Smedes was an official during the reign of Ramesses XI of the 20th Dynasty. Smedes began his rule in Tanis. There he was the high priest of Amon and the viceroy of Lower Egypt. Hrihor was also a high priest of Amon and the viceroy of Upper Egypt. Together these two kept Ramesses XI in seclusion on his estates. Upon the death of Ramesses, Smedes and Hrihor divided Egypt among them, which started the Twenty-first Dynasty. As a native of Djede, Smedes could have no personal right to the throne. The only record of Smedes' reign is a damaged inscription on a pillar in a quarry at Gebelen.