Founder of Manetho's 1st dynasty and unifier of Egypt

Menes was a pharaoh of the first dynasty of ancient Egypt. He lived ca. 3100-3000 BC. He brought together Upper and Lower Egypt to make an empire. He wore the Pschent or double crown: the white crown of Upper Egypt and the red crown of Lower Egypt. He built the city of Memphis and made it the capital.

Narmer Palette

There is extensive archeological evidence that there was a pharaoh named Narmer, but little evidence for Menes.[1] It is now believed that Menes was either Narmer, his predecessor, or Hor-Aha who ruled after him.

More than 2000 years later Manetho, an Egyptian historian, wrote that Menes ruled for 62 years and was killed by a hippopotamus.

An image of Menes holding an ankh is on the frieze on the south wall of the U.S. Supreme Court building.[2]


  • Kinnaer, Jacques. What is Really Known About the Narmer Palette?, KMT: A Modern Journal of Ancient Egypt, Spring 2004.
  • Toby A. H. Wilkinson, Early Dynastic Egypt, Routledge, London/New York 1999, ISBN 0-415-18633-1, 70-71


  1. Gardiner, Alan. Egypt of the Pharaohs. p. 405. Oxford University Press, 1961
  2. "Courtroom Friezes: North and South Walls: Information Sheet." Supreme Court of the United States. [1] Archived 2008-05-09 at the Wayback Machine

Other websitesEdit