Thursday, April 25, 2013

The End of the Old Kingdom

The End of the Old Kingdom

The history of ancient Egypt can be divided into three periods: the Old Kingdom, the Middle Kingdom and the New Kingdom.
The Old Kingdom existed from 2649 B.C.-2150 B.C.
The capital of the Old Kingdom was Memphis and Saqqara was its necropolis.
The 5th Dynasty of the Old Kingdom was the era of the pyramid builders.
For many decades, the cause of the Old Kingdom’s end was shrouded in mystery.
Now, because of the discoveries of geologists, the cause is known.
A severe and widespread drought cause severe and widespread famine which ended the Old Kingdom.
Geologists performed core soil samples from deep within the earth. Theses core samples revealed the severe drought.
In a normal year, the Nile floods, which contributes to a good harvest. The drought was so severe that it even dried out Lake Moeris. The drought caused subsequent bad harvests.
Unas 2381-2345 was the last king of the 5th Dynasty.  There are depictions at Saqqara which show the effects of famine.
The drought was caused by climate change.

After Memphis was abandoned, the capital of the Middle Kingdom became Thebes, which is now Luxor, Egypt.
The necropolis of the Middle Kingdom was The Valley of the Kings. It was in this necropolis that the tomb of the famed King Tut was discovered.

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