50 Interesting Facts About Ancient Egypt

  1. Ancient Egypt is one of the six ancient civilizations collectively known as the Cradle of CivilizationThe era of Ancient Egypt began around 3100 BC.
  2. The Egyptian-Hittite treaty of 1271 BC is the first known peace treaty in history. This peace agreement continued for 40 years until the fall of the Hittite Empire. (Source)
  3. Bread and beer were the most significant food and drink in Ancient Egypt. Beer and wine were more popular than fruits and fruit juices among Egyptians.
  4. There are only a few signs of diseases such as cancer, syphilis, and tooth decay in mummies of Ancient Egypt. However, many worms and other parasites were seen during their examination. (Source)
  5. Egyptians were the first to develop raised wooden bed frames. Its purpose was to seek protection from cold ground and harmful animals (snakes, rodents, insects, etc.) while sleeping. 
  6. Egyptians were the first to describe similarities between sleep and awakening. There were sleep temples in Ancient Egypt to heal various ailments. (Source)
  7. Egypt is the discovery place of the 2nd and 3rd oldest mathematics books. These books were written around 1850 BC and 1650 BC.
    Depiction of Ancient Egypt
    Ancient Egypt is known for inventions

  8. Imhotep, born in Ancient Egypt in 27th Century B.C, is the first physician, engineer, and architect in history. (Source)
  9. The oldest urine-based pregnancy test was performed in Ancient Egypt around 1350 BC. According to this test, the urine of a pregnant woman on wheat and barley produces barley in the case of a boy, wheat in the case of a girl, and nothing if she’s not pregnant. This test proved to be 70% accurate in 1963. (Source)
  10. Ancient Egyptians were also the pioneer of toothpaste. They started using toothpaste (made from rock salt, mint, pepper, and dried iris flower) to clean their teeth around 1,500 years ago. (Source)
  11. Egyptians started the usage of poppy seeds in the world. They considered it useful for anesthesia and the treatment of insomnia and headache. (Source)
  12. From the 15th to 18th Century, the Europeans believed in the medicinal properties of mummies. It gave rise to the illegal trade of mummies from Egypt to Europe. There were also many superstitions about mummies in Europe. (Source)
  13. There is a story about the presence of a mummified Egyptian priestess on the Titanic. Many believed that its curse destroyed the ship. But the story has proved to be false. (Source)
  14. Ancient Egypt is mainly divided into the periods of the Early Dynasty (3100-2686 BC), Old Kingdom (2686-2181), 12th Dynasty (2055-1786 BC), and New Kingdom (1567-1085 BC).
  15. The construction of pyramids started in the era of the Old Kingdom. The first pyramid was constructed around 2630 BC at Saqqara, near Memphis.
  16. Robbing tombs was widespread in Ancient Egypt. Robbers of both the upper and lower classes of society were involved in these lootings. (Source)
  17. There is a misconception that Napoleon destroyed the nose of the Sphinx. Photographs earlier than Napoleon also show the Sphinx without the nose. According to another account, a Sufi Muslim removed the nose in the 15th Century to discourage peasants from making offerings to the Sphinx.
  18. The largest pyramid in the world is not in Egypt. This 2,300 years old pyramid in Puebla, Mexico, is large enough to fit 2 Great Pyramids of Giza inside it. (Source)
  19. Even the highest numbers of pyramids are not in Egypt. Sudan has more than 200 pyramids compared to 138 in Egypt. The builder of these pyramids in Sudan was the Kingdom of Kush instead of the Ancient Egyptians. (Source)
  20. Mummification in Ancient Egypt was not limited to humans. This procedure was done on animals as well. They buried millions of mummified cats, birds, and other animals in temples as incarnations of gods. (Source)
  21. Religious beliefs of Ancient Egypt mostly remained polytheistic as they worshipped many gods and goddesses. However, monotheism was practiced in Ancient Egypt in the 14th Century during the reign of Akhenaten. He was a believer in the single god Aten (sun disk). But soon after his death, Egyptians restarted the worship of multiple gods. These 20 years of monotheism in Ancient Egypt are the first known record of monotheism in human history. (Source)
    Pharaoh Akhenaton and wife worshipping Aten
    First known instance of monotheism is recorded in Ancient Egypt

