Friday, July 22, 2011

Ancient Egyptian Royalty Wielded Serious Weapons

Live Science (Owen Jarus)

Elite members of ancient Egypt, including the pharaoh himself, likely wielded ornate daggers, swords and axes in battle, or to personally execute prisoners, rather than using the shiny metal for ceremonial purposes, research suggests.

The weapons were used during the Bronze Age, a period between 5,000 and 3,000 years ago when the civilization was at its height, according to Daniel Boatright, an Egyptologist at Isle of Wight College in the United Kingdom.

This finding is "strange considering the amount of literature that's been composed so far that basically says that all of them were for ritualistic purposes and were never used in battle," Boatright told LiveScience.

Royalty are known to have gone into battle. For instance, Prince Andrew, during the Falklands War, and Prince Harry, in Afghanistan, have served with British troops. "I can't see any reason why they wouldn't four or five thousand years ago as well," he said. [The History of Human Aggression]

Boatright did caution that it can't be ruled out that the weapons may have been used for animal sacrifices.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Amenhotep II's bow, Tutankhamen's shields, remains of chariots from several royal tombs plus the written accounts "His Majesty went forth in his chariot of electrum...". Is it really surprising the pharaohs (and their personal guard) were well equipped? It reminds me of the Anglo-Saxon House-carlssurrounding King Harold at Hastings.