CHAPTER 2 The Matriarchale Cultures of the Ancient World
From the content:
- The Search for the History of Matriarchy was and is not popular
- Matriarchy is a Historical Fact
- Ninety-eight percent of Human History was Matriarchal
and the World was at Peace
- The Secret of Peacefulness
- They worshipped and deified the earliest Mother of Mankind: The Primeval Mother – The Great Goddess
- A Sensational Discovery in the Middle East points to an early Connection with Egypt: The Iranian Aratta
- The Art of Iranian Aratta appears in the Early Days of Dynastic Egypt
The Search for the History of Matriarchy was and is not popular
»Prehistory research is the biggest challenge for the Egyptian archaeology of the future«,
says British prehistorian James Mellaart, accentuating that it was hard to believe that the fertile Nile valley should not have played any role in the period between 9500 and 4500, in a time that showed so many significant developments among its eastern and western neighbors. In his opinion, this is »the biggest – challenge for the Egyptian archaeology of the future« (Mellaart 1975, p. 271). Comparative research of North Africa, Near- and Middle East would attribute to a more comprehensive understanding of Egyptian history. The archaeologist and prehistoric scholar Elise J. Baumgartel complained that notable scientists, such as the British archaeologist Max E. L. Mallowan, who spent decades researching the Near East, or Henri Frankfort, an expert on the Near East and Egypt, who had, in their comparative studies worked out the connection of the cultures of Crete and Anatolia in the west, and Assyria and Mesopotamia to Persia and India to the east. But they had not taken Egypt into consideration. (Baumgartel 1947, p. 53; see Wolf www: ›Das matriarchale Königinnentum Ägyptens – vor der Eroberung‹ The Matriarchal Queenship of Egypt – Before the Conquest)
In this context, Wolfgang Helck admits: »Just the excavations of Çatal Höyük in Anatolia or Jericho changed decisively the picture of the period before 3000 B.C.E. We suddenly recognize the existence of large cities from a few thousand years before the beginning of Egyptian or Sumerian civilization, which were capable of great achievements, who knew the division of labor and showed clear signs of a reflected culture. « (W. Helck 1979, p. 1)
When looking at the cultures of the Near and Middle East of those time we have to proceed from a comparative perspective. Already in 1950, Alexander Scharff appealed that the history and reconstruction of Egypt’s historical data should no longer be treated alone, but include the neighboring cultures. »New excavations could bring much light here. But significant larger excavations with this objective are not known so far. Only minor coincidences in connection with other excavations are occasionally talked about. But that is all«, writes German literary historian and academic journalist Heide Streiter-Buscher (1989, p. 148). And she adds:
»Egyptian prehistory research was and is not popular! «
Reasons for this most likely lie in the fact that patriarchy does not want to acknowledge the existence of a peaceful, prosperous matriarchal power. Nor that this power was destroyed by warlike, white men who have been waging wars since 5000 years. In 1966, egyptologist Walter Wolf recognized that research was simply not carried out earlier on the predynastic culture, even though there was material in abundance, not at all hard to find. He attributes this to the focus on translations of written documents, resulting in a negligence of much evidence without inscriptions (Wolf 1966, p. 18 f). The fact is that the findings are deeply irritating to both, scientists and theologians. From Emery, we know that after the first excitement of the discoveries of early dynastic graves by de Morgan, Flinders Petrie, and Quibell, the interest of scholars subsided and research concerning the period diminished. Strangely enough, these discoveries were not followed up by others. (Emery 1961, p. 26) He regrets, that despite the increasing knowledge of this distant, unclear period of Egyptian history, »there still remain many features on which egyptologists are not in agreement and in the various works dealing with the subject, the student is often confused by the conflicting viewpoints of authorities who only too often fail to present the evidence for and against their conclusion. « (Emery 1961, p. 27 f). Twenty years later, in 1980, prehistorian Michael A. Hoffman, stated: »Ironically, despite the 150-year existence of the science of Egyptology and widespread public interest in the spectacular discoveries, scholarly writing, and occasionally heated feuds of archaeologists, no comprehensive account of Egyptian prehistory has appeared to date… Egypt’s prehistoric past is generally portrayed as a series of disjointed segments whose story is an unimportant prelude to the age of the pharaohs. « (Hoffman 1979, p. xiii)
In the six-volume ›Lexikon der Ägyptologie‹ (LÄ Lexicon of Egyptology) from 1977, consisting of 7838 pages, only seven and a half pages are dedicated to the prehistoric and Early History. The preface states: »If, on the one hand, prehistory should not have been overlooked, on the other hand, it could not have been treated in as much detail as it deserves as part of a human-historical epoch. « (LÄ,I,V) A substantiation of this statement is lacking. In this context, I refer to my early investigation of the question: What Was Before the Pharaohs ? (see ›Was war vor den Pharaonen – Die Entdeckung der Urmütter Ägyptens‹ 1994 What Was Before the Pharaohs – The Discovery of the Primal Mothers of Egypt, – free Download from author’s website – in German).
