long in Thebes. Already the court of Tutankhamen was mainly in the north, in Memphis. Immediately after the coronation, Horemheb went to the north.
Interested in supporting the Theban priesthood and the circles behind him, in honor of Amon, Horemheb continued the construction of the so-called Hypostyle hall in front of the Temple of Karnak . There, he attached to the center aisle, apparently erected by Amenhotep III , side panels resting on 126 columns 13 m high and set in 7 rows on each side of the middle aisle.
Horemheb appropriated the complex of the Aya memorial temple in Medinet-Abu on the bank of the Nile opposite Karnak and was originally intended for Tutankhamun . He completed and expanded it, replacing the title Aya with his colossal 5.5 m statue in this temple.
Under Horemheb, an army was formed, which Pharaoh divided into two parts, respectively, the two main areas of Egypt’s military expansion: “one in the southern region and the other in the northern part” . Apparently, Horemheb achieved significant military successes, although there was very little information about his wars.
Trekking in Nubia
When it was undertaken, a military expedition to Nubia was immortalized on the wall of the half-rock temple in the Gobel es Silsil quarries, where Nubian prisoners are depicted, and the Egyptian army's triumphant march upon returning home.
The first relief shows a standing pharaoh holding a battle ax on his shoulder. He accepts from Amon-Ra the symbol of divine life; he is given, in addition, the power to subjugate the north and defeat the south. Below are the Nubians, some plunged to the ground, others, with the pleading of their hands, to the Egyptian leading them, who, judging by the side inscription, reproaches them that they have closed their hearts with wisdom and that they did not hear when they were told: “look there is a lion that invaded the land of Cush . "
In another picture, the victorious Pharaoh is carried on royal stretchers; it is surrounded by carriers of the vane. Ahead clear the way for the procession of the ministers; behind the Pharaoh go the warriors leading the captives of the enemy leaders; other armed persons with shields on their shoulders move in line, having the trumpeter at the head. A crowd of Egyptian priests and dignitaries takes the king, expressing his loyalty to him. The hieroglyphic inscription says so about this image:
“The divine benefactor returns home, subjugating the princes of all countries. The bow is in his hand, as if he were lord of Thebes (here the god of war, Montu, is meant). A strong, glorious king brings with him the princes of the despicable land of Cush. The king returns from Nubia with loot taken by him in battle, as ordered by his father Amon. "
Here is the song of poor captive blacks:
|Glory to you the king of Egypt|
The sun of strangers.
Your name is great in the land of Cush,
where your war cry has penetrated people's homes.
Mighty your strength
she covers the nations with shame.
Pharaoh, life, happiness and health to him,
He is the shining sun.
Military action in Syria
Horemheb also made a trip to Syria . Images and inscriptions on the IX pylon of the Temple of Karnak tell about the capture of many prisoners and rich booty. The lists of defeated cities and countries include, along with Pella (Pihil), Kadesh , Katna , Tunip , also North-Syrian Ugarit and, finally, the realm of Hatti and the country of Artsav . Even the princes of Howinebu (Aegean islands) are depicted as submissive to Pharaoh. It is difficult to count the listing of these names in the lists of the defeated cities as empty boasting, because Artsava, for example, is not in the lists that have come down to us from earlier reigns.
Be that as it may, Pharaoh was unable to consolidate his successes in the north, and he concluded peace with the Hittite king on equal terms with the recognition of the status quo .
Swimming at Punt
Horemheb also sent an expedition to Punt . Images have survived in the Karnak temple on which the princes of this land are in front of Pharaoh, handing him numerous heavy bags filled with gold. They say to him: “Glory to you, the king of Egypt, the sun of nine foreign nations. [We swear] by your name! We did not know Egypt. Our fathers have never been to him. Give us freedom from your hand, we will be subjects to you. "
Duration of the Board
The duration of Horemheb’s rule is a subject of debate among scholars. Manetho removes the reign of 4 years and 1 month in his list, the Tsar who completes the XVIII dynasty. reign of which was really about 4 years old. Although in favor of the short time of the administration of Khoremkheb his tomb may serve ( KV57 ). It seems that the tomb was not completed, since the various stages of drawing are visible, and in some places there are corrections by the main artist. The pharaoh standing next to the last in the list of the kings of the eighteenth dynasty of manephon is named Ἀχερρῆς and has a reign of 12 years and 3 months. It is reasonable to assume that the years of the reigns of Horemheb and Aya are confused here and that 12 years and 3 months are more suitable for Horemheb than Aya. It is necessary, however, to note that Manetho himself, who wrote his work a thousand years later, did not really know the names and order of the pharaohs of the post-Amarnian period due to their widespread destruction from the monuments at a later time.
