King Pepy II (2278-2184)

Cartouche of King Pepy II
King Pepy II, the secondary son of Pepy I, came to the throne as a new child, following the untimely death of his brother, Merenre. He is accorded the easiest prevail in Egypt's history and was the last ruler of importance in the Old Kingdom; Manetho told that he submitted to the throne when he was only 6 years old and lived into his second year. His mother acted as his regent in the early years of the reign. In a wall lettering in the Aswan tomb of the official Harkhuf, the text of a good letter is kept. Harkhuf had processed the kings Merenre and Pepy II and, as Regulator of Upper Egypt, he had led 4 expeditions to Nubia on behalf of the king. Pepy II had evidently written this letter to Harkhuf at the time of one of these expeditions, when he was working a dancing pygmy back from the southeastern for the young pharaoh. The royal child, hot to see the pygmy, exhorts Harkhuf to take great care and to bring him safely to the palace come northwest to the Residence at once! Hurry and bring with you this pygmy!.

This inscription also puts up the most significant source for noesis of Egypt's kinships with Nubia at this time. Broken alabaster vases having the names of Pepy II, Pepy I and Merenre have been learned at Kerma in the Sudan, mayhap arguing that the Egyptians may have already established a trading middle far to the south. Vase fragmentise written with the names of *Pepy I and Pepy II have besides been observed at Byblos in Syria, and swapping ventures to this city were in all probability regular issues during this period. There were besides expeditions to the mines in Sinai, and it is noted that foreign contacts were widely established.

By the time that Pepy II's long prevail came to an end, the royal power had cut as the cumulative result of assorted political, economic and religious factors. The rustic nobility no longer felt a strong allegiance to the king, for they today held their governorships on a transmitted basis; other ingredients included the widening circle of hereditary pattern of some Crown land and the loss of revenue on the land  that  the  king  widespread  to  the  nobility.  In  addition,  the  royal  funerary memorials and the solar temples had placed an raising burden on the kings special resources. Pepy II was perhaps senior in the later years of his reign and incapable of vigorous rulership; he may well be the old king who is observed in the literary text known as the Admonitions of Ipuwer who, isolated in his palace, is unaware of the destruction of his kingdom.

There is too evidence in Pepy IIs prevail that the frames of Egypt were being harrassed. Hekaib (another Governor of Aswan) showed how he was sent to deal with inter-tribal troubles in Nubia, and soon after the death of the king, the *Asiatics plausibly enhanced their penetrations on Egypts north-east frontier. Eventually the society of the Old Kingdom gave and was substituted by the chaotic terms of the First Intermediate Period.

King Pepy II was the last king of the Old Kingdom to build a classic pyramid complex; it is settled south of Saqqara and was excavated by Jequier between AD 1929 and 1936. It is a full example of the most won form of such a complex and shows the same standard of excellence as the pyramids of the 5th Dynasty. In the pyramid mortuary temple, food and other necessities are depicted in the wall substitutes so that these could be magically burned for the king in his next life. Wrong the enclosure wall of the complex there were three small pyramids, each with its own set of edifices; these were meant for three important queens, Neith, Iput and Udjebten.