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Encyclopedia > Imhotep
Statuette of Imhotep in the Louvre
Statuette of Imhotep in the Louvre
Another image of the same statue
Another image of the same statue
Imhotep
in hieroglyphs

Imhotep (sometimes spelled Immutef, Im-hotep, or Ii-em-Hotep, (2650-2600BC) Egyptian ii-m-ḥtp *jā-im-ḥatāp meaning "the one who comes in peace") was an Egyptian polymath,[1] who served under the Third Dynasty king, Djoser, as chancellor to the pharaoh and high priest of the sun god Ra at Heliopolis. He is considered to be the first engineer[2], architect and physician in history known by name.[3] The full list of his titles is: Chancellor of the King of Lower Egypt, First after the King of Upper Egypt, Administrator of the Great Palace, Hereditary nobleman, High Priest of Heliopolis, Builder, Chief Carpenter, Chief Sculptor and Maker of Vases in Chief. Imhotep was one of very few mortals to be depicted as part of a pharaoh's statue. He was one of only a few commoners ever to be accorded divine status after death. The center of his cult was Memphis. From the First Intermediate Period onward Imhotep was also revered as a poet and philosopher. His sayings were famously referred to in poems: I have heard the words of Imhotep and Hordedef with whose discourses men speak so much.[4] Imhotep can refer to Amenhotep III (sometimes read as Amenophis III), the ninth pharaoh of the Eighteenth dynasty of ancient Egypt Imhotep, an ancient Egyptian architect, physician, and court official the mortuary priest in Agatha Christies novel Death Comes as the End a French sound engineer and musician from... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (768x1024, 341 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Imhotep Metadata This file contains additional information, probably added from the digital camera or scanner used to create... Image File history File linksMetadata Download high-resolution version (768x1024, 341 KB) File links The following pages on the English Wikipedia link to this file (pages on other projects are not listed): Imhotep Metadata This file contains additional information, probably added from the digital camera or scanner used to create... This article is about the museum. ... Image File history File links Please see the file description page for further information. ... Image File history File links Please see the file description page for further information. ... A section of the Papyrus of Ani showing cursive hieroglyphs. ... Leonardo da Vinci, a polymath, is seen as the epitome of the related term, Renaissance Man A polymath (Greek polymathÄ“s, πολυμαθής, having learned much)[1][2] is a person with encyclopedic, broad, or varied knowledge or learning. ... Known rulers, in the History of Egypt, for the Third Dynasty. ... Netjerikhet Consort(s) Inetkawes, Hetephernebti Unknown Father Khasekhemwy? Mother Nimaethap? Major Monuments Pyramid of Djoser Netjerikhet Djoser (Turin King List Dsr-it; Manetho Tosarthros) is the best-known pharaoh of the Third dynasty of Egypt, for commissioning the official Imhotep to build his Step Pyramid at Saqqara. ... For other uses, see Chancellor (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Pharaoh (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Ra (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Heliopolis. ... Look up engineer in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... For other uses, see Architect (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Doctor. ...


The knowledge of the location of Imhotep's tomb was lost in antiquity [5] and is still unknown, despite efforts to find it. The general consensus is that it is at Saqqara. Saqqara Saqqara or Sakkara, Saqqarah (Arabic: سقارة) is a vast, ancient burial ground in Egypt, featuring the worlds oldest standing step pyramid (). It is located some 30 km south of modern-day Cairo and covers an area of around 7 km by 1. ...

Contents

Attribution of achievements and inventions

Most "known" information about him is hear-say and conjecture.[citation needed] The ancient Egyptians credited him with many inventions. For example, it is claimed that he invented the papyrus scroll,[citation needed] being its oldest known bearer. James Henry Breasted says of Imhotep: For other uses, see Papyrus (disambiguation). ... Cover of Time Magazine, December 14, 1931 James Henry Breasted (August 27, 1865–December 2, 1935) was born in Rockford, Illinois and was an archaeologist and historian. ...

"In priestly wisdom, in magic, in the formulation of wise proverbs; in medicine and architecture; this remarkable figure of Zoser's reign left so notable a reputation that his name was never forgotten. He was the patron spirit of the later scribes, to whom they regularly poured out a libation from the water-jug of their writing outfit before beginning their work." Generally, patronage is the act of supporting or favoring some person, group, or institution. ... Scribes is a text editor for GNOME that is simple, slim and sleek, and features no tabs, auto-completion and much more. ...

