Ancient Egypt Wiki
Dynasties of Ancient Egypt
Predynastic Period
Protodynastic Period
Early Dynastic Period
1st 2nd
Old Kingdom
3rd 4th 5th 6th
First Intermediate Period
7th 8th 9th 10th 11th
Middle Kingdom
11th 12th
Second Intermediate Period
13th 14th 15th 16th 17th
Abydos Dynasty
New Kingdom
18th 19th 20th
Third Intermediate Period
21st 22nd 23rd 24th 25th
Late Period
26th 27th 28th
29th 30th 31st
Hellenistic Period
Argead Dynasty
Ptolemaic Dynasty

Known rulers, in the History of Egypt, for the Third Dynasty.

The Third, Fourth, Fifth and Sixth Dynasties of ancient Egypt are often combined under the Old Kingdom period.

While Manetho names one Necherophes, and the Turin King List names Nebka, as the first pharaoh of the Third Dynasty of Egypt, many contemporary Egyptologists believe Djoser was the first king of this dynasty, pointing out that the order in which some predecessors of Khufu are mentioned in the Papyrus Westcar suggests that Nebka should be placed between Djoser and Huni, and not before Djoser. More importantly seals naming Djoser were found at the entrance to Khasekhemwy's tomb at Abydos which demonstrates that it was rather Djoser, rather than Sanakhte who buried and succeeded this king. The Turin King List scribe wrote Djoser's name in red ink which indicates the ancient Egyptians recognition of this king's historical importance in their culture.

In any case, Djoser is the best known king of this dynasty, for commissioning his vizier Imhotep to build the earliest surviving pyramids, the Step Pyramid. Some authorities believe that Imhotep lived into the reign of the Pharaoh Huni.

Little is known for certain of Sekhemkhet. However, it is believed that Khaba possibly built the Layer Pyramid at Zawyet el-Aryan.


Third Dynasty
Name Dates Comments
Djoser 2686–2658 BC (28 years) Commissioned the Step Pyramid designed by Imhotep.
Sekhemkhet 2658–2652 BC (6 years)
Sanakhte 2652–2643 BC (9 years) Likely to be identified with the throne name Nebka.
Khaba 2643–2637 BC (6 years) Could be identical with Huni.
Huni 2637–2613 BC (24 years) Could be the same as Qahedjet or Khaba.


Preceded by:
2nd Dynasty
Old Kingdom
3rd Dynasty
Succeeded by:
4th Dynasty