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date: 21 August 2019


  • M. S. Drower


(regc. 3000 bc). Ancient Egyptian ruler. A series of small sculptures bear the name of Narmer, who was the last predynastic king of Egypt and who is identified by some with the traditional first pharaoh, Menes. Objects bearing Narmer’s name were found at Abydos in and near Tomb B10, generally thought to have been his burial-place, but also in Queen Neithhotpe’s tomb at Naqada. The most important monuments of his reign come from Hierakonpolis (Egyp. Nekhen), the ancient Upper Egyptian capital.

A large macehead (Oxford, Ashmolean), bearing relief decoration, shows Narmer in his jubilee cloak and the red crown of Lower Egypt; dignitaries stand behind his throne and standard-bearers approach him; large numbers of men, oxen and goats are enumerated, and there are other hieroglyphic signs. Another mace head from Hierakonpolis also bears Narmer’s name, while a third shows a dyke being cut by a king labelled ‘Scorpion’, perhaps another name for Narmer (...

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