Archaeologist Elise J. Baumgartel explained in her works that the culture of the Neolithic Badari and Nagada I periods (about 5000–3500) is, in comparison, so different from the subsequent Nagada II period (about 3500–3100) that the later one could not have evolved from the earlier one. Therefore, it could not have been a further development; rather, it is about a completely new culture. She writes that it seems that the homeland of the invaders was not far from that of the Sumerians, with whom the people of the Nagada I era had already merchandised (Baumgartel 1955, p. 49). And further, she emphasizes (1960, p. 154):
»The upheaval in the Nagada II era was a symbiosis of two civilizations,
one African and one from the Near East. Here lies the ›key to understanding
the beginning of dynastic Egypt, which was not a cultural, but a political event. «
The topic remained unpopular and was mentioned only marginally. The first and foremost question of the origin and provenance of the first rulers of Egypt was never asked and thus the theme was excluded from the discussion. With today’s knowledge of other great prehistoric cultures, Egypt can no longer be studied in isolation. There can be no doubt about its closely links with the Neolithic history of Africa, the Near and the Middle East, with Mesopotamia Iran, the Indus Valley and India.
The striking innovations that took place during the Nagada II period in Egypt and simultaneously in Mesopotamia were no coincidence. Archaeological evidence is confusingly similar. For all historical and geographical divergences, it is a theological aspect that forms the common basis of the conquered countries: the invention of the ›divine‹ kingship and the creation of male gods. From then on »human authority and power, which demanded absolute submission and unconditional obedience, was justified by a higher, ›divine‹ power« (Mumford 1974, p. 210).
One may wonder why and to what extent, an exploration of prehistoric and protohistoric cultures, the gathering and publishing of those distant events that occurred thousands of years ago, could be of concern to us today. However, the example of the deplorable condition of the world, given the patriarchal misery we live in, still shows the influence of those seemingly so distant eras. It turns out that the past is not past. We are faced with the undeniable fact of a continuum of those dramatic times when matriarchy was destroyed and became replaced by patriarchy.
Interest in this topic seems to rekindle in recent years. Towards the end of the 1990’s, after decades of disinterest, there seemed to be a new interest among scientists for this topic, which was completely unexpected. »A century after the discovery of Early Dynastic Egypt, scholarly interest in the formative period of Egyptian civilization is probably stronger than at any time over the last one hundred years. An unprecedented number of archaeological missions from a wide variety of countries are excavating throughout Egypt at sites with Predynastic and/or Early Dynastic material«, writes Toby Wilkinson (1999, p. 24) The research results of the long-underestimated and devalued early scientists seem to find a broader acceptance again. Even insiders like Wilkinson, are amazed at this new interest. However, there is a danger in this work, which until then has been successfully avoided: if the prehistoric times of Egypt and those of the Neolithic neighboring cultures are included in the historical consideration, the idealized image of the overrated dynasty founders on the Nile will dangerously stagger. One would then finally have to admit that Egypt – like its highly developed neighbors – had an evolved great culture long before the ›divine‹ kingdom and did not slip ›like the chick from the egg‹. Only by ignoring this important epoch, the myth of the grandiose pharaohs/kings can be upheld. For the perpetuation of this myth, the proof of a matriarchal prehistoric epoch has so far been denied, and for this, even a historical fraud has been accepted. But let’s wait and see, because as Max Planck said:
»A new scientific recognition usually cannot be presented in such a way
that its opponents are convinced. Rather, they are dying out, and a re-growing
generation will be familiar with the truth right from the start. « (Max Planck)
Matriarchy is a Historical Fact
»Men have a better life, where women are in power«, says Argentine doctor
and journalist Ricardo Coler. In his book ›The Paradise Is Female‹
he reports about his »fascinating journey into matriarchy«
of the Mosuo in a remote area of China.
