King Snefru, also known as Sneferu. He was the first pharaoh of the 4th dynasty of ancient Egypt. And flourished around the 25th century BCE (c. 2575–c. 2465 BCE). He encouraged the development of the highly centralised government that was the Old Kingdom’s pinnacle (c. 2575–c. 2130 BCE).
Snefru was born into a Middle Egyptian family and grew up not far from Hermopolis. He most likely gained the kingdom by marrying the royal heiress, the daughter of his predecessor. Although there are little written records of his rule. It is evident from the huge cemeteries surrounding him. And his son’s pyramids that members of the royal family held the top administrative positions.
King Snefru Family
Considering the interruption in dynasties. Snefru was probably the son of Huni. His predecessor, though there seems to be some debate about this. Meresankh I, who was most likely a lesser wife or concubine and hence not of royal lineage. Could have been his mother. In light of this, it may be clear why the ancient historian Manetho chose Snefru to establish a new dynasty.
However, it should be note that Huni marks the end of the preceding dynasty. According to both the later Saqqara List and the royal canon of Turin. To support his power, Snefru was very undoubtedly wed to Hetepheres I. Who would have been at least his half- sister, most likely by a more senior queen.
She was the mother of Khufu, who built the Great Pyramid at Giza and later rose to prominence as Egypt’s most well-known pyramid builder. We assume he had at least three further wives, who gave birth to a number of additional boys, including his eldest son Nefermaet, who went on to become a vizier. He was likely denied the Egyptian throne since he did not outlast his father. Kanefer, another vizier who reportedly continued in this role under Khufu, is one of the other sons (Cheops). We also think he had at least a few daughters and several other boys.
Kin Snefru Achievements
It is most likely King Snefru’s fault that the pyramid took on its present form. He apparently built what appeared to be a step pyramid at Maidum (Madum) before transforming it into a true pyramid. This effort was unsuccessful because of the pyramid’s weight and steep slope (albeit presumably not quickly). He also built the Red and Bent Pyramids at Dahshur. The Bent Pyramid was the first true pyramid design from the beginning; the Red Pyramid is Egypt’s first successful true pyramid construction. The Red and Bent Pyramids are, respectively.
Snefru is also credit with building at least one of several “regional” or provincial pyramids, located in Seila. There is no underpinning to this little, step pyramid. Some Egyptologists think Snefru (or his father) may have been the architect of all, or at least some, of the other identical pyramids that dot the Egyptian landscape as far south as Elephantine Island.
Although the purpose of these little pyramids is unknown, they were probably either part of the king’s regional cult worship or perhaps they were situated close to the king’s “country” residences.
One of Egypt’s most well-known pyramid builders has to be Snefru. In fact, he oversaw more construction than any other Old Kingdom king in terms of pure volume.
However, his accomplishments in building pyramids went beyond only the structure of the pyramids and undoubtedly encompassed changing religious views. We witness the earliest concrete manifestations of sun worship under his rule, which would later reach its apex during the reign of Akhenaten more than a thousand years later. The main axis of the architectural plan was initially orient from east to west rather than north to south, as was the case with older pyramids.
This appears to be a shift away from beliefs focused on the astronomical “stars,” and toward the east-west passage of the sun and the worship of Ra. In contrast to the Djoser Step Pyramid complex at Saqqara, the mortuary temple at Snefru is now on the east side.
In addition, the first of the little satellite pyramids, whose construction we still do not fully comprehend, is situate close to the southern face of the main pyramid. Additionally, a causeway now connected the pyramid and mortuary temple components to a valley temple that was situated on the border of the agriculture nearer to the Nile. We think the valley temple served as a colossal entrance to the entire pyramid complex.
It is not unexpected that Snefru was quite active in the quarries given all of his construction-related interests. At the turquoise and copper mines of the Wadi Maghara in the Sinai Peninsula, as well as nearby quarries, rock inscriptions bearing his name have been discover.
King Snefru monuments
In addition, King Snefru is credit with maintaining the country’s executive branch within the royal family. And it is likely that many more royal kids occupied prominent positions. Administrative power in Egypt would become significantly more decentralised by the end of the 6th Dynasty. Which is thought to be at least one of the factors that contribute the First Intermediate Period’s turmoil in Egypt.
Generally speaking, when Egyptian kings upheld a robust central authority like that of Snefru, Egypt was at its most powerful and rich. He also appears to have changed how his nobles owned their property, either to prevent them from being too powerful but also perhaps to encourage the cultivation of marshlands, in order to assist this centralised power base.
The Palermo Stone claims that he waged a military war against the Libyans and Nubians. The mission to Nubia was a huge undertaking. The Palemo Stone lists 7,000 captured people and 200,000 head of cattle as loot. Nubia had never had a large population, therefore this may have been a significant depopulation of the region.
The Palermo Stone also records the arrival of forty ships from an unidentified country, possibly Lebanon, carrying timber (likely cedar). Snefru credited with using some of this timber to construct Nile river boats up to around 50 M(about 170 feet) in length, among other building purposes.