Queen Shanakdakhete, The Great Nubian Queen Who Ruled Without A King


Queen Shanakdakhete took the Throne of Kush Empire in ancient Nubia from 170 to 150 BC. The Queen ruled with absolute power in the Meroë Empire as well. As a result, the Queen became known as the Lord of the Two Lands. The Queen also exercised power without the support of a king, which was unusual for the time.


Queen Shanakdakhete, also known as Shanakhdakheto, was an important figure in the Meroitic religion. The religion was derived from the Meroitic people who lived in modern-day Sudan. They also created their own language.


Her likeness is depicted in a statue now housed in the Cairo Museum. It was discovered in Meroë.


Though many details about the Queen’s life are unknown, the Shanakdakheto statue provides only the most basic information.


The statue includes a prince holding the Queen’s crown, implying that she had an heir. The mere act of wearing the crown implies the Queen’s position of power.



The Queen’s body is depicted as strong and sturdy, adorned with jewels that represented affluence, command, elegance, and beauty.


Queen Shanakdakhete and her son holding crown.


The whereabouts of Queen Shanakdakhete after her reign are unknown. Tanyidamani was her successor.


Written by How Africa News

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