Ancient Egypt - Ramesside Queens
Although not as influential as the queens of Dynasty XVIII, the Ramesside queens continued to play a prominent role. In the New Kingdom, the Queen became much more prominent and powerful. She acquired in her own right secular and religious titles that carried with them genuine jobs to do and estates with land, servants and administrators to provide an independent income. The title God's Wife of Amun provided the queen with her own source of money and gave her a considerable degree of independence. It is clear, that Queens such as Nefertari, Tiy, Tuya, Istnofret and Tauosret enjoyed this independence and played an important role in the running of Egypt and the Empire during its so-called, 'Glory days.'
It is very possible that Ramesses II's Chief Royal Wife (his favorite from many)- 'Nefertari', grew up as the daughter of a nobleman in Thebes. She most likely became
It was Nefertari who bore
* Held titles 'King's Great Wife', 'Mistress of the South and the North' and 'Lady of the Two lands'
* Epithet 'Beloved of Mut'
* Was possibly the granddaughter, daughter or niece of Ay
* Is depicted in offering scenes with
* Has a temple dedicated to her at Abu Simbel
* Appeared in statuary on the faç;ade of temple of
* Was identified with the Godesses Hathor of Ishbek and Sothis
* Died between Years 24 and 30
* Was buried in a lavish tomb in the Valley of the Queens (QV66).
"My love is unique - no one can rival her, for she is the most beautiful woman alive. Just by passing, she has stolen away my heart."
It is said that as Great Royal Wife, her high status and great authority within the royal court, along with her apparent beauty, charm, "sweetness", intelligence and guile, she may have been one of Egypt's greatest queens.
A description at Luxor Temple, says of her:
greatly favored, possessing charm, sweet of love.... Rich in love, wearing the circlet-diadem, singer fair of face, beautiful with the tall twin plumes, Chief of the Harim of Horus, Lord of the Palace; one is pleased with what(ever) comes forth concerning her; who has (only to) say anything, and it is done for her - every good thing, at her wish (?); her every word, how pleasing on the ear - one lives at just hearing her voice..."
Queen Tiy the Royal Wife of the Pharaoh Amenhotep III (1391-1353 B.C.) was (like Nefertari), also an intelligent and ambitious woman, involving herself in state affairs and official policies alongside that of her husband. Amenhotep married Tiy when she was 12 years old and showed a unwavering devotion to her through gratuitous gift-giving, and eventually by the construction of a temple for her in which she could be worshipped. Tiy was the mother of the Pharaoh Akhenaten and the grandmother of Tutankhamun.
It is interesting to note that the occurrence of her name with that of Amenhotep III throughout the written records, shows an official recognition of a queen which was very unusual throughout Egypt's glanderous history.
Queen Tuya comprises an important part of Egypt's history. Being the wife of Seti I and the mother of one of the greatest pharaohs of all time, (if not the greatest)-
Though Nefertari is by far
Finally Queen Tauosret is one Queen who can be said to have exercised one of the most exultant influences over Egypt, more so, than Nefertari, Tuya, Tiy and Istnofret alike. She acted as the last Pharaoh of the Nineteenth Dynasty ruling over Egypt for 2 years, from about 1188-1186 BC, according to traditional Egyptian chronology. She took over from her step-son Siptah, who suffered from ill-health (probably polio) and her burial (is perhaps significant of her importance) as she was buried in the Valley of the Kings (KV14) and had a mortuary temple built for her near the Ramesseum.