Contributions to the law of succession in Ancient Egypt

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Dokumentart: PhDThesis
Date: 2021-08-01
Language: English
Faculty: 5 Philosophische Fakultät
Department: Asien- und Orientwissenschaften
Advisor: Allam, Schafik (Prof. Dr.)
Day of Oral Examination: 2021-07-09
DDC Classifikation: 340 - Law
Other Keywords: Recht im alten Ägypten
Immobilien und persönliches Eigentum
materielle Sachen
immaterielle Sachen
Frauen im alten Ägypten
succession law
woman in ancient Egypt
Law in ancient Egypt
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This Dissertation dealt with the law of succession in Ancient Egypt, and is composed of two parts. The second part is a Catalogue. In this part, I have collected the legislative texts and other sources and designated them as the prime evidence of this study. These documents are arranged in chronologic¬al order. They are 11 tomb inscriptions, 12 papyri, 10 stelae, 20 ostraca, one statue inscription, two clay tablets, and one ceramic bowl. In addition to the demotic Papyrus Mattha, which dates back to c. 250 BCE. It is one of the prime sources of intestate succession. The first part of my work consists of three chapters: the first deals with the definition of the types of property bequeathed in pharaonic Egypt. I discussed the Egyptian terminology for property, in its definition as inheritance. After that I looked at the properties passed from the testator to his heir; these can be movables or immovables. Egyptologists affirm that the Egyptians could bequeath immovables like land and architectural structures as well as movables like pieces of furniture, clothes, tools, grains, etc. Yet no Egyptologist has engaged in an earnest endeavor to organize these items into either category. So one of the purposes of this chapter was to give an account of the items of property. In the second chapter, I studied the elements and means of succession. First, I shed some light on the family members and determined the role of each in the inheritance process. Then I examined the systems of succession law developed in pharaonic times: there were the customary intestate succession and the testate succession (by way of testamentary disposition). I explored how inheritance was divided among family members at the different stages of pharaonic history. The third chapter of my work deals with litigation and disinheritance and consisted of three sections. The first concerned the statutory bodies processing with inheritance matters and their tasks when quarrels flare-up between the heirs; that is besides the legal proceedings taken by the testator, heirs, and trustee in the succession process. The second section provided an analysis of prominent examples of disputes over inheritance across time. Finally, the third section studied the concept of disinheritance in pharaonic Egypt and identified the causes and the factors that made the testator deprived his legitimate heirs of inheritance.

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