Unas /ˈjuːnəs/ or Wenis, also spelled Unis (Ancient Egyptian: wnjs, hellenized form Oenas /ˈiːnəs/ or Onnos), was a pharaoh, the ninth and last ruler of the Fifth Dynasty of Egypt during the Old Kingdom. Unas reigned for 15 to 30 years in the mid-24th century BC ( circa 2345-2315 BC ), succeeding Djedkare Isesi, who might have been his father.
Little is known of Unas' activities during his reign, which was a time of economic decline. Egypt maintained trade relations with the Levantine coast and Nubia, and military action may have taken place in southern Canaan. The growth and decentralization of the administration in conjunction with the lessening of the king's power continued under Unas, ultimately contributing to the collapse of the Old Kingdom some 200 years later.
Unas built a pyramid in Saqqara, the smallest of the royal pyramids completed during the Old Kingdom. The accompanying mortuary complex with its high and valley temples linked by a 750-meter-long (2,460 ft) causeway was lavishly decorated with painted reliefs, whose quality and variety surpass the usual royal iconography. Furthermore, Unas was the first pharaoh to have the Pyramid Texts carved and painted on the walls of the chambers of his pyramid, a major innovation that was followed by his successors until the First Intermediate Period (c. 2160–c. 2050 BC). These texts identify the king with Ra and with Osiris, whose cult was on the rise in Unas' time, and were meant to help the king reach the afterlife.
Unas had several daughters and possibly one or two sons who are believed to have predeceased him. Manetho, a third-century BC Egyptian priest of the Ptolemaic Kingdom and author of the first history of Egypt, claims that with Unas' death the Fifth Dynasty came to an end. Unas was succeeded by Teti, the first pharaoh of the Sixth Dynasty, possibly after a short crisis. However, the archaeological evidence suggests that the Egyptians at the time made no conscious break with the preceding dynasty and the distinction between the Fifth and Sixth dynasties might be illusory.
The funerary cult of Unas established at his death continued until the end of the Old Kingdom and may have survived during the chaotic First Intermediate Period. The cult was still in existence or revived during the later Middle Kingdom (c. 2050–c. 1650 BC). This did not prevent Amenemhat I and Senusret I (c. 1990–c. 1930 BC) from partially dismantling the mortuary complex of Unas for its materials.
In parallel to the official cult, Unas may have received popular veneration as a local god of Saqqara until as late as the Late Period (664–332 BC), nearly 2000 years after his death.
Unas revived the Death Cult to new heights. This was a period of time without any alien interference.
The Sarans had left and the Old Gods fought a civil war with the Isians.
Unas, tried to use arcane knowledge to re-vitalize Death Cult.
He was poisoned to stop his madness.