Parallels

Imhotep was also known as a follower of the God of Joseph son of Jacob, and is, probably, according to many historians, the Joseph in the Bible of the son of Jacob (see below).


Engineering and architecture

One of the officials of the Pharaoh, Djosèr, he designed the Pyramid of Djoser (the Step Pyramid) at Saqqara in Egypt in 2630-2611 BC [6]. He may have been responsible for the first known use of columns in architecture. As an instigator of Egyptian culture, Imhotep's idealized image lasted well into the Ptolemaic period. The Egyptian historian Manetho credited him with inventing the method of a stone-dressed building during Djoser's reign, however he was not the first to actually build with stone. Stone walling, flooring, lintels, and jambs had appeared sporadically during the Archaic Period, though it is true that a building of the Step Pyramid's size and made entirely out of stone had never before been constructed. For other uses, see Pharaoh (disambiguation). ... Netjerikhet Consort(s) Inetkawes, Hetephernebti Unknown Father Khasekhemwy? Mother Nimaethap? Major Monuments Pyramid of Djoser Netjerikhet Djoser (Turin King List Dsr-it; Manetho Tosarthros) is the best-known pharaoh of the Third dynasty of Egypt, for commissioning the official Imhotep to build his Step Pyramid at Saqqara. ... The Pyramid of Djoser, or step pyramid or kbhw-ntrw, was built for the burial of Pharaoh Djoser-Netjerikhet by his Vizier Imhotep. ... The Pyramid of the Moon, Teotihuacan, is one example of an enormous step pyramid. ... Saqqara Saqqara or Sakkara, Saqqarah (Arabic: سقارة) is a vast, ancient burial ground in Egypt, featuring the worlds oldest standing step pyramid (). It is located some 30 km south of modern-day Cairo and covers an area of around 7 km by 1. ... (28th century BC - 27th century BC - 26th century BC - other centuries) (4th millennium BC - 3rd millennium BC - 2nd millennium BC) Events 2900 - 2334 BC -- Mesopotamian wars of the Early Dynastic period 2775 - 2650 BC -- Second Dynasty wars in Egypt Germination of the Bristlecone pine tree Methuselah about 2700 BC, the... (28th century BC - 27th century BC - 26th century BC - other centuries) (4th millennium BC - 3rd millennium BC - 2nd millennium BC) Events 2900 - 2334 BC -- Mesopotamian wars of the Early Dynastic period 2775 - 2650 BC -- Second Dynasty wars in Egypt Germination of the Bristlecone pine tree Methuselah about 2700 BC, the... For other uses, see Column (disambiguation). ... This article is about building architecture. ... Manetho, also known as Manethon of Sebennytos, was an Egyptian historian and priest from Sebennytos who lived during the Ptolematic era, circa 3rd century BC. Manetho recorded Aegyptiaca (History of Egypt). ... The name Archaic Period is given by archaeologists to the earliest periods of a culture. ... The Pyramid of the Moon, Teotihuacan, is one example of an enormous step pyramid. ...


Medicine

Imhotep is credited[citation needed] with being the founder of Egyptian medicine and with being the author of a medical treatise remarkable for being devoid of magical thinking, the so-called Edwin Smith papyrus containing anatomical observations, ailments, and cures. The surviving papyrus was probably written around 1700 BC but may be a copy of texts a thousand years older. This attribution of authorship is speculative, however.[7] To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Plates vi & vii of the Edwin Smith Papyrus at the Rare Book Room, New York Academy of Medicine The Edwin Smith Papyrus is the only surviving copy of part of an Ancient Egyptian textbook on trauma surgery. ... Human heart and lungs, from an older edition of Grays Anatomy. ...


Birth myths

According to myth Imhotep's mother was a mortal named Kheredu-ankh, elevated later to semi-divine status by claims that she was the daughter of Banebdjedet.[8] Conversely, as the "Son of Ptah",[9] his mother was sometimes claimed to be Sekhmet, the patron of Upper Egypt whose consort Ptah was often said to be. For other uses, see Sekhmet (disambiguation). ... Map of Upper and Lower Egypt Ancient Egypt was divided into two kingdoms, known as Upper and Lower Egypt. ...