Mao Zedong sought to eradicate the matriarchy of the Mosuo people, which »kept an active love life, ignored the much-acclaimed institution of marriage, and exempted the figure of the father from any importance. « For the conceptualization of the feudal-patriarchal ideology, Mao used state-political power, the power of kinship, religious violence and the power of the husbands to form the embodiment of the entire feudal-patriarchal system. His endeavours remained unsuccessful: when the politico-military commissioners withdrew and the pressure lifted, everyone returned to the matriarchal habits. Not only did the leaders not manage to change the situation, on the contrary: Many soldiers were attracted to the young Mosuo women and integrated into matriarchy. (Ricardo Coler 2005, Spiegel 27.5.2009, see also the documentary film of Uschi Madeisky: ›Where the free women live‹ on DVD and ›Joseph Rock discovers the Mosuo women’s kingdom of Mother-Goddess Gemu – Matriarchy, 1924 China‹ on Youtube).
Many more matriarchally organized peoples exist beside the Mosuo, the Minangkabau in Indonesia and the Khasi in India are the best known. German matriarchal researcher Heide Göttner-Abendroth states, »today there are no more than 20 of them, that we would call fully matriarchal, but there are many more societies with pronounced matriarchal traces and patterns. « Archaeologist Marija Gimbutas, in her comprehensive body of work ›The Civilization of the Goddess‹, writes:
»The generative basis of any civilization is its degree of artistic creation,
aesthetic achievements, intangible values and freedom that make life meaningful
and livable, as well as a balanced relationship between the sexes. «
British social anthropologist Robert Briffault (1876–1948), best known for his book ›The Mothers. A study of the origins of sentiments and institutions‹ (1927), demonstrated the high probability, that prehistoric society, was most likely strictly matriarchal. »It is hard to escape the cogency of his arguments, for they are based upon an almost overwhelming accumulation of facts. They show that those primeval concepts still condition our own ways of thinking and doing things, so that ›the societal characters of the human mind‹ all seem to go back ›to the functions of the female and not to those of the male. Thus, it appears that man [males], in his remote infancy, was by no means the lord of creation that he has since become. « (H. L. Mencken ›Treatise on the Gods‹ Wikipedia) Back then, the succession was matrilineal. Egyptologist J.H. Breasted reports: »As with many other peoples, the natural succession went through the eldest daughter, although this could occasionally be changed by a special will. The closest blood ties existed with the mother’s family, and the natural protector of a boy – even in front of his own father – was his mother’s brother. « (1954, p. 69)
»Matriarchy is the foundation of the principle of universal freedom and equality,
peace and loving humanity. It is also the foundation of thoughtful concern for material
well-being and earthly happiness. « (Erich Fromm)
The wonderful legacy left by Stone Age people in form of petroglyphs, ornate artifacts, painted ceramics and female statuettes testifies the sensitivity of the matriarchal era. Emerging conflicts and problems were obviously solved with intelligence. Matriarchal people did not waste life energy and prosperity in the invention and manufacture of weapons and the killing of other people and they did not believe in waging war, all of which was a precondition for peace. Archaeological research has shown how important it is to go back to the origins of patriarchy in order to fathom, understand, and prove the existence of peace during previous matriarchal times: The absence of signs of poverty, distress and misery is evidence of their high intelligence and humanity. An accumulation of wealth or personal possessions could not be observed anywhere in matriarchal societies. There was no social or gender hierarchy. Social psychologist Erich Fromm notes that the economic differences must have been so insignificant that they could hardly arouse envy. On the contrary, the way of life promoted cooperation and peaceful coexistence. »There was no basis on which the desire to exploit others could have arisen. In a society where there is no basis for such exploitation economically and socially, the idea would be absurd to take advantage of another’s physical or psychic powers for one’s own benefits. The impulse to dominate others could scarcely develop. « (Fromm 1974, p. 142 f) British archaeologist Leonard