Masaharta or Masaherta was the High Priest of Amun at Thebes between 1054 and 1045 BC.
His father was Pinedjem I, who was the Theban High Priest of Amun and de facto ruler of Upper Egypt from 1070 BC. He declared himself pharaoh in 1054 BC. Masaharta succeeded him as high priest. His mother was probably Duathathor-Henuttawy, the daughter of Ramesses XI, last ruler of the 20th dynasty. His aunt Tentamun, another daughter of Ramesses married Pharaoh Smendes I, who ruled Lower Egypt. One of Masaharta’s brothers was Psusennes I, who followed Smendes’s successor, the short-lived Amenemnisu as pharaoh.
Masaharta’s wife is likely to have been the Singer of Amun Tayuheret. Whose mummy found in the Deir el-Bahri cachette. It is possible that he had a daughter called Isetemkheb, since a lady by this name is called the daughter of a high priest on her funerary objects; it is also possible, though, that she was Menkheperre’s daughter.
The God’s Wife of Amun during Masaharta’s reign seems to have been his sister Maatkare.
High Priest of Amun
|Dynasty||Concurrent with the 21st Dynasty|
Several of his inscriptions known from the Karnak temple of Amenhotep II, from ram-headed sphinxes also in Karnak, and a large falcon statue.
Masaharta was responsible for the restoration of the mummy of Amenhotep I in the 16th regnal year of Smendes. He is also mentioned in Theban Graffito no. 1572, from a year 16, together with the King’s Scribe in the Place of Truth (= Scribe of the Necropolis) Ankhefenamun, the son of King’s Scribe Butehamun.
His highest attested year is a year 18. Sometimes derived from the combination of two letters found in el-Hiba, the first mentioning an untitled Masaharta praying for his health, and the second a letter of thanks to the local god by the High Priest Menkheperre, that Masaharta died of illness at el-Hiba around the 24th regnal year of Smendes, but this is no more than an unproven hypothesis. In fact, it has been pointed out that such a scenario ill fits the content of the letters.
His mummy found in the Deir el-Bahri cache along with several family members; it is now in the Mummification Museum in Luxor.