Deification

As Imhotep was considered the inventor of healing, he was also sometimes said to be the one who held up the goddess Nut (the deification of the sky), as the separation of Nut and Geb (the deification of the earth) was said to be what held back chaos. Due to the position this would have placed him in, he was also sometimes said to be Nut's son. In artwork he also is linked with the great goddess, Hathor, who eventually became identified as the wife of Ra. He also was associated with Maat, the goddess who personified the concept of truth, cosmic order, and justice—having created order out of chaos and being responsible for maintaining it. Also After Death people believed Imhotep became a god. In Egyptian mythology, Nuit or Nut was the sky goddess, in contrast to most other mythologies, which usually have a sky father. ... Geb (also spelt Seb, and Keb) was the personification of the earth, amongst the group who believed in the Ennead, a form of Egyptian mythology centred in Heliopolis, Since the Egyptians held that their underworld was literally that, under the earth, Geb was sometimes seen as containing the dead, or... For other uses, see Chaos (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Hathor (disambiguation). ... For other uses, see Ra (disambiguation). ... This article concerns the military rank of Maat. ...


Two thousand years after his death, his status was raised to that of a deity. He became the god of medicine and healing. He later was linked to Asclepius by the Greeks. He was associated with Amenhotep son of Hapu, who was another deified architect, in the region of Thebes where they were worshipped as "brothers".[10] This article discusses the term God in the context of monotheism and henotheism. ... For the chemical substances known as medicines, see medication. ... For the Todd Rundgren album, see Healing (Todd Rundgren). ... Asclepius (Greek , transliterated Asklēpiós; Latin Aesculapius) is the demigod of medicine and healing in ancient Greek mythology. ... Sculpture of Amenhotep, son of Hapu Amenhotep, son of Hapu, was an architect, a priest, a scribe, and a public official, who held a number of offices under Amenhotep III. He is said to have been born at the end of Thutmose IIIs reign, in the town of Athribis... Thebes Thebes (, Thēbai) is the Greek designation of the ancient Egyptian niwt (The) City and niwt-rst (The) Southern City. It is located about 800 km south of the Mediterranean, on the east bank of the river Nile (). Thebes was the capital of Waset, the fourth Upper Egyptian nome...


Legacy

The Encyclopedia Britannica says, "The evidence afforded by Egyptian and Greek texts support the view that Imhotep's reputation was very respected in early times... His prestige increased with the lapse of centuries and his temples in Greek times were the centers of medical teachings."


It is Imhotep, says Sir William Osler, who was the real 'Father of Medicine', "the first figure of a physician to stand out clearly from the mists of antiquity."


In the 1999 film The Mummy and sequels, the mummy and most of his historical background are based loosely on the real-life Imhotep. The Mummy is a 1999 American film written and directed by Stephen Sommers, starring Brendan Fraser and Rachel Weisz, with Arnold Vosloo in the title role as the reanimated mummy. ...


Imhotep was also identified with Thoth, the Egyptian god of writing, education, literacy & scribes through the Greco - Roman Period.


Imhotep and the Joseph of the Old Testament

The Upper Egyptian Famine Stela, dating from the Ptolemaic period, bears an inscription containing a legend about a famine of seven years during the reign of Djoser. Imhotep is credited with having been instrumental in ending it: one of his priests explained the connection between the god Khnum and the rise of the Nile to the king, who then had a dream in which the Nile god spoke to him, promising to end the drought. [11] The parallels with the biblical story of Joseph have long been commented upon.[12] More recently, the Joseph parallels have led some alternative historians to identify Imhotep with Joseph, and to argue that the supposedly thousand years separating them are indicative of a faulty chronology.[13] Famine stele, depicting the story of the king offering land to god Khnum, to end years of famine. ... Netjerikhet Consort(s) Inetkawes, Hetephernebti Unknown Father Khasekhemwy? Mother Nimaethap? Major Monuments Pyramid of Djoser Netjerikhet Djoser (Turin King List Dsr-it; Manetho Tosarthros) is the best-known pharaoh of the Third dynasty of Egypt, for commissioning the official Imhotep to build his Step Pyramid at Saqqara. ... Khnum on the right shown with his consort Menhit on the outside wall at the temple in Esna In Egyptian mythology, Khnum (also spelled Chnum, Knum, or Khnemu) was one of the earliest Egyptian gods, originally the god of the source of the Nile River. ... Joseph interprets the dream of the Pharaoh. ...


