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Not to be confused with Ranefer (High Priest of Ptah).
Ranefer in hieroglyphs

Ra is beautiful

Ranefer (or Ranofer) was a prince of ancient Egypt during the 4th dynasty (Old Kingdom of Egypt).[1] His name means “Ra is beautiful”.

Ranefer ‒ who had a title “King’s Son”[2] ‒ was a son of Pharaoh Sneferu, who was the first ruler of the Fourth Dynasty.[3] Ranefer’s mother was Sneferu’s wife or concubine; her name is unknown. Ranefer’s elder brothers were Nefermaat I and Rahotep.[4][5] They all died before Sneferu and their younger half-brother Khufu became king after Sneferu.[6]

Ranefer worked as an overseer for his father[7] (title: “Overseer of Djed-Sneferu”) and was buried inside a mastaba tomb at Meidum.[8] In the tomb were found remains of viscera wrapped in linen.[9] Ranefer’s body is the best representation of what mummification techniques entailed during the Old Kingdom.[10] His body was facing east, was molded as well as painted. The mummy’s hair was painted black, the eyebrows and eyes were painted green[11] whilst the mouth was painted red. The genitals were also carefully molded, the brain remained in the skull and its innards were found in a canopic chest in the tomb.[12]


  1. ^ Aidan Dodson and Dyan Hilton, The Complete Royal Families of Ancient Egypt: A Genealogical Sourcebook of the Pharaohs, 2004, Thames & Hudson
  2. ^ Bart, Anneke, Seneferu
  3. ^ Hill, Jenny. "Children and grandchildren of Sneferu". 
  4. ^ The California Institute for Ancient Studies. "The Kings of the 4th Dynasty". 
  5. ^ Old Kingdom Monuments Organized by Ruler, Wikiversity
  6. ^ Snofru, Ranefer's father
  7. ^ Justine Victoria Way, From Privilege to Poverty: The Life-cycle of Pyramid Settlements During the Old Kingdom
  8. ^ Marsh, Cynthia. "Egyptian Pharaoh Sneferu and His Overachieving Children". 
  9. ^ "Death and the afterlife in ancient Egypt". Preservation of the viscera. 
  10. ^ Ikram & Dodson 1998:110-111
  11. ^ Petrie, William Matthew Flinders. "Medum". 
  12. ^ McArthur, Riana (31 August 2011). The Evolution of the Technique of Human Mummification (ca.5000 BCE – ca.395 CE). p. 17.