Woolley, best known for his excavation at Ur in Mesopotamia, writes: »Strangely enough, there were never any weapons, and in none of the ancient cities of the Near East were found any sign of human strife or human violence. « Archaeological evidence confirms that the oldest Sumerian cities were demonstrably not protected by walls. The same was noticed in prehistoric Old Europe. H. J. Massingham writes dryly about the prehistoric inhabitants of Britain: »They had no borders, no fortresses, no weapons, and no warrior class, for they needed none. « (1936, p. 217) But this utmost important fact remains hidden from us, is kept a secret. Instead we learn: »War was always here. Before man was, war waited for him. « A certain Cormac McCarthy and war-enthusiast quoted this nonsense. Gun fools and war profiteers parroted it, but it is a lie, a very big lie. Quite the contrary is a fact:
Ninety-eight Percent of Human History was Matriarchal
and the World was at Peace
Leading archaeologist Harald Meller of the State Museum for Prehistory in Halle (at Saale, Germany) was the initiator and director of a special exhibition: ›War – an Archaeological Search for Clues‹ (Halle 2015/2016). He announced the result of his years of research on public television (3sat science program ›Scobel‹ November 12, 2015) with these words: »There were no wars in 98 percent of human history!« Surprisingly, the present guests, three other scientists, did not respond and did not discuss the sensational news. They stayed cool, remained untouched; showed neither interest, nor astonishment about this information. They obviously were unaffected. As if the idea of a world without war, without suffering, pain, misery, need, and all the terrible consequences of war is beyond their imagination and interest!
»Emotions are banned from all disciplines –
because of a reputed scientificity and objectivity. « (Gisela Weber)
Although science has spread and represented in every school textbook the idea that wars have ›always existed‹ ever since ›mankind has been in existence‹, with the new findings, this old idea is now exposed as heresy and in urgent need of being adjusted. With such scientists, who ignore the sensational news of a peaceful epoch in prehistoric times, peace will prospectively not be possible and the world will not be changed for the better. For the German press, this startling statement of archaeology was not worth another note. »The achievements of science, technology and computer science influence and dominate us. We believe that our thinking is realistic when it is free from emotions. But thinking without feeling«, says psychoanalyst and social critic Arno Gruen, »leads to an illusory world of abstractions. It makes us unable to perceive our reality immediately and compassionately. By abstract thinking, i.e. through the cognitive, the empathic in us will increasingly be displaced. In this way we are moving further and further away from the feeling of being connected to life. « (See Arno Gruen 1997)
The Secret of Peacefulness
Peace, the remarkable love for peace of matriarchal peoples, and the absence of war, is one of the greatest achievements of matriarchal civilization. The natural authority of the mothers suggests that the matriarchs provided secureness, cohesion, well-being, and assurance. In this way, they guided their children to harmony and tolerance, and set limits to the emergence of aggression. Matriarchal clans do not know marriage in a patriarchal sense. Daughters and sons stay together in the blood clan of the mother for their entire lives. As we know from reports of anthropologists, ethnologists and archaeologists, and confirmed by the example of Mosuo in China, love relationships are lived in so-called ›walking marriages‹. This means that male lovers visit their loved ones at night, disappear again at dawn and live and work in their own maternal clan. The relationships of a couple may be short or long lasting. There are no other claims outside of love and sexuality on any side, e.g. neither monogamy nor possession. Both men and women can enter into multiple relationships simultaneously. Even though the men are fathers of the children of the women they visited, they do not result in material, economic, social, moral or religious claims or rights and have no consequences whatsoever. Children were safely cared for in the matriarchal clan. There is no illegitimacy of any children; all children belong to the mother. The couple separates when they no longer love each other, what traditional scholars judged as a ›comparative promiscuity in sexual relations‹.
