The Phrygian language
|Battle with the Sea Peoples recorded on the exterior of the funerary temple of Ramesses III at Medinet Habu, 1160 B.C. (12)|
According to the Egyptians, the Philistines were just one tribe of a confederation of tribes who invaded Egypt and settled on the coastal plain south of Mount Carmel. They evidently became the dominant group in this confederation, because the writers of the Old Testament seem to use the word Philistine as a generic term to describe all the people who were moving onto the coastal plain at the time that the Israelites were carving a niche for themselves in the hill country of Canaan under Joshua and the succeeding judges.
The Egyptians tell of two great movements against them of people scholars have dubbed "the Sea Peoples." The Egyptians themselves do not use the phrase Sea Peoples, however, nor do they have a single generic name for all of the invaders, as found in the Bible. Instead, they refer to the invaders as "foreigners from the sea" coming from the "northern countries" or "their islands" beyond the sea, that is, the Mediterranean. The first invasion, recorded at Karnak in Upper Egypt, was in the fifth year of Pharaoh Merneptah, during the final third of the thirteenth century B.C. The Karnak record lists five specific groups as part of that invasion (Barnett 1975, 366-69):
Other spelling / pronunciation
1. A-qi-ya-wa-sa/ A-qi-wa-sa/ Ekwesh (`-k-w'-s')
2. Ta-ru-sa (Tw-rw-s'/ Tw-ry-s') Tursha
3. Rw-ku (Rw-kw)
4. Sa-ra-d-n/ Sa-ar-di-na (S'-r'd-n) Sherden
5. Sa-k(a)-ru-su (s'-r'-rw-s') Sheklesh
Not all scholars agree about the relationships that exist between these names and known sociopolitical groups or places, but let us focus on the more popular, probable, and accepted associations. The first name is generally linked to the Homeric Achaeans, the second to the Trojans, the third to the Lukka/Lycians of southwest Anatolia, the fourth to settlers who may have been from Sardis in western Anatolia who moved to the area of Akko north of Mount Carmel and eventually to Sardinia in Italy, and the fifth to the Sheklesh who may have been from or later moved to Sicily. This Karnak list does not include the Philistines, who are named some forty years later in a record of a second attack on Egypt.
This second attack of the Sea Peoples by land and sea occurred during the reign of Pharaoh Ramesses III, years five and eight, around 1175 B.C. The battle scenes and names of the invaders are recorded at Medinet Habu, near Thebes in Upper Egypt (Pritchard 1969, hereafter ANET, 262):
Other spelling / pronunciation
1. Pe-ra-sa-ta/ Peleset (Pw-r-s-ty) Philistine
2. Tjikar (T-k-k[-r]) Tjekker
3. Sa-k(a)-ru-su Sheklesh
4. Danuna (D-y-n-yw-n) Danaoi
5. Wasasa (W-s-s) Weshesh
The first on the list are the Philistines; the second are the Tjekker, who may have settled on Cyprus at the end of the thirteenth century B.C. and who later settled in Dor, south of Mount Carmel on the Palestinian coast, according to a late twelfth- and an eleventh-century B.C. Egyptian document; the third are also in the Merneptah list and are the only ones to be mentioned in two records; the fourth are the Homeric Danaans; and the fifth possibly are Carians of western Anatolia. All the Sea Peoples, according to Albright, came from the Aegean orbit (1975, 508). At Medinet Habu the Philistines and the names of the other Sea Peoples occur together, probably because the Egyptians knew them to be related geographically. The following text on the walls at Medinet Habu attest to the Sea People alliance:
. . The foreign countries made a conspiracy in their islands. All at once the lands were removed and scattered in the fray. No land could stand before their arms, from Hatti, Kode, Carchemish, Arzawa, and Alashiya on. . . . They were coming forward toward Egypt, while the flame was prepared before them. Their confederation was the Philistines, Tjeker, Shekelesh, Denye(n), and Weshesh, lands united. They laid their hands upon the lands as far as the circuit of the earth, their hearts confident and trusting: "Our plans will succeed!" [ANET, 262]
The reliefs on the temple walls at Medinet Habu give us excellent portrayals of civilian and combatant dress, weaponry, ships, chariots, wagons to move people and supplies, and military tactics. This depiction of the Sea Peoples has much in common with descriptions of the Aegean peoples from other sources. For example, the Philistines at Medinet Habu are pictured wearing "feathered headdresses" very similar to those pictured on the Phaistos Disk, a round, baked clay disk discovered on Crete at Phaistos and dated to the Middle Minoan IIIB period, circa 1600 B.C. The disk was found with a tablet inscribed with Linear A, which is the earliest form of writing found on Crete and is not yet deciphered. The clay and firing of the disk are not similar to what is generally found on Crete; it is possibly an import from Caria or Lycia in southwest Anatolia (Barnett 1975, 362-63; Pendlebury 1965, 170).
The feathered headdresses, according to Herodotus and a late Assyrian text, are typical of Caria and Lycia during the Bronze Age. Later, the same style of headdress is also worn by "Ionian and Karian warriors in an Assyrian relief, and by a Lycian contingent in Xerxes' fleet" (Burn 1930, 143). Herodotus states that "the Greeks are indebted to them [Carians] for three inventions: fitting crests on helmets, putting devices on shields, and making shields with handles" (Rieu 1954, 82). The Iliad, however, does not describe a feathered helmet similar to that of the Sea Peoples, though it describes various other types of helmets.
The feathered headdress also appears on a ceramic, anthropoid coffin uncovered at Beth-shean in Israel. The coffin may date to approximately 1040 B.C., roughly the time of King Saul's reign and his death in the area by Philistine hands (T. Dothan 1982a, 274-76). According to 1 Samuel 31:10, Saul's body was hung by the Philistines at Beth-shean. Anthropoid coffins have been found at other sites associated with Egyptian rule in both Egypt and Canaan. In addition, feathered headdresses appear on Sea People warriors pictured on a twelfth-century ivory game box and on a conical seal from Cyprus. The distinctive feathered headdress clearly seems to belong to the Sea Peoples, the Philistines in particular.
In addition to showing feathered headdresses, the Phaistos Disk links Crete and Anatolia in other ways. The disk also pictures beehive-type structures (probably huts), which have features similar to those of Lycian architecture in southwest Anatolia. As well as mentioning the huts, Pendlebury cites the type of bow pictured on the disk as having an Asiatic origin (1965, 170). He believes that Anatolia played an important role on Crete in both the Early Minoan (before 2000 B.C.) and Middle Minoan (ca. 1800 B.C.) periods (1965, 53, 121-22). Nearly five hundred years separate the Phaistos Disk and the Egyptian reliefs at Medinet Habu (T. Dothan 1982a, 13), pointing to long-standing ties between Crete and Anatolia.
Other arms pictured at Medinet Habu, such as long, tapered swords, spears, javelins, shields, and corselets, are similar to those described in the Iliad (Wainwright 1956, 203). "It will be noted that in spite of differences in detail, the general resemblance of the Achaean equipment to that of the Shardena and Pulesati [Philistines] is marked" (Lorimer 1950, 201). Further, the ships of the Sea Peoples at Medinet Habu and on the Phaistos Disk are similar to those shown on a Mycenaean Greek vase found on Skyros, an island in the Aegean between Athens and Anatolia (Raban and Stieglitz 1991, 38-39; T. Dothan 1982a, 7, 11; Barnett 1975, 373). The kilts worn by the Philistines at Medinet Habu also have Anatolian affinities: "Such a tasselled kilt is worn by a Southern Anatolian god on a stele from near Cagdin" (Barnett 1975, 372). In addition, the chariots of the Sea Peoples contain three men with spears, following the Hittite, rather than the Egyptian custom of only two men with bows. Also, the wagons and hump oxen of the Sea Peoples pictured on the reliefs are strictly Anatolian (T. Dothan 1982a, 5-13; A. Mazar 1990, 302-6; Sandars 1978, 121-31; Yadin 1963, 2:249-51).
