Monday, 12 September 2011

More on the Neferure fragment in Dundee

Before continuing, it is important that i thank two people for the following information. Rita Murray and Marianne Luban. Rita for your generous help in allowing me to obtain documentation from JSTOR and Marianne for asking questions on the original post, which can be seen here which made me look for a way of securing the location of the fragment within Deir el Bahri (or more correctly, Djeser Djeseru).

With Rita's help, i have been able to locate the following:

A LONG-LOST PORTRAIT OF PRINCESS NEFERURE' FROM DEIR EL-BAHRI By K. A. KITCHEN, The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology, Vol. 49 (Dec., 1963), pp. 38-40

I quote:

"I have visited Deir el-Bahri and was able to place the pencil- rubbing of the Dundee head in the gap in the south wall of the Sanctuary. It fitted exactly. The provenance of this relief is thus placed beyond all doubt. My thanks are due to Dr. L. Dabrowski and Eng. W. Kolataj of the Polish expedition working at Deir el-Bahri for their practical help on the spot".


Marianne Luban said...

Hi Stuart,

Thanks for following up on the Dundee fragment and now that my concerns are put to rest I can say that the fragment has several implications. Since this headgear of Neferure is reserved for princes [and possibly even heirs] it is obvious that this royal female is being treated in the manner of a male. This, taken in the context of her mother's own portrayals in male garb and kingly regalia [including a ceremonial beard]makes sense. The mother, Hatshepsut, is a woman/king and the daughter is a woman/prince or "sA Smsw" [literally "the son following"], which was the way to say "heir apparent" at the time. There was no female equivalent of any of it.
The biggest implication is where Thutmose III is concerned. He was supposedly the king, Hatshepsut should have been a regent but she usurped his prerogative by Year 7. However, around Year 16 [if I recall correctly] Hatshepsut began to make a public figure of Thutmose--a kind of "junior partner". But at the time of this painting of Neferura, it seems obvious that Hatshepsut fully intended to carry on as pharaoh until her death and be succeeded by her daughter. In fact, that is how I state the matter in my novel of the era, "The Pharaoh's Barber". But at some point Hatshepsut changed [or was forced to change] her mind about Neferura's future and decided to marry her to Thutmose.

Stuart Tyler said...

Hi Marianne. Interesting thoughts indeed. I've heard of the possibility of Hatshepsut rearing Neferure to be her successor before, but i do not recall the resons for the theory.

Also the thought of Neferure and Thutmose III is something I've seen stated cautiously, owing to the lack of any archaeological evidence of such a marriage.

What i have never heard before is the "Prince" label for Neferure. That's very interesting and seems likely IF Hatshepsut had Neferure in her plans as successor.

I wonder if Hatshepsut and Thutmose III did have a back up plan in place so that if TIII and Hat both died "early" then Neferure would take over control - given her tutorship. When it was clear that TIII and Hat were going nowhere, perhaps at THIS stage it would have seemed prudent for them to have a back up. What this would do though is completely alienate Amenhotep II from the equasion, which to me is the sticking point.

I am sure there's more to say on the matter, but the thought of Neferure being depicted in male regalia is something that is going around in my head requesting further information.

Can you suggest any way of backing up what we have said? I have a limited hiero knowledge, but am interested in the "sA Smsw" part. I wonder if any depiction of Neferure has this title. I would have thought we would be looking at Temple Relief, Stelae, Rock inscriptions (Sinai maybe)and not on the Senenmut Tutur Statues.

It would be great to follow this up.


Marianne Luban said...

I don't know of an instance of Neferure actually being styled "sA Smsw". My impression of her being the designated successor is based on her Horus lock and diadem, as worn by princes in the examples I showed you previously. This seems to have been a time of gender-bending where the succession was concerned. As far as I know, Neferure was the first wife of Thutmose III and there is something by Prof. Peter Piccione about that on the Web, if I recall, having to do with the cartouche of a queen that was later usurped by another wife of the pharaoh, Satiah. The eldest son and heir of TIII was not Amenhotep II, who seems to have been born rather late in the reign as an inscription claims he was only 18 when he became either a co-regent with or succeeded his father. The name of the elder brother was Amenemhat and his mother was either Neferure or Satiah. In my novel, Neferure is the mother. Meritre-Hatshepsut was the mother of Amenhotep II, as we know for sure.

Marianne Luban said...

Here is the URL of the relevant Piccione paper:

Stuart Tyler said...

Thanks for the link. I will have a read and get back to you.