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Ancient Egypt: Inscription of Nebwawi
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Inscription of Nebwawi, High Priest of Osiris

Offered by the favour of the king, the king of Upper and Lower Egypt Menkheperre, may he live forever, to the first prophet of Osiris Nebwawi.
He says: I was a servant who was useful to his lord, who followed the path of him who was benevolent towards me. I was invested with my first office in the House of his father Osiris. I was made head of this sanctuary and [//////] of the temple.
A royal order reached me every day. [////////]
I was a
[sA mrf] in the management of the duties (?) of the gold smiths, (and) in the secrets of the lord of Abydos.
I was skillful [with my hands at decorating the god, a
sem priest with pure] fingers.
I was a favourite of the good god.
All trades [were under] my [supervision], they happened through me. Not /////// my mark; no blame was attached to me, ////// in order to do good for the king. As truly as my lord lives, [I have done this] in truth. My witness is Onnophis. The duration of these matters amounted to 11 years.
-   Menkheperre: Thutmose III, c. 1504-1450 BCE
  House: here: temple
  sA mrf: a priestly title (Sethe)
  lord of Abydos" Khentamenthes, who was identified with Osiris
  with my hands: lit. concerning (my) arms
  the good god: Pharaoh
  Onnophis: Osiris
My lord, the king of Upper and Lower Egypt Menkheperre, praised me because of it. I was appointed first prophet of his father Osiris. Every office of this temple was placed under the supervision of this king's servant.
Another time when I was given an assignment (I was commissioned) to lead his father Horus, the "avenger of his father", in procession in the House of Min, lord of Ipu, during all the feasts at Ipu.
There I was chief of the prophets; all employees of this sanctuary reported to me all their business. The duration of these matters amounted to six years.
  king's servant: Nebwawi
  Ipu: ipw, Akhmim in the 9th nome of Upper Egypt
This was a (special) case, [no one] like me was [found] in the Thinite nome. The majesty of my lord praised me. I was nominated chief in Khemenu (?) [in order to] make magnificent the House of his father, the king of Upper and Lower Egypt Nebpehtyre. His treasuries were under my seals. I emerged from it safe and sound, after nine years.
I supervised the work on the
neshemet barque. I kept away him who rebelled against its majesty.

After Kurt Sethe, Urkunden der 18. Dynastie Band I, pp. 97f.

  Khemenu: Khmunu wnw ; Hermopolis Magna, cult centre of Thoth.
  father: forefather
  Nebpehtyre: Ahmose I
  neshemet: nSm.t The holy barque of Osiris at Abydos
  its: the barque's

 


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March 2004

 

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