The later reliably known year of the reign of Horemheb - the 8th. Although a pair of seals from wine vessels, marked as the 13th and even the 14th years of his reign, were found in his tomb in the Valley of the Kings .
Very interesting is the evidence of one, almost contemporary monument to him, namely, the inscription of a certain Mesa, dating back to the era of Ramses II . In this inscription on his tomb in Sakkar Mes he immortalized all the vicissitudes of an infinitely long family process on the allotment, which was given to one of the ancestors of Mesa in the epoch of Ahmose I. One of the judicial acts in this case is dated the 59th year of the reign of Horemheb, which created a difficult situation for modern Egyptologists. Horemheb, who had begun his career under Akhenaton , could hardly have been so long-lived. Obviously, 31 (or 32) years should be subtracted from this duration of the Horemheb reign, during which four predecessors of this pharaoh ruled (17 years - Akhenaten, 1-2 years - Smenkhkara , 9 years - Tutankhamun and 4 years - Aye ), that is the reign of the so-called heretical kings, the memory of which was subsequently destroyed. Thus, Pharaoh Horemheb himself reigned for 27 or 28 years. This conjecture is confirmed by the fact that an anonymous graffiti has been preserved, referring to “Day 9, the first month of the shem season, 27 years old Horemheb, loving Amon and hating his enemies . ” This inscription, scrawled on the shoulder of a now fragmented statue originating from his memorial temple at Karnak , refutes the theories of some researchers that Horemheb did not last long and therefore could not finish the work on his tomb.
It should also be noted that the extensive construction sites of Horemheb in Karnak support the theory of the continued presence of this pharaoh in power. A huge number of not dated private monuments clearly related to the XVIII dynasty should be attributed to his rule. Based on the foregoing, most historians agree that the rule of Horemheb was at least 27 years old.
It Horemhebom laid the prerequisites for the new rise of Egypt. He again reinforced Egypt after a temporary decline in the Amarnian period . The pharaohs of the XIX dynasty considered Horemheb its founder and honored his memory. Perhaps this was the reason for the construction of a number of tombs, in particular, the burial of Sister Ramses II Tii , in the area of Saqqara, where the first tomb of Horemheb was located. Obviously, the people also preserved the memory of Horemheb: it is believed that the prototype of the lyrical hero Mehi Horemheb, known from the love poetry of the end of the New Kingdom, was Pharaoh himself.
In connection with the unexpected rise of his career, Horemheb built two tombs for himself. The first - in Sakkara near Memphis, made for Horemheb before his accession, became the burial place of his wives  . Many reliefs from the tombs are exhibited today in the Leiden Museum . In the second royal tomb of Horemheb in the Valley of the Kings ( KV57 ), the wall paintings remained unfinished.
The tomb was found in a poor condition by Theodore M. Davis at the beginning of the 20th century - plundered, tilted because of displaced rocks over the centuries. The cover of the sarcophagus was shifted and broken by robbers  .
- The ups and downs of the transition of power from Akhenaten to Horemheb are described in Gerald Messadier’s trilogy “The Storm on the Nile”,
- Also in the novels of Sergey Shapovalov "Jubilant in the Sky" and "Living the Truth";
- 2010 - a minor character in Michelle Moran's “Nefertiti”,
- 2011 - in the book of Nick Drake “Tutankhamen. Book of Shadows
- 1954 - in the feature film " Egyptian " based on the novel by Mika Valtari " Sinuhe, Egyptian " the role of Horemheb was played by Victor Matyur .
- 1994 - In the feature film Nefertiti , Horemheb played the role of Guillaume Acor.
- 2015 - Canadian-American mini-series of six episodes of " Here " is partly based on the life of Egyptian pharaoh Tutankhamun. The role of General Horemheb played Nonso Anosi .
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|pharaoh of egypt|
OK. 1319 - 1292 BC. er