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A Short Story About The Life Of The Pharaoh Akhenaten - The Pioneering King

Updated on April 19, 2012

Akhenaton Is The Best Egyptian Pharoah Story

This is a short story about the life of Akhenaten, the heretic, as I see it. He was the first Egyptian Pharoah who believed in only one God. This is what made him a pioneering king. Starting his life in Thebes, now known as Luxor, on his rise to power, he relocated his base to the middle of the desert. Akhenaton's story, argueably, is the best Egyptian Pharoah story.

As can be seen below – The History Channel’s The Great Egyptians – the life of Akhenaten was dogged with disability. Being the son of Amenhoptep III and Queen Tiye, it appeared that he wasn’t the favourite to rule Egypt. However, with the help of his mother, he took power.

The life of Akhenaten is a short story that takes you through my interpretation of his life, his relationship with his wife Queen Nefertiti, his family and how he viewed life, love and his god – the sun, the aten. It is a time that he implemented great change, was stigmatised for it and, after his death, died as his son Tutankhamun re-established the old order.

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Akhenaten: The Pioneering King

I always was in disagreement. How they used to force me to go to those boring rituals in honour of the oh so many Gods. I don’t think the story of Horus could possibly be true. The son of Isis and Osiris – who were these so-called Gods anyway? I don’t feel they had a bearing on my life! The floods from the Nile come and leave as they do every year.I don’t think that some offering to these man-made bits of gold have any bearing in pleasing these non-existing Gods. I don’t think it is the Gods that fertilise the land!

So, here I am. I am having to endure the usual pomp and ceremony at my father’s elaborate temple, here in Thebes. The long ride through Karnak in this blazing heat amongst bowing slaves and Egyptian’s subjects all in honour of the Gods and my father – a God in the making.

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Marfan Syndrome

I am having to follow my mother, Queen Tiye, and my father, Amenhotep III. I always walk awkawardly when I am not being carried – my long fingers and toes do get in the way. It’s a strange family trait. You might call this Marfan Syndome. I recon it has something to do with my fore-fathers screwing with their daughters and the ilke! My father must have built up an army of loyal subjects in doing this. What a family I have! All willing to die and fight on behalf of my father, cos somewhere along the line, he is a high family member!

You know, I’ve seem him slipping off and slipping into the bed of another… all in the name of breeding another loyal royal subject. I feel a sawing sense of anger. I don’t believe in this, I don’t want to be here and I never really did. My mother knows the truth but she just tells me to do my duty and keep my views to myself. She recons that if we play our cards right, this Empire will be mine one day. O.k., I’m not first in line of throne, but if she can convince my father, then I’m there. She is his favourite, afterall, and has built monuments in her honour. She is always depicted as a woman with great power – not as much as father, mind you, but she is known as the most powerful woman in our Empire!

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Appease The Gods

The Empire… father did a good job in making it all powerful and great. People fear my father and do what he asks because he is all knowing and powerful. He is such a busy man. He never really had much time for me and the others – conquering yet another tribe – he collects people to help build this Empire for free.

I think you call these slaves. Mother says that he is rewarded by the Gods and that is why we should appease them. Poppycock! I just think that people will do exactly what you want them to do if they have their lives threatened. Anyway, as a Prince, I must do the dutiful thing and honour my father by attending this silly tradition…. Just for today, anyway.

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Amenhotep IV, Disabled with Marfan Syndrome, re-named himself Akhenaten

Amenhotep IV gave his father a dignified and respectable release to the other world. Truly, a send off, fit for a King – just as he would have wanted it! It wasn’t until a couple of years that the changes he wanted to initiate started taking place. He no longer wished to be known as his former name, but that of Akhenaten. He had even found love in his beautiful Queen, Nefertiti, and sexual bliss in the many male lovers that he had encountered. Things were good. He loved his family and grew into a good father.

