Akhenaten, Proto-Monotheist, Worked His People to Death

Things were hard for the people who built an instant capital city for the Dear Leader.

Researchers examining skeletons in the commoners’ cemetery in Amarna have discovered that many of the city’s children were malnourished and stunted. Adults show signs of backbreaking work, including high levels of injuries associated with accidents.

“We have evidence of the most stressed and disease-ridden of the ancient skeletons of Egypt that have been reported to date,” said University of Arkansas bioarchaeologist Jerome Rose (a National Geographic Committe for Research and Exploration grantee), one of the team of experts examining the dead. “Amarna is the capital city of the Egyptian empire. There should be plenty of food . . . Something seems to be amiss.”

Wikipedia describes Akhenaten’s new religion, which imposed on Egypt and which died with him, as “monolatristic, henotheistic, or monotheistic.”

Other ancient Egyptian workers’ skeletons show signs of hard lives, but apparently Amarna’s workers had it the worst.

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