Source:Echoes:Ch12:5:King receives throne name

King Receiving a Throne Name

King Receiving a Throne Name

In many ancient societies a king received a new name or throne name when he was crowned king. Several Israelite kings had two names, a birth name and a throne name. It may be that all the kings of Judah received a new name when they came to the throne. During the Middle Kingdom period (approximately 2000–1800 BC), each king of Egypt had no fewer than five names and received a throne name at the time he became king. Kings in Mesopotamia also received a new name. Each Parthian king (in ancient Iran) assumed the same throne name, Arsak, at his crowning, an act that has made it hard for historians to distinguish one ruler from another.

Similarly, use of a single royal title marked the early Nephite kings. Jacob wrote, "The people having loved Nephi exceedingly, . . . wherefore, the people were desirous to retain in remembrance his name. And whoso should reign in his stead were called by the people, second Nephi, third Nephi, and so forth, according to the reigns of the kings; and thus they were called by the people, let them be of whatever name they would" (Jacob 1:10–11). While we do not know that this new name was given to the Nephite rulers as part of the coronation rite, there is every reason to expect that it was.[1]


  1. Stephen D. Ricks, "Converging Paths: Language and Cultural Notes on the Ancient Near Eastern Background of the Book of Mormon," in Echoes and Evidences of the Book of Mormon, edited by Donald W. Parry, Daniel C. Peterson, and John W. Welch (Provo, Utah: FARMS, 2002), Chapter 12, references silently removed—consult original for citations.