The scholars referred to above make numerous other comparisons between the Sea Peoples pictured on the Medinet Habu reliefs and the Greeks from the Mycenaean and Anatolian world. These comparisons of modes of dress, weapons, and means of travel cannot be considered as conclusive evidence that the Sea Peoples, of which the Philistines were a part, were from the Aegean and from Anatolia, since these various modes could have been adopted through travel and trade. However, any study of these characteristics will reveal that the Sea People, including the Philistines, have much in common with the Mycenaean world and with Anatolia, especially the west and southwest sector.
As Ramesses III prepared for battle, according to the reliefs at Medinet Habu, he stated, "the Peleset (Pw-[r']-s'-t) are hung up, [ -- ] in their towns . . ." (Breasted 1906, 4:41). It would appear that some of the Peleset/Philistines were in Palestine even before Ramesses III defeated them. Perhaps some of the Sea Peoples had settled at a few sites in Canaan as conquerors or as Egyptian mercenaries, and due to a problem with them, Ramesses III put down their towns (Albright 1975, 511; Stiebing 1980, 14). It is possible that there was a pre-Ramesses III settlement of Sea Peoples at Ekron, according to T. Dothan, but not at Ashkelon, according to Stager (see pp. 97-101). Ramesses III used his warships, troops, and chariotry to overpower the invasion on both land and sea:
Those who reached my frontier, their seed is not, their heart and their soul are finished forever and ever. Those who came forward together on the sea, the full flame was in front of them. . . . They were dragged in, enclosed, and prostrated on the beach, killed, and made into heaps. . . . [ANET, 262-63]
. . . The northern countries quivered in their bodies, the Philistines, Tjekk[er, and . . .]. They cut off their (own) land and were coming . . . on land; another (group) was on the sea. [ANET, 263]
Ramesses III boasted that he not only defeated the Peoples of the Sea, but also forced them to settle in citadels in what today we call Palestine or Israel (see also B. Wood 1991, 44-52, 89-90).
I extended all the frontiers of Egypt and overthrew those who had attacked them from their (lxxvi 7) lands. I slew the Denyen in their islands, while the Tjeker and the Philistines were made ashes. The Sherden and the Weshesh of the Sea were made nonexistent, captured all together and brought in captivity to Egypt like the sands of the shore. I settled them in strongholds, bound in my name. Their military classes were as numerous as hundred-thousands. I assigned portions for them all with clothing and provisions from the treasuries and granaries every year. [ANET, 262]
Ramesses even recorded that the vanquished Peleset / Philistines said to him, "Give us the breath for our nostrils thou King, son of Amon" (Sandars 1978, 132). That is to say that, according to Ramesses, the Philistines recognized him as a god, for the gods give life, give breath.
The reign of Ramesses III at the beginning of the twelfth century coincided with the period of the judges in the Bible. Ramesses boasted that he settled the Peoples of the Sea in Palestine, and their presence there is also noted in another Egyptian document, the Onomasticon of Amenope, which dates to the end of the twelfth century. This document lists the Sea Peoples living in Canaan within the Egyptian sphere of influence: the Sherden, the Tjekker, and the Philistines. It also mentions the Philistine cities on the coast: Ashkelon, Ashdod, and Gaza. These cities were on the Egyptian line of defense, according to the Egyptian record. The material culture of the Philistines at Ashdod, Ekron, and other sites clearly displays Egyptian influence, corroborating the written evidence (A. Mazar 1990, 305; T. Dothan 1982a, 3-4; 1982b, 26).
Two earlier lists, which have not yet been mentioned, are also significant to our study: first, the list from Pharaoh Ramesses II of the Hittite allies that fought against him and, second, the Hittite list of the Assuwa League of allies (in western Anatolia) who struggled against them.
Pharaoh Ramesses II fought against the Hittite king Hattusili III at Kadesh of the Orontes in northern Syria around 1285 B.C. He recorded the names of the Hittite allies who opposed him; among them are the following: 1) Pi-da-sa, 2) Da-ar-d(a)-an-ya, 3) Ma-sa, 4) Qa-r(a)-qi-sa, 5) Ru-ka, and 6) Arzawa. The first name has been associated with Pedasos in Mysia of the Troad south of Troy, the second with the Dardanoi of the Troad, the third with southwest Anatolia, the fourth with Caria, the fifth with Lukka / Lycia, and the sixth with Arzawa in western Anatolia (Barnett 1975, 359-62; Breasted 1906, 3:123ff.; Gardiner 1961, 262ff.).
The Assuwa League was defeated by the Hittites around 1250 B.C. It had been formed to fight against the collapsing Hittite empire. The list of its members contains the names of twenty-two allies from western Anatolia. Three of these names are immediately familiar: Luqqa (Lycia), Ta-ru-i-sa (Troy), and Karkija (Caria). Also mentioned are Wilusiya (Ilios) and Warsiya (Lycia) (Albright 1950, 169; Gurney 1952, 56-58; Stubbings 1975, 349-50). A few years after the defeat of the Assuwa League by the Hittite king Tudhaliya IV, Lycia, Caria, and possibly a few others showed up among the Trojan allies fighting against the Achaeans, according to the Iliad.
There is some disagreement among scholars about the identities of the members of the Assuwa League. Garstang and Gurney agree that Wilusiya is probably Ilios (Troy) and that Warsiya may be associated with Lukka (Lycia). However, they do not equate Luqqa with Lukka (Lycia), for that would put the Assuwa League both north and south of Arzawa, in west central Anatolia. For them, the Assuwa League was strictly in northwest Anatolia, stretching north of Arzawa to the Troad (1959, 105-7). It should also be noted that Homer in the Iliad seems to refer to two Lycias. In book 2.876-77 and book 5.479, Sarpedon is a leader of the Lycians from "distant Lycia" by the river Xanthus in southwest Anatolia. Pandarus is another leader of Lycians, but they are from the region of the Anatolian Mount Ida near Troy (2.824ff. and 5.105, Rieu 1950, 61, 95). Lycians are also mentioned in the royal Egyptian Amarna letters of the fourteenth century B.C. as raiders of Alashiya (Cyprus or parts of it) and Egypt; the king of Alashiya is said to have sent out ships to watch for their approach.
