Ancient History/Egypt/New Kingdom

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The New Kingdom period of Egyptian history commenced with the uprising of Pharaoh Ahmose, who used the Hyksos technologies of chariots, horses and iron against the outside invaders, and re-conquered Lower Egypt. The New Kingdom's pharaohs were powerful compared with their authority in the Middle Kingdom, but still had to balance their wills against both priesthoods and nobility. A rising middle class also appeared in Egypt, and the idea of a universal afterlife (and acceptance of mummification for all social classes) took hold throughout the country. No pyramids were constructed during this age, since the nobles and the temples had building projects of their own which competed with royal building. However, the rock-cut tombs of the Valley of the Kings date to this period, including the tomb of Pharaoh Tutankhamun. Religious controversy also shattered the internal peace of Egypt several times, most notably during the reign of Pharaoh Akhenaten, who attempted to institute monotheism upon his subjects.