Mentuhotep IV
Nebtawyre Mentuhotep IV was the last king of the 11th Dynasty. He seems to fit into a 7 year period in the Turin Canon for which there is no recorded king, and is known from a few inscriptions in Wadi Hammamat
Wadi Hammamat
' is a dry river bed in Egypt's Eastern Desert, about halfway between Qusier and Qena. It was a major mining region and trade route east from the Nile Valley in ancient times, and three thousand years of rock carvings and graffiti make it a major scientific and tourist site today.-Trade...

 that record expeditions to the Red Sea
Red Sea
The Red Sea is a seawater inlet of the Indian Ocean, lying between Africa and Asia. The connection to the ocean is in the south through the Bab el Mandeb strait and the Gulf of Aden. In the north, there is the Sinai Peninsula, the Gulf of Aqaba, and the Gulf of Suez...

 coast and to quarry stone for the royal monuments. It seems that he was a son of his predecessor.

Despite being obscure (he is absent from the official king lists in Abydos
Abydos, Egypt
Abydos is one of the most ancient cities of Upper Egypt, and also of the eight Upper Nome, of which it was the capital city. It is located about 11 kilometres west of the Nile at latitude 26° 10' N, near the modern Egyptian towns of el-'Araba el Madfuna and al-Balyana...

), the inscriptions show the organization and makeup of a large expedition. The leader of an expedition to Wadi Hammamat, during the second year of Mentuhotep IV’s reign, was his vizier
Vizier (Ancient Egypt)
The vizier was the highest official in Ancient Egypt to serve the king, or pharaoh during the Old, Middle, and New Kingdoms. Vizier is the generally accepted rendering of ancient Egyptian tjati, tjaty etc, among Egyptologists...

, Amenemhat, who is assumed to be the future king Amenemhet I, the first king of the 12th Dynasty
Twelfth dynasty of Egypt
The twelfth dynasty of ancient Egypt is often combined with Dynasties XI, XIII and XIV under the group title Middle Kingdom.-Rulers:Known rulers of the twelfth dynasty are as follows :...

, and Mentuhotep's immediate successor. It is assumed by some Egyptologists that Amenemhet either usurped the throne or assumed power after Mentuhotep IV died childless. There is currently no archaeological or textual evidence to prove that Mentuhotep was deposed by his Vizier or that he chose Amenemhet to be his designated successor. Mummy or the burial place have not been found.

Further reading

  • W. Grajetzki, The Middle Kingdom of Ancient Egypt: History, Archaeology and Society, Duckworth, London 2006 ISBN 0-7156-3435-6, 25-26
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