Sixteenth Dynasty of Egypt
Dynasties of Ancient Egypt
The Sixteenth Dynasty of ancient Egypt (notated Dynasty XVI) was a dynasty of pharaohs that ruled the Theban region in Upper Egypt for 70 years during the late Second Intermediate Period (c. 1650-1580 BCE), a period that saw the division of Upper and Lower Egypt between the pharaohs at Thebes and the Hyksos kings of the 15th dynasty based at Avaris.
Ryholt (1997), followed by Bourriau (2003), in reconstructing the Turin canon, interpreted a list of Thebes-based kings to constitute Manetho's Dynasty XVI, although this is one of Ryholt's "most debatable and far-reaching" conclusions. For this reason other scholars do not follow Ryholt and see only insufficient evidence for the interpretation of the Sixteenth Dynasty as Theban.
The continuing war against Dynasty XV dominated the short-lived 16th dynasty. The armies of the 15th dynasty, winning town after town from their southern enemies, continually encroached on the 16th dynasty territory, eventually threatening and then conquering Thebes itself. In his study of the second intermediate period, the egyptologist Kim Ryholt has suggested that Dedumose I sued for a truce in the latter years of the dynasty, but one of his predecessors, Nebiryraw I, may have been more successful and seems to have enjoyed a period of peace in his reign.
From Ryholt's reconstruction of the Turin canon, 15 kings of the dynasty can now be named, five of whom appear in contemporary sources. While most likely rulers based in Thebes itself, some may have been local rulers from other important Upper Egyptian towns, including Abydos, El Kab and Edfu. By the reign of Nebiriau I, the realm controlled by the 16th dynasty extended at least as far north as Hu and south to Edfu. Not listed in the Turin canon (after Ryholt) is Wepwawetemsaf, who left a stele at Abydos and was likely a local kinglet.
Ryholt gives the list of kings of the 16th dynasty as shown in the table below. Others, such as Helck, Vandersleyen, Bennett combine some of these rulers with the Seventeenth dynasty of Egypt. The estimated dates come from Bennett's publication.
|Djehuti||Sekhemre-sementawi||ca 1649 BC||Queen Mentuhotep|
|Sobekhotep VIII||Sekhemre-seusertawi||ca 1645 BC|
|Neferhotep III||Sekhemre-seankhtawi||ca 1629 BC|
|Mentuhotepi||Seankhenre||ca 1628 BC|
|Nebiryraw I||Sewadjenre||ca 1627 BC|
|Nebiriau II||Neferkare ?||ca 1601 BC|
|Semenre||ca 1601 BC|
|Bebi-Ankh||Seuserenre||ca 1600 BC|
|Shedwast||Sekhemre||ca 1588 BC|
|Five kings lost in a lacuna of the Turin canon|
|Kings whose position is uncertain:|
|Mentuhotep VI||Merankhre||Sitmut ?|
Wolfgang Helck however gives a different list of rulers for the 16th dynasty:
- Kuhrt 1995: 118
- Bourriau 2003: 191
- Ryholt 1997: 305
- Bourriau 2003: 179
- Cory 1876
- see for example, Quirke, in Maree: The Second Intemediate Period (Thirteenth - Seventeenth Dynasties, Current Research, Future Prospects, Leuven 2011, Paris — Walpole, MA. ISBN 978-9042922280, p. 56, n. 6
- Darrell D. Baker: The Encyclopedia of the Pharaohs: Volume I - Predynastic to the Twentieth Dynasty 3300–1069 BC, Stacey International, ISBN 978-1-905299-37-9, 2008, pp. 256-257
- Kings of the Second Intermediate Period 16th dynasty (after Ryholt 1997)
- Chris Bennet, A Genealogical Chronology of the Seventeenth Dynasty, Journal of the American Research Center in Egypt, Vol. 39 (2002), pp. 123-155
- Kim Ryholt's 16th dynasty on Digital Egypt for Universities
- Wolfgang Helck, Eberhard Otto, Wolfhart Westendorf, Stele - Zypresse: Volume 6 of Lexikon der Ägyptologie, Otto Harrassowitz Verlag, 1986, Page 1383
- Bourriau, Janine (2003) , "The Second Intermediate Period", in Shaw, Ian, The Oxford history of ancient Egypt, Oxford: Oxford University Press, ISBN 0-19-280458-8
- Cory, Isaac Preston (1876), Cory's Ancient fragments of the Phoenician, Carthaginian, Babylonian, Egyptian and other authors, Reeves & Turner
- Kuhrt, Amélie (1995), The Ancient Near East: c. 3000-330 BC, London: Routledge, ISBN 9780415013536
- Ryholt, K. S. B. (1997). The Political Situation in Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period, c. 1800 - 1550 BC. Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanum Press. ISBN 8772894210.