We can see from the Hittite texts and records discussed in the Phrygian.html and Hittite _Treaties.html that the opposition to the Hittites came from both the Greek mainland and Anatolian coasts, the Lands of Caria, Lycia, Cilicia, Kue, Lydia and Phrygia (the Mushki). The Iliad repeats this cast of characters, involving those from Cyprus and Crete as well and we are reminded that Sarpedon from Crete settled Lycia. The peoples from Sardinia and Sicily somehow got involved in the battles of Ramesses III but are not listed in the battle involving the Trojan War. If we take a clue from the Odyssey and the Aeanid, which speak of refugees from the Trojan War, then the probable sequence of events may have begun with the Hittite wars with the "Sea Peoples," with the "Sea Peoples" gaining momentum in their onslaught, raiding then the lands of Assyria, led by the Urartu allies and the Mushki. With the fall of Hattusus the raiders would have turned to the Lebanon. If they were allied with the Mushki and the Mushki had in fact possessed Kue, then the natural path for them from Hattusus would have been to Melitea, Gurgum, Kue and then on to Carchemish and the outpost of the Hittite lands, Hamath. During the period of concern, 1180 B.C., the Philistines were already in Ashkelon and had already been fighting off both the Egyptians and the Assyrians. With the decline of both the Hittite and Egyptians powers after the battle of Kadesh (1274 B.C.), the Philistines were able to become the dominant group of what we now know to be Palestine and Israel. We have seen from the Assyrian and other records, such as the Egptian, that Cyprus was an island of refuge and closely linked to Syrian and Phoenician interests, and goods found there represent trade with Anatolia, Assyria and Egypt. The Philistines are reputed to have originated either in Cyprus or Crete. With the decline of the Hittites, Assyrians and Egyptians about 1180 B.C. the Philistines might be expected to have engaged in greater activity in Cyprus and through Cyprus perhaps got allied with the other Sea Peoples, from Greece and Anatolia, who were attacking old Mycennean fortifications. The archeological record, however, shows that at the same time forts and towers were raised in Italy and where unwalled settlements were located fortified, hilltop towns became in vogue, as particularly evidenced in cities of the Etruscans, in Etruria today. The Etruscans are remembered as pirates in the myth of Dionysus. They tried to abduct the god. Archeology tells us - particularly from the distribution of Etruscan mirrors - that the Etruscans were very active, world-wide traders, whose spheres included Spain to the Black Sea. They also were influenced by Phoenician and Egyptian culture, trading with those realms, as well as Libya as well.
Egyptian documents before and during the collapse
The Voyage of Unamun (14)
1190. A traveller's experience, as he is sent to Byblos (Gubla) to procure cedar wood to repair the old state-barge, Userhet. The famous old state-barge Userhet, which Amun of Thebes made use of at his festivals, had in course of time constantly to be restored, or else replaced by an entirely new constuction.
Egyptian tiles of a Syrian, Lybian and a Hittite
For such a purpose, cedar-wood, which had to be obtained from Lebanon, was required. This presented no difficult so long as Egypt was a great power, for the prince of Byblos was only too ready to render such service to the god, though, of course, for payment. But about 1100 B.C. the days of Egypt's greatness were over. At Thebes the last of many Ramessids still nominally reigned, though actually Egypt was subject to various petty rulers.
At Thebes, Hrihor, the high priest of Amun, held sway, and Tanis, the important city of the north-eastern Delta, belonged to a certain Smendes and a woman Tentamun. When the sacred barge of Amun once more needed complete renovation, Thebes was in dire straits. There was insufficient money and insufficient influence to procure the wood needed for the rebuilding. However, the money was raised by subscriptions from the different rulers of Egypt, though a state embassy was not feasible as in better days.
In this necessity the idea was adopted of sending Amun himself to Byblos, and there was chosen for that purpose an image of the god, which, as it was called, "Amun of the Road," had probably been sent away from Thebes on other occasions also. With this image was dispatched a temple official, "the Eldest of the hall, Unamun," but even he was left to depend upon charity for his journey. He was sent with letters of introduction to Smendes and Tentamun, who were then to further himon his way to Byblos.
This document presents us with a vivid picture of the voyage, and of trading operations in the eastern Mediterranean; it enables us to see, as it actually was, that world, ther eflection of which still delights us in the Odyssey. Its author writes the simplest prose, without any learned and archaistic embellishments; but so much the more does he appeal to us, and not the least by his delicate humour, which often unaffectedly breaks out in the course of the narrative.
Year 5, day 16 of the third month of Summer. On this day Unamun, Eldest of the Hall of the administration of Aun of Karnak, departed in order to fetch the timber for the great august ship of Amunre, king of gods, which is on (the river) and is called Userhet-Amun.
On the day whereon I came to Tanis, the abode of Smendes the Tentamun, I gave unto them the writings of Amunre, king of gods. They had them read in their presence and said: "Yea, I will do even as Amunre, king of gods, our lord, saith." I remained until the fourth month of Summer in Tanis. Smendes and Tentamun then sent me with the ship-captain, Mengebet, and on the first day of the fourth month of Summer I went down to the great Syrian sea. And I came to Dor, a city of the Zakar,(13) and its prince Beder caused to be brought to me fifty (?) loaves, one measure of wine, and a leg of beef. A man of my ship ran away and stole in
Gold: ......................(vessels), amounting to 5 deben.
Silver: .....................4 vessels, amounting to 20 deben.
Silver: in a bag, amounting to 11 deben.
(total of what he stole:) Gold, 5 deben; silver, 31 deben
(1 deben = 91 grammes)
On the same (?) morning I arose and went to where the prince was, and said unto him: "I have been robbed in thine harbour. Now thou art the prince of this land, and thou art its judge (v. inquisitor, police), so look for my money. Of a truth themoney belongeth to Amunre, king of gods, the lord of the countries; it belongeth to Smendes; it belongeth to Hrihor, my lord, and the other great men of Egypt. To thee it belongeth, and it belongeth to Weret, and belongeth to Mekemer, and belongeth to Zakarbaal, the prince of Byblos."(13)
And he said unto me: "Art thou aggrieved (?), or art thou friendly?" for behold, I understand nought of this matter that thou hast told me. Had it been a their belonging to mine own country that went aboard thy ship and stole thy money, then would I have repaid it thee out of my treasury, until thy thief aforesaid had been apprehended. But the thief that hath robbed thee, he is thine, he belongeth to thy ship. so tarry a few days here with me, that I may seek for him."
So I spent nine days moored in his harbor. then I went unto him and said: "Behold, thou has not found my money, (so I will now depart) with the captain and with them that go away..." (What follows is missing text then picks up again with:)
The prince of Byblos sent unto me and said: "Get thee out of my harbor." (Unamun answered - missing text)....."If men sail, let them take me away to Egypt." I passed nineteen days in his harbor, and every day he continued sending to me, saying: "Get thee out of my harbor."
Now when he was making offering to his gods, the god seized one of his noble youths andmade him frenzied, andhe said: "Bring the god hither! Bring the messenger, that hath him. It is Amun that sent him, it is he that caused him to come."
Thus the frenzied one continued in frenzy throughout this night, when I had just found a ship bound for Egypt, and I was stowing all that I had aboard her, and was watching for the darkness, thinking that when it descends I will also embark the god, so that no other eye may see him.
And the harbor-master came to me, saying: "Remain until morning at the disposition of the prince." I said unto him: "Art thou not he that continued coming to me every day, saying: 'Get thee out of my harbor,' and never didst thou say: 'Remain?' And now the prince will let the ship, which I have found, depart, and thou wilt come again saying: 'Get thee gone!' "
So he went and told it to the prince, and the prince sent unto the ship's captain saying: "Remain until morning at the disposition of the prince."
And when the morning was come he sent and had me brought up, while the god rested in the ....in which he was, on the shore of the sea. I found him sitting in his upper chamber, with his back leaning against the window, while the waves of the great Syrian sea beat upon his neck.
