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Khafra

Khafra

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Khafre
Khufu and Khafre
In cryptography, Khufu and Khafre are two block ciphers designed by Ralph Merkle in 1989 while working at Xerox's Palo Alto Research Center...

 also refers to a block cipher.

Khafra (Greek
Greek language
Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages. Native to the southern Balkans, it has the longest documented history of any Indo-European language, spanning 34 centuries of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the majority of its history;...

, Χεφρήν; Chephren) — also Khafre — was an Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

ian pharaoh
Pharaoh
Pharaoh is a title used in many modern discussions of the ancient Egyptian rulers of all periods. The title originates in the term "pr-aa" which means "great house" and describes the royal palace...

 of the Fourth dynasty
Fourth dynasty of Egypt
The fourth dynasty of ancient Egypt is characterized as a "golden age" of the Old Kingdom. Dynasty IV lasted from ca. 2613 to 2494 BC...

, who had his capital at Memphis
Memphis, Egypt
Memphis was the ancient capital of Aneb-Hetch, the first nome of Lower Egypt. Its ruins are located near the town of Helwan, south of Cairo.According to legend related by Manetho, the city was founded by the pharaoh Menes around 3000 BC. Capital of Egypt during the Old Kingdom, it remained an...

. According to some authors he was the son and successor of Khufu
Khufu
Khufu , also known as Cheops or, in Manetho, Suphis , was a Pharaoh of Ancient Egypt's Old Kingdom. He reigned from around 2589 to 2566 BC. Khufu was the second pharaoh of the Fourth Dynasty. He is generally accepted as being the builder of the Great Pyramid of Giza, one of the Seven Wonders of...

, but it is more commonly accepted that Djedefre was Khufu's successor and Khafra was Djedefre's. Khafra's two chief wives were Queen Meresankh III
Meresankh III
Queen Meresankh III was the daughter of Hetepheres II and Prince Kawab and a grand-daughter of the Egyptian pharaoh Khufu. She was the wife of King Khafre.-History:...

 whose mastaba tomb is located at Giza and Queen Khamaerernebty I who was the mother of his successor, Menkaura
Menkaura
Menkaure was a pharaoh of the Fourth dynasty of Egypt who ordered the construction of the third and smallest of the Pyramids of Giza. His name means "Eternal like the Souls of Re"...

. Khafre was the builder of the second largest pyramid in the Giza Necropolis complex (his is 3 metres shorter than Khufu's). Most modern egyptologists also credit him with the building of the Great Sphinx
Great Sphinx of Giza
The Great Sphinx of Giza , commonly referred to as the Sphinx, is a limestone statue of a reclining or couchant sphinx that stands on the Giza Plateau on the west bank of the Nile in Giza, Egypt....

.

His name, Khaf-Ra, means "Appearing like Ra
Ra
Ra is the ancient Egyptian sun god. By the Fifth Dynasty he had become a major deity in ancient Egyptian religion, identified primarily with the mid-day sun...

" for some translators and "rise Ra!" for others; the meaning is most probably the first, according to the hieroglyphic representing his name, which includes that crown. In ancient time his name was read out Ra-chaf to honor the supreme god Ra
Ra
Ra is the ancient Egyptian sun god. By the Fifth Dynasty he had become a major deity in ancient Egyptian religion, identified primarily with the mid-day sun...

.

Family


Khafre was a son of king Khufu
Khufu
Khufu , also known as Cheops or, in Manetho, Suphis , was a Pharaoh of Ancient Egypt's Old Kingdom. He reigned from around 2589 to 2566 BC. Khufu was the second pharaoh of the Fourth Dynasty. He is generally accepted as being the builder of the Great Pyramid of Giza, one of the Seven Wonders of...

 and the brother and successor of Djedefre. Khafre is thought by some to be the son of Queen Meritites I
Meritites I
Meritites I was an ancient Egyptian Queen of the 4th dynasty.She was a daughter of King Sneferu and the wife of King Khufu. Her name means "Beloved of her Father". Several of her titles are known from a stela found at Giza. She was the mother of Crown Prince Kawab and may have had several more...

 due to an inscription where he is said to honor her memory
Kings-wife, his beloved, devoted to Horus, Mertitytes.

