Assess the importance of the Punt expedition to the reign to Hatshepsut.

Essay by extraordinary07High School, 12th gradeB+, March 2007

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Along with her development of Egypt, Hatshepsut's expedition to Punt was one that she took great pride in, enough for it to be recorded in her mortuary temple. Along with the expedition came many positive outcomes, which included religious, economic and political benefits. Bentley believes that it was one of the most 'important events of her reign'.

One main feature of importance of the expedition was the economic impact that it had. Hatshepsut benefited greatly from the expedition, with many resources obtained. Redford states 'Hatshepsut was not blind to the need of bolstering Egypt's economy', emphasising that she was active in her trade missions. Bradley states 'the Egyptians needed a continuing supply of exotic products...' this illustrates the need for strong trade in order to maintain stability. The exotic products that they received included myrrh, incense, ebony, ivory, gold and even dancing pygmies, according to Tyldesley. These products were rare and objects such as these heightened the level of success of the Egyptians.

Tyldesley states that 'trade flourished' during her reign in contrast to the reigns of her predecessors.

The Speos Artemidos temple, middle Egypt quotes 'and Punt overflows me on the fields'. This temple shows the view of Hatshepsut in promotion of her expedition, thus it may have bias from her view. Hatshepsut used the expedition as propaganda and the temple may be to an extent biased. Tyldesley states 'presented the King with a marvellous propaganda coup...' illustrating her use of propaganda. This source ensures that there was economic growth and that the expedition did benefit her reign. With the economic benefits came support and it further justified her reign. The expedition also gave an opportunity for extended trade with other parts of the continent. The expedition opened up trade between Egypt and inner Africa, according to Bentley. Egypt...