I said unto him: "the kindness (?) of amun!" he said unto me: "How long is it until today since thou camest from the abode of Amun?" I said unto him: "five full months until now." He said unto me: "Dost thou indeed speak the truth? Where then is the writing of amun, which thou (shouldest) have? where is the letter of the High Priest of Amun, which thou (shouldest) have?" And I said unto him: "I gave them to Smendes and Tentamun." And he was very wroth, and said unto me: "Behold, writing and letter hast thou none. Where is then (at least) the ship of cedar-wood that Smendes hath given thee? And where is her Syrian crew? He surely did not hand thee over to this ship's captain, to be slain and to be cast into the sea! From whom had they sought the god then? And thee, pray, from whom had they sought thee, pray?" So speak he unto me. And I said unto him: "But it is an Egyptian ship, and it is also an Egyptian crew, that saileth for Smendes. he hath no Syrian crew." And he said unto me: "But there are twenty ships here in my harbor that are in kheber (i.e., association, partnership) with Smendes, and as for this Sidon, past which thou didst also (?) sail, there are other fifty (/) ships there, which are in kheber with Birkat-el, and they sail (?) to his house."
I was silent in this great moment. And he answered and said unto me: "Upon what kind of behest art thou come hither/" I said unto him: "I am come after the timber for the great august vessel of Amunre, king of gods. Thy father used to do it, thy grandfather used to do it, and thou wilt do it also." So spake I unto him. And he said unto me: "They did it in sooth, and if thou wilt give me something for doing it, I will do it. Of a truth my people did execute this behest, but the Pharaoh had six ships sent hither, laden with the wares of Egypt, and they unloaded them into their storehouses. So do thou bring somewhat for me also." And he had fetched the daily registers of his fathers, and he had them read aloud in my presence, and it was found that it was a thousand deben of every kind of silver that was entered in his book.
And he said unto me: "If the ruler of Egypt were the lord of my possessions, and I were also his servant, he would not have sent silver and gold, when he said: 'Execute the behest of amun.' Nor was it a king's gift that they assigned to my father. And I too, I am not thy servant, nor yet am I the servant of him that sent thee. If I cry out to the Lebanon, the heaven openeth, and the trees are here lying on the shore of the sea. Give me thesails that thou hast brought with thee, to take thy ships that carry thy timber back to (Egypt). Give me also the ropes, that thou hast brought with thee, in order to bind fast (?) the ...For without all this thou canst not sail away (?) with the timber, and if I make them for thee (into?) the sails of thy ships, the ends (?) will be too heavy and (the ship) will break in pieces, and thou wilt perish in the middle of the sea. (For) behold, Amun thundereth in the sky and causeth Sutekh (i.e., Seth-Sutekh, regarded as the god of the tempest) to (rave?) in his season. For amun hath equipped all lands; he hath equipped them, and the land of Egypt, whence thou comest, he did first equip. For cunning work came forth from it to reach mine abode - what are these childish journeyings that they have caused thee to make!"
And I said unto him: "Fie! They be no childish journeyings in any wise that I make. There is not a ship upon the water that belongeth not to Amun. His is the sea and his is Lebanon, whereof thou sayest: 'It belongeth unto me.' (Nay rather) is it a plantation for the bark Userhet-Amun, the lord of all ships. Of a truth thus spake Amunre, king of gods, saying unto Hrihor, my lord: 'Send me forth,' and made metravel with his great god. But behold, thou hast caused this great god to spend twenty-nine days, after that he had landed in thy harbor, and thou knewest well that he was here! He is still the same as ever he was, and tho standest and wouldest bargain about Lebanon with Amun its lord. As for thy sauing: 'The former kings sent silver and gold' - if they had offered life and health, they wold not have sent these things. Rather they sent thy fathers these things instead of life and health.
"Now as for Amunre, king of gods, he is the lord of life and health, and he was the lord of your fathers, who passed their term of life making offering to Amun. And thou too, thou art a servant of Amun. If now thou sayest: 'Yea, I will do it,' and fulfillest his behest, thou wilt live and prosper and be in health, and thou wilt be a benefactor to thy whole land and to thy people. But covet not for thyself anything that belongeth to Amunre, king of gods; verily a lion loveth his own!
"Let my scribe be brought unto me, that I may send him to Smendes and Tentamun, the officers of the land, whom Amun hath given to the northern portion of his land, and they will send all that is needed. I will write to them, saying: 'Send it until I become to the south and send thee all that I owe thee.' " So spake I unto him.
And he gave my letter into the hand of his messenger, and loaded the keel (?) and the bow - and stern-post, together with four other hewn logs - seven in all - and had them brought to Egypt.
And his messenger went to Egypt and came back to me to Syria in the first month of Winter. And Smendes and Tentamun sent me:
Gold: 4 ewers and 1 kakment-vessel.
Silver: 5 ewers.
Garments of royal linen: 10 pieces.
Good Upper Egyptian linen: 10 khered.
Fine papyrus: 500.
Lentils: 20 sacks.
Fish: 30 baskets.
They also brought to me:
Garments of good Upper Egyptian linen: 5 (?) pieces.
Good Upper Egyptian linen: 5 khered.
Lentils: 1 sack.
Fish: 5 baskets.
And the prince rejoiced, and appointed three hundred men and three hundred oxen, and set overseers at their head, in order that they might fell the trees. And they felled them, and they remained lying over the winter. But in the third month of summer they were dragged to the shore of the sea.
And the prince came forth and took up his stand upon them, and sent for me, saying: "Come." Now when I was brought nigh unto him, the shadow of his fan (?) fell upon me. And Penamun, a butler belonging unto him, placed himself between me (and him), saying: "The shadow of Pharoah, thy lord, hath fallen on thee." And he was wroth with him, saying: "Let him alone." And I was brought nigh unto him, and he answered and said unto me: "Behold, the behest that my fathers fulfilled in times past, I have also fulfilled it, albeit thou on thy part hast not done for me what thy fathers did for me. Behold, the last of thy timeber hath now arrived and there it is stacked. Now do according to my wish and come to stow it for in truth it is given unto thee. But come not to regard the terror of the sea. If thou regardest the terror of the sea, regard that of me also. Verily, I have not done to thee what they did to the messengers of Khamwese (Ramesses IX?) when they passed seventeen years in this land. They died where they were." And he said unto his butler: "Take him and show him their grave wherein they rest."
And I said unto him: "Show it to me not! As for Khamwese they were men whom he sent unto thee as messengers, and he himself was a man. I have none of his messengers, and he himself was a man. I have none of his messengers, and yet thou sayest: "Go and look on thy comrades." Dost thou not rather rejoice and have a tablet made for thee and say upon it: 'Amunre, king of gods, sent unto me his messenger, Amun of the Road, together with Unamun, his human messenger, after the timber for the great august bark of Amunre, king of gods. I felled it, I stowed it, and I despatched it with my ships and my crews. I sent them to Egypt in order to beseech for me ten thousand years of life from Amun over and above that ordained for me (by destiny), and so shall (?) it come to pass.' When, therefore, in the time to come another messenger shall come from the land of Egypt, one that knoweth writing, and readeth thy name on the tablet, thou wilt receive water in the West like the gods that are here."
And he said unto me: "It is a great testimony that thou has recounted unto me."
I said unto him: "As for the many things that thou hast said unto me, if I reach the abode of the High Priest of Amun, and he seeth thy behest, then shall thy behest bring thee in somewhat."