There is little jealousy and no reason for strife, so-called domestic violence often the case in patriarchal, nuclear families, does not exist. Freedom, autonomy, self-determination and the absence of religious restriction, of sexual control, of prudishness and hypocritical morality are the characteristics of love relations in matriarchy. Women are self-determined beings who have the human right to autonomously dispose over their own bodies. This autonomy has far-reaching consequences. Women followed their maternal instincts, deciding for themselves on their desired number of children, and they were never alone: every member of the mother clan, women and men, took on responsibility for the children. The maternal uncle, i.e. the brother of the mother, is usually described as important; he performs the social function of the male part in matriarchal cultures. An example of what the world may have looked like in matriarchy, and how indigenous peoples of today still see the world, is described by researcher Jean Liedloff in her ethnological studies during several stays with the Yequana Indians in Venezuela. Liedloff was impressed by the happiness and peaceful harmony of these people. She describes the Yequana Indians as well-balanced, fortunate, content, happy, self-aware and without inner aggression. She never heard people quarrel and never heard babies screaming. The secret of this idyll: The Yequanas educate their children completely without repression. In the first year of life, infants are kept on the body 24 hours a day, so that there is always close physical contact with the mother or another person. The needs of babies are always and immediately satisfied. In this way, the child experiences the world as a loving and safe place and feels protected, secure and shielded.
Until 5000 years ago, we can not find a single male god!
Only the Great Goddess was venerated. »Without any doubt,
the earliest deity in human history was a great Goddess«, writes
Italian archaeologist Gabriele Rossi Osmida (›Dea Madre‹).
They Worshipped and Deified the Earliest Mother of Mankind:
The Primeval Mother – The Great Goddess
From the Paleolithic to the Neolithic and the beginning of Bronze Age we find picture works and sculptures that suggest the worship of a Great Goddess. In the 7th millennium, the number of religious symbols multiplied. »Evidence arose in abundance, which allows a deciphering of the iconography of the Goddess. « (Marija Gimbutas 1996, p. 222) As far as we can trace back the prehistory of humanity, the visible expression of a religious attitude was the worldwide worship of the Goddess, known under countless names and appearing in numerous forms. The belief that humans are born of a Great Female Ancestor – a Magna Mater – and are reborn after death, was a matter of course for matriarchal peoples, it was an image of a true reality for them. The belief in a universal creator Goddess and the power of a female creatress was real, descriptive, vivid, immanent, natural, inherent, recognizable, tangible and irrefutable to all. It was visible in the belief of women as birth-givers of new life, visible in the cycle of nature, in the life-cycle of becoming and passing away. Thus, divinity was feminine. The religious awareness was integrated into domestic life. Splendid sanctuaries or monumental buildings did not yet exist.
People respected the wisdom, power and dignity of women.
»One of the characteristic features of the Neolithic settlements is the
central role of the mother in social structure and religion. « (Erich Fromm)
A sensational Discovery in the Middle East
points to an Early Connection with Egypt:
The Iranian Aratta
We owe one of the greatest finds of the 4th millennium, which is also significant for the early history of Egypt, to a coincidence. In the year 2000, a flooding of the Halil Rud River near Jiroft, in the southern Iranian province of Kerman, revealed traces of a lost, great early civilization. Massive artifacts suddenly appeared on the black market for antiquities before the Iranian authorities became aware of this and intervened. The Iranian archaeologist, Youssef Madjidzadeh, who examined the first artworks of the smuggler’s goods, was stunned: he was well-familiar with the artifacts. They had been found at various excavation sites several thousand miles apart. He said:
»I saw something that did not exist in Mesopotamia.
Something much more refined than the Mesopotamian art. «
»In 2007, Majidzadeh presented a seminar in Kerman entitled ›Jiroft, the Cradle of Oriental Civilization‹. During the lecture, he said: ›The history of civilization in Jiroft dates back to 2700 BCE and the third millennium civilization is the missing link of the chain of civilizations which archaeologists have long sought. « He also stated: »We do not deny the Mesopotamian civilization, but we believe that the Jiroft culture is of equal importance to the Mesopotamian. The only difference is that the Mesopotamian civilization had cultural continuity while the Jiroft civilization suffered from ups and downs for natural reasons. Thus, it emerged in a certain period and was buried at a later time. « Youssef Madjidzadeh is convinced that this area on the Halil Rud must be the mythical city of Aratta, which he had long suspected to be in the vast mountainous landscape of the southwestern Iranian plateau. Aratta was known only through the Sumerian poem ›Enmerkar and the Lord of Aratta‹. Neither the location nor the remains of Aratta and this exceptionally prosperous region in eastern Sumer had been found until this flood. The city-state of Aratta owed its wealth to abundant treasures of gold, silver, electrum, and precious and semiprecious stones, and was favored by its location at the center of the extensive, lucrative trade network. This had aroused the envy and greed of the Indo-European invaders, who saw in Aratta’s wealth their own source of precious goods. They conquered and subjugated the flourishing city, just like it had happened in Egypt. Everywhere they destroyed the matriarchal structure, murdered the ruling queens and enslaved the people. Something similar happened everywhere, caused by the same invaders from the north, the Indo-European cattle breeders.