He interacted well with his children and behaved in a way he wished his father had done with him. He wanted to lead by example and depicted happy family scenes on the walls of temples. He even pictured himself and other’s as they really were – flabby bits, long fingers, toes and extended foreheads. Truth and the Aten was the Ankh. This was the key of life.

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Amenhoptep Keeps Away From The Temple

Back at the temple home, I am my usual clumsy self. I stumble and fall. Mother appears concerned at my lack of agility. She is not so pleased with my strong views either…

“I think we should keep Amenhotep IV out of the limelight, husband. It seems he is finding his movements difficult to manage around the uneven floors of the temples. Maybe he should stay back until he is older? You do need to be seen by your Empire as strong blood stock and, although Amenhotep IV will make a great Pharoah, we don’t want him to be seen as weak before he acquires the throne. We need to groom him without critism by your subjects”.

“Who said he was going to be Pharoah, anyway?!” Amenhotep III responded, “I am not sure he has the capacity to rule.” With deep watery eyes that could melt the heart of the most hardiest of people, Queen Tiye fluttered “I am your most beautiful, your bestest lover and most adored wife.” She had such a way with him. She could get anything she wanted just by looking at him. How could he resist? “Bah! let him stay at home… and don’t give me those eyes… he will not rule!” But Queen Tiye had other ideas…..

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I Dream Of Aton

Looking out on the balcony on the early morning rise, I could see it. My God… The Sun. This was it! This is what my dream meant. The real life-giver – the Sun… The Aten. Where would we be without the Aten? It gives us warmth. It gives us life. When the Lilly’s grow, they push their faces toward it. As the Aten decends at night, the darkness prevails. We become cold. In my dream, I see our land revolving around it. I see the affects over the year it has upon our earth. The Aten is God. The one and only God. It bringth life and it taketh away. I now have the answer to the quest our philosophers have sought… ‘What came first, the chicken or the egg?”

It is this… the Egg in the sky… The Aten… the God of everything, the invisible God. Amun… Amun Ra as us Egyptians are familiar with. One of many Gods… the invisible God of the Sun, of everything. Only… I don’t believe in lots of Gods, I believe in only one. And as with my dream, it is the Aten. It is the sun to whom I shall pray. So be it (amen).

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The years passed and so did the might of the Empire. Amenhotep IV rarely attended the temples – it kinda became the norm. Tiye was even more adored by the Pharaoh and became his constant companion and confidant. But there was more… as time continued the king felt a dull aching. His mouth throbbed. The bread that was baked was gritty and over the years this had worn away his teeth.

As an elderly man, this had a cruel affect on him. No painkiller touched the throb. No appeasement to the Gods helped. Neither did the nagging from his Queen subside, particularly on the subject of Amenhotep IV acquiring the throne! Amenhotep III got quite ill with it all. It wasn’t until he was starting to burn up with fever, that he agreed that Amehotep IV was to inherit the throne…

Who, Our Great Pharoah... Who will you choose?"

“My darling Pharaoh. The one and only love of my life. I am worried about you! You look pale. I worry what will become of me and our family, should you take the journey toward the West Bank. Please, for my own well-being and the saving of the great Empire that you have built, choose you son, your name-sake, to continue your great work.”

“Oh my Queen… I am in agony… I cannot think of such matters… “ The Pharaoh became delirious with fever. “Oh great Osirus guide me.. gggrr ..sloooow…ummm…” he muttered. The High Priests and those of great importance attended to the bedded king. His skin seemed to engulf patches of red blotches that manifested all over his enrashed body.

“Who, our Great Pharaoh.. who will you choose to lead this our Egypt, once you leave this mortal earth, once you become a God amongst the Gods?” Tiye sobs whilst descending to her knees… “Please, please….” She begs. He looks up from where he is about to start his new journey – the journey to the afterlife, points to the chosen one and says “The Gods choose the only one. The one that follows my name.” As Tiye breathes a sigh of relief, the King breathes a sigh of death. The start has an end and the end has a start.