References

  1. ^ The Egyptian Building Mania, Acta Divrna, Vol. III, Issue IV, January, 2004.
  2. ^ What is Civil Engineering: Imhotep.
  3. ^ William Osler, The Evolution of Modern Medicine, Kessinger Publishing 2004, p.12
  4. ^ Barry J. Kemp, Ancient Egypt Routledge 2005, p.159
  5. ^ The Harper's Lay, ca. 2000 BCE
  6. ^ Barry J. Kemp, Ancient Egypt, Routledge 2005, p.159
  7. ^ Leonard Francis Peltier, Fractures: A History and Iconography of Their Treatment, Norman Publishing 1990, p.16
  8. ^ Marina Warner, Felipe Fernández-Armesto, World of Myths, University of Texas Press 2003, ISBN 0292702043, p.296
  9. ^ Miriam Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature: A Book of Readings, University of California Press 1980, ISBN 0520040201, p.106
  10. ^ M. Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature, The University of California Press 1980, vol.3, p.104
  11. ^ Erik Hornung, The Secret Lore of Egypt: Its Impact on the West, Cornell University Press 2001, ISBN 0801438470, p.50
  12. ^ Vandier, La Famine dans l Egypte ancienne
  13. ^ Emmet Sweeney, The Genesis of Israel and Egypt, London, 1997

