Achthoes


Achthoes
(Akhtoy) King c.2160 BC.
    During the troubled period from the Eighth to the Tenth Dynasty, the only ruler whom *Manetho mentions by name is Achthoes; he places him in the Ninth Dynasty. This man was originally the governor of the Twentieth Nome of Upper Egypt which had its district capital at Heracleopolis. He managed to subdue opposition from neighbouring governors and came to be recognised as king throughout Egypt as far south as Aswan, although the eastern Delta may have remained outside his control. His throne name was Meryibre and he established the Heracleopolitan Dynasty; *Manetho's history claimed that he was more cruel than any of his predecessors and that he eventually became insane and was killed by a crocodile.
    He was succeeded by seventeen kings who comprised the Ninth and Tenth Dynasties. One was Achthoes II, who was probably mentioned in the famous story of 'The Eloquent Peasant'; another king with literary connections was Wahkare, Achthoes III (the owner of a finely decorated coffin from el Bersha) who was accredited as the author of the Wisdom Text The Instruction of King *Merikare'.
    Merikare inherited the throne and died before the Theban rulers, under *Mentuhotep II (Nebhepetre), reached Heracleopolis, but his successor (who is not identified in the records) was overcome by the Thebans.
    The Heracleopolitan rulers brought some stability to those areas they controlled and had a special alliance with the governors of Assiut. Funerary inscriptions and goods found in the tombs of the governors of Middle Egypt (Assiut, Beni Hasan and Akhmim) provide the primary material for the study of this period.
BIBL. Winlock, H.E. The Rise and Fall of the Middle Kingdom in Thebes. New York, 1947; AEL i. pp. 97-109, 169-83.
Biographical Dictionary of Ancient Egypt by Rosalie and Antony E. David

Ancient Egypt. A Reference Guide. . 2011.

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