Tomb of Amenemhat

Tomb of Amenemhat

Amenemhat was the last to hold the title of nomarch (governor) of the Oryx nome. He held this position for around 25 years, during the reign of the 12th Dynasty king, Senusret I (c.1965–1920 BC).

Similar to Khnumhotep II’s tomb, the entrance into Amenemhat’s tomb chapel is in the form of a portico with two columns and surrounded by a forecourt reached by way of a causeway running up the hill. Hence, its course can still be seen thanks to the boulders on either side of it. Inside the tomb chapel, a shrine cut into the east wall, facing the doorway, contains a statue of Amenemhat, his wife Hetepet, and his mother Henu.

The tomb of Amenemhat has some of the finest decorations of all the tombs at Beni Hasan. This includes scenes depicting activities of daily life such as agriculture, fishing, and fowling, and the practicing of various crafts and professions including carpentry, sandal making, pottery, bows and arrows.

Particularly, the ceiling of the tomb chapel is striking. In each segment, along largely yellow rectangle bearing a hieroglyphic inscription runs through the center, representing a wooden beam. Its midsection is flanked by a yellow and red check pattern contained in a rectangle, which is itself surrounded on its two opposing sides by a pattern imitating matting. Surrounding this entire arrangement are red and yellow squares containing quatrefoils.