The Middle Kingdom
12th - 13th Dynasty
(20th century BCE)
Source: Website of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
Picture from the tomb
The Middle Kingdom
(Dates: ± 50 years)
12th - 13th Dynasty
2050 - 11th Dynasty
- Domesticated cats possibly introduced from Nubia or Libya.
- Graveyards have a "Holy Road"
- Earliest ushabtis as grave goods under Mentuhotep II
- Tombs of Mentuhotep III and IV at Deir-el-Bahari: two floors with pillar halls, at the centre a pyramid, a broad ramp leading to the upper floor
- Model ships with painted figurines etc as gifts to the dead.
- Hennu journeys south along the east-African coast.
2000 - 12th Dynasty
- Amenemhet I restricts the power of the nobles
- Important moral and didactic writings:
- Well developed calligraphy, papyrus, reed pens, ink made of soot, pen-cases
- Miniature animal statues: Hippos, hedgehogs, hares, mice etc
- Vibrant trade relations with Syria and Palestine, above all the Phoenician port cities.
- Ovens for baking bread
- Olive oil
|1985 - Amenemhet I
- Giant tomb of an officer and landowner at Assiut: 7 chambers, 50 metres long. Inscriptions determine the services to be held after his death.
- The Teachings of King Amenemhet for his son Senusret I, pessimistic world view
- Apparently murdered
|1955 - Senusret I
- Senusret I (Sesostris) extends Egyptian influence to the third cataract in Nubia.
Fortification with bastions in Nubia
- Tomb of Sirenpowet at Asswan: Staircase, courtyard, entrance hall, three aisled hall, reliefs
- Mass sacrifices of Nubians at burials of Egyptian princes
- Obelisk erected at the temple of Heliopolis, commemorating 30 years of the rule of King Senusret I.
- Rock tombs at Beni Hassan with culturally interesting pictures and inscriptions.
In the tomb of Amenemhet I: three aisled inner room with double rows of fluted columns without capital (similar in form and style to those found in Greek temples). wall paintings: antelope hunt, dancers, bearers votive offerings
- Rectilinear auxiliary grid lines used in relief sculpture
- Proven cultural exchanges between Egypt and Mesopotamia
- Feeding of the Antelopes", naturalistic wall painting in the tomb of Khnumhotep at Beni-Hassan
- Grave of a second Sirenpowet at Asswan: Pictures of the deceased and his family
- Right angles are constructed with the help of knotted ropes in the form of a triangle, the relation between the sides: 3 to 4 to 5.
|1880 - Senusret II
- Coffin Texts, magical spells on the inside of the coffins, serve the dead.
- Granite statue of Nofret, wife of King Senusret II
- Sandstone statue of Chertihotep
- First alphabetic inscription on a rock, which appears to include two men's names, titles, and perhaps a prayer to a local god. (Syrian alphabetic writing dates from about 1700)
- Settlement housing the workers who erected the pyramid of Senusret II at the entrance to the Fayum oasis in the Libyan desert.
|1850 - Senusret III
- King Senusret III seeks support from the rising bourgeoisie, conquers Nubia and Canaan.
- Symmetrical, geometrical and ornamental forms preferred in reliefs
- Canals, sluices and dams control the waters of the Nile at Fayum oasis and enable settlement.
- Granite sphinx of Amenemhet III at Tanis
- Granite block statue, merges the human body with the geometrical cube form.
- Isis suckling Horus, copper statue
- Pyramids and temples at Hawara (Fayum)
- Rhind Papyrus: arithmetic book of Ahmes, with mathematical notes, examples taken from agricultural practice including fractions and area calculations .
- Men's clothing: A long loin cloth made of linen. Women's clothing: A long shirt made of linen with shoulder straps, coloured collar. Shoes are not worn, sandals infrequently. Curly haired wigs.
|1770 - Second Intermediate Period
- Social unrest
- Egyptian culture becomes more 'secular' and bourgeois.