Armlet of Queen Ahhotep I


When it was found among the mummy’s hair, this gold armlet of Ahhotep I was thought to be a crown. Because of its diameter, however, it is certain that it was to be worn round the arm for protection. It is inlaid with lapis lazuli and carnelian and decorated with vulture of gold and inlays bearing the names of Ahmose I.

Ahhotep I is the wife of Seqenenre Tao and mother of Ahmose I. Ahhotep II is the queen known from the gilded coffin found at Dra’ Abu el-Naga’ and possibly a wife of Kamose.

Inlaid Gold Armlet of Queen Ahhotep I
Inlaid Gold Armlet of Queen Ahhotep I

Most of the objects found in the tomb of Queen Ahhotep bear the names of her sons, Kamose and Ahmose, the kings that chased the Hyksos out of the country. The queen played a major role during the war of liberation as testified by the many objects that her sons donated to her grave goods. Some of those gifts were weapons, unusual for a woman’s tomb.

Second Intermediate Period, 17th Dynasty, ca. 1560-1530 BC. Gold, inlaid with lapis lazuli, carnelian and turquoise. From Dra’ Abu el-Naga’, West Thebes. Excavation by A. Mariette (1859). Now in the Egyptian Museum, Cairo. JE 4679