Osiride pillar statue of King Senusret I.
Senusret I succeeded his father after a 10-year coregency and brought Kemet to a peak of prosperity. Senusret became coregent in 1918 BC with his aging father, Amenemhet I, who had founded the 12th dynasty. While his father completed his domestic reforms, Senusret undertook the conquest of Nubia, to the south of Kemet, and in the year 30 of his father’s reign he led an expedition against the Libyans in the Western Desert.
According to The Story of Sinuhe, the biographical writings of a court official, Sesostris learned of his father’s assassination while on campaign in Libya. Leaving the army, he hurried to the capital to seize his inheritance. He undertook a political consolidation by disseminating his father’s testament, The Instructions of Amenemhet, a document that stressed his father’s good deeds and the conspirators’ baseness and reaffirmed Senusret’s right to the throne.
Once securely in power, Sesostris continued the conquest of Nubia. Establishing an operational base at Elephantine (opposite modern Aswān), in the year 18 of his reign, he thoroughly subjugated Nubia and established forts with garrisons at strategic points. The governor of Elephantine, the king’s own appointee, became responsible for the new territory. After the war theexploitation of Nubia’s resources began. Gold, copper, amethysts, and diorite were extracted at several sites, and inscriptions by the leaders of expeditions and inspectors attest much activity. During his reign, the King maintained peaceful relations with Palestine and Syria. As shown by The Story of Sinuhe, the king did not profess a desire to acquire territory in Asia, although his emissaries traversed its lands and sought to exert diplomatic pressures. In reality he seems to have conducted campaigns there.
c.a 1971–1926 BC
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