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Authors: P. C. Doherty

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THE HOUSE OF PHARAOH
Hatusu:
Pharaoh-Queen of the XVIII dynasty
Senenmut:
lover of Hatusu: Grand Vizier or First Minister, a former stonemason and architect
Valu:
the ‘Eyes and Ears' of Pharaoh: royal prosecutor
Omendap:
Commander-in-Chief of Egypt's armies
THE HALL OF TWO TRUTHS
Amerotke:
Chief Judge of Egypt
Prenhoe:
Amerotke's kinsman, a scribe in the Hall of Two Truths
Asural:
Captain of the Temple Guard of the Temple of Ma'at in which the Hall of Two Truths stands
Shufoy:
a dwarf, Amerotke's manservant and confidant
Norfret:
Amerotke's wife
Ahmase and
Curfay:
Amerotke's sons
THE TEMPLE OF ISIS
Impuki:
High Priest and Principal Physician
Lady Thena:
Impuki's wife
Paser:
Impuki's deputy
Mafdet:
Captain of the Temple Guard
THE HOUSE OF GENERAL SUTEN
Suten:
retired senior general
Lupherna:
Suten's wife
Menna:
Chief Scribe
Heby:
Suten's valet
OTHER CHARACTERS
Nadif:
officer in the Medjay, desert police
The Shardanna:
a former member of the Sebaus
Djed:
a member of the Sebaus
Hefau and Apep:
snake men
Sithia:
a courtesan, member of the Sebaus
Nethba:
a Theban noble woman
Sese:
father of Nethba, former royal architect
Rahimere:
disgraced former Grand Vizier of Egypt
The Rose Demon
The Soul Slayer
The Haunting
Domina
The Plague Lord
Murder Imperial
An Evil Spirit Out of the West
Ancient Egyptian mysteries
The Mask of Ra
The
Horus Killings
The Anubis Slayings
The Slayers of Seth
The Sorrowful Mysteries of Brother Athelstan
The Nightingale Gallery
The House of the Red Slayer
Murder Most Holy
The Anger of God
By Murder's Bright Light
The House of Crows
The Assassin's Riddle
The Devil's Domain
The Field of Blood
The House of Shadows
Hugh Corbett medieval mysteries
Satan in St Mary's
Crown in Darkness
Spy in Chancery
The Angel of Death
The Prince of Darkness
Murder Wears a Cowl
The Assassin in the Greenwood
The Song of a Dark Angel
Satan's Fire
The Devil's Hunt
The Demon Archer
The Treason of the Ghosts
Corpse Candle
The Magician's Death
The Canterbury Tales of murder and mystery
An Ancient Evil
Being the Knight's Tale
A Tapestry of Murders
Being the Man of Law's Tale
A Tournament of Murders
Being the Franklin's Tale
Ghostly Murders
Being the Priest's Tale
The Hangman's Hymn
Being the Carpenter's Tale
A Haunt of Murder
Being the Clerk of Oxford's Tale
The Journals of Sir Roger Shallot
The White Rose Murders
Poisoned Chalice
The Grail Murders
Brood of Vipers
The Gallows Murders
The Relic Murders
This novel contains many strands of life in Egypt as it approached the zenith of its glory during the Eighteenth Dynasty. I have referred to the royal Necropolis as the Valley of the Kings, though that was a name given to it by later generations. However, what is a definite fact is that the robbery of royal tombs became ancient Egypt's second oldest profession. The robberies were often highly organised and led by nobles and officials who had access to secret information. Some of these robberies were breathtaking in their daring. For example, during the Twenty-first Dynasty, the princess Henttawy, daughter of a high priest, was robbed even before she was buried. A very interesting source is the Papyrus Salt 124 (formerly known as British Library Manuscript 10055), which gives a vivid description of a gang like the Sebaus robbing tombs during the reign of Sety II. The organising genius behind this was a high-ranking official called Paneb who received a great deal of help from a very corrupt vizier. Surviving records known as the Tomb Robbery Papyri describe similar robberies during the twenty-ninth year of the reign of Rameses III. The target of these robberies was no less than the burial place of Egypt's greatest king, Rameses II, and his magnificent House of a Million Years in the Valley of the Kings.
Sometimes important documents were buried with Pharaohs.
In the 1920s, when Howard Carter first discovered the tomb of Tutankhamun, he thought he would find highly confidential manuscripts buried with the boy king. In his search for them, Carter unearthed a dual mystery. Tutankhamun's tomb contained two guardian statues, and it looked as if manuscripts had been hidden there but then taken out and the holes in the statue carefully gessoed over. More surprisingly, Carter also discovered evidence that, shortly after Tutankhamun was buried, the tomb was opened again. The first opening was a robbery which was undoubtedly discovered, but the second was the work of a high-ranking official known as Maya. It would seem from my researches that Maya did not only restore certain goods to Tutankhamun's tomb but may have taken specific items out.
 
The relationship between Hatusu and Senenmut was very close. Graffiti dating from shortly after Hatusu's reign depicted this relationship in very crude and explicit terms. Hatusu may have had a daughter by Senenmut, although this child never succeeded her. For some strange reason Hatusu also had a special devotion to that rather ancient god of Egypt, Khnum. Her memorial temple at Deir-el-bahri possesses a drawing of the god Khnum creating the Pharaoh Queen on his potter's wheel!
 
The temple life described in this novel reflects the reality of the early years of Hatusu's reign. The great temples of ancient Egypt were like the cathedral abbeys of the Middle Ages; they were not only centres of worship but businesses possessing their own academies and schools.
There is no clear source which proves that the Egyptians dissected corpses, but sometimes the medical knowledge of Egyptian physicians is truly astonishing, particularly the treatment of wounds and some quite sophisticated internal complaints. Specialist physicians took rather strange titles such as ‘Guardian of the Ear' or ‘Guardian of the Anus'.
The only conclusion I can draw from their expertise and perceptive comments about certain diseases and illnesses is that dissection was carried out but never discussed. One example of their knowledge will suffice: the Egyptians were very careful to clean wounds. They possessed the herbs to accomplish this and were very careful about how wounds were bandaged, deliberately keeping dressings loose to allow the wound to breathe and clear itself of any pus, a practice the British Army ignored to its cost until after the First World War!
THE ASSASSINS OF ISIS.
Copyright © 2004 by P. C. Doherty
All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief quotations embodied in critical articles or reviews. For information, address St. Martin's Press, 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, N.Y. 10010.
 
 
 
 
eISBN 9781429937344
First eBook Edition : October 2011
 
 
ISBN-13: 978-0-312-35960-7
ISBN-10: 0-312-35960-8
First published in Great Britain by Headline Book Publishing, a division of Hodder Headline
First St. Martin's Minotaur Edition: November 2006
BOOK: The Assassins of Isis
13.02Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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