Department of Near Eastern Languages and Cultures
Transition 18th–19th dynasty
- Author(s): Manassa Darnell, Colleen
- et al.
The transition between the 18th and 19th Dynasties, a period beginning with the reign of Aye and concluding with the reign of Sety I, represents the conclusion to the tumultuous Amarna Period and the beginning of the stability and prosperity of the following Ramesside Period. The rule of individuals coming from non-royal families—Aye, Horemheb, and Ramesses I—gives way to a strong dynastic succession with Sety I. Limited monumental construction during the short reigns of Aye and Ramesses I can be contrasted with the extensive building at Karnak during the reign of Horemheb and the impressive construction program of Sety I throughout Egypt. Foreign policy in Syria-Palestine and Nubia during the reign of Sety I reinforce Egypt’s imperial domination of those regions, and larger geo-political conflicts are dominated by the rise of the Hittite Empire. In the cultural sphere, the transition between the 18th and 19th Dynasties reversed the revolutionary changes enacted by Akhenaten, although traces of that period remained in artistic representation, the expression of personal piety, and even the language of monumental inscriptions.