  22. The first-ever known door lock was made in Ancient Egypt. According to findings, wooden locks and keys were present in Egypt as early as 2000 B.C. The basic idea of modern locks follows the technique of the same Ancient Egyptian lock. (Source)
  23. The oldest recorded death sentence occurred in Egypt in 16th Century BC. The first person to receive this punishment was a member of nobility accused of magic. (Source)
  24. The annual Nile Flood Festival started during the era of Ancient Egypt. This festival is still celebrated in Egypt.
  25. Elite women were enjoying equal rights as elite men in Ancient Egypt. They were allowed to represent themselves in court, file for divorce, own property, and sue others. (Source)
  26. The first prosthetic limb ever discovered was a toe belonging to a noblewoman in Ancient Egypt. This big toe dated between 950-710 BC.
  27. Around 1550 BC, the world’s first great empire (Egyptian Empire) was established during the era of the New Kingdom. 
  28. Ramses II (1304-1237 BC) was the longest-reigning Pharaoh of the New Kingdom. According to estimates, he was the Egyptian ruler during the Exodus of Moses and the Israelites.
  29. The belief in eternal life after death was the cause of the building of pyramids and the mummification of Pharaohs. They were buried alongside their treasures and pets to enjoy their company in the afterlife.
  30. In contrast to a common misconception, the builders of the pyramids were paid laborers, not slaves. This myth is attributed to Herodotus, an ancient Greek historian. (Source)
  31. The first recorded strike in history was conducted by laborers building the burial chambers of the then Egyptian-ruler Ramses III around 1170 BC. Their strike was over a shortage of food supply and remained successful. (Source)
  32. Ancient Egyptians were the first to use wedding rings. They believed that the “vein of love” runs from the heart to the fourth finger of the left hand. (Source)
  33. Obesity was prevalent among the elite in Ancient Egypt. They were well-nourished and less physically active. Some mummies also show evidence of arterial diseases in the affluent. (Source)
  34. King Charles II had the habit of rubbing mummy dust on his skin. It was his superstition that this action would make him great. (Source)
  35. Both women and men in Ancient Egypt used to wear black Kohl (powdered stone) as makeup for the eyes. A vital purpose of this makeup was to protect the eyes from sun rays, sand, and flies.
    Ancient Kohl tube
    Kohl was used to protect eyes

  36. The famous Egyptian pharaoh, Cleopatra VII, was not an Egyptian but belonged to a Greek family of Macedonian origin.
  37. Ancient Egyptians were fond of board games. The most famous board game in ancient Egypt was Senet (or Senat). A copy of this game is also present at the tomb of the Egyptian Pharaoh Tutankhamun.
  38. Beqa was developed in Ancient Egypt to evaluate gold and gold dust. It is known as the oldest and longest-lived unit of weight. (Source)
  39. According to historical records, Egyptians introduced taxation nearly 5,000 years ago. This tax was on grain harvests. (Source)
  40. Incest marriages were widespread among the royal class and priests in Ancient Egypt. There are also reports of these relationships between common people in the society. (Source)
  41. Experts have found the world’s oldest dress in an Egyptian tomb. This tarkhan dress is 5,500 years old and discovered in 1977. (Source)
  42. Queen Sobekneferu (1789-1786 BC) was the first female ruler of Egypt and the last ruler of the 12th Dynasty.
  43. Ancient Egyptians were the first to adopt a solar calendar with 365 days in 12 months. The earliest known solar calendar was adopted in 4236 B.C., the earliest recorded year in history. (Source)
  44. Ancient Egyptians were the first to use wigs. The usage of wigs to conceal baldness was common among people of both high and low classes.
  45. Sutures (or stitches) were initially described in Ancient Egyptian literature in 3000 BC. They used plant or animals materials for this purpose. (Source)
  46. Every city or region in Ancient Egypt had its god, worshiped by the local people. It is difficult to understand their beliefs due to the mixing of new and old religious concepts with time. (Source)
  47. According to historical records, Egyptian Pharaoh Pepi II ruled for over 90 years, the longest reign in history. However, many modern historians believe his rule lasted for nearly 65 years.
  48. Pepi II is also known for smearing honey on naked slaves near him. The idea behind this move was to remove flies from him.
  49. Several types of pet animals were present in Ancient Egypt. These include domesticated dogs and cats to large animals such as baboons, falcons, gazelles, lions, and hippos. (Source)
  50. Donkeys were the most significant load carriers in Ancient Egypt. They were commonly used for plowing seeds and carrying people. (Source)

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