Who was the first pharaoh of ancient Egypt? What do we know about this person? What did they achieve?
The first pharaoh of ancient Egypt is usually ascribed to one name in particular - Narmer. But was he really the first?
Another name appears in the historical records of that time (3100 BC). This name is Menes. It has been suggested that they are actually the same person - with a name change at some point in his reign.
But were there leaders before?
Yes, there were.
Narmer is considered the ‘first’ pharaoh because he unified Upper and Lower Egypt into one consolidated country. Before Narmer, Egypt was actually two regions. There were conflict and turmoil on both sides.
So who came before Narmer?
One name that has cropped up is Iry-Hor. He probably ruled around 3200 BC. Other names that have come down to us are; Wazner, Ny-Hor and Hedju Hor who is one of the very earliest names we know of who may have ruled.
At some point, Kings in Egypt named themselves after animals. Double Falcon, Elephant, Gazelle and Scorpion are all names we have found.
It’s important to remember that the only record of these kings having ever actually existed is a dusty almost imperceptible glyph carved into stone.
Absolutely nothing is known about their reign or indeed if they were even real people.
Chronological Egyptology ascribes Narmer as the founder of the First Dynasty of ancient Egypt. It is a fair conclusion to make according to the surviving evidence.