preview

Akhenaten

Satisfactory Essays
Akhenaten, or Amenhotep IV as he was first known, reigned during the prosperous golden age of Egypt’s 18th dynasty. He is generally associated with the neglecting the empire in order to pursue his dreams as a religious philosopher; letting the Egyptian border crumble, and ignoring their foreign colonies and provinces. Akhenaten was married to the most beautiful woman of ancient Egypt, who also happened to be his sister, Nefertiti. Delving into the reasons behind Akhenaten’s brief reform of Egyptian religion and art and the impact this had on Egypt’s golden age.
Akhenaten had a dream to reform Egypt. He changed the way they worshiped, the way they lived and even the way they created art. His rule was a time of great change for Egypt, however his ideas and reforms were met with little support or enthusiasm. He used tremendous amounts of Egypt’s recourses and time for all his reforms, he also consumed a lot of his own time on these problems rather than on his pharaonic duties. During the 5th and 6th years of his reign Akhenaten set the boundaries for his new capital, Akhetaten, 350 kilometres north of Thebes. It was to be a city dedicated to Aten and all who worshiped him, however like most of Akhenaten’s reforms once his rule concluded, like so many other of his attempts to change Egypt, this too would be abandoned. Akhenaten led an artistic reform, changing the way that Egyptian artists portrayed the people of Egypt. He moved away from the false grandeur that had always been used and opted for a more stark and realistic approach, possible even an exaggerated ugliness. He himself was depicted as a gaunt, frail and pot-bellied man with a stern and imposing face rather than a strong radiant god king as previous pharaohs had always b...

... middle of paper ...

...sia as a result of new forces in that area and of the indifference and preoccupation of the pharaoh” It is clear that during Akhenaten’s rule the kingdom fell into disarray, due in large to his infatuation with Aten. His reign is often referred to as the beginning of the end of the golden age, as Egypt’s foreign relations and boarders crumbled. Historian T. Save-Sӧderbergh sums up Akhenaten’s rule and its effect on the Kingdom by saying “Akhenaten’s final years must have been filled with infinite bitterness. All had failed. The great empire, Egypt’s pride lay shattered, and the enemy threatened Egypt’s boarders…”
Conclusively, Akhenaten can be considered as the facilitator for New Kingdom Egypt’s downfall due to his neglect of foreign relations, the empires borders and the misuse of many precious Egyptian resources on his own reform rather than the empire’s needs.
Get Access