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Afterglow of Empire

Afterglow of Empire: Egypt from the Fall of the New Kingdom to the Saite Renaissance

Aidan Dodson
Copyright Date: 2012
Pages: 352
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  • Book Info
    Afterglow of Empire
    Book Description:

    During the half-millennium from the eleventh through the sixth centuries BC, the power and the glory of the imperial pharaohs of the New Kingdom crumbled in the face of internal crises and external pressures, ultimately reversed by invaders from Nubia and consolidated by natives of the Nile Delta following a series of Assyrian invasions. Much of this era remains obscure, with little consensus among Egyptologists. Against this background, Aidan Dodson reconsiders the evidence and proposes a number of new solutions to the problems of the period. He also considers the art, architecture, and archaeology of the period, including the royal tombs of Tanis, one of which yielded the intact burials of no fewer than five pharaohs. The book is extensively illustrated with images of this material, much of which is little known to non-specialists of the period. By the author of the bestselling Amarna Sunset and Poisoned Legacy.

    eISBN: 978-1-61797-365-9
    Subjects: History, Archaeology, Religion

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-viii)
    (pp. ix-xii)
  4. Abbreviations and Conventions Used in Text
    (pp. xiii-xvi)
  5. MAPS
    (pp. xvii-xxviii)
    (pp. 1-2)

    During the second half of the second millennium BC, Egypt had transformed from an entity primarily focused on the Nile valley to an imperial power. At her empire’s height she exercised direct or indirect control over a vast swath of territory that stretched from northern Syria into the heart of Upper Nubia. This expansion seems to have been a direct reaction to the humiliation of the Second Intermediate Period, during which much of Egypt had been under the sway of the Palestinian Hyksos rulers,¹ while Nubia, long a tributary of Egypt, had become an independent and hostile state.² The wars...

    (pp. 3-38)

    In contrast to Rameses III through VIII, whose mutual relationships are clear,¹ the background of Neferkare-setepenre Rameses IX Khaemwaset I is obscure. Based on the fact that Rameses IX had a son named (Rameses-)Montjuhirkopeshef (C),² it has been proposed that Rameses IX might have been the offspring of the son of Rameses III named Montjuhirkopeshef.³ On the other hand the existence of a further son of Rameses IX named Nebmaatre⁴ (the prenomen of Rameses VI) could also point to Rameses IX being a son of the sixth Rameses.

    Montjuhirkopeshef C is known only from his tomb in the Valley of...

    (pp. 39-82)

    Although the work attributed to the Ptolemaic historian Manetho has, since the earliest days of Egyptology, formed the basis for the dynastic structure of ancient Egyptian history, the usability of the data, and the level of reliability attributed to it by modern researchers, varies widely. For the Twentieth Dynasty, all the existing epitomes of Manetho state simply “twelve kings of Diospolis,” with aggregate reigns of 135, 178, or 172 years.¹ The number of kings has usually been taken to be an error for the ten kings Sethnakhte and Rameses III through XI, but there is no reason why Herihor and...

    (pp. 83-112)

    While it is clear that Shoshenq I was king after the death of Pasebkhanut II, it is possible that he obtained at least quasi-regal authority while Pasebkhanut yet lived. The significant document is the dateline in the Karnak Priestly Annals Fragment 4b (fig. 98), which cites “Year 2 . . . of the Great Chief of the Ma, Shashaq.”¹ Although this has generally been dated to the first years of Shoshenq I’s independent reign,² one remains uncomfortable with the idea that a crowned pharaoh of Egypt could be so gratuitously insulted by his being referred to, in the heart of...

    (pp. 113-138)

    The last years of the reign of Osorkon II mark a watershed in the history of the Third Intermediate Period. With it, the fissiparous tendencies that had been apparent since the last years of the New Kingdom and had been manifested in the dual kingships of the Twentieth/Twenty-first transition both recurred in the person of Horsieset I and stood on the threshold of becoming institutionalized. Indeed, Osorkon’s ‘manifesto’ on his Tanis statue highlights the various nodes of power he wished to secure in the persons of his sons, suggesting an unease at their being held by worthies without a direct...

    (pp. 139-168)

    Following Piankh’s campaign(s) into Nubia during thewḥm-mzwt,the region of Nubia had seemingly ceased to be dependent on Egypt, although the Third Prophet of Amun, Akheperre, held the title of King’s Son of Kush during the pontificate of Menkheperre,¹ while Nesikhonsu A, wife of Panedjem II, bore the Nubian viceregal title as late as the reign of Siamun (cf. pp. 70–71). Evidence for the ensuing three and a half centuries is relatively scarce, with its interpretation subject to ongoing controversy.²

    In Lower Nubia, radiocarbon evidence suggests that fortification work was begun at the hilltop redoubt of Qasr Ibrim...

    (pp. 169-180)

    As recorded in his so-called Dream Stela, found at Gebel Barkal,¹ Bakare Tanutamun’s first action after visiting Napata to ensure the acceptance of his assumption of the throne was to return northward and re-establish Kushite power successively in Thebes, Memphis, and Heliopolis. At Memphis he crushed the pro-Assyrian elements there:² it was probably at this time that Nekau I of Sais lost his life, his son Psamtik-Nabushazzibanni escaping to Syria.³ The king then confronted the Delta princes, who at length came to Memphis and submitted to him.

    Tanutamun’s reassertion of Kushite dominion was to be short-lived, as the Assyrian armies...

  13. Appendix 1 The Absolute Chronology of the New Kingdom and Third Intermediate Period
    (pp. 181-189)
  14. Appendix 2 Outline Chronology of Ancient Egypt
    (pp. 190-194)
  15. Appendix 3 Correlation of reigns, regnal years, and pontificates between Rameses IX Psamtik I
    (pp. 195-201)
  16. Appendix 4 Hieroglyphic Titularies of Kings and God’s Wives
    (pp. 202-225)
  17. Appendix 5 Genealogies
    (pp. 226-232)
    (pp. 233-234)
  19. NOTES
    (pp. 235-282)
    (pp. 283-312)
  21. INDEX
    (pp. 313-344)