Djer . ., Pharoah of Egypt (c.-3100 - c.-3055) MP

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Birthplace: Egypt
Death: Died
Managed by: Joseph Frederick Strausman
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About Djer . ., Pharoah of Egypt

Djer was the second or third pharaoh of the first dynasty of Egypt, which dates from approximately 3100 B.C. Some scholars, however, debate whether the first pharaoh, Menes or Narmer, and Hor-Aha might have been different rulers. If they were separate rulers, this would make Djer the third pharaoh in the dynasty. A mummified wrist of Djer or his wife was discovered, but has been lost.

Djer's Horus name means "Horus who succours".[3]

The Abydos King List lists the second pharaoh as Teti, the Turin Canon lists Iteti, while Manetho lists Athothis.

While the Egyptian priest Manetho, writing in the third century B.C., stated that Djer ruled for 57 years, modern research by Toby Wilkinson in Royal Annals of Ancient Egypt stresses that the near-contemporary and therefore, more accurate Palermo Stone ascribes Djer a reign of "41 complete and partial years."[4] Wilkinson notes that Years 1-10 of Djer's reign are preserved in register II of the Palermo Stone, while the middle years of this pharaoh's reign are recorded in register II of Cairo Fragment One.[5]

The evidence for Djer's life and reign is[6]:

Tomb in Umm el-Qa'ab, Abydos

Seal prints from graves 2185 and 3471 in Saqqara

Inscriptions in graves 3503, 3506 and 3035 in Saqqara

Seal impression and inscriptions from Helwan (Saad 1947: 165; Saad 1969: 82, pl. 94)

Jar from Turah with the name of Djer (Kaiser 1964: 103, fig.3)

UC 16182 ivory tablet from Abydos, subsidiary tomb 612 of the enclosure of Djer (Petrie 1925: pl. II.8; XII.1)

UC 16172 copper adze with the name of Djer (tomb 461 in Abydos, Petrie 1925: pl. III.1, IV.8)

Inscription of his name (of questioned authenticity, however) at Wadi Halfa, Sudan

The inscriptions, on ivory and wood, are in a very early form of hieroglyphs, hindering complete translation, but a label at Saqqarah may depict the early Old Kingdom practice of human sacrifice.[7] An ivory tablet from Abydos mentions that Djer visited Buto and Sais in the Nile Delta. One of his regnal years on the Cairo Stone was named "Year of smiting the land of Setjet", which often is speculated to be Sinai or beyond.

Djer was a son of a pharaoh Hor-Aha and his wife Khenthap. His grandfather was probably Narmer, and his grandmother was Neithhotep. Women carrying titles later associated with queens such as great one of the hetes-sceptre and She who sees/carries Horus were buried in subsidiary tombs near the tomb of Djer in Abydos or attested in Saqqara. These women are thought to be the wives of Djer and include:

Nakhtneith (or Nekhetneith), buried in Abydos and known from a stela.[8][1]

Herneith, possibly a wife of Djer. Buried in Saqqara.[8]

Seshemetka, buried in Abydos next to the king.[9] She was said to be a wife of Den in Dodson and Hilton.[8]

Penebui, her name and title were found on an ivory label from Saqqara.[1]

bsu, known from a label in Saqqara and several stone vessels (reading of name uncertain; name consists of three fish hieroglyphs).

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