Neferkare Setepenre Ramesses IX (also written Ramses and Rameses) (1124 BC – 1106 BC) was the eighth king of the Twentieth Dynasty. He was the third longest serving king of this Dynasty after Ramesses III and Ramesses XI. According to the evidence of Papyrus Turin 1932+1939, Ramesses IX enjoyed a reign of 18 Years and 4 months and died in his Year 19, Ist month of Peret between day 17 and 27. (Wente & Van Siclen: pp.235 & 261) His throne name, Neferkare Setepenre, means "Beautiful Is The Soul of Re, Chosen of Re." (Clayton: p.167)
His reign is best known for a Year 16 tomb robbery papyrus report--called the Abbott/Leopold II-Amherst Papyrus--when several royal and noble tombs in the Western Theban necropolis were found to be robbed including that of a 17th Dynasty king, Sobekemsaf I. An inspection, led by Paser, Mayor of Eastern Thebes or Karnak, fingered Paweraa, the Mayor of West Thebes, as being either culpable in this wave of robberies or negligent in his duties of protecting the Valley of the Kings from incursions by tomb robbers. However, it proved impossible for Paweraa to be officially charged with the crimes due to the circumstantial evidence, and according to the Egyptologist Joyce Tyldesley, Paser disappears from sight soon after he filed his report. Ramesses IX brought a measure of stability to Egypt after the wave of tomb robberies. He also paid close attention to Lower Egypt and built a substantial monument at Heliopolis.
Most of his building works centre on the sun temple centre of Heliopolis in Lower Egypt where the most significant monumental works of his reign are situated. (Grimal: p.289) However, he also decorated the wall to the north of the Seventh Pylon in the Temple of Amun-Re at Karnak. (Grimal, p.289) Finally, his name has been found at Dakhla Oasis and Gezer at Palestine which may suggest a residual Egyptian influence in Asia; the majority of the New Kingdom Empire's possessions in Canaan and Syria had long been lost to the Sea Peoples by his reign.
Ramesses IX's son, Mentuherkhepeshef, did not live to succeed his father, though Montuherkhopshef has one of the most beautiful tombs in the Valley of the Kings (designated KV19). The throne was assumed by Ramesses X whose precise relationship to Ramesses IX is unclear. The tomb of Ramesses IX, (KV6), has been open since antiquity, as is evidenced by the presence of Roman and Greek graffiti on its tomb walls. It is quite long in the tradition of the 'syringe' tunnels of the later 19th and 20th Dynasties and lies directly opposite the tomb of Ramesses II in the Valley of the Kings; this fact may have influenced Ramesses IX's choice of location for his final resting place due to it proximity to this great Pharaoh. (Clayton: p.170) In 1881, the mummy of Ramesses IX was found in the Deir el-Bahri cache (DB320).
- Peter Clayton, Chronicle of the Pharaohs, Thames & Hudson Ltd, 1994
- Nicolas Grimal, A History of Ancient Egypt, Blackwell Books, (1992),
- E.F. Wente & C.C. Van Siclen, "A Chronology of the New Kingdom" pp.217-261 in Studies in Honor of George R. Hughes, (SAOC 39) 1976, ISBN 0-918986-01-X