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Title: Sehetepibre  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Sewadjkare, Iufni, Pharaohs, Mekh, Nebiriau II
Collection: Pharaohs of the Thirteenth Dynasty of Egypt
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia


Sehetepibre Sewesekhtawy (also Sehetepibre I or Sehetepibre II depending on the scholar) was an Egyptian pharaoh of the 13th Dynasty during the early Second Intermediate Period, possibly the fifth[1] or tenth[2] king of the dynasty.


  • Chronological position 1
  • Attestations 2
  • References 3

Chronological position

The position of Sehetepibre Sewesekhtawy within the 13th Dynasty is not entirely clear. In the Turin canon, a king list redacted in the early Ramesside period, two kings are listed with the name "Sehetepibre", both in Column 7[3] (which mainly lists kings of the 13th Dynasty). The first "Sehetepibre" appears as the fourth king of the Dynasty, and the other as its eighth. Therefore the exact chronological position of Sehetepibre Sewesekhtawy cannot be ascertained using only the Turin canon. According to the egyptologists Kim Ryholt and Darell Baker, Sehetepibre Sewesekhtawy was in fact the tenth king of the dynasty, reigning for 2 years from 1783 BC until 1781 BC.[2][4] They believe that the first "Sehetepibre" is an error resulting from the corruption of the name of Hotepibre Qemau Siharnedjheritef. They further propose that the author of the list did not include two kings, Nerikare and Ameny Qemau, thereby artificially making Sehetepibre Sewesekhtawy the eighth king when he was the tenth.[2] At the opposite, Detlef Franke and Jürgen von Beckerath see Sehetepibre Sewesekhtawy as the first "Sehetepibre" listed in the Turin canon and thus as fifth king of the dynasty. Franke and von Beckerath identifies the second "Sehetepibre" with Hotepibre Qemau Siharnedjheritef.[5][6][7]


For a long time, Sehetepibre was known only from the Turin canon and from a single lapis-lazuli cylinder seal. The seal, of unknown provenance, was bought by a private collector in Cairo and finally sold in 1926 to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where it is now on display.[8] The seal bears Sehetepibre's prenomen and is dedicated to "Hathor, Lady of [Byblos]".[2] The seal is further inscribed with the name in cuneiform of a governor of Byblos named Yakin-Ilu.[4] The archaeologist William F. Albright has tentatively identified Yakin-Ilu with a governor Yakin, attested on a stele discovered in Byblos and depicting his son, Yantinu, seated on a throne next to Neferhotep I's cartouches.[2][9] If Albright's hypothesis is correct, then Sehetepibre would be one generation removed from Neferhotep I.

The principal contemporary attestion of Sehetepibre is a stela published in 1980 and discovered earlier at Gebel Zeit, by the Red Sea, where galena mines where located. The stela bears the name of a king Sehetepibre together with the Horus name Sewesekhtawy. This stela, contemporary with his reign, further confirms the existence of this king.[4][10]


  1. ^ Thomas Schneider: Ancient Egyptian Chronology - Edited by Erik Hornung, Rolf Krauss, And David a. Warburton, available online, see p. 176
  2. ^ a b c d e K.S.B. Ryholt, The Political Situation in Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period, c.1800–1550 BC, Carsten Niebuhr Institute Publications, vol. 20. Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanum Press, 1997, excerpts available online here.
  3. ^ Position within the papyrus: Column 7, line 8 and 7.12 - The column starts with rulers of the Twelfth Dynasty
  4. ^ a b c Darrell D. Baker: The Encyclopedia of the Pharaohs: Volume I - Predynastic to the Twentieth Dynasty 3300–1069 BC, Stacey International, ISBN 978-1-905299-37-9, 2008, p. 359-360
  5. ^ Detlef Franke: Zur Chronologie des Mittleren Reiches (12.-18. Dynastie) Teil 1 : Die 12. Dynastie, in Orientalia 57 (1988)
  6. ^ Jürgen von Beckerath: Untersuchungen zur politischen Geschichte der Zweiten Zwischenzeit in Ägypten, Glückstadt, 1964
  7. ^ Jürgen von Beckerath: Chronologie des pharaonischen Ägyptens, Münchner Ägyptologische Studien 46. Mainz am Rhein, 1997
  8. ^ Seal of Sehetepibre at the MMA, picture and context.
  9. ^ W. M. F. Albright: An Indirect Synchronism between Egypt and Mesopotamia, cir. 1730 BC, BASOR 99 (1945)
  10. ^ P. Mey, G. Castel, J.-P. Goyon: Installations rupestres du moyen et du nouvel empire au Gebel Zeit (près de Râs Dib), In: Mitteilungen des deutschen Archäologischen Institutes Kairo 36 (1980), 303-305, fig. 1 [1], pl. 80 [a]
Preceded by
Semenkare Nebnuni
Pharaoh of Egypt
Thirteenth Dynasty
Succeeded by
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