Saqqara Canon king list

The Saqqara Canon (a.k.a. Saqqara Tablet) contains a list of Egyptian pharaohs. Mariette wrote of the discovery to his patron Vicomte de Rougé in March of 1860, but the list was not published until 1864.

It was found in a funerary shrine above the tomb of a lector priest by the name Gardiner: V13-G43-N35-Z2-D21-Z1-M17-M17 Tjunery (), who lived during the reign of Ramesses II. The location of the tomb is lost, but supposedly south of Djoser's step pyramid, close to the pyramid of Unas, between the Monastery and Sekhemkhet’s enclosure.

The inscription originally listed 58 kings in two rows of 29 kings each, in reverse chronological order, starting with Ramesses II, going backwards to Adjib. It was discovered in eight parts, with a section missing, which was searched for but never found. It is assigned inventory number JE 11335 (CG 34516), and is on display in Hall 9 at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.

It was written in the tradition of Lower Egypt, i.e. preferring honored ancestors with a strong affinity in Lower Egypt. The purpose of the list was to show celebrated "ancestors," and was not meant to be a complete chronological list, apparent by the exclusion of Hatshepsut and the heretic Amarna pharaohs.

Cartouche 39 was recorded by Mariette in 1864 containing the name Menkaura, but this is the only attestation for this. In all subsequent line drawings, the cartouche is drawn as unreadable, so the reading can not be trusted, it was likely added by Mariette.

Saqqara Canon king list

Curiously, the New Kingdom kinglists have differing numbers of kings for the Fourth Dynasty. Abydos holds six kings (20-25), Saqqara nine (43-35) and the Royal Canon of Turin eight (4.9-16). At some point, the records of the Fourth Dynasty suffered damage that resulted in incompletely preserved archives for posterity. Centuries later, scribes accessing the archives for information about the ancient kings either failed to realize that the records were incomplete, or misinterpreted the contents. The variation in the three king lists is puzzling.

Cartouche of Ramesses II
User Maat Ra, setep en Ra

wsr-mꜢꜤt-rꜤ stp.n-rꜤ

The justice of Ra is powerful, chosen of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 1
Cartouche of Seti I
Men Maat Ra

mn-mꜢꜤt-rꜤ

Eternal is the Truth of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 2
Cartouche of Ramesses I
Men pehty Ra

mn-pḥti-rꜤ

Eternal is the Strength of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 3
Cartouche of Horemheb
Djoser kheperu Ra, setep en Ra

ḏsr-ḫprw stp-n-rꜤ

Holy are of the manifestations of Ra, chosen of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 4
Cartouche of Amenhotep III
Neb Maat Ra

nb-mꜢꜤt-rꜤ

The possessor of the Maat of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 5
Cartouche of Thutmose IV
Men kheperu Ra

mn-ḫprw-rꜤ

Established manifestations of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 6
Cartouche of Amenhotep II
Aa kheperu Ra

ꜤꜢ-ḫprw-rꜤ

Great are the manifestations of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 7
Cartouche of Thutmose III
Men kheper Ra

mn-ḫpr-rꜤ

Lasting is the Manifestation of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 8
Cartouche of Thutmose II
Aa kheper en Ra

ꜤꜢ-ḫpr-n-rꜤ

Great is the manifestation of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 9
Cartouche of Thutmose I
Aa kheper ka Ra

ꜤꜢ-ḫpr-kꜢ-rꜤ

Great is the manifestation of the soul of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 10
Cartouche of Amenhotep I
Djoser ka Ra

ḏsr-kꜢ-rꜤ

Holy is the soul of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 11
Cartouche of Ahmose I
Neb pehty Ra

nb-pḥti-rꜤ

The Lord of the might is Ra

Saqqara Canon: 12
Cartouche of Mentuhotep II
Neb hapet Ra

nb-ḥꜢpt-rꜤ

The Lord of the rudder is Ra

Saqqara Canon: 13
Cartouche of Mentuhotep III
Sankh ka Ra

s-Ꜥnḫ-kꜢ-rꜤ

The one whom the ka of Ra has sustained

Saqqara Canon: 14
Cartouche of Amenemhat I
Sehotep ib Ra

s-ḥtp-ib-rꜤ

He who satisfies the heart of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 15
Cartouche of Senusret I
Kheper ka Ra

ḫpr-kꜢ-rꜤ

The Ka of Ra is created

Saqqara Canon: 16
Cartouche of Amenemhat II
Nebu ka Ra

nbw-kꜢ-rꜤ

Golden are the souls of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 17
Cartouche of Senusret II
Kha kheper Ra

ḫꜤ-ḫpr-rꜤ

The appearance of the manifestation of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 18
Cartouche of Senusret III
Kha ka Ra

