Osorkon I Pharaoh of Egypt [61002]
(Abt 0955 B.C.-Abt 0889 B.C.)
Tashedkhonsu [61003]
Takelot I of Egypt [61000]
(Abt 0935 B.C.-Abt 0874 B.C.)
Kapes [61001]

Osorkon II of Thebes [60990]
(Abt 0905 B.C.-Abt 0850 B.C.)


Family Links

1. Djedmutesankh [60992]

2. Karomama [60991]

Osorkon II of Thebes [60990]

  • Born: Abt 905 B.C.
  • Marriage (1): Djedmutesankh [60992]
  • Marriage (2): Karomama [60991]
  • Died: Abt 850 B.C. about age 55

bullet  General Notes:

Osorkon II was the fifth king of the Twenty-second Dynasty. There are inscriptions in the hypostyle hall of the Luxor temple that indicate that
there was a very high inundation of the Nile during the third year of his reign. The inscription says, "All the temples of Thebes were like
marshes." During his twenty-second year, he celebrated the Sed Festival. He built a granite gateway at the great temple at Bubastis and
decorated the gateway with scenes of this festival. During his reign, there was weakness internally and there were threats from the Assyrians.
Egypt's borders did not extend as far as they once had and tried to resist the increasing pressures from the east by joining the states of Palestine
and Syria. It is possible that a co-regent ruled with Osorkon II named Harsiese, who was the high priest of Amun at Thebes. It is possible that
Harsiese was the son of Osorkon. His tomb has been found at Tanis. It was constructed of large stones with several chambers inside. Several
other bodies were found inside such as King Takelot II.

872\endash 837 BC, 22nd Dynasty

Osorkon II
was a pharaoh [1] of the Twenty-second Dynasty of Ancient Egypt and the son of Takelot I and Queen Kapes. He ruled Egypt around 872 BC to 837 BC from Tanis , the capital of this Dynasty. After succeeding his father, he was faced with the competing rule of his cousin, king Harsiese A , who controlled both Thebes and the Western Oasis of Egypt. Osorkon feared the serious challenge posed by Harsiese's kingship to his authority but, when Harsiese conveniently died in 860 BC, Osorkon II ensured that this problem would not recur by appointing his own son Nimlot C as the next High Priest of Amun at Thebes. This consolidated the pharaoh's authority over Upper Egypt and meant that Osorkon II ruled over a united Egypt. Osorkon II's reign would be a time of large scale monumental building and prosperity for Egypt

According to a recent paper by Karl Jansen-Winkeln, king Harsiese A , and his son [..du] were only ordinary Priests of Amun, rather than High Priests of Amun, as was previously assumed. The inscription on the Koptos lid for [..du], Harsiese A's son, never once gives him the title of High Priest.[2] demonstrates that the High Priest Harsiese who served is attested in statue CGC 42225 \endash which mentions this High Priest and is dated explicitly under Osorkon II \endash was, in fact, Harsiese B . The High Priest Harsiese B served Osorkon II in his final 3 years. This statue was dedicated by the Letter Writer to Pharaoh Hor IX, who was one of the most powerful men in his time.[3] However, Hor IX almost certainly lived during the end of Osorkon II's reign since he features on Temple J in Karnak which was built late in this Pharaoh's reign, along with the serving High Priest Takelot F(the son of the High Priest Nimlot C and therefore, Osorkon II's grandson). Hor IX later served under both Shoshenq III, Pedubast I and Shoshenq VI . This means that the High Priest Harsiese mentioned on statue CGC 42225 must be the second Harsiese: Harsiese B .

Reign length

Osorkon II died around 837 BC and is buried in Tomb NRT I at Tanis. He is now believed to have reigned for more than 30 years, rather than just 25 years. The celebrations of his first Sed Jubilee was traditionally thought to have occurred in his 22nd Year but the Heb Sed date in his Great Temple of Bubastis is damaged and can be also be read as Year 30, as Edward Wente notes.[6] The fact that this king's own grandson, Takelot F, served him as High Priest of Amun at Thebes\endash as the inscribed Walls of Temple J prove \endash supports the hypothesis of a longer reign for Osorkon II.

Recently, it has been demonstrated that Nile Quay Text No.14 (dated to Year 29 of an Usimare Setepenamun) belongs to Osorkon II on palaeographical grounds.[7] This finding suggests that Osorkon II likely did celebrate his first Heb Sed in his 30th Year as was traditionally the case with other Libyan era Pharaohs such as Shoshenq III and Shoshenq V. In addition, a Year 22 Stela from his reign preserves no mention of any Heb Sed celebrations in this year as would be expected, (see Von Beckerath ).

While Osorkon II's precise reign length is unknown, some Egyptologists such as Jürgen von Beckerath \endash in his 1997 book Chronology of the Egyptian Pharaohs[8] \endash and Aidan Dodson have suggested a range of between 38 to 39 years.[9] However, these much higher figures are not verified by the current monumental evidence. Gerard Broekman gives Osorkon II a slightly shorter reign of 34 Years.[10]

Marriages and children

Osorkon II is known to be the father of Tjesbastperu, Nimlot C --a High Priest of Amun at Thebes--Hornakht , a short-lived chief priest of Amun at Tanis and Shoshenq D, a High Priest of Ptah at Memphis who died young in his father's reign.[11] Osrkon's son Nimlot C, in turn, was the father of Takelot II who would later rule Upper Egypt at the same time that Shoshenq III ruled Lower Egypt.

