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Preceded by:
Intef III
Pharaoh of Egypt
11th Dynasty
Succeeded by:
Mentuhotep III
Mentuhotep II
Statue of Mentuhotep II

Statue of Mentuhotep II.

Reign
2060-2009 BC (51 years)
Praenomen
M23
t
L2
t
<
ra
nb
P8
>
Nebhepetre
Re is the Lord of the Rudder
Nomen
G39N5
<
mn
n
T
wHtp
t p
>
Mentuhotep
Montu is Pleased
Horus name
G5
F36N19
Srxtail2
Shematawy
He who Unifies the Two Lands
Nebty name
G16F36N19
Shematawy
He who Unifies the Two Lands
Golden Horus
G8qS9
Qashuti
Lofty in Plumes
Legacy
Father Intef III
Mother Iah
Consort(s) Tem, Neferu II
Issue Mentuhotep III
Died 2009 BC
Burial Deir el-Bahari
Monuments Mortuary temple of Mentuhotep II
For other pages by this name, see Mentuhotep.

Nebhepetre Mentuhotep II (transliteration: mnṯw-ḥtp, meaning: "Montu is Pleased") was a Pharaoh of the Eleventh Dynasty and founder of the Middle Kingdom. He was the son of Pharaoh Intef III and Queen Iah. Mentuhotep II reigned from circa 2046-1995 BCE. His own wife was the "King's Mother" Tem. Other wives were Neferu II (his sister) and five women buried in his funerary complex. His only known son is his successor Mentuhotep III.

The king changed in his reign several times his name, perhaps reflecting important political events. His throne name was Nebhepetre, and he was the first ruler of the Middle Kingdom. He is known to have ruled 51 years.

In the 14th year of his reign there is attested an uprising in Thinis. This was perhaps connected with a war of Mentuhotep II against the rival 10th Dynasty at Herakleopolis Magna. Little is known of the events.

Mentuhotep II declared war to unify the two lands, deposed the Nomarch of Lycopolis, expelled the Asian Bedouin, who tried to invade the Nile Delta, and made Thebes the political capital of the kingdom.

Mentuhotep reunited Ancient Egypt in the following years for the first time since the 6th Dynasty. The exact date of this unification is still unknown.

He is also known for commanding military campaigns south into Nubia, which had gained its independence during the First Intermediate Period. There is also evidence for military actions against Palestine.

The king reorganised the country and placed a vizier at the head of the administration. The viziers of his reign were Bebi and Dagi. The treasurer was Khety who was involved in the sed festival of the king. He was followed by Meketre. The general was a certain Intef known from his Theban tomb.

He was buried in a tomb he had built for himself inside his mortuary temple erected at Deir el-Bahari. Mentuhotep II built temples and chapels at several places in Upper Egypt. He was the first pharaoh to build a mortuary temple at the site of Deir el-Bahari, only to be followed later by Hatshepsut and Thutmose III a little less than 500 years later during the New Kingdom.

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Further reading[]

  • W. Grajetzki, The Middle Kingdom of Ancient Egypt: History,Archaeology and Society, Duckworth, London 2006 ISBN 0-7156-3435-6, 18-23
  • Labib Habachi: King Nebhepetre Menthuhotep: his monuments, place in history, deification and unusual representations in form of gods. Annales du Service des Antiquités de l'Égypte 19 (1963), p. 16-52

External links[]

Predecessor:
Intef III
Pharaoh of Egypt
11th Dynasty
Successor:
Mentuhotep III
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