The temple of Queen Hatshepsut, or Hatchepsut, was the first Ancient Egyptian temple we would walk into & even though a lot of it had already been renovated & large sections still remained in disrepair, it did not disappoint. She was the 5th pharaoh of the 18th dynasty & the 2nd confirmed female pharaoh. She was the chief wife of Thutmose the II & officially was a joint ruler with her child Thutmose III who ascended the throne after his father at the age of 2. She ruled during the years of 1479 to 1458 BC, creating much speculation within the early scholary circles that she was a joint ruler, today's egyptologist's have come to a generalised consensus that she was actually the only ruler and assumed the position as pharaoh. She is considered by many historians to be one of the 'first great women of history' a rather grand & aspiring title, I'm sure she would be very proud of. During her reign she was responsible for the erection of some grand monuments including her temple at Luxor as well as establishing vast international trade routes. She was successful in warfare very early in her reign, though after this Egypt was very peaceful, wealthy & prosperous under her long 20 year reign. She was truly special, but not exceptional as a female ruler of Egypt and pre dating her are many examples of female rulers and co-regents, with records as far back as the 1st dynasty. She did however claim the divine right to rule the country, a claim given to her by the god Amun. Very interestingly she is depicted in statues as a traditional male pharaoh wearing the headress, the fake beard & standing like a man, as well as herself in a more natural feminine position.
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