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Ancient Egypt

Government

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The Ancient Egyptian Government was ruled first and foremost by the Pharaoh. The Pharaoh was the supreme leader not only of the government, but also of the religion. However, the Pharaoh couldn't run the government all by himself, so he had a hierarchy of rulers and leaders below him who ran different aspects of the government.

Vizier

The Primary leader of the Government under the Pharaoh was the Vizier. The vizier was the Chief Overseer of the land, sort of like a Prime Minister. All the other officials reported into the vizier. Perhaps the most famous vizier was the first one, Imhotep. Imhotep architected the first pyramid and was later made into a god.

The Egyptian law stated that the vizier was to 1) act by the law 2) judge fairly and 3) not act willfully or headstrong.

Nomarks

Under the vizier were local governors called Nomarks. Nomarks ruled over an area of land called a nome. A nome was like a state or province. Nomarks were sometimes appointed by the Pharaoh, while at other times the position of nomark would be hereditary and handed down from father to son.

Other Officials

Other officials that reported into Pharaoh were the army commander, the chief treasurer, and the minister of public works. These officials each had different responsibilities and powers, but Pharaoh had the final say. Many of the Pharaoh's officials were priests and scribes.

Scribes were important to the government as they kept track of the finances and recorded taxes and the census. Overseers of the land were also appointed to keep track of the farmers and to make sure they were doing their jobs.

Monarchy

The average person had no say in the government. However, because Pharaoh was considered a god, and the people's representative to the gods, they often accepted the Pharaoh as their supreme leader without complaint.

Fun Facts about the Ancient Egyptian Government

Take a ten question quiz at the Ancient Egyptian Government questions page.

More information on the civilization of Ancient Egypt:

Overview
Timeline of Ancient Egypt
Old Kingdom
Middle Kingdom
New Kingdom
Late Period
Greek and Roman Rule

Monuments and Geography
Geography and the Nile River
Cities of Ancient Egypt
Valley of the Kings
Egyptian Pyramids
Great Pyramid at Giza
The Great Sphinx
King Tut's Tomb
Famous Temples
Culture
Egyptian Food, Jobs, Daily Life
Ancient Egyptian Art
Clothing
Entertainment and Games
Egyptian Gods and Goddesses
Temples and Priests
Egyptian Mummies
Book of the Dead
Ancient Egyptian Government
Women's Roles
Hieroglyphics
Hieroglyphics Examples
People
Pharaohs
Akhenaten
Amenhotep III
Cleopatra VII
Hatshepsut
Ramses II
Thutmose III
Tutankhamun

Other
Inventions and Technology
Boats and Transportation
Egyptian Army and Soldiers
Glossary and Terms


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