See also

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
Imhotep
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The well preserved temple of Horus at Edfu is an exemplar of Egyptian architecture The Nile valley has been the site of one of the most influential civilizations which developed a vast array of diverse structures encompassing ancient Egyptian architecture. ... The Pyramid of Djoser, or step pyramid or kbhw-ntrw, was built for the burial of Pharaoh Djoser-Netjerikhet by his Vizier Imhotep. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... For other uses, see Pharaoh (disambiguation). ... Ptah also refers to the asteroid 5011 Ptah Ptah In Egyptian mythology, Ptah (also spelt Peteh) was the deification of the primordial mound in the Ennead cosmogony, which was more literally referred to as Ta-tenen (also spelt Tathenen), meaning risen land, or as Tanen, meaning submerged land. ... This list of deities aims to give information about deities in the different religions, cultures and mythologies of the world. ... // The following is a list of famous architects - well known individuals with a large body of published work. ... Timeline of medicine and medical technology // c. ... For other uses, see Column (disambiguation). ... ... The Early Dynastic Period of Egypt is taken to include the First and Second Dynasties, lasting from 2920 BC, following the Protodynastic Period of Egypt, until 2575 BC, or the beginning of the Old Kingdom. ... Narmer was an Egyptian Pharaoh who ruled in the 31st century BC. Thought to be the successor to the predynastic Scorpion and/or Ka, he is considered by some to be the founder of the First dynasty, and therefore the first king of all Egypt. ... This article is about the Pharaoh. ... Hor-Aha was the 2nd Pharaoh of the 1st dynasty of Ancient Egypt. ... Image File history File links Ankh. ... The Old Kingdom is the name commonly given to that period in the 3rd millennium BC when Egypt attained its first continuous peak of civilization in complexity and achievement – this was the first of three so-called Kingdom periods, which mark the high points of civilization in the lower Nile... Netjerikhet Consort(s) Inetkawes, Hetephernebti Unknown Father Khasekhemwy? Mother Nimaethap? Major Monuments Pyramid of Djoser Netjerikhet Djoser (Turin King List Dsr-it; Manetho Tosarthros) is the best-known pharaoh of the Third dynasty of Egypt, for commissioning the official Imhotep to build his Step Pyramid at Saqqara. ... Sneferu He of Beauty[1] Horus name Neb-maat[2] Nebty name Neb-maat-nebty[2] Golden Horus Bik-nub[2] Consort(s) Hetepheres I Issues Khufu Father Huni Mother Meresankh I Died 2589 BC Major Monuments Bent Pyramid, Red Pyramid Sneferu, also spelt as Snefru or Snofru (in Greek... For other uses, see Khufu (disambiguation). ... The Pyramid of Khafra and the Great Sphinx of Giza Portrait of Khafra, originally found at Mit Rahina, now residing in the Egyptian Museum, in Cairo. ... Men-kau-re[1] Eternal like the Souls of Re Nomen Consort(s) Khamerernebty II Issues Khuenre, Shepseskaf, Khentkawes Father Khafre Mother Khamaerernebty I Died 2504 BC Burial Pyramid at Giza Major Monuments Pyramid at Giza Menkaura (or Men-Kau-Re; Mycerinus in Latin; Mykerinos in Greek) was a pharaoh... nomen or birth name Pepi II (c. ... The Middle Kingdom is the period in the history of ancient Egypt stretching from the establishment of the Eleventh Dynasty to the end of the Fourteenth Dynasty, roughly between 2030 BC and 1640 BC. The period comprises two phases, the 11th Dynasty, which ruled from Thebes and the 12th Dynasty... nomen or birth name Nebhotepre Mentuhotep II (2046-1995 BCE) was a Pharaoh of the 11th dynasty, the son of Intef III of Egypt and a minor queen called Iah. ... nomen or birth name Nebtawyre Mentuhotep IV was the last king of the 11th Dynasty. ... Khakhaure (The king of the two lands, The kas of Ra have appeared) Nomen Senusret (The son of Ra, man of the strong one) Horus name Netcher Kheperu (Horus, divine of form) Nebty name Netcher Mesut (The two ladies, divine of birth) Golden Horus Kheper (The golden Horus has... ny m3ˁt rˁ (Nimaatre)[1] Belonging to the truth of Re Nomen Amenemhat[1] Amun is in front Horus name Wahankh[1] Long of life Nebty name Itjijautawy[1] Who comes to the inheritance of the two lands Golden Horus ˁ3 ba(u) (Aabaw)[1] Great of power Issues... Sobek-kare Sobek is the Ka of Re Nomen Sobekneferu The beauties of Sobek Horus name Meritra Beloved of Re Nebty name Satsekhem Nebettawy Daughter of the powerful one, Mistress of the two lands Golden Horus Djedetkhau Established of crowns Died 1802 BC Sobekneferu (sometimes written Nefrusobek) was an Egyptian... The New Kingdom is the period in ancient Egyptian history between the 16th century BCE and the 11th century BC, covering the Eighteenth, Nineteenth, and Twentieth Dynasties of Egypt. ... Maatkare[1] Truth is the Ka of Re Nomen Khnumt-Amun Hatshepsut[1] Joined with Amun, Foremost of Noble Ladies Horus name Wesretkau [1] Mighty of Kas Nebty name Wadjrenput[1] Flourishing of years Golden Horus Netjeretkhau[1] Divine of appearance Consort(s) Thutmose II Issue Neferure Father Thutmose I... Menkheperre Lasting is the Manifestation of Re[1] Nomen Thutmose Neferkheperu Thoth is born, beautiful of forms Horus name Kanakht Khaemwaset Mighty Bull, Arising in Thebes Nebty name Wahnesytmireempet Enduring in kingship like Re in heaven Golden Horus Sekhempahtydsejerkhaw Powerful of strength, holy of diadems Consort(s) Hatshepsut-Meryetre, Nebtu... Nebmaatre The Lord of Truth is Re[2] Nomen Amenhotep Hekawaset Amun is Satisfied, Ruler of Thebes[1] Horus name Kanakht Emkhaimaat The strong bull, appearing in truth Nebty name Semenhepusegerehtawy One establishing laws, pacifying the two lands Golden Horus Aakhepesh-husetiu Great of valour, smiting the Asiatics Consort(s... For other uses, see Akhenaten (disambiguation). ... King Tut redirects here. ... 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  Results from FactBites:
 
Imhotep - Crystalinks (825 words)
As the son of Ptah, his mother was sometimes said to be Sekhmet, who was often said to be married to Ptah, since she was the patron of Upper Egypt.
Imhotep is credited as the founder of Egyptian medicine, and as author of the Edwin Smith papyrus, in which more than 90 anatomical terms and 48 injuries are described.
Imhotep is one example of the "personality cult" of Kemet, whereby a learned sage or otherwise especially venerated person could be deified after death and become a special intercessor for the living, much as the saints of Roman Catholicism.
Imhotep ~ Ancient Worlds Egypt (562 words)
During this period, Imhotep was declared the son of Ptah and Sekhmet in the Triad of Mennefer (Memphis), and was sometimes identified with their son Nefertem.
Imhotep whose name means "In peace" is one example of the "personality cult" of Kemet, whereby a learned sage or otherwise especially venerated person could be deified after death and become a special intercessor for the living.
Imhotep's diadactic texts were well known in later periods and not only was he honoured by the Greeks but during the Roman era, the emperors Tiberius and Claudius inscribed their praises of the vizer on the walls of their Egyptian temples.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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