King's-wife, his beloved, Mertitytes; beloved of the Favorite of

the Two Goddesses; she who says anything whatsoever and it is done

for her. Great in the favor of Snefr[u] ; great in the favor

of Khuf[u] , devoted to Horus, honored under Khafre. Merti[tyt]es.[Breasted; Ancient Records]

Others argue that the inscription just suggests that this queen died during the reign of Khafre. Khafre may be a son of Queen Henutsen
Henutsen
Henutsen was an ancient Egyptian queen of the 4th dynasty.- Biography :Henutsen was a daughter of Pharaoh Sneferu and his third wife. Henutsen married her elder half-brother Khufu. Her name is known only from a 16th dynasty stela, found next to an Isis' temple which was built during the reign of...

 instead.

Khafre had several wives and he has at least 12 sons and 3 or 4 daughters.
  • Queen Meresankh III
    Meresankh III
    Queen Meresankh III was the daughter of Hetepheres II and Prince Kawab and a grand-daughter of the Egyptian pharaoh Khufu. She was the wife of King Khafre.-History:...

     was the daughter of Kawab
    Kawab
    Kawab was an ancient Egyptian prince of the 4th Dynasty. He was the eldest son of King Khufu and Queen Meritites I. Kawab served as vizier and was buried in the double mastaba G 7110 - 7120 in the east field which is part of the Giza Necropolis.- Biography:Kawab was the eldest son of Pharaoh...

     and Hetepheres II
    Hetepheres II
    - Birth and family :Queen Hetepheres II may have been one of the longest-lived members of the royal family of the Fourth dynasty of Egypt, which lasted from ca. 2723 to 2563 BC. She was a daughter of Khufu and was either born during the reign of her grandfather Sneferu or during the early years of...

     and thus a niece of Khafre. She was the mother of Khafre's sons Nebemakhet
    Nebemakhet
    Nebemakhet was a king's son and a vizier during the 4th Dynasty. Nebemakhet was the son of King Khafre and Queen Meresankh III. He is shown in his mother's tomb and in his own tomb at Giza.-Family:...

    , Duaenre
    Duaenre
    Duaenre was a vizier under Menkaure during the Fourth dynasty of Egypt. His titles include those of king's son of his body , hereditary prince , count , vizier , scribe of the divine book , mouth of Nekhen , and mouth of every Butite .-Family:Duare was the son of...

    , Niuserre and Khenterka, and a daughter named Shepsetkau.
  • Queen Khamerernebty I
    Khamerernebty I
    Khamerernebty I was an ancient Egyptian queen of the 4th dynasty. She was probably a wife of King Khafre and the mother of King Menkaure and Queen Khamerernebty II...

     was the mother of Menkaure and his principal queen Khamerernebty II
    Khamerernebty II
    Khamerernebty II was an ancient Egyptian queen of the 4th dynasty. She was a daughter of Pharaoh Khafra and Queen Khamerernebty I. She married her brother Menkaure and she was a mother of Prince Khuenre.-Family:...

    .
  • Hekenuhedjet
    Hekenuhedjet
    Hekenuhedjet was an ancient Egyptian queen consort of the 4th dynasty, a wife of Pharaoh Khafra. She is depicted in the tomb of her son the Vizier Sekhemkare....

     was a wife of Khafre. She is mentioned in the tomb of her son Sekhemkare
    Sekhemkare (Vizier)
    Sekhemkare was a vizier from the Fifth dynasty of Egypt. He was a son of king Khafre and queen Hekenuhedjet. He served as vizier during the beginning of the next dynasty, during the reigns of Userkaf and Sahure.-Family:...

    .
  • Persenet
    Persenet
    Persenet was an ancient Egyptian queen consort of the 4th dynasty. She may have been a daughter of King Khufu and a wife of King Khafra...

     may have been a wife of Khafre based on the location of her tomb. She was the mother of Nikaure
    Nikaure
    Nikaure was an ancient Egyptian prince and vizier during the 4th dynasty. His titles include king's eldest son of his body , as well as chief justice and vizier .-Family:...

    .


Other children of Khafre are known, but no mothers have been identified. Further sons include Ankhmare
Ankhmare
Ankhmare was an ancient Egyptian prince and vizier of the 4th dynasty. His titles include king's eldest son of his body , as well as chief justice and vizier...

, Akhre, Iunmin
Iunmin I
Iunmin was a vizier from the Fourth dynasty of Egypt. He was possibly a son of king Khafre. He served as vizier towards the end of the dynasty, possibly during the reign of his brother Menkaure.-Tomb:...

