The Old Kingdom (about 2755-2255 BC) spanned five centuries of rule by the 3rd through the 6th dynasties. The capital was in the north, at Memphis, and the ruling monarchs held absolute power over a strongly unified government. Religion played an important role; in fact, the government had evolved into a theocracy, wherein the pharaohs, as the rulers were called, were both absolute monarchs and, possibly, gods on earth.
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