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A Family Scene
A Family Scene

In Honour of the Sun God Aten - A New City

“Oh Aten, the one and only God. My purpose is your fulfillment. I am your vessel, your advocate. There is only one God and with this I shall rule.”

It didn’t go down very well in Thebes - the decision the Pharaoh had taken. Actually, it went too far, it was felt. Tradition had always worked over the hundred of years of rule for Egypt, so why change now? The poor priests and priestesses were going to be redundant in their positions. The Great Akhenaten was to undertake the greatest project ever.

Aten had appeared to the Pharaoh, burning bright within the horizon, between two lands. This was a sign. A new city was to be created in the desert –Akhetaten. The old Gods were to go.

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Akhenaton's World Was Not About War, But Peace

And so it was. Akhenaten’s world was indeed happy. He loved, he desired and, for the first time in his life, he was fulfilled. As a wonderful city was created, so the might of Thebes decayed and raped for its fertility. His world was a happy hippy one. One of adoration. One of empowerment. This world was not about war, but peace.

It was not about suffering, but love. Not about slavery, but loyalty through will. Akhenaten believed in the first principal… ‘First do no harm.’ He allowed the one true God to make judgment, to protect and to fulfil the destinies of others.

“Oh Aten, what am I to do?” He asked when receiving news from a family member on an issue of an attempt to be overthrulled by rebels from the Empire. “He wants me to supply troops! Please, no more bloodshed! My father allowed a sea of blood during his reign, so no more!” He seeks for an answer in his very being. It is here that God speaks. “My heart tells me that I should let things be. My God will do what’s right. Aten has greater plans. There is a bigger picture!“

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Akhenaton So Loved His God

Don’t you, however, think the old ways were forgotten, though. This was not the case. Worship and deities were honoured in secret. Mutterings of overthrow and planning persisted. Unbeknown to the King, there was great discontent. Some people were not as adaptable to change as he. Some people did not believe in the one and only ‘all knowing’ God. The old order was too ingrained. This, however, was another story! And what happened as regards to the rebels? Akhenaten never responded to the pleas made by the communications he received.

The rebels had won - a piece of his Empire eroded. Slowly, by slowly, these pieces became more and more. It was not the will of Akhenaten, but the will of Aten. Akhenaten so loved his God and his God so loved the people. To let the people be free was the free will of the people. If this was the will of Aten, then this was the will of the King. Does this not sound like another story?

Akhenaten ruled 500 years prior to the King of the Jews. Moses, too, believed in one God and advocated for freedom. The Pharoah, Akhenaten, is the pioneering king because he was the first. I hope you enjoyed this short story and I would much appreciate your comments.

This work is covered under Creative Commons License

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    • profile image


      7 years ago

      what's so good about him

    • shazwellyn profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Great Britain

      Lol Puntadeleste... said in true NEFERTITI style! Looks like there are more parallel's going on in your family that you would care to let on! hehehe

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I admired Akhenetan's beliefs and his inner strength. I was so enthralled w/ Egyptology, that I named my middle son AKHENATON. Coincidentally, I can see some "authority" w/in his personality. I often remind him, "You have no servants here, so YOU must clean your own room."

    • shazwellyn profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Great Britain

      Lovely comment Sophia and so true! Thank you for your marvellous enrichment to this story :)

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Amenhotep IV gave his father a dignified and respectable release to the other world. Truly, a send off, fit for a King – just as he would have wanted it! It wasn’t until a couple of years that the changes he wanted to initiate started taking place. He no longer wished to be known as his former name, but that of Akhenaten. He had even found love in his beautiful Queen, Nefertiti, and sexual bliss in the many male lovers that he had encountered. Things were good. He loved his family and grew into a good father.

      He interacted well with his children and behaved in a way he wished his father had done with him. He wanted to lead by example and depicted happy family scenes on the walls of temples. He even pictured himself and other’s as they really were – flabby bits, long fingers, toes and extended foreheads. Truth and the Aten was the Ankh. This was the key of life.

