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King Djedefre

  • 05 16, 2023

King Djedefre 

The fourth dynasty of Egyptian pharaohs was led by Dyedefra, also known as Radedef. Between 2558 and 2550 BC, roughly, was his rule. Although his name is illegible, the Turin Canon gives him credit for an eight-year reign. He is named Dyedefra in the Royal Lists of Abydos and Saqqara.

King Djedefre is a pharaoh who, for the short duration of his reign, should not have played an important part in the history of the dynasty, but the choice of the place where he built his pyramid, Abu Roash, suggests that there were dynastic complications related to his name.

It seems that Djedefre, son of Cheops and a Libyan bride, had, for this reason, fewer rights to the throne than other princes.

After Cheope's death, Djedefre is believed to have had his eldest brother Kanab assassinated, who was born of an Egyptian bride of the deceased pharaoh and therefore had greater rights to the throne.

Successor of Cheops

Choosing a location far from Giza for its pyramid would have been dictated by the calculation, in order not to force the hand in wanting to appear at all costs the legitimate successor, as it would have meant having a tomb prepared next to Cheope's.

After eight years of reign, Djedefre would have died, possibly assassinated by the order of Chephren, who thus brought the fourth dynasty back into the Egyptian family. Confirmation of the illegitimacy of the throne of Djedefre seems to be given by the discovery of some of his statues intentionally torn to pieces and by the abrasion of his name made on some monuments.

If you're planning to visit Egypt, then you should consider reviewing our detailed Egypt travel guide, as it is a unique experience during Egypt Tours that is not comparable with any other things to do in Egypt.


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Djedef Ra started constructing his pyramid in Abi Rawash during his rule. The design of this pyramid was to be similar to Menkaure's pyramid, which was built later. However, the construction of Djedef Ra's pyramid remained incomplete. This period was marked by internal conflicts within the Pharaoh's family, which may have led to Djedef Ra's downfall and sparked a new conflict between his brothers.

The Valley of the Kings, located on the west bank of the Nile River near Luxor in Egypt, holds immense significance for the pharaohs of ancient Egypt. This site served as the burial ground for many New Kingdom pharaohs, queens, and high-ranking officials during a significant period of Egyptian history. Here are some key points explaining its significance:

   Royal Burial Site: The Valley of the Kings was chosen as the burial site for pharaohs due to its strategic location on the west bank of the Nile. In Egyptian mythology, the west was associated with the journey to the afterlife, making it an ideal place for royal tombs.

   Secrecy and Protection: Pharaohs desired secrecy and security for their tombs to prevent tomb robbers from looting their valuable funerary goods. The rugged terrain and concealed entrances to the tombs helped in achieving this goal.

   Elaborate Tomb Construction: The pharaohs spared no expense in the construction and decoration of their tombs. These tombs are remarkable for their elaborate architecture, intricate wall paintings, and hieroglyphic inscriptions. The decorations often included scenes from the Book of the Dead and other religious texts to ensure a successful journey to the afterlife.

   Rich Funerary Goods: Pharaohs were buried with a vast array of funerary goods, including jewelry, furniture, food, and precious artifacts. These items were meant to accompany them into the afterlife and sustain them in the realm of the gods.

   Continuity of the Pharaoh's Rule: The belief in an afterlife was central to Egyptian religion. Pharaohs saw their deaths not as the end but as a transition to a divine existence. They believed that they would continue to rule in the afterlife alongside the gods, ensuring the continuity of their reign and the well-being of Egypt.

   Tourism and Study: Today, the Valley of the Kings is a major tourist attraction and a significant site for Egyptologists and archaeologists. The discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun in 1922 by Howard Carter brought worldwide attention to the valley, sparking a renewed interest in Egyptology and ancient Egyptian history.

   Historical and Cultural Significance: The Valley of the Kings offers valuable insights into the religious beliefs, funerary practices, and artistic achievements of ancient Egypt. The tombs and their decorations provide a window into the lives of pharaohs and the society of the New Kingdom.


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