People > Amyrtaeus


Egypt History - Egyptian Chapter Decoration


Amyrtaeus, also known as Amenirdisu, was a native Egyptian ruler who became the only pharaoh of the 28th Dynasty of Egypt. His reign, from 404 to 399 BCE, marked a brief period of independence for Egypt from Persian rule. Amyrtaeus is particularly notable for his successful revolt against the Achaemenid Empire, which temporarily restored Egyptian autonomy. Here is an overview of Amyrtaeus and his reign:


  1. Late Period of Ancient Egypt:

    • The Late Period (664–332 BCE) of ancient Egypt was characterized by significant foreign influence and control, primarily by the Assyrians, Persians, and later the Greeks.
    • Prior to Amyrtaeus's reign, Egypt was under the control of the Achaemenid Persian Empire, which had established the 27th Dynasty following the conquest by Cambyses II.
  2. Family and Lineage:

    • Amyrtaeus was likely a descendant of the Saite line of kings from the 26th Dynasty, although precise details about his lineage are unclear.
    • He is often associated with the city of Sais in the Nile Delta, a significant center of power during the Saite Period.

Reign of Amyrtaeus

  1. Revolt Against Persian Rule:

    • Around 404 BCE, Amyrtaeus led a successful rebellion against the Persian rulers of Egypt. This revolt coincided with a period of internal strife within the Achaemenid Empire, which weakened its control over Egypt.
    • Amyrtaeus capitalized on this instability to rally support from various factions within Egypt, including local leaders and military forces.
  2. Accession to the Throne:

    • After expelling the Persians, Amyrtaeus declared himself pharaoh and established the 28th Dynasty. His accession marked a rare period of native Egyptian rule during the later years of ancient Egyptian history.
    • His reign was centered in the Delta region, particularly in Sais, which had historical significance as a former capital of the 26th Dynasty.

Challenges and Achievements

  1. Consolidation of Power:

    • Amyrtaeus faced the challenge of consolidating his power over a country that had experienced significant foreign domination and internal division.
    • He worked to re-establish Egyptian control and authority, though his reign was marked by ongoing conflicts and political instability.
  2. Limited Building Projects:

    • Due to the brevity and turmoil of his reign, there are few notable building projects or monumental constructions attributed to Amyrtaeus. His focus was primarily on securing and maintaining his rule rather than large-scale architectural achievements.

Downfall and Death

  1. Overthrow:

    • Amyrtaeus's reign lasted only about five years. In 399 BCE, he was overthrown by Nepherites I, who founded the 29th Dynasty. The reasons for his overthrow are not well-documented, but it likely involved political and military conflicts.
    • Nepherites I, who came from the city of Mendes in the Delta, succeeded in capturing and executing Amyrtaeus, thus ending his brief rule.
  2. Death and Burial:

    • Amyrtaeus's exact burial location is unknown, and there are few records detailing his death and the events surrounding his downfall.


  1. Historical Significance:

    • Amyrtaeus's reign is significant as it represents a brief period of Egyptian independence from Persian rule. His successful revolt is a testament to the resilience and determination of native Egyptian leaders to reclaim their sovereignty.
    • His rule is a transitional period in the complex history of Egypt's Late Period, illustrating the persistent internal and external challenges faced by the country.
  2. Cultural Impact:

    • While his reign did not produce significant cultural or architectural advancements, Amyrtaeus's leadership during the revolt against Persia is an important chapter in Egypt's struggle for autonomy.
  3. Archaeological Evidence:

    • Due to the lack of extensive building projects and the brevity of his reign, there is limited archaeological evidence directly associated with Amyrtaeus. Most of what is known about him comes from later historical records and references.


Amyrtaeus, ruling from 404 to 399 BCE, was the sole pharaoh of the 28th Dynasty of ancient Egypt. His reign marked a brief period of independence from Persian rule following a successful revolt. Although his time on the throne was short and characterized by political instability, Amyrtaeus's efforts to reclaim Egyptian sovereignty are significant. His legacy lies in his role as a native ruler who temporarily restored Egyptian autonomy during the Late Period, highlighting the ongoing struggle for control and stability in ancient Egypt.

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