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The Restoration Stela of Pharaoh Tutankhamun

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Year 1, fourth month of Akhet, day 19, under the Majesty of:

Horus: Strong Bull, pleasing of births

Two Ladies: Effective of laws, who placates the Two lands

Golden Horus: Young of appearance, who pleases the Gods

Son of Re:  (Horemheb, Beloved of Amun)[carved over] Tutankhamun, Ruler of Southern Heliopolis

Insibya: (Djeserkheprure Setepenre)[carved over] Nebkheprure

May he be given Life, like Re forever and ever, Beloved of Amun Lord of the Two Lands, Foremost in Karnak [Ipet-esut], beloved of Atum Lord of the Two Lands of Heliopolis; of Re-Horakhte and Ptah-south-of-his-wall, Lord of Memphis; and of Thoth, Lord of Hieroglyphs [literally, words of the gods] the one who appeared upon the throne of the living Horus, like his father Re.

The good god, son of Amun, son of Kamutef [literally, Bull-of-his-Mother, title of Horus], the good son, the holy egg whom Amun created, father of the Two Lands, the one who makes the one who made him, the ba's of Heliopolis united in order to form him, to be King forever and ever, as Horus, living immortally. He is the effective King who did what was good for his father and all the gods. He restored everything that was ruined, to be his monument forever and ever. He has vanquished chaos from the whole land and has restored Ma'at to her place. He has made lying a crime, the whole land being made as it was at the time of creation.

Now when His Majesty was crowned King the temples and the estates of the gods and goddesses from Elephantine as far as the swamps of Lower Egypt had fallen into ruin. Their shrines had fallen down, turned into piles of rubble and overgrown with weeds. Their sanctuaries were as if they had never existed at all. Their temples had become footpaths. The world was in chaos and the gods had turned their backs on this land. If an army was sent to Djahy to extend the boundaries if Egypt, it would have no success. If you asked a god for advice, he would not attend; and if one spoke to a goddess likewise she would not attend. Hearts were faint in bodies because everything that had been, was destroyed.

Now some days after His Majesty appeared upon the throne of his father and he ruled the "Two Banks of Horus' [Egypt], the Black Land and the Red Land being under his authority and every land bowed down before his might. How His Majesty was in his palace which was in the House of Aakheperkare, being like the Sun in the sky, and His Majesty carried out the works of this land and everything the Two Lands needed every day. Then His Majesty considered in his heart and looked for something which would be effective for his father Amun. He made the holy statue out of genuine electrum, giving to it more than he had done before. He made his father Amun 13 poles long, the holy statue being made of electrum, lapis lazuli, turquoise and every noble and precious stone, although the majesty of this noble god had been only 7 poles long before. His Majesty made monuments for the gods, making their statues from electrum from the tribute of the foreign lands. He renewed their sanctuaries as his monuments forever and ever, endowing them with offerings forever, laying aside for them divine offerings daily, laying aside bread from the earth. He added great wealth on top of that which existed before, doing more than his predecessors had ever done. He allocated waab-priests, God's Servants and the heirs of the Chiefs of the Cities to be the sons of wise men whose reputation is established. He has enriched their tables with gold and silver, bronze and copper without limit. He has filled their storehouses with male and female workers and with His Majesty's booty. He has added to the wealth of every temple, doubling, trebling and quadrupling the silver, gold, lapis lazuli, turquoise and every noble precious stone, together with byssus, white linen, ordinary linen, oil, fat, resin, incense, perfumes and myrrh without limit.

His Majesty, Life Prosperity Health, has made quays for the river from new wood from the hill-slopes from the pick of Negau, inlaid with gold, the tribute of foreign countries, so that they might decorate the river. His Majesty, Life Prosperity Health, picked male and female servants, musicians and dancers who had been women of the palace, their cost being charged to the palace and to the treasury of the Two Lands. I shall have them protected and guarded for my ancestors, the gods, in the hope that they will be contented, by doing what their ka's wish while they protect Egypt.

Now the gods and goddesses of this land are rejoicing in their hearts, the Lords of the temples are in joy, the provinces all rejoice and celebrate throughout this whole land because good has come back into existence. The Ennead [the nine gods of creation] in the temple, their arms are raised in adoration, their hands are filled with jubilees forever and ever. All life and might is with them, and it is for the nose of the mighty King Horus, repeater of births, beloved son of his father Amun Lord of the gods, who made the one who made him, the King of Upper and Lower Egypt, his eldest son, the true and beloved one who protects his father who begot him. His Kingship is that of his father Osiris son of Re, the son who is good to the one who begot him, plentiful in monuments, rich in wonders, the one who makes an accurate monument for his father Amun, fair of births, the King who has established Egypt.

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Web Publisher's Note

The above text is an extract from the Restoration Stela of Tutankhamun at Karnak.

In reality, the boy pharaoh Tutankhamun was much too young to have originally authored this Restoration Stela. When Horemheb ascended the throne of Egypt as the last pharaoh of the XVIIIth Dynasty, he usurped the stela by overcarving his name in two places in the Five Horus Names of Tutankhamun. If one examines the textual style of the royal proclamations and decrees of Horemheb after he ascended the throne, they are in ideological terms and descriptive tone very similar to Tutankhamun's Restoration Stela. It is therefore not a great stretch to attribute the original authorship of the Restoration Stela to Tutankhamun's then General of the Armies Horemheb.

Published with permission for public reference by: Standing In Motion / SIMba Events Online®

For a translation of the full text see: Egyptian Historical Records of the Later Eighteenth Dynasty, Fascicle VI - B. G. Davies / 1995

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