The Dictionary

– U –

UNAS (reigned c. 2375–2345 BC). Last pharaoh of the Fifth Dynasty, buried at Saqqara, near Memphis. A fragment of relief from the causeway of his temple shows a battle, with bearded enemies, either Asiatics or Libyans, being shot by archers using self-bows, or engaged in hand-to-hand combat. Another fragment of relief shows starving Libyans, and a period of famine appears to have forced nomadic peoples on Egypt’s border into the country, possibly resulting in conflict.

URONARTI. Island fortress in the Second Cataract, within signaling distance of Semna and Shalfak. Perhaps begun in the reign of Senusret I, it was completed by the reign of Senusret III. Like most island forts, its overall plan was dictated by the topography, but with an internal grid plan. In this case, the result was a roughly triangular fort with spur walls. The spur wall on the north ran for 230 meters, with bastions on its northern side. The north side of the island was flatter than elsewhere and the point from which attack was most likely. There was a second spur wall on the south side of the fort. The main gate, with towered gatehouse, was in the west wall. A gate in the east wall led to a stairway and the water gate. The accommodation at Uronarti suggests a garrison of between about 112 and 280 men. Its defense needs were between 250–500, or between 375–750, if the spur walls are taken into account.

USERKAF (reigned c. 2494–2487 BC). First pharaoh of the Fifth Dynasty buried at Saqqara, near Memphis. Fragments of the relief decoration from his pyramid temple survive. One of these shows running troops who originally accompanied a ship. Some are dressed in kilts, the others in an apron with three hanging pieces of cloth. There is no explicit evidence for military activities.

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