Pharaoh is a title used in many modern discussions of the ancient Egyptian rulers of all periods. In antiquity this title began to be used for the ruler who was the religious and political leader of united ancient Egypt. This was true only during the New Kingdom, specifically during the middle of the eighteenth dynasty. For simplification, however, there is a general acceptance amongst modern writers to use the term to relate to all periods.

Pharaoh meaning “Great House”, originally referred to the king’s palace, but by the reign of Thutmose III (ca. 1479-1425 BCE) in the New Kingdom had become a form of address for the person of the king. The Egyptian term for the ruler himself was rendered in Babylonian as insibya; Egyptological pronunciation “Nesu, “King of Upper and Lower Egypt”, literally “he of the sedge and the bee” (properly)), the sedge and the bee being the symbols for Upper and Lower Egypt, respectively. Also “King of the Two Lands”.