National Geographic : 1941 Oct
The Family of King ThIut-mose I ABOUT 1520 B. c. Thut-mose I, king of Egypt and grand son of Ah-mose I, died and left as his heirs his son, ThIut-mose II, born to him by one of his secondary wives, and his daughter, Hat-shepsfit, the child of his queen. To strengthen his right to the throne, Thut-mose II was married to his brilliant and strong-willed half-sister, and for 18 years the two ruled the country as king and queen. Two daughters, Neferu-R6e and Meryet-Re' Hat-shepsuit, were born to the couple. Thut-mose II's only son, Thut-mose III, had the mis fortune to be the offspring of a harim girl, named Isis. At his father's death in 1501 B. c. this boy, ten or twelve years old at the time, inherited the throne and the full titles and regalia of kingship. However, as the courtier Ineny astutely observed, it was "the God's Wife, Hat-shepsut, who managed the affairs of the Two Lands according to her own devices, and Egypt was made to labor with bowed back for her." In the seventh year of what was, technically, the reign of Thut-mose III, Hat-shepsut, in a swift and apparently bloodless coup d'etat, broke the age-old tradition which had held that only a male could be the ruler of Egypt, and had herself formally proclaimed "king." One of the few women ever to hold that position,she assumed allthetitles, attributes, and other paraphernalia ofthepharaonic office. In this startling gesture she was supported by agroup of faithful and most able officials, foremost among whom was her special favorite, Sen-Mut, Chief Steward oftheestates of Amun and tutor of her daughter, thePrincess Neferu-R&e. For fourteen years moreThut-mose III, who had been allowed to retain a nominalposition asco-regent and had been married to his half-sister, Neferu-Re', was forced to subject his own proud spirittothe will ofhisaunt (Hat shepsut) ; but from the sixteenth year ofhisreign onward he began to come into his own. In this year or shortly afterwards Neferu-R edied, pre sumably the victim of an illness, and two orthree years later Sen-Mut fell or was forced outofroyal favor. In 1480 B. C., having dominated thefirst twenty-one years of the reign of her nephew and having stirred inthebreast of that spirited young man ahatred forherself which beggars description, Hat-shepsut diedorwas thrust outoftheway. Thus, Thut-mose III at last came into hisbirthright, and during the remaining 33 years ofhislong lifeperformed those deeds of high prowesswhich have justly earned for him a reputation as one ofEgypt's greatest pharaohs.