The Meaning of Akhenaton
Akhenaton is an ancient Egyptian name that has been used for centuries. The literal translation of the name is “servant of Aten”, with Aten being the sun god in ancient Egyptian mythology. Akhenaton was also known as Amenhotep IV and was a pharaoh who ruled during the 18th dynasty of Egypt. He is most famous for his religious reforms which included the worship of one god, Aten, instead of many gods.
The Reign of Akhenaton
Akhenaton ascended to the throne in 1353 BC and immediately began to make changes to the traditional religion of Egypt. He abolished the worship of all other gods and declared that only Aten should be worshipped. This was a radical departure from the polytheistic beliefs that had been held by Egyptians for centuries. Akhenaton also moved the capital city from Thebes to a new city called Akhetaten (modern day Amarna).
In addition to his religious reforms, Akhenaton also made changes to art and architecture. He encouraged artists to create works that depicted him and his family in a more naturalistic style than had been seen before. This style became known as Amarna art and it featured more realistic depictions of people and their emotions. Akhenaton also built several temples dedicated to Aten throughout Egypt.
Legacy of Akhenaton
Akhenaton’s reign lasted only 17 years but he left an indelible mark on Egyptian history. His religious reforms were eventually reversed after his death but they laid the groundwork for monotheism in later religions such as Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. His artistic innovations also influenced later generations of artists who sought to capture emotion in their work.
The legacy of Akhenaton lives on today in many ways. His name is still used as a given name in some parts of the world and his influence can be seen in modern art and architecture. He is remembered as a revolutionary leader who sought to bring about change in a time when change was not always welcomed.