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A very interesting enigma with the serekh is that while its use is common in Dynasty 0, i.e. the depiction of this building, actual buildings which utilize this style, even tombs, are not found.

In the 1st Dynasty, however, not only do these buildings suddenly appear en masse in the form of very elaborate monumental tombs, but Egyptian material culture in general simply explodes in sophistication. Curiously though, several of these 1st Dynasty kings have tombs at Abydos (Umm el-Qa'ab) and Saqqara with the tombs at Saqqara being far superior with no palace facade at Umm el-Qa'ab (but they do have the serekh) and nothing but palace facade at Saqqara. The 1st Dynasty tombs at Saqqara, of which there are many, are truly marvelous. To look at Dynasty 0 then Dynasty 1, there is no doubt there is a sudden and fundamental change that occurred almost overnight. Stunning does not describe it.

While palace facade mastabas are most notably found at Saqqara, there are several other notable early Dynastic sites that have them as well, one of which the enormous very elaborate palace facade mastaba surrounded by a large enclosure wall at Naqada (Thinis) attributed to the early 1st Dynasty Queen Neithhotep (like thought to be the wife of Narmer/Menes early):

Neithhotep's name is found in a serekh implying she was a king in her own right, but instead of Horus above the serekh the symbol of the goddess Neith is depicted:

Interestingly, another queen, Merneith (buried at Abydos near Umm el-Qa'ab), perhaps a king as well, also bears the name of Neith.

The mastaba is very odd in that for one, it is in the middle of nowhere relative to royal cemeteries, some 80 miles from from the royal cemetery at Umm el-Qa'ab (Abydos) and farther still from Saqqara, but also that all of its internal structures including "burial chamber" are uncharacteristically above ground.

It was first excavated in the late 1800's and unfortunately by the time it was re-excavated decades later it had already begun to erode where today it is completely destroyed. Located south of the Naqada predynastic cemetery, I am reminded
again of the also seemingly out of place nearby massive mastabas at Beit Khallaf attributed to the 3rd Dynasty (Djoser/Senakht) which would have also been in the general area near Thinis, the early dynastic capital of Egypt before Memphis.

At any rate, we are left to wonder why this unusually large northern Egyptian palace facade style mastaba, literally at the very beginnings of Dynastic Egypt, was built in neither of the known royal cemeteries of the time.


I found this photo on Pinterest labeled "1938 Vintage Photo The Tomb or Hor Aha at Abydos second pharoah of Egypt" though I am certain it is not and is actually the mastaba of Neithhotep of whom Hor Aha is credited with building it for her under his reign.

From this ignored thread The Lost Early Dynastic Cemetery of El-Reqaqna I take an inventory of sites I have so far found that contain or may contain palace facade mastabas:
Quote

Notes to self:
Early Dynastic Cemeteries with monumental palace facade mastabas:
Saqqara
Helwan
Tarkhan
Giza (southern cemetery)
Abu Roash (Early Dynastic tomb superstructures found destroyed. Have yet to verify if any evidence of palace facade.) [UPDATE: Verified-has many.]
El-Reqaqna
Beit Khallaf (? Large mastabas, no, which is interesting, not sure about others.)
Naga ed-Deir

The 1st Dynasty supposedly lasted less than 200yrs yet here we find a vast, highly developed network of cemeteries right from the get go, most occurring within the first 130yrs or less depending on whose dating. In conjunction with the sudden arrival of monumental palace facade architecture, among other things, I am even more convinced this goes far beyond just the "unifying" of Egypt.

It is without precedent, and traditional explanation as I have argued, that such a vast scope of otherwise unknown architectural works in the 1st Dynasty could appear so suddenly and in abundance over such a relatively very short archaeological period without influence from an outside (Mesopotamian) source.

Further reading: Mesopotamian Origin of the Egyptian Serekh Palace Facade Building



Edited 10 time(s). Last edit at 26-Aug-19 02:20 by Thanos5150.

