Third king of the 6th Dynasty, son of Teti and Iput. He succeeded to the throne as a child after the murder of his father, and ruled for at least forty years. His married life was not always easy; after a secret harem plot against the king, and the subsequent conviction of the queen and the two sons she had wanted on the throne, Pepi married both daughters of a certain Khuy from Abydos in his year 21. The elder probably died not long after the birth of her children Merenre and Neith, the younger was still alive during the reign of her son Pepi II. During the reign of Pepi I, the development of greater independence for the provinces continued, as evidenced by building works at Bubastis, Abydos, Dendera and Elephantine. Expeditions to Sinai and the Near East were conducted - stone vases of Pepi I have been found in Syria.
A life-size copper statue of Pepi from Hierakonpolis, a seated alabaster figure, and a statuette showing the king kneeling and making an offering survive. His pyramid at Saqqara, the walls of which are inscribed with the Pyramid Texts, is of moderate size.