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A dynastic period spanning the past 3,000 years BC, in which 30 dynasties reigned sovereign. In this long period occur: the Thinita Empire (I-II dynasties until 2650), the Old Kingdom (III-VIII dynasties to about 2200 BC), the First Intermediate Period (IX-X dynasties until around 2000) The Middle Kingdom (XI-XII dynasties until about 1800 BC), the Second Intermediate Period (XIII-XVII dynasties until around 1600 BC), the New Kingdom (XVIII-XX dynasties until about 1000 BC), the Third Period intermediate or Decline (XXI-XXIV dynasties to about 700 BC), the Late Period (XXV-XXX dynasties in the period up to the conquest of Egypt by Alexander the Great: 332 AC).


Intermediate Periods correspond to times of political instability, unrest, wars, and invasions of foreign nations (well, the Hyksos in the Second Intermediate Period). In the Thinita Empire, with its capital Thinis near Thebes, it is made and consolidates the unity of the nation. The Old Kingdom, in Saqqara, Memphis and Giza as major cities, come to the great pyramids. The Middle Kingdom was a time of transition after a period of decline and disorders. The New Kingdom comes the great tombs of the Valley of the Kings and the temples and colossi at Karnak and Luxor, all near Thebes, the capital.




Most of the knowledge we have of the Egyptian medical papyrus have been obtained, including two: the Edwin Smith and Ebers. The first is more than 4.5 meters long, the second has a little over 20 meters. Both were written around 1600, at the end of the Second Intermediate Period or during the XVIII dynasty, the Ebers somewhat later than Smith, and probably come from the same tomb in Thebes. The Edwin Smith Papyrus, named after its first owner, is incomplete. His first translation, made by Breasted, 1930. The papyrus is composed mostly of paper on the wounds. The Ebers Papyrus is a complete text. His first translation, made by Joachim is 1890. This is a compendium of medicine.




The most salient fact of the archaic Egyptian medicine is the separation of religious, magical and empirical elements. There was, therefore, priests, magicians and doctors, and citizens could use one or the other. Today also we pray and do you command, goes to a healer, acupuncturist, chiropractor or doctor. Herodotus, Hippocrates contemporary historian, in his visit to Egypt was impressed of medicine in this country, among other things, the existence of specialists, a type of doctor for each disease he wrote. Among specialists, there was one with the title of Guardian of the Year. The doctors were in the temples and had a hierarchical system range. From lowest to highest were: the doctor, the Chief Medical Officer, Medical Inspector and the Medical Superintendent. Doctors palace had a Senior. Above all was the Medical Staff of Upper and Lower Egypt, a kind of health minister.