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Egypt Through the Ages

First Intermediate Period



The 7th Dynasty marked the beginning of the First Intermediate period. As a consequence of internal strife, the reigns of this and the succeeding 8th Dynasty are rather obscure. It is clear, however, that both ruled from Memphis and lasted a total of only 25 years. By this time the powerful nomarchs were in effective control of their districts, and factions in the south and north vied for power. Under the Heracleopolitan 9th and 10th dynasties, the nomarchs near Heracleopolis controlled their area and extended their power north to Memphis (and even into the delta) and south to Asy?? (Lycopolis). The rival southern nomarchs at Thebes established the 11th Dynasty, controlling the area from Abydos to Elephantine, near Syene (present-day Aswan). The early part of this dynasty, the first of the Middle Kingdom, overlapped the last part of the 10th.