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Ruling Queen of Kush
Shanakdakheto (Cairo Museum)
Reign (ca. 177 BCE-155 BCE)
Full name Shanakdakheto
Born BCE
Died First century BCE
Buried Pyramid at Meroë (Beg. N11), ca. 155 BCE
Predecessor Unknown Qore
Successor Tanyidamani
Dynasty Meroitic
The pyramid of Shanakdakheto at Meroe (N11)

Shanakdakheto or Shanakdakhete was a Black African ruling queen of Kush, when the Kingdom was centered at Meroë. She is the earliest known ruling queen of Nubia, and reigned from about 177 to 155 BC (these dates are very uncertain and disputed [1]). She styled herself as Son of Re, Lord of the Two Lands, Shanakdakheto (Sa Re nebtawy, Shanakdakheto).[2]

The only inscription mentioning her comes from Temple F in Naqa where her name appears "in Meroitic hieroglyphics in the middle of an Egyptian text."[3] The name appears in Meroitic script, the earliest known example of Meroitic writing. Her pyramid was identified at Meroë, but does not preserve her name.

Part of decoration of the wall in a pyramid chapel of Meroe, now in the British Museum, perhaps belonging to Queen Shanakdakheto


  1. ^ "Meroitic Palaeography as a Tool for Chronology: Prospects and Limits", Arkamani. Sudan Journal of Archaeology and Anthropology, September 2004 (Internet Archive, dd. February 6th, 2008
  2. ^ László Török, The kingdom of Kush: handbook of the Napatan-Meroitic Civilization, 1997
  3. ^ Queen Shanakdakheto (REM 0039, 0051-0054), Internet Archive

Further reading[edit]

  • Laszlo Török, in: Fontes Historiae Nubiorum, Vol. II, Bergen 1996, 660-662

External links[edit]