The Art of Iranian Aratta appears in the Early Days of Dynastic Egypt
»The archaeological research of the Near East and Europe has brought to light
cultures that have advanced thousands of years ahead of Ancient Egypt. «
Egyptologist Wildung mentions, among others, the Hassuna culture of northern Mesopotamia and the perfection of its stone processing, »which was only achieved in Egypt 2000 years later at the end of the 4th millennium. « (Wildung 1981, pp. 7 f) The findings of Jiroft make it clear: It was not the Sumerians who had invaded the Two-River-Region, who are erroneously praised as ›culture bringers‹, who created the earliest works of art in Mesopotamia and Egypt – it was the women and men of Iranian Aratta.
Stone vases of Aratta, found in Egypt (after W.C. Hayes, 1953, p. 23)
Until Aratta was discovered in 2000, it was not possible to explain the ›quantum leap‹ of the art of stone working from the period of upheaval and the 1st and 2nd dynasties found in Egypt. Now it is known that it first came through trade routes, then conquerors brought along the manufacturers of art, the highly skilled stonemasons and goldsmiths, from the Iranian Aratta. Egyptologist Kurt Lange admiringly states: »Everything is there at once: jug, bowl, cup, plate, dish, basin, vessel, goblet … And all that is carried out with consummate perfection, unparalleled aristocratic forms, in the most beautiful colored hard stones, as they appear to us only in exceptional cases« (Lange 1952, p. 23).
The art of stone cutters from Aratta brought forth thousands of decorated stone vessels made of different selected stones. Stamp and cylinder seals were found with motifs and forms of extraordinary diversity and all were executed to the highest perfection. The American stone carving specialist, Holly Pittman of the University of Pennsylvania, sees in Aratta’s art, a proof of the unique talent, creativity and the phenomenal imagination of artisans with motifs she has never encountered before. Madjidzadeh added:
»The culture of Aratta was developed long before the Mesopotamian
culture and has influenced the latter in numerous fields. «
Directed by the French filmmaker Olivier Julien, who accompanied an archaeological research team to the Jiroft district, created the remarkable documentary ›Aratta‹ (Arte TV). Julien said: »The scientific community is aware that the discovery in Jiroft must challenge and revise the commonly held assumption that the cradle for all civilizations is in Mesopotamia. « Jiroft/Aratta shows clearly: It was not the Sumerians who immigrated to Mesopotamia, who are repeatedly praised as ›cultural bringers‹, who created the earliest works of art in Mesopotamia and Egypt, but the craftswomen and craftsmen of Aratta. »We are facing an international challenge«, emphasizes Madjidzadeh. »It’s about the history of the development of the first human cultures and civilizations. « As we can see now, history does not begin with Sumer, as Samuel Noah Kramer, one of the world’s foremost sumerologists, believed. Rather, the beginning of history originates in the rich cities of the Neolithic matriarchal period. (Ref: Youssef Madjidzadeh, ›The Land of Aratta‹, JNES 35, 1976, TV documentary ›Aratta‹ by Olivier Julien, Richard Covington, ›Saudi Aramco World‹, September-October 2004, pp. 2-11, Samuel Noah Kramer ›History Begins at Sumer‹ 1981)
Greenish stone basket originating from the Iranian Aratta, found in Egypt (Museum Cairo)
Stone carving art was not known in Egypt during early times. That is why Flinders Petrie drew attention to the foreign stone art objects in Egypt. Nothing was known about Aratta at the time of Petrie, when he already noticed – long before the discovery of Jiroft – that art objects, such as the basket of green-black slate must have come from the wider area of southwestern Iran. The material is striking: many artefacts are made of this greenish black chlorite slate, which is exactly the same as the masterfully crafted palettes from late predynastic time around 3000, depicting mostly cruel, sanguinary scenes e.g. the Battlefield- and the Narmer Palette. In fact, it is clearly the art of Aratta, but only a few scientists believed Petrie’s thesis. It took another 80 years until the kingdom of Aratta was discovered and Petrie’s assumption was confirmed. However, to this day, no egyptologist believes him, or is simply ignorant about the facts. W.B. Emery too, was astonished about the striking artistic changes in Prehistoric Egypt, he wrote: »A new art came to Egypt, and although many authorities see in it an unbroken development from that of the predynastic age, I think there is overwhelming evidence of the incursion into the Nile valley, in the period immediately prior to the Unification, of something entirely new. « (Emery 1961, p. 165).
