|Meriibre, Meribre and Kheti, Akhtoy, Achthoes; Merybtawy, Meribtawy|
Copper container with Meryibre Khety's royal titulary. Paris, Louvre.
|Reign||c. 2160 BCE - ? (9th dynasty (mainstream); 10th dynasty (Von Beckerath))|
|Predecessor||a pharaoh of the 7th or 8th dynasty|
|Successor||Neferkare (not directly)|
Some scholars believe that Meryibre Khety was the founder of the 9th dynasty, a Herakleopolitan nomarch who gathered enough authority to claim himself the legitimate successor of the 6th dynasty pharaohs. It seems that Meryibre ruled over his neighboring nomarchs with an iron fist, and it is likely to be for this reason that in later times this ruler became Manetho's infamous Achthoes, a wicked king who went insane and then was killed by a crocodile.
Because of the contrasting opinions of scholars, Meryibre's reign is difficult to account and date with reliability; if he really was the founder of the 9th dynasty, his reign should have conventionally begun in c. 2160 BCE, while in the second case his reign should have started about a century later.
As his name is not mentioned in the Turin King List (probably because the papyrus is very scattered at this point), this ruler is known only for few objects: a sort of copper brazier or basket from a tomb near Abydos (found along with a scribe's palette bearing the name of king Merikare) and now exhibited at the Louvre Museum, an ebony wand from Meir now at the Cairo Museum (JE 42835), an ivory casket fragment from Lisht and some other minor finds. Thanks to those few monuments, however, Meryibre's royal titulary is the most complete amongst the known pharaohs of this period.
- Flinders Petrie, A History of Egypt from the Earliest Times to the XVIth Dynasty (1897), pp. 114-15.
- Alan Gardiner, Egypt of the Pharaohs. An introduction, Oxford University Press, 1961, p. 112.
- William C. Hayes, in The Cambridge Ancient History, vol 1, part 2, 1971 (2008), Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-077915, p. 464.
- Nicolas Grimal, A History of Ancient Egypt, Oxford, Blackwell Books, 1992, p. 140.
- Jürgen von Beckerath, Handbuch der Ägyptischen Königsnamen, 2nd edition, Mainz, 1999, p. 74.
- William C. Hayes, op. cit., p. 996.
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