Smendes I was the founder and becoming the first Egyptian King (Pharaoh) of the 21st Dynasty ( Third Intermediate Period ). He reigned about 1070-1044 BC

Origin and Classification

Its origin, status and historical context are very controversial. He may be a son of Herihor and Nedjmet. Perhaps he married his first wife next Tentamun also Henuttaui Q, a younger daughter of Ramesses XI. , Making him a legitimate heir to the throne of the aging king ends without surviving sons.


According to Manetho he reigned 26 years. This was seen confirmed by the mention of a 25 year on the stele of the exiles, but this is doubtful.

Smendes I was probably military commander and governor of Lower Egypt in the last years of the reign of Ramses XI. He lived and worked at Tanis, which is 20 km north of Pi -Ramesses, and probably was the port. After his government takeover, he moved the residence to Tanis, but he also resided in Memphis. The discovery of one of his canopic jars near Tanis suggests that he was buried there.

In the narrative of the Wenamun is he and his wife Tentamun as " pillars that Amun has imposed on the north of the country " means. In the narrative of a journey of Wenamun by boat to the Byblos speech, to be procured in the wood for a barque of Amun at Karnak. He is but robbed. Smendes nevertheless paid the purchase price. The fifth year, departing in the Wenamun, referring mostly to Ramses XI. ( = Be 23 years ). Therefore Smendes I can until then also referred to as Pharaoh (name not in cartridges ). The above-mentioned year and called on coffin labels in Thebes sixth year but can also be related to Smendes I. (missing cartridges in this text not relevant). Whether Tanis was at this time already capital depends on whether you can see Smendes I. At this time, even as a ruler or whether. Until after the death of Ramses XI the capital was moved from Pi -Ramesses to Tanis.

Under the ruling in Tanis Semendes Upper Egypt was politically and economically almost independently and was administered by the High Priests of Amun. The Pharaoh but was recognized as overlord, which demonstrates the inscription on a stele in the quarries of Dibabieh near Gebelein. The main text reported in the form of King novella, as the king was informed about the destruction of the Luxor temple by floods, gave instructions, this was to repair (that's why the work in the quarries ), and informed of the success of the mission. Interestingly, the king resided according to an inscription in Memphis ( and not, as assumed in Tanis ).

Pinudjem I was around the time of accession to the throne Semendes ' I. High Priest of Amun at Thebes and was perhaps his nephew. The relationship between Tanis and Thebes remained friendly and kinship were probably closely related and were strengthened by marriages on, so was Hentaui A, a daughter Semendes ' I., married to Pinudjem I..