Akhenaten: Dweller in Truth by Naguib Mahfouz, Tagreid Abu-Hassabo

By Naguib Mahfouz, Tagreid Abu-Hassabo

From the winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature and writer of the Cairo Trilogy, comes Akhenaten, a desirable paintings of fiction concerning the such a lot notorious pharaoh of historical Egypt.

In this beguiling  novel, initially released in Arabic in 1985, Mahfouz tells with outstanding perception the tale of the "heretic pharaoh," or "sun king,"--the first identified monotheistic ruler--whose iconoclastic and arguable reign in the course of the 18th Dynasty (1540-1307 B.C.) has uncanny resonance with smooth sensibilities.  Narrating the radical is a tender guy with a fondness for the reality, who questions the pharaoh's contemporaries after his terrible death--including Akhenaten's closest acquaintances, his such a lot sour enemies, and at last his enigmatic spouse, Nefertiti--in an attempt to find what particularly occurred in these unusual, darkish days at Akhenaten's court. As our narrator and every of the themes he interviews give a contribution their model of Akhenaten, "the fact" turns into more and more evanescent.  Akhenaten encompasses the entire contradictions his matters see in him: instantaneously merciless and empathic, female and barbaric, mad and divinely encouraged, his personality, as Mahfouz imagines him, is eerily sleek, and fascinatingly ethereal.  An formidable and enormously lucid and available publication, Akhenaten is a piece basically Mahfouz may possibly render so elegantly, so irresistibly.

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Additional info for Akhenaten: Dweller in Truth

Sample text

He decreed the closing of temples, confiscated all the idols, and erased their names from the monuments. It was then that he changed his name to Akhenaten. Then he toured the country proclaiming his religion. People received him with amazing love and eagerness. In the past, they had heard about pharaohs without ever seeing them, but now the image of Akhenaten and Nefertiti in their public appearances became engraved on their memories forever. But the dream did not last. Clouds of sorrow began to gather; hesitant at first, then quickly they broke like a fierce cataract.

From the time I first knew him, until we parted, he thought of nothing but religion. I gave him the respect that was due to him from the beginning, for I was raised to worship duty and to place everything in that context, regardless of any personal emotions or attachments. Akhenaten was the crown prince, I was one of his subjects. I owed him respect. In my heart, however, I despised him for his weakness and his feminine appearance. I could not picture myself a friend of his. But the fact is, he won me and I became his true friend.

First, Queen Tiye gave birth to twins, Smenkhkare and Tutankhamun. Shortly after, the pharaoh's health deteriorated, and he died. Messengers from the palace carried the news to the prince, for him to return and take the throne. I discussed the future of the country with the priests of Amun, and we came to an agreement. Immediately I took action, and asked to meet the queen despite the mourning and her preoccupation with mummifying her husband's body. Even in her grief, the queen was powerful and enduring.

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