The Royal Archive of the 18th Dynasty of Egypt and the Statue of Tutankhamun’s Grandmother

The Royal Archive of the 18th Dynasty of Egypt Data found in Armenia shows that many rulers of ancient Egypt were carrying Armenian genes. However, this fact still causes a lot of controversy and criticism, especially among militant ignorant individuals. For the final clarification of the situation, we propose the article written by Anzhela Teryan.

Near the Amarna archaeological site (300 km south of Cairo), archaeologists accidentally discovered the royal archive of the 18th dynasty of Egypt (1580-1090 BC), which was of great importance for the study of the history of not only Egypt but the rest of Asia Minor as well. The archive consists of 300 tablets containing the diplomatic correspondence of Amenhotep III and Amenhotep IV with the kings of Mitanni, Assyria, Babylon, Hatti, etc.

At the peak of Mitanni’s power, its southern borders reached the Kingdom of Egypt as well as Syria and Palestine. In this region, the interests of the two powers collided, which led to war.

Thutmose IV (1465-1455), following his ancestors, undertook new campaigns against Mitanni, but the eastern coast of the Mediterranean remained under the control of the Mitannians. As a consequence of the unsuccessful war, the Pharaoh decided to sign a peace and brotherhood treaty.

Thutmose sent a delegation of matchmakers to the palace of Artatama I to propose to his daughter. Only after the seventh time, Artatama agreed, and the princess of Mitanni Mutemwiya became the queen of Egypt.

Mutemwiya gave birth to the next pharaoh of the 18th dynasty Amenhotep III (1455-1419). He also, in his turn, sent six delegations to the capital of Mitanni to King Saturn I. As a result, Gilu-Hepa, his daughter, became the wife of the pharaoh.

Amenhotep III also had another wife of non-royal origin named Tiye (probably after the death of Gilu-Hepa since there are no more references to her). From the written sources found in the tomb of Queen Tiye, we know that her parents were from Nairi (Naharina). Tiye was called “the elder wife of the king.”

She was smart and had fame in the palace. She also helped her husband in rule. Despite these positive features, because of Tiye’s non-royal origin, the Egyptian priests demanded a divorce, but Amenhotep refused and called her “the wife of a powerful pharaoh”.

Flinders Petrie, a well-known archaeologist and Egyptologist who carefully studied the positions of the princesses of Mitanni in the royal court of the pharaohs, wrote:

“Tiye’s face… was different from the type common in Egypt… the face of Nefertiti has many features similar to Tiye’s. They have so much in common that they probably belonged to one nation.”

Translation of an excerpt from Anzhela Teryan’s “History and Armenia”, Yerevan, 2006. Read also: From Mitanni to the Kingdom of Van  and: Armenia And Ancient Egypt

 The statue of the grandmother of Tutankhamun

A group of archaeologists led by a popular Egyptologist of Armenian descent Hurig Suruzyan, who conducted excavations in Kom el-Hettan, reported on a unique find, the statue of Queen Tiye, the grandmother of the most famous Egyptian pharaoh Tutankhamun.

The statue of Tiye was discovered accidentally in the funerary temple of Pharaoh Amenhotep III. According to Hurig Suruzyan, the find was in good condition. It was reported that the statue has even retained its colors despite the centuries of age.

Hurig Suruzyan is considered an outstanding Egyptologist and art critic. The scientist heads the archaeological “Colossi Mission of Memnon and the temple in Kom el-Hettan”. She was born in Baghdad into a family of Armenian emigrants, whose ancestors had become victims of the Armenian Genocide.

Hurig Suruzyan took part in numerous excavations, which resulted in the discovery of important artifacts of antiquity. Many of the finds of Suruzyan are now kept in the Louvre and the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. Suruzyan is married to the popular Egyptologist and researcher of the Egyptian pyramids Rainer Stadelmann.


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