Government of Ancient Egypt

The Pharaoh was in charge of the Ancient Egyptian government. The Pharaoh was the chief figurehead of both the state and the religion. The Pharaoh had a hierarchy of leaders and rulers below him who oversaw various elements of the government because he was unable to manage it alone.


The Vizier served as the primary executive in the Pharaoh’s government. Similar to a prime minister, the vizier served as the country’s chief overseer. The vizier received reports from all the other officials. Imhotep, the first vizier, was maybe the most well-known. The first pyramid was designed by Imhotep, who was eventually transformed into a god.

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The vizier was required by Egyptian law to: 1) follow the law, 2) render fair judgments, and 3) refrain from acting stubbornly or intentionally.


Nomarks, or local governors, served under the vizier. Over a region of land known as a nome, nomarks had power. Similar to a state or province, a nome. Sometimes the Pharaoh appointed nomarks, and other times the title was passed down from father to son by inheritance.

Other Admins

The general in charge of the army, the chief treasurer, and the minister of public works were additional representatives who answered to Pharaoh. The Pharaoh had the last say, although these officers each had particular duties and authority. Priests and scribes made up a large portion of the Pharaoh’s administration.

Scribes were crucial to the functioning of the government because they documented taxes, the census, and financial transactions. To monitor the farmers and make sure they were performing their duties, overseers of the land were also appointed.


The typical citizen had no voice in the government. But because the Pharaoh was revered as a god and the people’s intermediary with the gods, they frequently accepted him as their supreme ruler without protest.

Interesting Information on Ancient Egyptian Politics

The Pharaohs were the most powerful individuals in the kingdom, followed by their wives.

Taxes were collected from the populace to fund the government.

Court cases in the New Kingdom were decided by an elders’ council known as a Kenbet.

Pharaohs would host a court for their senior priests and most important servants. When people came close to him, they would kiss the ground beneath him.

They had a straightforward set of laws and statutes. In many instances, judges made decisions based on common sense in an effort to reach a consensus.