    • profile image


      7 years ago


    • shazwellyn profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Great Britain

      Thank you Nellianna - He was an extraordinary man and true humanist. Your comment is insightful and I am glad you get what I wanted to achieve with this 'story'. I wanted to put myself in his shoes and tell his story.

      Thank you for dropping by and supporting me here with such great positivity :)

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 

      8 years ago from TEXAS

      Akhenaten is my favorite Pharoah. Indeed he did pioneer the monotheist idea as well as a simpler, more natural way of living and a more democratic interaction with the people. It angered the powerhouse of Egyptian priesthood of the established culture enough to try to erase him from history. That says a lot. There is high likelihood that Moses learned a lot from his teachings, in spite of the efforts to stamp them out.

      I need to read this hub more carefully, but I congratulate you for it. I voted it up and seem to be the first reader to give it other high ratings.

    • shazwellyn profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from Great Britain

      Thank you Bonny. He was a greatly misunderstood good guy really. He would have fitted very well in today's culture - although, thinking about it... no one likes a smart ar$e!

      Thanks for reading x

    • bonny2010 profile image

      bonetta hartig 

      9 years ago from outback queensland

      Really good hub - Akhenaten has always been a favourite of mine - its sad they tried and succeeded to a large degree to obliterate his existence from history

    • shazwellyn profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from Great Britain

      Thank you Ibtrader. I wanted people to learn from Akhenaten's example. He was the pioneer, 500 years before Moses! He was dogged with disability, but he went his own way and stood firm in his beliefs. He was an empowerer and non conformist! A right royal rebel!

      Of course, the conformists got there own way in the end by using Tutenkharmen to re establish the Gods, then promptly, he mysteriously died... some would think he was killed off! So, again, the bad guy wins through!

      Thanks for reading x

    • lbtrader profile image


      9 years ago from Canada

      Interesting...Holding to the first principle seems to be one of the first edicts that is thrown out of the rule book when it comes to rulers and the laws they make.

      The Hyppocratic Oath, is interesting that it mentions this "first do no arm" principle while at the same time mentioning members of my favorite subjects in the world....greek characters such as Asclepius, and Apollo, Hygiaea and others, who come close to the truth while battling serpents and other mysterious menaces. But they somehow are subdued by tyrrant lords, ie. Zeus, who goes on to rule the world under his precept of what the first principle is....

      As you say, Can you see another story here ?

      I'm a fan. I also like the way you present this story from a current perspective. It's almost like being there.

    • Richieb799 profile image


      9 years ago from Cardiff, Wales UK

      you can delete the above comment now I've inserted the capsule

    • motricio profile image

      Mauricio Rodriguez 

      9 years ago from Bogota DC, Colombia

      Great compilation about Akhenaten and the Pharaohs story!

      Yes you can link to my Atlantis hubs.

      Furthermore, I'll be adding Egypt hubs to that section too.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Nice personal parallel story you injected in there. I must admit to being clueless in this realm, however, you most definitely are not. Great read. Like a broken record here, I know, but your writing style earns the praise. Thanks once again. :-)

    • shazwellyn profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from Great Britain

      Thank you for taking the time to read it. Akhenaten was someone very special, someone they tried to irradicate from history.


    • wrenfrost56 profile image


      9 years ago from U.K.

      Your right I love Ancient Egypt and this was a great read, thanks giving me the link.

    • profile image

      Duchess OBlunt 

      9 years ago

      Good Hub. Lots of history that could have been lost.

    • Chloe Comfort profile image

      Chloe Comfort 

      9 years ago from Long Island

      Cool hub. I have read a couple of books on Akhenaten and Nefertiti. Egyptian history has always held fascination for me. He was a pioneer. Too bad they tried to erase him from history after he died. Glad they failed and we know about his life today. Kudos!


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