And I went to the shore of the sea to where the timber was stacked, and I descried eleven ships drawing nigh on the sea. They belongeth to the Zakar (and came with the order): "Take him prisoner, suffer not a ship of his to get to the land of Egypt." Thereupon I sat down and wept.
And the letter-writer of the prince came out to me and said unto me: "What aileth thee?" And I said unto him: "Surely thou seest the birds that for the second time go down into Egypt. Look at them! They go to the cool pool, but how long am I to be left here? Surely thou seest them that come back to take me prisoner."
And he went and told it to the prince, and the prince began to weep because of the tidings told him, that were so grievous. And he sent out his letter-writer unto me, and he brought me two measures of wine and a ram. Moreover, he had brought unto me Tentnut, an Egyptian singer that was with him, saying, unto her: "Sing unto him; let not his heart harbor cares!" And he sent unto me, saying, " "Eat and drink! Let not thine heart harbor cares! Thou wilt hear all that I I shall say tomorrow." And when the morrow came he had his ......caled, and he stood in their midst and said unto Zakar: "What meaneth this coming of yours?" And they said unto him: "We are come after the shivered ships which thou sendest unto Egypt with our .....comrades." And he said unto them: "I cannot take the messenger of Amun prisoner in my land. Let me send him away, and then do ye pursue him in order to take him prisoner."
He put me on board and sent me away ....to the harbor of the sea. And the wind drave me to the land of Arsa (Cyprus?). And they of the city came forth against me to slay me, and between them I was hustled to the place of abode of Hetch, the queen of the city. And I found her as she was coming from her one house and was entering into her other.
And I saluted her, and said unto the people that stood beside her: "Surely there is one among you that understandeth Egyptian." And one of them said: "I understand it." And I said unto him: "Say unto my mistress: 'As far as Thebes, even unto the abode of Amun, I have heard it said that wrong is done in every city, butright is done in the land of Arsa. And now here also wrong is done every day.' " And she said unto me: "But what meaneth it, that thou sayest this?" And I said unto her: "If the sea raged and the wind drave me to the land wherein thou dwellest, thou wilt not suffer them to arrest me in order to slay me, seeing that I am a messenger of Amun. Look well to it. I am one for whom search will be made unceasingly. And as for this crew of the prince of Byblos that they seek to slay, if their lord findeth ten crews of thine he too will slay them."
So she had the people summoned and they were brought forward. And she said unto me: "Lie down and sleep -" (Here the papyrus breaks off.)
The Battle of Kadesh
This battle was written as a poem in the 9th year of Ramesses II's reign, and the king liked it so well he had it placed in his great temples. It is preserved in a manuscript (Pap. Sallier, iii., in the British Museum) and imperfectly in the temples of Luxor, Karnak and Abydos. The battle between Ramasses II (1279-1212) and the Hittite army of Muwatalli (1296-1271 B.C.) was on the Orontes river in Syria in July 1274 B.C. The Hittites are called "Khatti" in the poem.
[Wikepedia.org says] Prior to the battle, since the 18th dynasty the Egyptians had been losing ground in their dominions south of the Orontes river. [Wikepedia says:] "For most of the 18th and 19th Dynasties the Egyptians had been gradually pushed back from upper Retnu (the Orontes River watershed) into the Djadi (the Jordan River watershed).
"At the start of this period the Hittites were still a loosely organized group of trading states and Kadesh was probably the more powerful foe, exerting influence as far south as Megiddo. Amenophis II, the son and coregent of Thutmosis III, fought battles against Kadesh both before and after his father's death (1425 BC). Many of the Egyptian campaign accounts between c 1400 and 1300 BC reflect general destabilization of the region of the djadi, including endemic banditry.
"The reigns of Thutmose IV and Amenophis III were undistinguished except that Egypt continued to lose power to the Mitanni in northeastern Syria and to Kadesh in the region Biblically referred to as Mount Hermon. During the reign of Akhenaten (or Amenophis IV) the Amarna letters tell the story of the decline of Egyptian influence in the region. After Akhenaten, Haremhab continued the campaign and in the 19th Dynasty so did Ramesses I. Like his father, Ramesses I, Seti I was a military commander and set out to restore Egypt's empire back to the vast glory days of the Tuthmosis kings almost a century before. Inscriptions on Karnak show the details of him campaigning into Palestine and Syria. He took 20,000 men and reoccupied abandoned Egyptian posts and garrisoned cities. He made peace with the Hittites, took control of coastal areas along the Mediterranean, and continued to fight against the bandits in Palestine. A second campaign led him to Kadesh where a stela commemorated his victory and his son and heir Ramesses II campaigned with him."
Ramesses thought he had the advantage as he had captured some men (who turned out to be spys of the Hittites) who had told him the position of the Hittite army. The king pressed on ahead with the first of his four armies, without any suspicion that the whole of the enemy forces lay in wait for him behind the fortress of Kadesh.
The Battle of Kadesh
The title: (14)
The Victory which Ramessess II won over the Khatti and all their confederates. A champion without his peer, with strong arms and stout heart -----, beautiful of form like Atum ------, victorious inn all lands. None can take up arms against him; he is a wall for his soldiers, and their shiled in the day of battle. A bowman whom none equalleth, stronger than hundreds of thousands together; who goeth forward ------. With (stout) heart in the hour of the encounter ----------; a thousand men cannot stand before him, and an hundred thousand are faint, when they see him.
|Relief from the Ramusseum, Thebes, of Ramesses II attacking a city|
The terrible one, loudly shouting; who (causeth) the hearts of the foreign peoples (to quail), as doth a fierce lion in the desert valley. --------Excellent inplans, good at (giving) directions, and his utterance is found to be admirable. Who rescueth his army (protecteth?) his body-guard, and delivereth his troops -------; his heart is like a mountain of ore, --he, King Ramesses.
Now his majesty had made ready his infantry and his chariotry, besidTh the Shardana, whom his majesty had taken captive by the victories of his arm, and he had given them the directions for the battle. His majesty proceeded northwards with his infantry and his chariotry, and he began the goodly march. In the fifth year, on the ninth day of the second month of Summer, his majesty passed the fortress of Zaru.
He was like Month at his appearing, and all foreign countries trembled before him. -----all (rebels?) came bowing down for fear of the might of his majesty. His army marched along the narrow defiles, and they were there as though upon the roadways of Egypt.
And many days after this his majesty was in Ramesses-Beloved-of Amun, the city which lieth in the land of the cedars. His majesty proceeded northward, and came to the mountain range of Kadesh. And his majesty went forward like his father Month, lord of Thebes, and crossed the ford of the Orontes with the first army of Amun. -------His majesty came to the city of Kadesh. And the wretched, vanquished chief of Khatti had come, after he had gathered to himself all lands as far as the ends of the sea; the whole land of Khatti had come, and likewise Naharina, Aradus, Pedes, Irun, Kerkesh, Reke, Kizwadna, Carchemish, Ekeret, Kedi, the whole land of Nushashi, Meshenet, and Kadesh. He had left no land which he had not brought with him; all their princes were with him, and every one had his foot-soldiers with him and chariotry, a very great multitude without limit. They covered mountains and valleys, and were like grasshoppers in their multitude. He had left no silver in his land, and had stripped it of all its possessions; he had given them to all countries, in order to lead them with him to the battle.
