Ancient Egypt Wiki
"The Beautiful Young Bird"
Dynasty 21st Dynasty
Pharaoh(s) Psusennes IOsorkon
Titles Second Prophet of Amun
Third Prophet of Amun
Fourth Prophet of Amun
Overseer of the Cattle of Amun
Steward of the Estates of Re
Priest of Montu and Khnum
God's Father
Sem Priest
Father Menkheperre or Nespaherenmut
Mother Isetemakhbit (?)
Spouse(s) Gautseshen
Issue Menkheperre, Pinedjem, Nesamun,
Burial Bab el-Gasus
For other pages by this name, see Tjanefer.

Tjanefer (ancient Egyptian: ṯꜣ-nfr, "The Beautiful Young Bird") was an ancient Egyptian priest of the Twenty-first Dynasty during the Third Intermediate Period.


Tjanefer had several titles including; "Priest of Montu, Lord of Thebes", "Priest of Khnum, Lord of the Cataract", "God's Father, Beloved of the God", "Chief of the Secrets in the Sky, on the Earth and in the Duat", "The one who opens the doors of the sky in Karnak", "Sem Priest in the horizon of the eternity", "Overseer of the Cattle of Amun", and "Steward of the Estates of Re". Tjanefer also held prestiguous priestly positions at Karnak, serving as Fourth, Third and ultimately briefly as Second Prophet of Amun at the end of his life.


Tjanefer is a son of the High Priest of Amun Menkheperre, naming his father on one of his two funerary papyri (Cairo CG 40014). Although the identity of his mother remains unknown, she was probably his father's only known wife, Princess Isetemakhbit. Tjanefer was married to his sister Gautseshen. Alternatively, Broekman proposes that Tjanefer was a son-in-law of Menkheperre and that his father was the Fourth Prophet of Amun, Nespaherenmut.[1]

If he was a son of Menkheperre, Tjanefer would be a younger brother of Smendes II and Pinedjem II, who both rose to their father's position of High Priest of Amun. He then also had three younger brothers called Psusennes, Hori and Ankhefenmut. Besides his wife Gautseshen, other sisters would include; Henuttawy, Isetemakhbit, and Meritamen.[2]

Tjanefer and Gautseshen are known to have had at least three sons; Pinedjem and Nesamun, both became Fourth Prophet of Amun, and Menkheperre, who held the position of Third Prophet of Amun.[3] The couple also had a daughter named Gautseshen.


Tjanefer was buried in the Bab el-Gasus cache at Deir el-Bahari. He was probably one of the first buried in the tomb, his coffin found at the back of the small room under that of his wife, Gautseshen. Their daughter Gautseshen and sons Menkheperre and Nesamun were also interred in this cache.


  1. Broekman 2010, p. 127.
  2. Dodson 2012, p. 64-65.
  3. Sousa & Cooney 2021, p. 172-173.


  • Broekman, G.P.F., 2010: The Leading Theban Priests of Amun. The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology, Vol. 96.
  • Dodson, A./Hilton, D., 2004: The Complete Royal Families of Ancient Egypt. Thames & Hudson, London.
  • Dodson, A., 2012: Afterglow of Empire: Egypt from the Fall of the New Kingdom to the Saite Renaissance. The American University in Cairo Press.
  • Sousa, R./Cooney, K.M., 2021: Bab El-Gasus in Context: Rediscovering the Tomb of the priests of Amun.