Ay

Also known as: Aja, Aya Dynasty XVIII

Ay is believed to be the father of Nefertiti. the wife of Akhenaten. When Tutankhamun died, his powerful vizier Ay quickly stepped in and assumed kingship, despite fact that general Horemhab was the designated heir. Manetho assigned Armais with a reign for 4-5 years, which usually has been assigned to Ay instead, based on his known highest date of 4 years. It is now believed that the assignation of Armais to Horemhab was correct, but the number of years should be raised by ten. This leaves Ay unaccounted for by Manetho, unless one of the three(!) Akenchereses could somehow be assigned to Ay.

Reign of Ay
AE Chronology1323–1320
von Beckerath1325–1321
Shaw1327–1323
Dodson1333–1328
Malek1327–1323
Arnold1338–1335
Grimal1327–1323
Redford1346–1343
Highest attestationYear 4

 

The Royal Titulary

From the hieroglyphic records

Horus name
Horus name of Ay: Ka nakht tjehen khau
Ka nakht tjehen khau
kꜢ-nḫt tḥn-ḫꜤw
The strong bull, the one of glittering crowns
E1:D40-S15A:xa*Z2
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 113b+c
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 146-147, 14:H1
Horus name variant
Horus name of Ay: Ka nakht tjehen kheperu
Ka nakht tjehen kheperu
kꜢ-nḫt ṯḥn-ḫprw
The strong bull, the one of dazzling manifestations
E1:D40-THn-xpr:Z2
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 113a
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 146-147, 14:H2
Horus name variant
Horus name of Ay: Ka nakht tjehen kheperu
Ka nakht tjehen kheperu
kꜢ-nḫt ṯḥn-ḫprw
The strong bull, the one of dazzling manifestations
E1:D40-U33-V28-n:nw*w-THn:xa*Z2
Stela found at Giza (CG 34187)
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 146-147, 14:H3
Nebty name
Nebty name of Ay: Sekhem pehty der setet
Sekhem pehty der setet
sḫm-pḥti dr-sṯt
Who is mighty of strength, who subdues the Asiatics
sxm-Aa15:F9*F9-d:r-S22:t*t:N25
Panopolis Grotto
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 114b+c
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 146-147, 14:N1
Golden Horus name
Golden Horus name of Ay: Heqa Maat sekheper tawy
Heqa Maat sekheper tawy
ḥḳꜢ-mꜢꜤt sḫpr-tꜢwi
The ruler of truth, who created the Two Lands
HqA-q-C10A-s-xpr-r:N17:N17
Panopolis Grotto
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 114b+c
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 146-147, 14:G
Throne name
Throne name of Ay: Kheper kheperu Ra
Kheper kheperu Ra
ḫpr-ḫprw-rꜤ
Everlasting are the Manifestations of Ra
ra-xpr-xpr-xpr
Tomb of Tutankhamun KV62, burial chamber, north wall
Porter & Moss, Topographical Bibliography, I, 570 (8:1)
Throne name variant
Throne name of Ay: Kheper kheperu Ra
Kheper kheperu Ra
ḫpr-ḫprw-rꜤ
Everlasting are the Manifestations of Ra
ra-xpr-xpr-Z2
Urkunden des Ägyptische Alterthums, IV, 2108
Throne name variant
Throne name of Ay: Kheper kheperu Ra, iri Maat
Kheper kheperu Ra, iri Maat
ḫpr-ḫprw-rꜤ iri-mꜢꜤt
Everlasting are the Manifestations of Ra, who does what is right
ra-xpr-xpr-C10A-Z2A-D4
Panopolis Grotto
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 114b+c
Throne name variant
Throne name of Ay: Kheper kheperu Ra, iri Maat
Kheper kheperu Ra, iri Maat
ḫpr-ḫprw-rꜤ iri-mꜢꜤt
Everlasting are the Manifestations of Ra, who does what is right
ra-xpr-xpr-Z3-ir:Aa11:t
Tomb of Ay (KV23)
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 113a+d
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 146-147, 14:T1
Throne name variant
Throne name of Ay: Kheper kheperu Ra, iri Maat
Kheper kheperu Ra, iri Maat
ḫpr-ḫprw-rꜤ iri-mꜢꜤt
Everlasting are the Manifestations of Ra, who does what is right
ra-xpr-xpr-Z2:D4:Aa11
Sarcophagus of Ay
d'Avennes, Histoire de l'art Egyptien, Atlas I, plate 6
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 113d
Throne name variant
Throne name of Ay: Kheper kheperu Ra, iri Maat
Kheper kheperu Ra, iri Maat
ḫpr-ḫprw-rꜤ iri-mꜢꜤt
Everlasting are the Manifestations of Ra, who does what is right
ra-xpr-xpr-Z3-D4:Aa11-C10A
Urkunden des Ägyptische Alterthums, IV, 2107
Throne name variant
Throne name of Ay: Kheper kheperu Ra, iri Maat
Kheper kheperu Ra, iri Maat
ḫpr-ḫprw-rꜤ iri-mꜢꜤt
Everlasting are the Manifestations of Ra, who does what is right
ra-xpr-xpr-Z3-C10A-ir
Brooklyn Museum 66.174.1
Birth name
Birth name of Ay: It netjer Ay
It netjer Ay
iti-nṯr Ꜥy
God's father, Ay
nTr-i-t:f-i-A2-i-i
The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology 18, 50-52
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 146-147, 14:E2
Birth name variant
Birth name of Ay: It netjer Ay netjer heqa Waset
It netjer Ay netjer heqa Waset
it-nṯr Ꜥy nṯr-ḥḳꜢ-wꜢst
God's father, Ay, God and ruler of Thebes
X2-nTr-i-A2-i-i-nTr-HqA-R19
Sarcophagus of Ay
d'Avennes, Histoire de l'art Egyptien, Atlas I, plate 6
, Denkmäler aus Ägypten und Äthiopien (), III, 113; 114b+c
, Handbuch der ägyptischen Königsnamen (), 146-147, 14:E1

Bibliography


Handbuch der Ägyptischen Königsnamen, MÄS 49 (1999): 146–147
The Encyclopedia of the Pharaohs: Volume I – Predynastic to the Twentieth Dynasty 3300–1069 BC (London, 2008), 62–65
Le livre des rois d'Égypte. MIFAO 18 (1912): 374–380
The Great Name: Ancient Egyptian Royal Titulary (Atlanta, 2013), 106–107

 

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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