ḫꜤ-kꜢ-rꜤ

The appearance of the kas of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 19
Cartouche of Amenemhat III
Ni Maat Ra

ni-mꜢꜤt-rꜤ

He who belongs to the Maat of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 20
Cartouche of Amenemhat IV
Maa kheru Ra

mꜢꜤ-ḫrw-rꜤ

The righteous one of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 21
Cartouche of Neferusobek
Sobek ka Ra

sbk-kꜢ-rꜤ

The ka of Sobek-Ra

Saqqara Canon: 22
Cartouche of Pepi II
Nefer ka Ra

nfr-kꜢ-rꜤ

The perfect one of the ka of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 23
Cartouche of Nemtiemsaf I
Mer en Ra

mr-n-rꜤ

The one whom Ra has loved

Saqqara Canon: 24
Cartouche of Pepi I
Pepi

pipi

Pepi

Saqqara Canon: 25
Cartouche of Teti
Teti

tti

Teti

Saqqara Canon: 26
Cartouche of Unas
Unas

wnis

The one who truly exists

Saqqara Canon: 27
Cartouche of Djedkara Isesi
Maat ka Ra

mꜢꜤt-kꜢ-rꜤ

The soul of Ra is justified

Saqqara Canon: 28
Cartouche of Menkauhor Kaiu
Men ka Hor

mn-kꜢ-ḥr

The established one of the ka of Horus

Saqqara Canon: 29
Cartouche of Neferefra Isi
Kha nefer Ra

ḫꜤ-nfr-rꜤ

The appearance of the perfection of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 30
Cartouche of Shepseskara Netjeruser
Shepses ka Ra

špss-kꜢ-rꜤ

The noble one of the ka of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 31
Cartouche of Neferirkara I Kakai
Nefer ir ka Ra

nfr-ir-kꜢ-rꜤ

The perfect one whom the ka of Ra has made

Saqqara Canon: 32
Cartouche of Sahura
Sahu Ra

sꜢḥw-rꜤ

Ra has endowed me

Saqqara Canon: 33
Cartouche of Userkaf
User kaf

wsr-kꜢ-f

His ka is strong

Saqqara Canon: 34
Cartouche of Q
Unreadable

Hieroglyphs destroyed

Saqqara Canon: 35
Unknown
Cartouche of Q
Unreadable

Hieroglyphs destroyed

Saqqara Canon: 36
Unknown
Cartouche of Q
Unreadable

Hieroglyphs destroyed

Saqqara Canon: 37
Unknown
Cartouche of Q
Unreadable

Hieroglyphs destroyed

Saqqara Canon: 38
Unknown
Cartouche of Menkaura
Men kau Ra

mn-kꜢ.w-rꜤ

Hieroglyphs destroyed. Incorrectly shown by Mariette 1864.

Saqqara Canon: 39
Cartouche of Khafra
Khaf Ra

ḫꜤ.w-f-rꜤ

He appears (as) Ra

Saqqara Canon: 40
Cartouche of Radjedef
Djedef Ra

ḏd-f-rꜤ

Ra is his stability

Saqqara Canon: 41
Cartouche of Khufu
Khufu

ḫwfw

He protects me

Saqqara Canon: 42
Cartouche of Sneferu
Sneferu

s-nfr-w

He has perfected me

Saqqara Canon: 43
Cartouche of Huni
Huni

ḥw-ni

The smiter

Saqqara Canon: 44
Cartouche of Nebkara
Neb ka Ra

nb-kꜢ-rꜤ

The Lord of the ka of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 45
Cartouche of Sekhemkhet
Djoser Teti

ḏsr-tti

Teti is sacred

Saqqara Canon: 46
Cartouche of Djoser
Djoser

ḏsr

The sacred one

Saqqara Canon: 47
Cartouche of Khasekhemwy
Beby

bby

Beby

Saqqara Canon: 48
Cartouche of Hudjefa I
Hudjefa

ḥw-ḏfꜢ

“Omitted” (i.e. name missing)

Saqqara Canon: 49
Cartouche of Neferkasokar
Nefer ka Sokar

nfr-kꜢ-skr

The perfect one of the ka of Sokar

Saqqara Canon: 50
Cartouche of Sneferka
Nefer ka Ra

nfr-kꜢ-rꜤ

The appearance of the perfection of Ra

Saqqara Canon: 51
Cartouche of Senedj
Senedj

snḏ

The frightful one

Saqqara Canon: 52
Cartouche of Wadjenes
Wadjlas

wꜢḏ-l-s

Fresh of tongue

Saqqara Canon: 53
Cartouche of Ninetjer
Ba netjeru

bꜢ-nṯrw

The spirit of the gods

Saqqara Canon: 54
Cartouche of Nebra
Kakau

kꜢ-kꜢw

Bull of bulls

Saqqara Canon: 55
Cartouche of Hotepsekhemwy
Netjeri bau

nṯr-bꜢw

Divine of might

Saqqara Canon: 56
Cartouche of Qaa
Qebehu

ḳbḥw

He from the north

Saqqara Canon: 57
Cartouche of Adjib
Meri bia pen

mri-biꜢ-pn

Beloved one of the throne

Saqqara Canon: 58

Gallery