Now the wretched chief of Khatti, with the many nations which were with him, stood hidden and ready for battle on the north-west of Kadesh. His majesty was all alone (with) his body-guard. The army of Amun marched behind him, the army of Re crossed over the ford in the region south of the city of Shebten -------, the army of Ptah was south of the city of Erenem, and the army of Sutekh (another name of Seth, the war god) was (yet) marching upon the road. His majesty had made a vanguard of all the captains of his army; these were on the coast in the land of Emor.
The wretched chief of Khatti stood in the midst of the army, which he had with him, and for fear of his majesty he came not forth to the battle. He had caused very many people and horses to come, multitudinous as the sand; they stood three men to a span, and had joined themselves with warriors of every sort ------furnished with all the weapons of war, without number. They stood in battle array, concealed on the north-west of the city of Kadesh, and they came forth from the south side of Kadesh. They attacked the army of Re in its center, as it marched unheeding and unready for battle. The infantry and chariotry of his majexty fainted before them.
Now his majesty had halted north of Kadesh, on the west side of the Orontes; and one came and told it to his majesty.
The King's fight
His majesty issued forth like his father Month, after he had seized his panoply of war, and had put on his corselet; he was like Baal (whom the Egyptians equated to Sutekh) in his hour. The great span, which bore his majesty, was called Victory-in-Thebes and was from the great stable of Ramesses. His majesty (rode) at a gallop, and charged the hostile army of Khatti, being all alone and having none with him.
When his majesty looked behind him he marked that two thousand five hundred chariots encircled him on his way out, with all the warriors of the wretched land of Khatti and of the many countries which were with him, from Aradus, Mese, Pedes, Keshkesh, Irun, Kizwadna, hereb, Ekeret, Kadesh and Reke. They stood three men to a span, and had banded themselves together.
No chief is with me, no charioteer, no officer of foot-soldiery nor of chariotry. My foot-soldiery and my chariotry left me for a prey before them, and not one of them stood fast in order to fight with them.
And his majesty said: "What is it then, my father Amun? hath a father indeed forgotten his son? Have I done ought without thee? have I not gone or stood still because of thine utterance? And I never swereved from the counsels of thy mouth. How great is the great lord of Thebes, too great to suffer the foreign peoples to come nigh him! What are these Asiatics to thee, Amun? Wretches that know not God! Have I not fashioned for thee very many monuments, and filled thy temple with my captives? I have built for thee my temple of millions of years, and have given thee my goods for a possession. I present unto thee all countries together, in order to furnish thine offering with victuals. I cause to be offered unto thee tens of thousands of oxen, together with all sweet-smelling plants.
"No good thing leave I undone in thy sanctuary. I build for thee great pylons, and I myself set up their flag-staffs. I bring thee obelisks from Elephantine, and I it is who conveyeth stone. I cause galleys to voyage for thee upon the sea, in order to fetch for thee the tribute of the countries. Mischief shall befall him who thwarteth thy counsels, but well fareth he that understandeth (?) thee. One should work (?) for thee with loving heart.
"I call to thee, my father Amun. I am in the midst of foes whom I know not. All lands have joined themselves together against me, and I am all alone and none other is with me. My soldiers have forsaken me, and not one among my chariotry hath looked round for me. If I cry to them, not one of them hearkeneth. But I call, and I find that Amun is worth more to me than millions of foot-soldiers, and hundreds of thousands of chariots, than ten thousand men in brethren and children, who with one mind hold together. The work of many men is nothing; Amun is worth more than they. I have come hither by reason of the counsels of thy mouth, O Amun, and from thy counsels have I not swerved."
I pray at the limits of the lands, and yet my voice reacheth unto Hermonthis; Amun hearkeneth unto me and cometh, when I cry to him. He stretcheth out his hand to me, and I rejoice; he calleth out behind me: "Forward, forward! I am with thee, I thy father. Mine hand is with thee, and I am of more avail than an hundred thousand men, I, the lord of victory, that loveth strength!"
I have found my courage again, mine heart swelleth for joy, all that I was fain to do cometh to pass. I am like Month, I shoot on the right hand and fight on the left. I am as Baal in his time before them. I find that the two thousand five hundred chariots, in whose midst I was, lie hewn in pieces before my steeds. Not one of them hath found his hand to fight. Their hearts are become faint in their bodies for fear, their arms are all become powerless. They are unable to shoot, and have not the heart to take their lances. I cause them to plunge into the water, as plunge the crocodiles. They stumble one over the other, and I slay of them whom I will. Not one of them looketh back, and there is none that turneth him about. Whosoever of them falleth lifteth not up himself again.
Now the wretched Prince of Khatti stood in the mdists of his army and watched the fight, which his majesty fought all alone without foot-soldiery or chariotry. He stood with face averted and irresolute.
He caused many chieftains to come; all of them had horse-chariots, and they were equipped with all their weapons of war: namely, the prince of Aradus, of Mese, of Irun, of Reke and of Derdeni; the prince of Carchemish, of Kerkesh, and of Khereb, and the brethren of the princes of Khatti - all these together were two thousand horse-chariots, who came straight ahead on to the fire.
I made for them, I was like Month, I caused them to taste my hand in a single moment. I slaughtered them, slaying them where they stood, and one cried out to the other, saying: "This is no man that is among us, he is Sutekh, great of strength; Baal is in his limbs. They are not the deeds of a man that he doeth. (Never yet) hath one man alone, without foot-soldiers and chariotry, overcome hundreds of thousands. Come quickly, that we may flee from before him, that we may seek for ourselves life and yet draw breath. Lo, as for anyone that ventureth to approach him, his hand is paralysed and every limb. None can grasp bow or lance, when it is seen how he cometh, having run the course."
His majesty was behind them as it were a gryphon; I slew among them and none escaped me. I shouted out to my army: "Steady, steady your hearts, my soldiers. Ye behold my victory, I being alone. But Amun is my protector, and his hand is with me. How faint-hearted ye are, my chariotry, and it is useless to trust in you. There is not one among you to whom I had not done good in my land. Stood I not as lord there, while ye were in poverty? Yet I caused you to become notables, and daily ye partook of my sustenance. I set the son over the possessions of his father. All that was evil in this land is abolished. I remitted to you your dues, and gave to you other things that had been taken away from you. Whosoever came with a petition, to him I said at all times: 'Yea, i will do it.' Never has a lord done for his soldiers what I have done according to your desire, (for) I made you dwell in your houses and your cities, albeit ye did no soldier's service. My chariotry likewise, to them gave I the road to many cities, and thought to experience today a like thing in you in this hour of entering into battle. But behold, ye all with one consent do a coward's deed; not one of you standeth firm in order to reach me his hand, while I am fighting.
"As the ka of my father, Amun, endureth, would that I were in Egypt like my fathers, who saw not the Syrians --------and not one of you had come inorder to tell his news in the land of Egypt. What a goodly existence he hath, who conveyeth many monuments to Thebes, the city of Amun!
The crime which my foot-soldiery and chariotry have committed is greater than can be told. But, behold, Amun gave me his victory, although no foot-soldiery and no chariotry were with me. I let every far-off land see my victory and my might, while I was all alone, without a great one to follow me, and without a charioteer, without an officer of the foot-soldiery or of the chariotry. The foreign countries who see me shall speak of my name as far as the farthest lands which are unknown. Whosoever of them escapeth from mine hand, he standeth turned about and seeth what I do. When I attack millions of them, their feet stand not firm, but they flee away. All who shoot at me, their arrows are dispersed when they reach me.
