Amenhotep IV

Also known as: Akhenaten, Akhenaton, Echnaton, Amenophis IV Dynasty XVIII

Amenhotep IV reigned for five years before changing his name to Akhenaten, keeping only the throne name of his original titulary. He is especially famed for introducing the worship of Aten above all other gods, sometimes described as monotheism, which it was not. His name in the Amarna letters is Nibhururiya, which is the Akkadian renditon of his throne name Neferkheperura.

Reign of Amenhotep IV
AE Chronology1353–1336
von Beckerath1355–1337
Shaw1352–1336
Dodson1360–1343
Malek1353–1337
Arnold1364–1348
Grimal1352–1338
Redford1372–1355
Manetho (Josephus)12y 5m
Manetho (Jerome)16 years
Highest attestationYear 17

 

The Royal Titulary

From the hieroglyphic records

Horus name
Horus name of Amenhotep IV: Ka nakht qa shuty
Ka nakht qa shuty
kꜢ-nḫt ḳꜢi-šwti
The strong bull, high of plumes
E1:D44-q-A28-S9
Before name change
Urkunden des Ägyptische Alterthums, IV, 1963
Gebel el-Silsila rock inscription
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 110i
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:H1
Horus name variant
Horus name of Amenhotep IV: Ka nakht mery Aten
Ka nakht mery Aten
kꜢ-nḫt mri-itn
The strong bull, beloved of Aten
E1:D40-(i-t:n:ra):N37
After name change
Davis, The rock tombs of Amarna, VI, plate XXXII
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 107d
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:H2
Horus name variant
Horus name of Amenhotep IV: Ka nakht mery Aten
Ka nakht mery Aten
kꜢ-nḫt mri-itn
The strong bull, beloved of Aten
E1:D40-i-t:n:ra-mr-i-i
After name change
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 91a
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:H3
Horus name variant
Horus name of Amenhotep IV: Ka nakht mery Aten
Ka nakht mery Aten
kꜢ-nḫt mri-itn
The strong bull, beloved of Aten
E1:D40-i-t:n:ra-N37
After name change
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 107d
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:H3
Horus name variant
Horus name of Amenhotep IV: Ka nakht mery Aten
Ka nakht mery Aten
kꜢ-nḫt mri-itn
Beloved of Aten
E1:D40-i-t:n:ra-mr
After name change
d'Avennes, Monuments (1847), pl. 13
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:H2
Nebty name
Nebty name of Amenhotep IV: Wer nesyt em Ipet-sut
Wer nesyt em Ipet-sut
wr-nsyt-m-ipt-swt
Great of kingship in Karnak
wr:r-sw*t:n-i-i-m-i-p:t-st-t:Z2
Before name change
Urkunden des Ägyptische Alterthums, IV, 1963
Gebel el-Silsila rock inscription
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 110i
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:N1
Nebty name variant
Nebty name of Amenhotep IV: Wer nesyt em Akh et Aten
Wer nesyt em Akh et Aten
wr-nsyt-m-Ꜣḫtitn
Great of kingship in Akhetaten
wr:r-sw-t-i-i-Aa15:N27:t*pr-i-t:n:ra
After name change
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 105c
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:N2
Golden Horus name
Golden Horus name of Amenhotep IV: Wetjes khau em Iunu shemau
Wetjes khau em Iunu shemau
wṯs-ḫꜤw-m-iwnw-šmꜤi
Elevated of appearances in southern Heliopolis (Thebes)
U39-M40-xa:Z2-m-iwn-nw:O49-M27
Before name change
Urkunden des Ägyptische Alterthums, IV, 1963
Gebel el-Silsila rock inscription
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 110i
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:G1
Golden Horus name variant
Golden Horus name of Amenhotep IV: Wetjes ren en Aten
Wetjes ren en Aten
wṯz-rn-n-itn
Who has elevated the name of Aten
U39-r:n:V10:n-i-t:n:ra
After name change
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 105c
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:G2
Throne name
Throne name of Amenhotep IV: Nefer kheperu Ra, wa en Ra
Nefer kheperu Ra, wa en Ra
nfr-ḫprw-rꜤ wꜤ-n-rꜤ
The beautiful one of the manifestations of Ra, the unique one of Ra
C2A-nfr-xpr-Z2*ra:T21:n
Before name change
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 110d
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:T2
Throne name variant
Throne name of Amenhotep IV: Nefer kheperu Ra, wa en Ra
Nefer kheperu Ra, wa en Ra
nfr-ḫprw-rꜤ wꜤ-n-rꜤ
The beautiful one of the manifestations of Ra, the unique one of Ra
ra-nfr-xpr-ra*Z2:T21:n
After name change
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 105c, 107d
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:T3
Birth name
Birth name of Amenhotep IV: Amenhotep, netjer heqa Waset
Amenhotep, netjer heqa Waset
imn-ḥtp nṯr ḥḳꜢ wꜢst
Amenhotep, God and ruler of Thebes
i-mn:n:Htp-nTr-HqA-R19
Before name change
Legrain, "Les steles d'Amenothes IV". ASAE 3. 260
Birth name variant
Birth name of Amenhotep IV: Amenhotep, netjer heqa Waset aa em ahauef
Amenhotep, netjer heqa Waset aa em ahauef
imn-ḥtp nṯr ḥḳꜢ wꜢst ꜤꜢ-m-ꜤḥꜤw.f
Amenhotep, the god and ruler of Thebes, great in respect of his lifetime
i-mn:n:Htp-nTr-HqA-R19-O29v-P6-f
Before name change
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 110d
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:E1
Birth name variant
Birth name of Amenhotep IV: Akh en Aten
Akh en Aten
Ꜣḫ-n-itn
Living spirit of the Aten
i-t:n:ra-Ax&x:n
After name change
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 103
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 142-143, 10:E4

The complete titulary

Sources containing all five names of the royal titulary

Stela of Amenhotep IV at Zarnikh

Before name change. Legrain, Les steles d'Amenothes IV, ASAE 3, 260
Architrave in Ay's tomb at Amarna

After name change. Lepsius, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien, III, 105b–c
Boundary Stela U

Davies, The rock tombs of el Amarna, V, pl. XXV; Porter & Moss, Topographical Bibliography, IV, 231
Boundary Stela S

Davies, The rock tombs of el Amarna, V, pl. XXVI; Porter & Moss, Topographical Bibliography, IV, 231

The sources of antiquity

From the writings of the historians and scholars of antiquity

AuthorGreekTransliterationTranscriptionReign
Jerome Chenchres 16 years

Bibliography


Handbuch der Ägyptischen Königsnamen, MÄS 49 (1999): 142–143
The Encyclopedia of the Pharaohs: Volume I – Predynastic to the Twentieth Dynasty 3300–1069 BC (London, 2008), 13–18
Le livre des rois d'Égypte. MIFAO 18 (1912): 343–361
The Great Name: Ancient Egyptian Royal Titulary (Atlanta, 2013), 104–105

 

End of page
The Royal titulary

The full titulary was announced at the coronation, when a pharaoh officially became king.

Horus
Horus name
The oldest form of a pharaoh's name, often enclosed in a serekh, a sort of "heraldic crest" representing a palace facade.

Nebty
Nebty name
The "Two Ladies", the heraldic goddesses Nekhbet and Wadjet, representing Upper and Lower Egypt respectively.

Golden Horus
Golden Horus name
Gold was strongly associated with eternity, but the meaning of this title is disputed.

Prenomen
Throne name
(prenomen) Announced at the coronation, and written in a cartouche.

Nomen
Personal name
(nomen) The name given at birth, also written in a cartouche.

Kinglists
Ancient historians

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