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Hatshepsut was one of the most prominent queens and had a strong influence. She was one of the queens of the Eighteenth Dynasty, and the daughter of “Thutmose I,” the most important warrior king in ancient Egypt, who was a great leader and credited with eliminating the Hyksos.
The death of “Thutmose I” and the attempts of “Hatshepsut” to rule Egypt
Following the death of Thutmose I, his male son, Thutmose II, could not rule Egypt, because he was not born from a royal marriage, and Hatshepsut was the remaining daughter of a royal marriage, so she is the one who is considered the legitimate heir to rule Egypt, but at that time it was not common that a woman would rule Egypt, therefore a dispute arose between Hatshepsut and Thutmose II. There were very clear differences between them, that “Hatshepsut” was being taught by senior teachers, and she was deliberately hiding her feminine features, while her brother was luxurious and was ignorant of many of the capabilities that he must possess in order to be able to rule this empire. In order to resolve these disputes between them, Thutmose II decided to marry his sister, Hatshepsut, and thus his blood became royal and became the legitimate heir of the ancient Egyptian empire. Indeed, Hatshepsut agreed and married him (siblings marriage was a common thing among the Pharaohs), and despite their marriage, she had the power to interfere in the affairs of the country more than her husband, that was because of her strength, sufficient knowledge, and her genius ability to manage the country, which was lacking by Thutmose II and he acknowledged his weak leadership abilities.
After they got married, Hatshepsut gave birth to a girl, which disturbed her a lot because she wanted to have a male child so that he would assume the throne immediately after the death of “Thutmose II” without conflicts or problems and she would be his guardian and thus enjoy the full power. She decided to give birth to more children, but she gave birth to a girl this time as well, which raised her tension, because “Thutmose II” had other wives and male children and had another royal marriage and a son of royal blood. “Thutmose II” found that “Thutmose III“ is the most prominent and knowledgeable of his sons, and has the capabilities that qualify him to assume power, even though his mother was an ordinary woman from the common people, therefore he decided to raise Thutmose III among the priests to qualify him for ruling Egypt, and in order to make his blood royal, it was very easy, as Thutmose II could order him to marry one of his sisters, the daughters of Hatshepsut, thus he can rule Egypt without any challenge.
Following the death of Thutmose II, conflict arose between Hatshepsut and her husband’s son, Thutmose III, because a new king must be crowned on the throne of Egypt immediately after the end of the funeral rituals of Thutmose II. Since there was a huge entourage of priests who support Thutmose III and promote that he is the legitimate heir, Hatshepsut decided at that time to declare Thutmose III as king of the Egyptian Empire, she seized the opportunity that he was young to be his guardian until he reached the legal age to take over, and she became the empress of Egypt.
The reign of Hatshepsut
Hatshepsut was just a guardian of Thutmose III, and despite her possession of all the powers as a natural empress, she knew that when he grew up, all powers will be revoked and would not be the queen anymore, so she decided during that time to create an entourage to form a political party to support her, she was interested in bringing together people from all fields, including workers, engineers, ministers, and others, but “Thutmose III” also had his own party that supported him, and they were the priests, who represented a large party and were able to control the minds of the common people. In addition to her interest in gathering prominent people from all fields around her in order to support her at the decisive moment, Hatshepsut also wanted to benefit from them in their fields. One of the people that Hatshepsut cared about most during this period was Senenmut, who was from an ordinary family and had great ambition, as he was close to her in age, handsome, intelligent and possessed revolutionary ideas, but he was one of the priests, in order to get him out of this party, Hatshepsut appointed him to be the educator of one of her daughters, the manager of her property and that of her daughters, and chief of the palace guards and slaves, until he had a strong influence inside the palace, by doing so, she believed that she had made him loyal to her.
“Hatshepsut” had an administrative and peaceful thought, as she did not favor wars or introducce herself in this way, unlike the policy of all the rulers who preceded her and who used to fight wars and win as a principled way to introduce themselves as strong rulers, her thought was supported by the party that surrounded her, most of which were people with administrative thinking. In order to express and introduce herself, she decided to establish the Deir el-Bahari temple and to hold funeral rites for her and her father therein, she moved the mummy of her father, King Thutmose I, into the funerary room inside the temple to express the extent of her love for her father and how he saw her as the most worthy heir to the throne of the Egyptian empire, and wrote on all the walls of the temple inscriptions explaining her history. She established three obelisks inside the temple, one of them for her father and the others to celebrate her thirtieth birthday, although she did not reach the age of thirty at that time, but rather a preparation for the reign in which her husband was the ruler and the period in which she would the actual queen of Egypt. “Senenmut” designed the temple and chose the construction site. The design of the temple building was very similar to the roots of a tree, in order to convey the idea that “Hatshepsut” is the queen of the Egyptian empire with actual roots.
One of Hatshepsut’s most important achievements during her reign was the commercial campaign she carried out with Puntland, a country that was characterized at the time by the presence of aromatic trees, whose wood was commonly used by the Egyptians in that era in the form of incense during funeral rituals and others, these trees were also ebony wood-rich, which is one of the Rare wood and was later found in the form of carvings inside the pharaonic tombs. Therefore, 5 sailing ships were equipped and traveled to the country of Punt, passing through the waters of the Nile River and the waters of the Red Sea, when they arrived, the leader of the country ordered the preparation of all the requests of the Egyptian empress, which were wood, ivory, leather, gold, and some types of animals, besides that, the leader of the country gave them seedlings of aromatic trees so that they could plant them in the land of Egypt and use them at any time. In order to ensure the success of the campaign, representatives of all the tribes of Puntland returned with the ships, who showed their loyalty to the Egyptian queen upon their arrival, who in turn received them with a sermon praising the importance of their country and the extent of the satisfaction of the god “Amun” with it.
The death of Hatshepsut
“Thutmose III” exceeded the age at which he could rule Egypt many years ago, so he thought about how to overthrow “Hatshepsut”, and it came to his mind first to overthrow “Senenmut” before her, who was the second most influential person in the royal palace after the queen, but Hatshepsut died of natural causes at that time, it is said that during the examination of her mummy later on, they found that she died as a result of suffering from cancer and diabetes, at the age of fifty.