Although he died at the young age of nineteen, there is little doubt that King Tut was one of the great rulers of his time. Originally named Tutankhamun, King Tut managed an extraordinary range of accomplishments, over the course of his short life. To consider this list of accomplishments is to be truly impressed by everything he did over a relatively short amount of time.
1. He Was Born Into Royalty
King Tut was destined to rule. He was born at approximately 1341 B.C. His father was King Akhenaten, who infamously forbade the worship of several gods, in favor of worshiping just Aten, who was known as the sun disk. Tut’s mother is largely unknown. The only thing we know about her is that she was one of Akhenaten’s siblings. Her tomb offers no clues as to her identity, referring to her only as “The Younger Lady.”
2. His Name Was Designed To Emphasize His Birth Right
Shortly after he was born, Tut was given the name Tutankhamun. The name literally means “the living image of Aten.” This can be tied into the fact that Tut’s father had barred the worship of all gods who weren’t Aten.
3. He Was Born Into Chaos
There is no question that at the time of Tut’s birth, Egypt was mired in social and political chaos. His father had banned the worship of other gods, and his rule was becoming increasingly corrupt, as time went on. Eventually, Tut’s father was forced to give up the throne. He died shortly thereafter. In the aftermath of Akhenaten’s death, Tutankhamun was the natural next choice to take the throne.
4. He Took The Throne At An Early Age
When his father left the throne, Tut was naturally the next one in line to take over. At the young age of nine, he ascended the throne. He would take the throne name Nebkheperure.
5. He Put The Old Gods Back Into Place
One of the first things King Tut did, upon taking the throne at age nine, was reestablish the various gods that had been worshipped, prior to King Akhenaten barring all but Aten. In fact, he completely terminated the rule of the god Aten. Instead, he chose to reinforce the rule of the god Amun. The Amun cult ban was lifted, and the traditional privileges were given back to the priesthood.
6. He Utilized Powerful Council
Given that Tut assumed control of the throne at a rather young age, it just makes sense that he would receive powerful council from others. It is believed that the early years of his rule were largely managed by an elder who went by the name of Ay. His title was that of Vizier. Horemheb was another key figure in this era. This top military commander frequently offered advice and support to Ay.
7. He Changed His Name
To perhaps further strengthen his connection to Amun, Tut changed his name to Tutankhamun, which translated to the living image of Amun.
8. He Worked Extensively At Restoration
In addition to having several essential holy sites restored, Tut also began several crucial building projects during his reign. He also continued construction of the temple known as Karnak. On top of all of this, King Tut also watched over the work involved in seeing the red granite lions at Soleb properly completed.
9. He Worked To Achieve Better Relations With Egypt’s Neighbors
One of the most significant accomplishments of King Tut’s life and career involved foreign relations. The ruler worked tirelessly to improve the relationship Egypt had with many of their neighbors. Many of these relationships had suffered due to the reign of his father, which neglected things like this, as the corruption within his kingdom became increasingly pronounced. Unfortunately, Tut’s desire to improve relations didn’t always go as planned. Numerous conflicts were recorded during his rule, including battles with both the Nubians and the Asiatics. Nonetheless, the fact that Tut tried so hard to improve the standing Egypt carried with other nations is a clear indication that he was eager to undo some of the damage his father had caused.
10. The Discovery Of His Tomb Set Off A Global Fascination
He died out of nowhere at the age of eighteen or nineteen. To this day, the exact cause of his death is unknown, although tests and scans have discovered that he may have had a number of diseases and infections. This would include a potential infection in his leg, in addition to malaria. Nonetheless, he was preserved and buried in the fashion normally befitting a man of his status. His tomb was then discovered in 1922. It was this discovery that set off a massive interest in all things related to Egyptian history and culture. The discovery of Tut’s tomb is still regarded as one of the biggest archaeological finds of the 20th century.