Osorkon II appointed his third son Hornakht as the chief priest of Amun at Tanis to strengthen his authority in Lower Egypt; however, this was clearly a political move since Hornakht died prematurely before the age of 10.[12] In this period of Egypt's history, religious and political power were at their most inseparable.


David Aston has convincingly argued in a JEA 75 (1989) paper that Osorkon II was succeeded by Shoshenq III at Tanis rather than Takelot II Si-Ese as Kitchen assumed because none of Takelot II's monuments have been found in Lower Egypt where other genuine Tanite kings such as Osorkon II, Shoshenq III and even the short-lived Pami (at 6-7 Years) are attested on donation stelas, temple walls and/or annal documents.[13] Other Egyptologists such as Gerard Broekman, Karl Jansen-Winkeln, Aidan Dodson and Jürgen von Beckerath have also endorsed this position. von Beckerath also identifies Shoshenq III as the immediate successor of Osorkon II and places Takelot II as a separate king in Upper Egypt.[14] Gerard Broekman writes in a recent 2005 GM article that "in light of the monumental and genealogical evidence," Aston's Chronology for the position of the 22nd Dynasty kings "is highly preferable" to Kitchen's chronology.[15] The only documents which mention a king Takelot in Lower Egypt such as a royal tomb at Tanis, a Year 9 donation stela from Bubastis and a heart scarab featuring the nomen 'Takelot Meryamun' \emdash have now been attributed exclusively to king Takelot I by Egyptologists today including Kitchen himself.[16]

The English Egyptologist Aidan Dodson in his book, The Canopic Equipment of the Kings of Egypt, observes that Shoshenq III built "a dividing wall, with a double scene showing Osorkon II" and himself "each adoring an unnamed deity" in the antechamber of Osorkon II's tomb.[17] Dodson concludes that while one may argue Shoshenq III erected the wall to hide Osorkon II's sarcophagus, it made no sense for Shoshenq to create such an elaborate relief if Takelot II had really intervened between him and Osorkon II at Tanis for 25 years unless Shoshenq III was Osorkon II's immediate successor. Shoshenq III must, hence, have wished to associate himself with his predecessor \endash Osorkon II.[18] Consequently, the case for establishing Takelot II as a Twenty-second Dynasty king and successor to Osorkon II disappears, as Dodson writes.


The French excavator, Pierre Montet discovered Osorkon II's plundered royal tomb at Tanis on February 27, 1939. It revealed that Osorkon II was buried in a massive granite sarcophagus with a lid carved from a Ramesside era statue. Only some fragments of a Hawk-headed coffin and canopic jars remained in the robbed tomb to identify him.[19] While the tomb had been looted in antiquity, what jewellry which remained "was of such high quality that existing conceptions of the wealth of the northern Twenty-first and Twenty-second dynasties had to be revised."[20]


1. ^
[1] <> Osorkon (II) Usermaatre
2. ^ Karl Jansen-Winkeln, "Historische Probleme Der 3. Zwischenzeit," JEA 81(1995), pp.129-149.
3. ^ David Aston, "Takeloth II: A King of the Theban 23rd Dynasty?," JEA 75(1989), p.152
4. ^ Statue, Cairo CG 42206, 42207
5. ^ Cairo CG 42213
6. ^ Edward Wente, Review of Kenneth Kitchen 's The Third Intermediate Period in Egypt c.1100-650 BC, JNES 35(1976), pp.275-278
7. ^ Gerard Broekman, "The Nile Level Records of the Twenty-Second and Twenty-Third Dynasties in Karnak," JEA 88(2002), pp.174-178
8. ^ Jürgen von Beckerath, Chronologie des Pharaonischen Ägypten, MAS:Philipp von Zabern, (1997), p.98 & p.191
9. ^ Aidan Dodson, A new King Shoshenq confirmed?, GM 137(1993), p.58
10 ^ Gerard Broekman, 'The Reign of Takeloth II, a Controversial Matter,' GM 205(2005), pp.31 & 33
11 ^ Nos ancêtres de l'Antiquité <>, 1991. Christian Settipani , p.153 and 166
12 ^ Nicolas Grimal, A History of Ancient Egypt, Blackwell Books, 1992. p.325
13 ^ Aston, pp.139-153
14 ^ Jürgen von Beckerath, "Chronologie des Pharaonischen Ägypten," MÄS 46 (Philipp von Zabern), Mainz: 1997. p.94
15 ^ Gerard Broekman, 'The Reign of Takeloth II, a Controversial Matter,' GM 205(2005), pp.31
16 ^ K.A. Kitchen, in the introduction to his 3rd 1996 edition of "The Third Intermediate Period in Egypt (c.1100-650 BC)," Aris & Phillips Ltd. pp.xxxii-xxxiii
17 ^ Aidan Dodson, "The Canopic Equipment of the Kings of Egypt," (Kegan Paul Intl: 1994), p.95
18 ^ Dodson, The Canopic Equipment of the Kings of Egypt, p.95
20 ^ San el-Hagar <>
21 ^ Bob Brier, Egyptian Mummies: Unravelling the Secrets of an Ancient Art, William Morrow & Company Inc., New York, 1994. p.144


Osorkon married Djedmutesankh [60992] [MRIN: 551617339].


Osorkon next married Karomama [60991] [MRIN: 551617338].

Home | Table of Contents | Surnames | Name List

This Web Site was Created 17 Mar 2015 with Legacy 8.0 from Millennia