‘The Mummy Returns’ – Nefertiri

There was a historical figure named Nefertiri. Though it is unknown who her parent were, but she is one of the most famous queens of Egypt. Her image appears on many monuments throughout Egypt, many are found alongside her husband Ramesses II. Nefertiri is also famously known from the film ”The Ten Commandments’ as the love interest of the royal Prince Moses. In the film, she is depicted as the prize to the man who will inherit Seti I’s throne, she hates Ramses and hopes that it will be Moses who will become the new pharaoh of Egypt. She continues to love Moses even after she discovers his Hebrew background and tries to hide it by murdering the maidservant who knew the secret. Of course in the end, Moses returns to his Hebrew roots and Ramses becomes the next pharaoh of Egypt, inheriting the throne and winning the prize.  It is unknown how much the couple loved one another but it is clear from the many monuments that they were fond of each other and she was after all one of his high royal wives.

Nefertari and Isis from her tomb (19th Dynasty)


Rachel Weisz as Nefertari in “The Mummy Returns” (2001)

Anne Baxter as Nefertiri in “The Ten Commandments” (1956)

In the ‘Mummy Returns’, Nefertiri is shown as the daughter of Seti I, which historically is untrue, and that she was the rival of Anuck-su-namon, who, as mentioned in previous post, was born at least fifty years previous to these events. Regarding the fight scene between Nefetiri and Anuk-su-namun I have not found anything that indicates that women in Ancient Egypt knew how to fight in hand-to-hand combat, much less women who belonged to the royal family, though women in Ancient Egypt had more freedom than their european counterparts. They could own property, they could stand in a court of law in their own rights and they could inherit.

Nefertiri and Anuk-Su-Namon in their fight scene