WHO WAS IMHOTEP?


The 1999 film The Mummy portrayed Imhotep as a romantic, lovesick priest of Seti I who was hellbent on resurrecting his true love. But who was he really?

Imhotep was chancellor to the Pharaoh Djoser (reigned 2668-2649 B.C) and was the architect of his famous Step Pyramid.

His early life is not known but in the millennia after his death, he was gradually deified and celebrated as a spiritually important figure in Egyptian culture.

He was a polymath and a poet, an astronomer and (according to historical accounts that were written thousands of years after his death) a physician.

Scholars have even compared Imhotep to Hippocrates and Charaka as a father of modern medicine. However, no evidence for this exists and not even his name is mentioned in any unearthed text in the first 1200 after his death.

What do you think? Was Imhotep as important as history suggests? Or was he just a chancellor of a famous Pharaoh who was given too much credit?

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