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Great Royal Wives

The People

Ancient Egypt’s Queen, Consort and Regent 

HMT NSWT WRT

The Egyptian title for the Great Royal Wife or Chief Royal Wife of Pharaoh. The first out of all Pharaoh’s Consorts.

Some, but not all, Great Royal Wives held the Title of “God’s Wife” to guide the role the women had within the Religion of Ancient Egypt. Supporting the Pharaoh in their God status and also in their secular human role along with the priests and priestesses. 

Diplomacy would have been another of these senior ladies roles. Taking their place on the International Stage alongside their Pharaoh husband and on behalf of all Egypt. 

It was a necessity for the Great Royal Wife to be as educated and knowledgeable as possible about Egypt, the Hierarchy and workings of the Religion and Priesthood, the Government, as well as International State of affairs.  

To learn more about some of Ancient Egypt’s Great Royal Wives, click on the links below:

Queen Senebhenas, Health is with Her

Great Royal Wife to 13th Dynasty Pharaoh Sobekhotep III

Her Titles included “Lady of all Lands”, “King’s Wife” and “United with the White Crown”

Queen Ineni

Great Royal Wife to 13th Dynasty Pharaoh Merneferre Ay

Her Titles included “She who is United with the White Crown”. The 1st Queen to have her name written within a Royal Cartouche

Queen Nefertari

Great Royal Wife to 18th Dynasty Pharaoh Thutmoses IV

Thought to be of common birth she was raised to be a Great Royal Wife and a Goddess alongside her mother-in-law, Queen Tiaa

She is shown on Stelae in Giza and Luxor Temple

It appears she died in Year 7 of Pharaoh’s reign as his sister, Queen Iaret became Great Royal Wife at this juncture

Queen Artystone

Great Royal Wife to 27th Dynasty Pharaoh Darius I

She was the Daughter of Persian King, Cyrus the Great, and therefore a Persian Princess in her own right

She was the Mother of Arsames and Gobryas

With her husband, she was the 3rd Persian ruling couple of the Achaemenid Empire which at the time included west Asia, Caucasus, Balkans, Black Sea coasts, central Asia, north Africa, east Libya, coastal Sudan and of course, Egypt

Queen Isetnofret II, “the Beautiful Isis”

Great Royal Wife to 19th Dynasty Pharaoh Merenptah

Her Titles included “Lady of the Two Lands”, “Mistress of Upper and Lower Egypt”, “Queen of all Egypt” and “King’s Wife”

She was the Daughter of Pharaoh Ramses II and Queen Isetnofret and Mother to future Pharaoh Seti II, Prince Merenptah and Prince Khaemwaset

Queen Takhuit

Great Royal Wife to 26th Dynasty Pharaoh Psamtik II

She was the Mother of future Pharaoh Apries and future God’s Wife of Amun, Ankhnesneferibre

Queen Karomama II

Great Royal Wife to 23rd Dynasty Pharaoh Takelot II

Her Titles included “Mistress of Upper and Lower Egypt”, “King’s Wife” and “King’s Daughter”

She was the Daughter of Nimlot C, the High Priest of Amun, and the Lady Tentsepeh C. Lady Tentsepeh C was in turn the Daughter of Pharaoh Osorkon II and Queen Djedmutesakh

She was the Mother to future Pharaoh Osorkon III, and became the Grandmother to future Pharaohs Takelot III and Rudamun

Female Regents included:

 

 

  1. Neithotep: ruled on behalf of her son Pharaoh Hor-Aha
  2. Merneith: ruled on behalf of her son Pharaoh Den
  3. Nimaathap: ruled on behalf of her son Pharaoh Djoser
  4. Khentkaus I: ruled on behalf of her son
  5. Khentkaus II: ruled on behalf of one of her sons: either Neferefre or Nyuserre Ini
  6. Iput I: ruled on behalf of her son Pharaoh Pepi I
  7. Ankhesenpepi II: ruled on behalf of her son Pharaoh Pepi II
  8. Ahhotep I: ruled on behalf of her son Pharaoh Ahmose I
  9. Ahmose-Nefertari: ruled on behalf of her son Pharaoh Amenhotep I
  10. Hatshepsut: ruled on behalf of her step-son Pharaoh Thutmose III
  11. Twosret: ruled on behalf of her setp-son Pharaoh Siptah