Since the early dynastic period, the characteristic art objects of Aratta are present in large quantities in Egypt. Luxurious crockery, bowls, vases, cylinder seals, mace heads, created from any kind of soft and hard rock, rose quartz or rock crystal, all of which have been produced with exceptional technical skill. In the underground galleries of the step pyramid of Djoser in Saqqara »thousands of vases, bowls, cups, and dishes were found. They testify to a wealth of forms and materials and a quality of unparalleled implementation« (Emery 1961).
Djoser was the first king of the 3rd dynasty, he reigned from 2720 to 2700. Djoser/Djeser is not a birth or proper name; his Horus name is ›Netjeri-chet‹; Djoser is also transcribed as Zo-Sar/Ze-ser, which certainly is a honorary title and denotes his rank. Ser/Sar corresponds to the Indo-Aryan princely title Sar, Tsar, Iranian Kay-sar, Great King, Gothic Kaisar, Latin Cae-Sar Emperor, Sumerian Sar, King, Prince. Zer/Ser/Sar/Zar designates also in Egypt a prince or so-called ›nobleman‹
Amethyst vase, about 3200 (CC-BY-NC-SA.
Museum and Papyrus Collection, Berlin
In the catalog of the Egyptian Museum Berlin we read about this beautiful, artistically accomplished vase: »Since the ancient Egyptian artisan of the pre- or early-dynastic period had not yet found the right material and the form appropriate for the content of a vessel, he had to experiment. From this time of searching comes the illustrated vessel, which is still completely untypical. « (1989, p. 6) But we are more in agreement with W.B. Emery, who was convinced that this culture did not come from a phase of experimentation, but must have been preceded by a fairly long period of development. Like kind is found neither in Mesopotamia nor in Egypt. Egypt only later found its way into an independent art style, which then – in accordance with the rigid state leadership – remained unchanged for nearly 3000 years. Emery noted that all the stonework from the time of the upheaval and the beginning of the dynastic period were artistically perfected products of a fully developed craftsmanship; whether it was vessels, cylinder seals or the portraiture of large-scale sculptures. He wondered, »how could they have achieved such incredible accuracy that no deviation from a perfect circle could be realized? How did they manage to make tubular pitchers from rock crystal, whose walls are not thicker than a millimeter? « The female and male artists of the stone carving art from Aratta may also have been the crafts people of the wonderful, artistically unsurpassable reliefs of the Noble Tombs of the Old Kingdom in Saqqara and the artistic hieroglyphs carved in stone. Still three thousand years later, Iranian artists created magnificent works of art. The art studio of King Darius in Persepolis had 1348 artisans, probably many women among them. They were employed under the guidance of a woman. The copius abduction of Ancient Near Eastern women to Egypt is a well-known fact, with a preference on beautiful and artistic women who were captured and ended up in harems. Thus, the conjecture comes as no surprise:
In Egypt the death mask of Tutankhamun was created by Women of the Harem. Where else, one would have to ask. This work was only possible in the fortified temple palaces. Women were shielded from the outside, they were well protected and guarded from thieves and insurgents. Many talented women goldsmiths and silversmiths must have worked in the workshops of the harem. Special talents or art skills that could be put to use were part of the coveted commodity of women. To this day, the artistic contribution of women is massively underestimated by patriarchal scientists. It is time to question their narrow-mindedness. The time has come to finally research and acknowledge ›Herstory‹. And this begins with the exploration of prehistory.