Takelot II was the sixth king of the Twenty-second Dynasty. He was the father to the high priest of Amun, Osorkon. This Osorkon was
responsible for the longest inscription on the Bubastite Gate. According to his inscription, during the fifteenth year of Takelot's
reign, there was warfare in the North and South and a great convulsion broke out in the land. The remains of Takelot II were found in
a usurped sarcophagus from the Middle Kingdom in Tanis. His Canopic jars and ushabti-figures were found with him as well.
Hedjkheperre Setepenre Takelot II Si-Ese was a pharaoh of the Twenty-Third Dynasty of Ancient Egypt in Middle and Upper
Egypt (840 – 815 BC). He has been identified as the High Priest of Amun Takelot F, son of the High Priest of Amun Nimlot C
at Thebes and, thus, the son of Nimlot C and grandson of king Osorkon II according to the latest academic research.
Most Egyptologists today including Aidan Dodson, Gerard Broekman, Jürgen von Beckerath, M.A. Leahy and Karl
Jansen-Winkeln also accept David Aston's hypothesis that Shoshenq III was Osorkon II's actual successor at Tanis,
rather than Takelot II. As Aidan Dodson and Dyan Hilton write in their comprehensive book on the Royal Families of Ancient
" Takelot II is likely to have been identical with the High Priest Takelot F, who is stated in [the] Karnak
inscriptions to have been a son of Nimlot C, and whose likely period of office falls neatly just before Takelot II's
Takelot II rather ruled a separate kingdom that embraced Middle and Upper Egypt, distinct from the Tanite Twenty-second
Dynasty who only controlled Lower Egypt. Takelot F, the son and successor of the High Priest of Amun Nimlot C, served for
a period of time under Osorkon II as a High Priest of Amun before he proclaimed himself as king Takelot II in the final
three regnal years of Osorkon II. This situation is attested by the relief scenes on the walls of Temple J at Karnak which
was dedicated by Takelot F – in his position as High Priest – to Osorkon II, who is depicted as the celebrant and king.
All the documents which mention Takelot II Si-Ese and his son, Osorkon B, originate from either Middle or Upper Egypt
(none from Lower Egypt) and a royal tomb at Tanis which named a king Hedjkheperre Setepenre Takelot along with a Year 9
stela from Bubastis are now recognised as belonging exclusively to Takelot I. While both Takelot I and II used the same
prenomen, Takelot II added the epithet Si-Ese ("Son of Isis") to his royal titulary both to affiliate himself with Thebes
and to distinguish his name from Takelot I.
The Crown Prince Osorkon -
Takelot II controlled Middle and Upper Egypt during the final 3 Years of Osorkon II and the first 2 decades of Shoshenq
III. The majority of Egyptologists today concede that king Osorkon III was the illustrious "Crown Prince and High Priest
Osorkon B," son of Takelot II. A misunderstanding arose over his identity because in the Crown Prince's famous Chronicle,
which was carved on the Bubastite Portal at Karnak, Osorkon dates his actions by both the regnal years of Takelot II
(years 11 through 24) -with a short year 25 left unmentioned - and then by those of the Tanite king, Shoshenq III (from
regnal years 22 through 29). While Kenneth Kitchen has interpreted this to mean that Shoshenq III succeeded Takelot II
at Tanis, in fact Takelot II and Shoshenq III were likely close contemporaries because immediately after the death of his
father in year 25 of Takelot II, Osorkon B started dating his activities to year 22, and not year 1, of Shoshenq III
onwards. Consequently, there was never a two decade long break in Osorkon B's struggle to regain control of Thebes (from
Year 1 to Year 22 of Sheshonq III) as Kitchen's chronology implies because year 25 of Takelot II is equivalent to year 22
of Sheshonq III. Osorkon B did not immediately ascend to his father's throne presumably because he was involved in a
prolonged civil war with his rival Pedubast I and, later, Shoshenq VI, for control of Thebes. Instead, he merely dated his
activities to the serving Dynasty 22 Pharaoh at Tanis: Shoshenq III.
The Crown Prince Osorkon B was not outmaneuvered to the throne of Tanis by Shoshenq III because both men ruled over
separate kingdoms with the 22nd Dynasty controlling Lower Egypt, and Takelot II/Osorkon B ruling over most of Upper Egypt
from Herakleopolis Magna to Thebes, where they are monumentally attested. In 1983, a donation stela was discovered by
Japanese excavators (Heian Museum 1983) at Tehna which reveals that Osorkon III was once a High Priest of Amun himself.
This person can only be the well-known High Priest Osorkon B since no other Theban High Priests named Osorkon are known
until the reign of Takelot III half a century later when the latter's son Osorkon F served in this office.
Theban Uprising and Conflict -
In Year 11 of Takelot II, an insurrection began under Pedubast I whose followers challenged this king's authority at
Thebes. Takelot reacted by dispatching his son, Osorkon B, to sail southwards to Thebes and quell the uprising. Osorkon B
succeeded in retaining control of the city and then proclaimed himself as the new High Priest of Amun. Some of the rebel's
bodies were deliberately burned by Osorkon to permanently deny their souls any hope of an afterlife. However, just four
years later, in year 15 of Takelot II, a second major revolt broke out and this time Osorkon B's forces were expelled from
Thebes by Pedubast I. This caused a prolonged period of turmoil and instability in Upper Egypt as a prolonged struggle
broke out between the competing factions of Takelot II/Osorkon B and Pedubast I/Shoshenq VI for control of Thebes. This
conflict would last for 27 long years – from Year 15 to Year 25 of Takelot II and then from Year 22 to Year 39 of Shoshenq
III when Osorkon B finally defeated his enemies and conquered this great city. Osorkon B proclaimed himself as king
Osorkon III sometime after his victory. On other matters, the Chronicle of Prince Osorkon B, which is carved on the
Bubastis Portal at Karnak, records Osorkon's activities between regnal years 11 and 24 of his father and then from regnal
years 22 through 29 of Shoshenq III. However, Takelot II's brief 25th year is attested by a donation stela made by his son
in his position as High Priest at Thebes shortly before Takelot died; it granted 35 aurourae of land to Takelot II's
daughter, Karomama E. As of 2008, no tomb or final resting place has been found for Takelot.
Marriages and children -
Takelot II married his sister and Great Royal Wife Karomama Merymut II; they were the parents of Osorkon B, the High
Priest of Amun at Thebes who later became king Osorkon III.