But when Menna, my charioteer, saw that a great multitude of chariots compassed me round about, he became faint, and his heart failed him, and very great fear entered into his limbs. Then said he unto his majesty: "My good lord, valiant prince, great protector of Egypt in the day of batle, we stand alone in the midst of the foe. Behold, the foot-soldiery and chariotry have abandoned us. Wherefore wilt thou stay until they bereave (us of breath)? Let us remain unscathed, save us Ramesses." Then said his majesty unto his charioteer: "Steady, steady thine ehart, my charioteer. I shall enter in among them even as a hawk striketh; I slay, hew in piecs, and cast to the ground. What mean these cowards to thee/ My face groweth not pale for a million of them." His majesty hastened forwards; he charged the foe and charged them until the sixth time. I am behind them as Baal in the hour of his might. I make slaughter of them and am not slothful.
Now when my foot-soldiers and chariotry saw that I was like Month in might and strength, and that Amun, my father, was joined with me and made every land straw before me, they approached one by one in order to (creep?) at eventide into the camp, and they found that all peoples, among whom I had forced my way, were lying slaughtered in heaps in their blood, even all the best warriors of Khatti, and the children and brethren of their pricne. I had cuased the field of Kadesh to become white, and one knew not where to tread because of their multitude.
And my soldiers came to reverence my name, when they saw what I had done; my notables came to extol my might, and my chariotry likewise, who glorified my name: "Ah, thou goodly warrior, who maketh steady the heart, thou rescuest thy foot-soldiery and thy chariotry. O son of Amun, deft of hands, thou destroyest the land of Khatti with thy mgihty arms. Thou are a goodly warrior without thylike, a king that fighteth for his soliders on the day of battle. Thou art stout of heart and art foremost when the fight is joined. All lands, united in one, have not withstood (?) thee; thou wast victorious in the presence of the host, in the sight of the whole earth - that is no baost. Thou art the protector of Egypt, the subduer of the foreign countries, thou hast broken the back of Khatti forever."
And his majesty said unto his foot-soldiers, his chief captains, and his cahriotry: "What a crime ye have committed (?) my chief captains, my foot-soldieery and my chariotry, ye who have not fought! Hath not one boasted in his city -------, he will do a deed of valour for his good lord -----------? Have I not done good to one of you? Your leaving me alone in the mdist of the enemy, how excellent that is in you! ----------your breathing the air while I am alone. Could ye then not say in your hearts that I am your wall of iron --------. It will be heard , say that ye left me alone, without another, and no chief captain, no officer either of chariotry or of foot-solciery came to hold out his hand to me. I fought and overcame millions of lands, all alone. I was with Victory-in-Thebes and Mut-is-Content, my great steeds; in them (alone) found I succour, when I was all alone in the midst of many countries. Furthermore, I myself will cause them to eat their provender in my presence every day, when I shall be once more in my palace, for it was in them that I found succour, and also in Menna, my chaioteer, and in the butlers of the palace, who were beside me. These were present at the battle. Lo, I found that they came to my majesty in valour and victory, after that I had overthrown with my mighty arm hundreds of thousands united together."
The second day of battle and the overthrow of the enemy
When the day dawned, I began (?) the fighting in the battle. I was ready for the fray like a bull on the alert; I shone forth against them like Month, furnished with fighters and with mighty men. I forced my way into the mêlée and fought even as a hawk striketh. The royal snake upon my brow, it overthrew mine enemies; it spat forth fire into the face of the foe. I was like Re when he ascendeth in the mornting, and my rays burnt the limbs of the enemy.
One cried out to the other: "Look to yourselves! Protect yourselves! Lo, the mighty Sekhmet is with him; she is by him on his horses, and her hand is with him. If any draweth nigh unto him, the blast of fire cometh and burneth his limbs." Then they began to kiss the ground before me. My majesty was mighty behind them, I made slaughter among them, and was not slack (?). They were cut to pieces before my steeds, they lay together stretched out in their blood.
Then the wretched fallen prince of Khatti sent and revered the great name of his majesty: "Thou are Re-Harakhti, thou art Sutekh, great in strength, son of Nut; Baal is in thy limbs, and terror of thee is in the land of Khatti. Thou hast broken forever the back of the prince of Khatti." He sent his envoy with a letter, which was addressed to the great name of my majesty, and apprised the Majesty of the Palace of Horus, Strong Bull, Beloved of Truth, as followeth: " O King, who protecteth his soldiers, valiant in his might, a wall for his troops in the day of battle, king of Upper and Lower Egypt, Usimre-Chosen-of-Re, son of Re, Ramesses-Beloved-of-Amun! The servant there saith, and would have thee know that tho art the son of Re, who issued from his limbs, and he hath given thee all lands united in one. The land of Egypt and the land of Khatti, they are thy servants and they lie at thy feet. Thine august father, Re, hath given them unto thee. Be not violent with us! Behold, thy prowess is great, and thy might is heavy upon the land of Khatti. Is it good that thou shouldest slay thy servants? ------Yesterday thou didst slay hundreds of thousands, and today thou comest and leavest (us) no heirs surviving. Be not severe in thine utterance, O mighty king; peaceableness is better than strife of battle. Give us breath!"
My majesty allowed myself repose, full of life and good fortune, and I was as Month in his time, when his victory hath been achieved. My majesty caused to be brought all the generals of the foot-soldiers, of the chariotry, and all other troops, altogether, in order to inform them of what the great prince of Khatti had written unto Pharaoh. They answered and said unto his majesty: "Mercy is good exceedingly, our lord O King; in peaceableness is there nought to harm (?) -------------. Who will revere thee on the day wherein thou art wroth? Then his majesty commanded his words to be heard and extendedhis hand in peace upon the march southwards.
And when his majesty drew near in peace to Egypt with his chief captains, his foot-soldiers, and his chariotry - life, stability and happiness were with him, and gods and godesses -----and all lands praised his fair countenance -----he arrived safely at House-of-Ramesses-Great-of-Victores, and rested in his palace, full of life like Re upon his throne, and the gods greeted his ka, saying unto him: "Welcome, our beloved son, Ramesses-Beloved-of-Amun!" They gave him millions of jubilees, and eternity upon the throne of his father (?) Atum, while all lands and all foreign coutnries lie under his feet.
All images except that for Script XW are from:
1) "The Art of Mesopotamia," by Eva Strommenger, Harry N. Abrams, Inc., NY, 1964.
2) History of Arti in Persia, by Georges Perrot and Charles Chipiez, Chapman and Hall Ltd., 1892.
3) A History of Art in Chaldaea & Assyria, by Georges Perrot and Charles Chipiez, Chapman and Hall Ltd., 1892.
4) All quotes from Assyrian texts are from "Ancient Records of Assyria and Babylonia," (in 2 volumes) by Daniel David Luckenbill, Ph.D., Professor of the Semitic Languages and Literatures in the University of Chicago, Histories & Mysteries of Man Ltd., London, 1989. Paragraph numbers used here refer to Luckenbill's numbering.
5) Wikipedia lists various traditions involving Mount Judi, which suggest it was the final resting place of Noah's Ark. Another discussion on the controversy involving the true location of Mt. Judi is at arksearch.com.
6) Dates and the list of Assyrian rulers are from "The Wordworth Handbook of Kings and Queens," by John E. Morby, Wordsworth Reference, 1989.
