Akhenaten was born as the son of the
great military leader Amenhotep III, he was originally
named Amenhotep IV after the God Amen (or Amun). Later
as Amenhotep IV begun to worship the Aten
(Sun Disc) he changed his name to Akhenaten, meaning
Glory to the Sun Disc. Akhenaten reigned in what is
described by Egyptologists as the New Kingdom which
is dated from around 1500BC to 1000BC.
was a pacifist and turned his back on notions of military
conquest and empire, concentrating more on spiritual
and religious goals. He wanted all of Egypt to worship
the sun God - the Aten, and moved the capital of Egypt
from Thebes (now present day Luxor) to Akhet-Aten (now
Amarna). A controversial figure in Egyptian history,
Akhenaten's name was later stricken from every history
book and statue and the enigmatic pharaoh was referred
to only as "The Heretic King". Akhenaten was branded
a heretic because of his belief in following the Aten
, the Sun Disk. He rejected the traditional notions of Egyptian
worship and was seen as a freak because of this. There is evidence to suggest that during his reign, he forbade depictions of traditional Egyptian deities and some commentators have branded him the worlds first religious oppressor.
of the Pharaoh are unique in that he is often depicted
in statues and pictures as having an elongated head
and swollen hips with a swollen stomach. Some
theories have imaginatively speculated that
Akhenaten was a sexual deviant or
a woman posing as a man, more recent theories suggest
that Akhenaten had advanced knowledge of the sun. The elongated head and
swollen parts of the body (genital areas) suggest a
knowledge of fertility and its connection to sun-rays.
This is knowledge that modern scientists are only now
discovering, but evidence suggests that Akhenaten knew
this over 3000 years ago. Akhenaten’s wife and children
are also depicted in some reliefs as having ‘swollen'