Item description for Discoveries: Ramessess II: Greatest of the Pharaohs (Discoveries (Abrams)) by Bernadette Menu...
Outline ReviewThanks to films like The Ten Commandments and The Prince of Egypt, Egyptian Pharaoh Ramesses II (1301-1235 B.C.) is forever seen by the Western world as a heartless, bloodthirsty tyrant who lorded over Hebrew slaves until he was bested by Moses. French scholar Bernadette Menu's small but detailed book sets the record straight about this much-maligned leader, who reigned for an astonishing 66 years as the absolute ruler of a domain stretching from the present-day Sudan to Syria and built great statues bearing his likeness, which continue to inspire awe. "He was blessed with exceptional longevity, was spouse and lover of the most beautiful women of his time, husband to four or five of his own daughters and father to some 100 children," Menu writes. "He was a pious ruler and bold general ... [and] an enthusiastic patron of art and architecture." Through artwork, masonry, and texts by Greek historians and Egyptian scribes who recorded his exploits--and through the research of modern Egyptologists--we discover Ramesses's early successes in foreign policy and diplomacy. There's also the marvel of his massive funeral temple, the Ramesseum, and his eternal resting place in the Valley of the Kings. Menu's exhaustive work and the numerous accompanying photographs illuminate the true character of a misunderstood giant of the ancient world. --Eugene Holley Jr.
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Studio: Harry N. Abrams
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 6.97" Width: 4.93" Height: 0.48" Weight: 0.49 lbs.
Release Date Jun 30, 1999
Publisher Harry N. Abrams
ISBN 0810928701 ISBN13 9780810928701
Reviews - What do customers think about Discoveries: Ramessess II: Greatest of the Pharaohs (Discoveries (Abrams))?
A helpful little companion Oct 19, 2002
The benefits of this series is that they provide a good amount of info for the casual reader, along with great illustrations and useful texts. I got this particular book on Ramesses for my mom who is reading the bestselling historical fiction about him. The illustrations alone are worth the price of the book -- often of the same caliber as those hideously expensive coffee table books. The text is fine, albeit brief... but again these books are primarily for general readers and great in that regard. This book would also be great for younger readers who have been struck by the "Indiana Jones" bug. Interested readers may also wish to check out the Cleopatra book from this same series, which deals with the last gasp of Egypt as an independent power.
Great, concise, factual. Oct 10, 2001
For all who love Egyptology, this little book is great. Very helpful, with lots of clear pictures. A delight!
Value in a small volume Jan 20, 2001
I bought this book after my trip to Egypt. What the other reviewers say is absolutely true- this is a thoroughly enjoyable, well-documented book about Ramses II, his accomplishments (real and self-aggrandized) and greater Egypt at the time, with historic detail that further illustrates the WHYs and HOWs of the Ramses phenomenon, and not pedantic at all. It is also copiously and beautifully illustrated. - So, how come the very low price and my four star rating (instead of five)? This book is about thin pocketbook or field-guide size, one of publisher Harry Abrams' "Discoveries" series, so the sumptious illustrations are quite small, and some eye strain may be necessary to grasp the detail. This book is light enough you can take it on your trip to Egypt. Buy it with the knowledge that this is not your coffee table souvenir book of your once-in-a-lifetime Egypt trip; full size would have earned it five stars plus in my book.
Some Truth about Ramesses Aug 16, 2000
Finally, a book which without being overbearing gives the reader a great overview of the amazing man known as Ramesses II! Well written and enjoyable to read, "Ramesses II, Greatest of the Pharaohs" is a beautifully illustrated guide to the life of one of history's most interesting men. I was very impressed with the attention paid to the gods and the impact they had on the kings of the 19th dynasty, as well as the listing of Ramesses known advisors, sons and wives. All in all, a very enjoyable book for those with an interest in Ramesses and Ancient Egypt.
An excellent overview of the mighty King of Egypt Aug 7, 2000
This is one in a series of books which overviews significant people and events in history. In this book the life and accomplishments of Ramesses II is chronicled and given in good detail. Not only is the book about Ramesses but attention is also give to what an average Egyptian's world was like during the reign of Ramesses II.
The pictures in here are outstanding from Abu Simbel to Piramesse and ultimately Ramesseum, his mortuary temple, the pictures are clear and the colors are excellent. Ramesses life is shown on temple walls, statues and other records. This was truely a great and powerful king. His empire was vast, yet he could govern it with an iron fist if need be. Ramesses's mummy is one of the most photographed mummy's of today, yet I wonder if given life, what he would say and it would be fascinating to listen to his life and accomplishments.
The Egyptian gods are also detailed here, as they were most important in an Egyptian's daily life, from Pharaoh to slave. Also given in the book, is the possible relationship between Moses (Egyptian word for Moses is "Mes") and Ramesses.
Overall, this is a fascinating read and highly recommended to all amatuer and professional Egyptologists.