, and Iunre
Iunre
Iunre was an ancient Egyptian prince of the 4th dynasty. He was the son of king Khafre. He was named after Ra.-Titles:His titles include:* the King of Upper and Lower Egypt, Khafre, His Eldest Son of His Body...

. Two more daughters named Rekhetre
Rekhetre
Rekhetre was an ancient Egyptian queen from the late 4th dynasty or early 5th dynasty. She was a daughter of Pharaoh Khafra. Her husband is never mentioned, but Rekhetre would have been the wife of one of Khafre's successors, possibly Menkaure.-Titles:...

 and Hemetre
Hemetre
Hemetre was an ancient Egyptian royal woman of the 4th dynasty. Hemetre may have been a daughter or granddaughter of Khafre. She did not hold the title king's wife and may have even married a non-royal. She is mainly known from her tomb, which is located in the central field of Giza...

 are known as well.

Reign


There is no agreement on the date of his reign. Some authors say it was between 2558 BC and 2532 BC; this dynasty is commonly dated ca. 2650 BC–2480 BC. While the Turin King List
Turin King List
The Turin King List, also known as the Turin Royal Canon, is a hieratic papyrus thought to date from the reign of Ramesses II, now in the Museo Egizio at Turin...

 length for his reign is blank, and Manetho's exaggerates his reign as 66 years, most scholars believe it was between 24 to 26 years, based upon the date of the Will of Prince Nekure which was carved on the walls of this Prince's mastaba
Mastaba
A mastaba, or "pr-djt" , is a type of ancient Egyptian tomb in the form of a flat-roofed, rectangular structure with outward sloping sides that marked the burial site of many eminent Egyptians of Egypt's ancient period...

 tomb. The will is dated anonymously to the Year of the 12th Count and is assumed to belong to Khufu since Nekure was his son. Khafra's highest year date is the "Year of the 13th occurrence" which is a painted date on the back of a casing stone belonging to mastaba G 7650. This would imply a reign of 24–25 years for this king if the cattle count was biannual during the Fourth Dynasty.

Pyramid complex



Khafra built the second largest pyramid
Egyptian pyramids
The Egyptian pyramids are ancient pyramid-shaped masonry structures located in Egypt.There are 138 pyramids discovered in Egypt as of 2008. Most were built as tombs for the country's Pharaohs and their consorts during the Old and Middle Kingdom periods.The earliest known Egyptian pyramids are found...

 at Giza. The Egyptian name of the pyramid was Wer(en)-Khafre which means "Khafre is Great".

The pyramid has a subsidiary pyramid, labeled GII a. It is not clear who was buried there. Sealings have been found of a King's eldest son of his body etc. and the Horus name of Khafre.

Valley Temple


The valley temple of Khafre was located closer to the Nile and would have stood right next to the Sphinx temple. Inscriptions from the entrance way have been found which mention Hathor and Bubastis. Blocks have been found showing the partial remains of an inscription with the Horus name of Khafre (Weser-ib).Mariette discovered statues of Khafre in 1860. Several were found in a well in the floor and were headless. But other complete statues were found as well.

Mortuary Temple


The mortuary temple was located very close to the pyramid. From the mortuary temple come fragments of maceheads inscribed with Khafre's name as well as some stone vessels.

Great Sphinx and Sphinx temple


The sphinx is said to date to the time of Khafre. A temple dedicated to Haremakhet was erected by Khafre. It was located right in front of the paws of the Sphinx.

In popular culture

  • Khafra was played by Charles Arnt
    Charles Arnt
    Charles Arnt was an American film actor. He appeared in 120 films between 1933 and 1962.He was born in Michigan City, Indiana, and died in Orcas Island, Washington from pancreatic and liver cancer.-Selected filmography:...

     in the 1945 film Sudan
    Sudan (film)
    Sudan is a 1945 historical drama film set in Egypt during the reign of the pharaoh Khafra . The film was directed by John Rawlins and starred Maria Montez.-Cast:* Maria Montez as "Naila"* Jon Hall as "Merab"* Turhan Bey as "Herua"...

    .
  • Khafre was played by Erno Crisa
    Erno Crisa
    Erno Crisa was an Italian film actor. He appeared in 52 films between 1944 and 1968.-Selected filmography:* The White Line * Sunday Heroes * The Gold of Naples...

     in the 1960 film Il Sepolcro dei re.

Further reading

  • James H. Breasted, Ancient Records of Egypt Part I, §§ 192, (1906) on 'The Will of Nekure'.

External links