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Ancient Egypt
1. Introduction
2. People
3. Life styles
4. Culture
5. Education and Science
6. Society
7. Economy
8. Government
9. Cities and Villages
10. Language
11. Religion
12. Kings / periods
13. History
14. Map

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Open map of Ancient EgyptAncient Egypt / Old Kingdom / 4th Dynasty /

Statue of Snefru.
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Statue of Snefru.

The Red Pyramid of Snefru, the first perfect pyramid in world history. Dahshur, Egypt.
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The Red Pyramid at Dahshur, the first perfect pyramid in world history.

The Bent Pyramid of Snefru. Dahshur, Egypt.
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The flawed pyramid project of the Bent Pyramid, just a kilometre away from the Red Pyramid.

(?-2589 BCE) King of Ancient Egypt, 1st king of the 4th Dynasty of Egypt, ruling 2613-2589 BCE, 24 years.
Snefru did not come from royal descent. He probably became king by marrying the royal heiress. We know much about his reign compared to other rulers of the same era, yet little compared to later rulers. But we learn from inscriptions and stories from the following centuries that Snefru's regime was considered a good time, and Snefru a beneficent ruler.
We know that he was active in building a centralized administration for Egypt, and it appears that the office of the vizier came into a leading position during his time. He managed to stay in power by appointing members of the royal family to the highest positions in the bureaucracy.
His time was also one of much warfare, in which Egypt was the strong party, suppressing its neighbours and taking control over resources and trade. This policy was central in building a wealthy state in these times, as trade between kingdoms often was halted in times of tension.
Snefru raided Nubia to the south, from which he brought home much booty. He also established a fort at Buhen. He also led a campaign into Libya, and he conquered Sinai and made it a part of Egypt.
Today, the most notable remains from his reign today are his two pyramids at Dahshur. These are the two first real pyramids ever built (read about the step-pyramid at Saqqara for more information). The first of the two, the Bent Pyramid, may have been constructed with too steep sides, as the angle was changed half way up. The second of the pyramids, the Red Pyramid, was built with slower angles. (Open new window with articles from LookLex / Egypt).
The king before him was Huni of the 3rd Dynasty, and father of his wife, Hetepheres. He appears to have died a natural death, being succeeded by his son, the famous Khufu.

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By Tore Kjeilen