King Ramses II
King Ramses II , who reigned for 67 years during the 19th dynasty of the 12th century BC, was known as "Ramses the Great". He is known as one of Egypt's greatest warriors, but also as a peace-maker and for the monuments he left behind all over Egypt. He was the first king in history to sign a peace treaty with his enemies, the Hittites, ending long years of wars and hostility.King Ramses reigned for 67 years (1292–1225 B.C.). Under him Egypt acquired unprecedented splendor. His empire extended from Syria to near the Fourth Cataract of the Nile.
King Ramses left monuments throughout Egypt. The principal ones are probably the temple at Karnak, which he completed; the Rameseum, his mortuary temple, at Thebes; the temple at Luxor; and the great rock temple at Abu Simbel with four seated figures of the king on the facade. The period of his rule was characterized by great luxury, increased slavery, and the growth of a mercenary army, all of which led to the final decline of Egypt.
King Ramses II
Ramses The Great marched 20,000 soldiers north into Syria to defend his empire against Hittite invaders. His empire stretched from South Syria to the fourth cataract of the Nile. Social life was luxurious for the upper classes during his reign and Ramses The Great left many monuments to himself. Ramses duty was to preserve the union of Upper and Lower Egypt which he did by defeating Egypts enemies and honoring the gods.
Ramses devoted a vast number of buildings like the new capital in the Nile delta. He finished the columned great hall in the temple of Amon-re at Karnak. At Abu Simbel he built the rock temple and took credit for many of his ancestor's buildings. His love of architecture and power allowed him to erect more monuments and temples than any other Pharaoh. Abu Simbel, probably Ramses II’s most impressive structure was carved from a sandstone cliff that faced to the east. This was located in ancient Nubia. Although Abu Simbel remains his most famous structure, he had many more architectural projects. Among them, is included the expansion of Luxor and Karnak. There he finished older projects set forth by his father and erected many more monuments. It was evident Ramses II wanted to leave a mark as a reminder of his great strength and wealth.
Two of Ramses II's projects, on the west bank of the Nile that cut deep into the cliffs at Abu Simbel, are perhaps the most famous. These temples, considered Ramses' greatest achievements, were erected in honor of Egypt's major gods and their local variants. After ordering the artisans to carve impressive images of him onto the facade and pillars of these temples, King Ramses' perception of himself changed forever. The temples' scenes of the gods were ordered to be re-carved to include the great king, and he gained eminence equal to that of his fellow gods.