Ancient Egypt: History and culture
Herodotus on Nitocris
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Herodotus on Nitocris

    The Turin Papyrus places 'Nitocris' after Pepi II and possibly Merenre II and an unknown pharaoh towards the end of the 6th dynasty

Turin papyrus: Nitocris,
Hieroglyphic transcription from the Hieratic,
Source: Jacques Kinnaer's Egypt site

This 'Nitocris' is also mentioned by both Herodotus and Manetho as a queen, but cannot be identified with any historical pharaoh. Neither can the events reported by Herodotus be verified.
    There are a few inscriptions which indicate that a king named Neterkara may have existed during the sixth dynasty, which - apart from him being the wrong sex - would be in accordance with Manetho.

 

    ... the name of the woman who reigned was the same as that of the Babylonian queen, namely Nitocris.
    Of her they said that desiring to take vengeance for her brother, whom the Egyptians had slain when he was their king and then, after having slain him, had given his kingdom to her,--desiring, I say, to take vengeance for him, she destroyed by craft many of the Egyptians. For she caused to be constructed a very large chamber under ground, and making as though she would handsel it but in her mind devising other things, she invited those of the Egyptians whom she knew to have had most part in the murder, and gave a great banquet. Then while they were feasting, she let in the river upon them by a secret conduit of large size.
 
    Of her they told no more than this, except that, when this had been accomplished, she threw herself into a room full of embers, in order that she might escape vengeance.

Herodotus Histories II
Project Gutenberg


 

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