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Egyptian Classes in Society

Paper Masters custom writes research papers on Egyptian Classes in society in Egypt today and mainly in ancient Egypt. Any one class can be reported on or the entire caste system can be overviewed in a research paper that is written by a historian in ancient cultures.

Egyptian classes in ancient Egypt consisted of the following people, from most important to the least important:

  1. Priests, Royal Family and Pharohs
  2. Officers of the State and Officers of the Armed Forces
  3. Scribes
  4. Artists and Craftsmen
  5. Laborers and Peasants

Daily life for most Egyptians is remarkably analogous to early 1900s ghetto life in America.  Most ancient towns consisted of modest houses cramped together along narrow alleys and were often full of children and families.  Since there were no sanitation facilities, disposing of household garbage, battling rodents and fetching water were typically the daily concerns of the Egyptian household. Women were generally regulated to domestic tasks, such as fetching water for the household, washing clothes and housecleaning; while men often sought work outside of the home, as construction sites and brickyards were often key employers.

Egyptian Classes in Society

The above description is a propos when describing the life of the peasants and laborers—which were the vast majority of the Egyptian population.  However, different classes in Egyptian society enjoyed significantly different lifestyles than that known to the peasant. Slightly above the peasants and laborers were the artists and craftsmen. While many historians have hypothesized that the monuments of ancient Egypt were built by the blood and sweat of expendable slaves, new evidence suggests that the artists and craftsmen were largely responsible for many of Egypt’s great works of art. Because the artists and craftsmen were only required to successfully transfer images from one place to another, they were not required to be educated and their work schedule was significantly short of demanding.  One author writing on the subject notes:

It is sobering to learn that these artisans worked for four hours in the morning before knocking off for a meal and a nap. The rest of their working day consisted of another four-hour stint in the afternoon.  Even so, absenteeism was common.

Another step-up from the artists and craftsmen were the scribes. Scribes were considered professionals in Egyptian society and were educated beginning at a very young age.  Scribes were often public servants who kept numerous records, including legal texts, letters and mathematical and surgical treatises.  In addition, scribes often went on to become poets, writers, priests and medical doctors.  The role of the scribe was highly revered in Egyptian society and scribes were often seen as the lynchpin of a cohesive society.

Moving up the societal hierarchy once again, were the officers of the state and armed forces.  These two groups of society were responsible for making laws and enforcing them, respectively.  While neither group was as revered as the scribes in ancient Egyptian society, both were respected and dully accorded with in the proper manner.

Above these classes in society were the priests, the royal family and the pharaoh. While the pharaoh himself was considered to be the High Priest of all of the Gods of Egypt, the priests that were appointed him were assistants utilized to discharge essential but subordinate functions. Although the royal family held prestige and honor and commanded respect by the citizens of Egypt, a majority of the duties of the state, including the religious rituals, often fell solely in the hands of the pharaoh.

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