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The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 5579 Thanos5150 10-Aug-18 05:33
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 721 Open mind 10-Aug-18 13:30
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 736 Thanos5150 10-Aug-18 16:26
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 1274 Thanos5150 13-Aug-18 03:44
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 647 Eddie Larry 13-Aug-18 04:40
Re: A Brief History of Predynastic Egypt 1394 Thanos5150 15-Aug-18 04:22
Re: A Brief History of Predynastic Egypt 776 Audrey 17-Aug-18 05:32
Re: A Brief History of Predynastic Egypt 871 Thanos5150 19-Aug-18 16:07
Re: Same Motifs Found on Naqada II and Elam Pottery 850 Thanos5150 09-Sep-18 04:39
Re: Same Motifs Found on Naqada II and Elam Pottery 1056 Thanos5150 10-Sep-18 04:44
Re: Same Motifs Found on Naqada II and Elam Pottery 978 Thanos5150 05-Dec-18 06:55
Re: A Brief History of Predynastic Egypt 293 Thanos5150 24-Mar-20 23:10
Re: A Brief History of Predynastic Egypt 250 seasmith 25-Mar-20 03:48
Re: A Brief History of Predynastic Egypt 260 Thanos5150 25-Mar-20 04:22
Re: A Brief History of Predynastic Egypt 257 seasmith 25-Mar-20 12:36
Re: A Brief History of Predynastic Egypt 298 Thanos5150 25-Mar-20 16:01
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 646 Koeeoaddi There 22-Aug-18 15:33
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 899 Thanos5150 22-Aug-18 23:13
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 606 Koeeoaddi There 23-Aug-18 10:04
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 743 Thanos5150 23-Aug-18 23:13
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 676 Audrey 24-Aug-18 04:16
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 657 Thanos5150 24-Aug-18 05:21
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 579 Koeeoaddi There 24-Aug-18 15:56
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 631 Thanos5150 25-Aug-18 15:01
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 602 Thunderbird 25-Aug-18 17:36
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 627 Thanos5150 26-Aug-18 01:52
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 693 Koeeoaddi There 28-Aug-18 16:25
Mod Note > Posting Images 591 Dr. Troglodyte 28-Aug-18 18:31
Thanks! 567 Koeeoaddi There 28-Aug-18 19:38
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 580 Manu 28-Aug-18 22:04
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 646 Koeeoaddi There 29-Aug-18 16:12
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 610 Manu 29-Aug-18 17:26
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 588 Koeeoaddi There 31-Aug-18 14:21
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 573 Manu 31-Aug-18 16:16
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 760 Thanos5150 28-Aug-18 23:40
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 662 Thanos5150 29-Aug-18 00:47
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 607 Koeeoaddi There 29-Aug-18 16:43
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 669 Thanos5150 30-Aug-18 05:09
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 606 Koeeoaddi There 29-Aug-18 16:32
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 631 Thanos5150 30-Aug-18 03:53
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 577 Koeeoaddi There 31-Aug-18 14:49
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 551 Thanos5150 01-Sep-18 14:50
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 632 Koeeoaddi There 02-Sep-18 13:40
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 687 Thanos5150 02-Sep-18 06:28
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 672 waggy 02-Sep-18 07:49
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 607 Thanos5150 02-Sep-18 16:00
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 602 waggy 02-Sep-18 19:41
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 637 Thanos5150 03-Sep-18 01:57
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 826 Thanos5150 14-Sep-18 22:55
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 584 Eddie Larry 15-Sep-18 00:11
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 589 Thanos5150 15-Sep-18 03:35
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 595 Eddie Larry 15-Sep-18 04:37
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 603 R Avry Wilson 03-Sep-18 01:01
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 701 Thanos5150 03-Sep-18 02:10
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 578 R Avry Wilson 03-Sep-18 07:31
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 619 Thanos5150 03-Sep-18 16:44
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 594 R Avry Wilson 03-Sep-18 19:20
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 619 R Avry Wilson 03-Sep-18 22:45
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 609 Thanos5150 03-Sep-18 23:28
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 617 Thanos5150 03-Sep-18 23:50
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 580 Corpuscles 04-Sep-18 06:05
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 613 Thanos5150 04-Sep-18 22:43
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 674 Corpuscles 04-Sep-18 23:52
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 592 Thanos5150 05-Sep-18 01:12
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 581 R Avry Wilson 05-Sep-18 03:57
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 583 Thanos5150 05-Sep-18 06:31
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 594 R Avry Wilson 05-Sep-18 07:10
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 602 Thanos5150 05-Sep-18 22:10
I plead Guilty as charged - Public Apology! 591 Corpuscles 05-Sep-18 06:39
Re: I plead Guilty as charged - Public Apology! 579 R Avry Wilson 05-Sep-18 07:31
Re: I plead Guilty as charged - Public Apology! 551 Eddie Larry 05-Sep-18 23:36
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 566 R Avry Wilson 05-Sep-18 03:40
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 575 Corpuscles 03-Sep-18 23:07
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 895 Thanos5150 06-Sep-18 02:00
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 607 Thanos5150 30-Aug-18 05:22
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 611 Koeeoaddi There 31-Aug-18 14:56
Re: Manetho Mentions 1st Dynasty Pyramids 605 Thanos5150 09-Sep-18 03:57
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 715 Audrey 14-Aug-18 05:38
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 680 Thanos5150 15-Aug-18 00:04
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 666 Thunderbird 14-Aug-18 19:44
Re: The URUK State Expansion 706 Thunderbird 24-Aug-18 17:38
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 731 Thanos5150 21-Sep-18 01:41
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 661 Thanos5150 29-Nov-18 06:13
Re: The Enigma of the Palace Facade Mastabas of the 1st Dynasty 685 Thanos5150 20-Dec-18 03:02
Re: Mastaba Fires 505 Thanos5150 07-Mar-19 05:53
Re: Mastaba Fires 522 Thanos5150 07-Mar-19 06:35
Re: Mastaba Fires 452 Thanos5150 26-Aug-19 05:06


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