Biographical texts from Ramessid Egypt

Frood, Elizabeth

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  • Creator by Elizabeth Frood ; edited by John Baines
  • Format Books
  • Contributors
  • Publication Atlanta : Society of Biblical Literature, [2007] ©2007
  • Series
  • Physical Details
    • 1 online resource (xix, 301 pages) : illustrations, map
  • ISBNs 9781589832107, 1589832108
  • OCLC ocn558446335


  • The Ramessid period in Egypt (ca. 1290-1075 B.C.E.) corresponds to the Late Bronze Age, a time of great change both in Egypt and the Near East. This period of empire, dominated by the figure of Ramesses II, witnessed crucial developments in art, language, and religious display. Biographical Texts from Ramessid Egypt offers insights into these cultural transformations through the voices of forty-five priests, artists, civil officials, and military men who served under the kings of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Dynasties. Sixty-five biographical texts, which were inscribed in tombs, on statues and stelae in temples, and exceptionally on temple walls, give details of their careers and character. The metrically arranged translations are introduced by descriptions of the texts' monumental contexts and, where possible, summaries of the careers of their owners. The volume provides an introduction to the historical background of the Ramessid period, drawing together key themes and interpretive issues raised by the texts and their contexts. These include the representation of relationships to deities and the king, the thematization of the priestly life, and implications of changes in the texts' media, including new decorative programs of nonroyal tombs. This integration of text with context sheds light on the meaning of biographical writing in ancient Egypt as a whole.


  • Includes bibliographical references (pages 273-290) and index.


  • I. The priesthood and related offices -- 1. The high priests of Amun -- 2. Other priesthood and temple staff in Thebes -- 3. The Abydos priesthood -- 4. The priesthood of Onuris -- II. Artists -- III. Civil Officials -- IV. The Military -- V. Administering Nubia -- VI. Texts from Deir el-Medina
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