7) Paragraph 92 - drove out Mitâ, king of Muski; who restored the captured fortresses of Kue. This is an important passage. Earlier the Annals connected Mitâ of Mushki allied in the rebellion of the Manneans. Now we are told that Mitâ had held sovereignty over Que. If the Zincirli Relief is of Sennacherib and his dominion over Que, considering the Phrygian writing one would postulate that the Phrygians during the time of Sennacherib (704-681 B.C.) possessed the land of Que. The earlier statement in Sargon's Annals (721-705 B.C.) that Mitâ of Mushki held dominion over Que explains the reason for the Phrygian writing on a stone containing Sennacherib's name. This adds further evicence that at least one King Midas of Phrygia was subdued by Sargon. If this is the legendary King Midas it places him about 711 B.C., in the eighth year of Sargon's reign, at least circa. 721-705 B.C.
See also another reference to Mitâ whom Sargon "drove out" and in the same context says he (Sargon) restored the captured fortresses of Kue. This also is important since it suggests that Mitâ had taken the fortresses from Sargon.
In paragraph 99 another summary groups Kasku, all of Tabalu and Hilakku together, preceeding the description of driving out Mitâ, king of Mushki. The narrative then turns to another geographica area of conquest, beginning with the defeat of Egypt at Rapihu, counting together Hanno the king of Gaza and the defeat of the seven kings of Ia', a province of Iatnana (Cyprus) located a seven days' journey in the midst of the western sea. Recognizing that an earlier text refers to Mushki being part of Tabalu, we may surmize that the description reads from north to south, with Kasku probably being above the Halys river, near the Black Sea, Tabalu would be a region stretching from Que, on the Mediterranean coast, north to Kasku. South of Tabaluproper would be Hilakku, which must be Cilicia. To the west of Cilicia would be Lycia , Caria and Lydia, none of which are (so far as we can see) mentioned in the texts. Sandwiched to the east of Tabalu (Mushki) would be the wide region of Kummuhu which seems to begin near Carcamish and stretch to Melitea and Gurgum, the territory east of Tabalu and Mushki.
In paragraph 117 Cilicia is identified with Kue. The list of conquests involving Urartu (Armenia) begins as usual with the Medes, then westward, the Mannean-land, Urartu (Armenia), Kasku, Tabalum, up to the land of Mushki. This says that in order moving across Anatolia and northward (upwards) are the lands of Kasku, then Tabalum, all of which he conquered up to Mushki. The text identifies Melitea and Gurgum, so north of Melitea must be Kasku, and west of the region Kasku and the cities Melitea and Gurgum would be Tabalu, Tabalum and northwest of it would be Mushki.
Paragraph 442 carries an interesting link of the lands of Kutmuhi and Mushki, which were entered after crossing the Tigris from the mountains of Nipur and Pasate. He doesn't mention crossing the Euphrates, which makes this entry interesting, since the Mushki (Phrygians) would be presumed to be well to the west of the Euphrates, on the Halys river. If the Mushki are the Phrygians then we have a confirmation of their presence circa. 883-859 B.C. But here we may have a record of the Mushki being adjacent to (west of?) the Van area. Their presence there, near Urartu, would suggest the entry of the Phrygians into Anatolia (from Thrace) via the Caucaus region.
Paragraph 72, Introduction. This king, Adad-Nirâri I, provides several notations on his ancestors, in the context of honoring them for having either first built or later restored a specific structure in Assur. It was apparently the tradition to record the event on stones and bricks in the walls of the monuments with the basic who, what, when and where information successors to the long-lived dynasty would want to know. We are particularly interested i n the events leading up to the Trojan War era, circa. 1180 B.C. Because Adad-nirâri I was engaged in so much restorative work it appears that his time represented a period of peace and "restoration." After him there is a gap in the Assyrian historical record, probably caused by the same "invaders" that brought about the destruction of Hattusus and Troy. What happened between the reign of Assur-nâdin-apli, (1206-1203 B.C.) and Assur-resh-ishi I (1132-1115 B.C.)? We see in the historical record that Urartu and Commagene were viewed as land within the border of Assyria. The Assyrian kings were constantly conducting military campaigns in these areas and lands adjacent to them, and they record how the Mushki (Phrygians) and others would be allied with the rebels, which would have provoked campaigns against the Mushki. They claim to take their campaigns to the northern sea (Black Sea?), which would be a natural extension of a military campaign into the lands of the Mushki which they say are in the land(s) of Tabal. The power of the Mushki is noted in the record with regard to the disposition of Que or Kue, which they say was originally occupied by the Mushki and lost by them to Assyria, then reoccupied. If Que is another name for Cilicia it would imply that the Phrygians (Mushki) had conquered the Cilicians. We leave the issue as an occupation of Que, leaving the matter of occupation of Cilicia an unresolved matter. Adad-Nirâri I is important to the context of Phrygian influence in the sense that we can surmise that his time was a period of relative peace and not as consumed by defending the lands of Urartu (Armenia).
8) Tiglath-pileser III follows the convention of grouping districts and provinces adjacent to each other together. Such groupings tend to follow the sequence of campaigns, usually from the northwest, Urartu, to the southwest and southeast (to Kummuhu, Commagene and east to Carchemish. Within the groupings districts tend to be listed in the same order, as if one were listing cities while referring to a map. If the campaign began in the southeast, such as Tyre and worked westward, the listing would group Kummuu, west of Carchamish, and Kûe (Que) adjacent to this province, region, in the west, together. North of Kûe they list Gurgum , Melid (Melitea) and Tabal together. Following them in this group is Tunai, Tuhan and Ishtunda. Then the list shifts to Ashkelon, etc., which relates to the dominion from Egypt to Syria and the Hittite territory north of Tyre.
9) Because of the reference to the land of Nairî, we know that Tushha is Tushba(Van), the capital of the Urartu. With note 7, paragraph 442, we can inquire, whether the Mushki had moved into the region of the Tigris river (just west of it) and whether the Armanians, or Urartu, had not emerged at that time ~880 B.C.
10. Paragraph 772 - The Zincirli relief is reputed to be written in Aramaic and says: "I am Barrakib, son of Panammuwa." The inscription by the moon-disk reads: "My lord, Ba'al of Harran." (See hittitemonuments.com/zincirli/zincirli19.htm) There is another orthostat / relief shown on this website that carries a long inscription said to be in Phonecian, "of King Kilamuwa from Hilani j." While the Zincirli short inscription appears to be Phrygian, we defer judgment as to its language until the longer inscription has been analyzed.
11) Paragraph (Vol. I) 165 - The reference to cutting through the mountain ranges with bronze axes and galling the enemies' necks with copper fetters is salient, since iron is not mentioned. Later Assyrian kings' inscriptions include the hewing out of the mountains with both bronze and iron implements.
12) Image from "Atlas of Egyptian Art," E. Prisse D'Avennes.
13) A people who with the Philistines eight years earlier had conquered the coast of Palestine.
14) These are the Phonenician princes, whose harbors he has to visit, and who would also come in for some of the money when he recovered it. Text from "The Literature of the Ancient Egyptians," by Adolf Erman, Methuen & Co. Ltd, London, 1927. Thebes, Ramesseum Ramesses II
Updated: 6.20.07; 2.19.10
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Copyright © 2007-2010 Mel Copeland. All rights reserved.