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Thutmosis I.'s campaign in Syria—The organisation of the Egyptian army: the infantry of the line, the archers, the horses, and the charioteers—The classification of the troops according to their arms—Marching and encampment in the enemy's country: battle array—Chariot-charges—The enumeration and distribution of the spoil—The vice-royalty of Rush and the adoption of Egyptian customs by the Ethiopian tribes.
The first successors of Thutmosis I.: Ahmasi and Hatshopsitit, Thūtmosis II—The temple of Deīr el-Bahari and the buildings of Karnah—The Ladders of Incense—The expedition to Pūanīt: bartering with the natives, the return of the fleet.
Thūtmosis III.: his departure for Asia, the battle of Megiddo and the subjection of Southern Syria—The year 23 to the year 28 of his reign—Conquest of Lotanū and of Mitānni—The campaign of the 33rd year of the king's reign.
CHAPTER III—THE EIGHTEENTH THEBAN DYNASTY
Thūtmosis I. and his army—Hātshopsītū and Thūtmosis III.
The account of the first expedition undertaken by Thūtmosis in Asia, a region at that time new to the Egyptians, would be interesting if we could lay our hands upon it. We should perhaps find in the midst of official documents, or among the short phrases of funerary biographies, some indication of the impression which the country produced upon its conquerors.
With the exception of a few merchants or adventurers, no one from Thebes to Memphis had any other idea of Asia than that which could be gathered from the scattered notices of it in the semi-historical romances of the preceding age. The actual sight of the country must have been a revelation; everything appearing new and paradoxical to men of whom the majority had never left their fatherland, except on some warlike expedition into Ethiopia or on some rapid raid along the coasts of the Red Sea. Instead of their own narrow valley, extending between its two mountain ranges, and fertilised by the periodical overflowing of the Nile which recurred regularly almost to a day, they had before them wide irregular plains, owing their fertility not to inundations, but to occasional rains or the influence of insignificant streams; hills of varying heights covered with vines and other products of cultivation; mountains of different altitudes irregularly distributed, clothed with forests, furrowed with torrents, their summits often crowned with snow even in the hottest period of summer: and in this region of nature, where everything was strange to them, they found nations differing widely from each other in appearance and customs, towns with crenellated walls perched upon heights difficult of access; and finally, a civilization far excelling that which they encountered anywhere in Africa outside their own boundaries. Thūtmosis succeeded in reaching on his first expedition a limit which none of his successors was able to surpass, and the road taken by him in this campaign—from Gaza to Megiddo, from Megiddo to Qodshū, from Qodshū to Carchemish—was that which was followed henceforward by the Egyptian troops in all their expeditions to the Euphrates. Of the difficulties which he encountered on his way we have no information. On arriving at Naharaim, however, we know that he came into contact with the army of the enemy, which was under the command of a single general—perhaps the King of Mitanni himself, or one of the lieutenants of the "Cossęan King of Babylon"—who had collected together most of the petty princes of the northern country to resist the advance of the intruder. The contest was hotly fought out on both sides, but victory at length remained with the invaders, and innumerable prisoners fell into their hands. The veteran Āhmosi, son of Abīna, who was serving in his last campaign, and his cousin, Āhmosi Pannekhabīt, distinguished themselves according to their wont. The former, having seized upon a chariot, brought it, with the three soldiers who occupied it, to the Pharaoh, and received once more "the collar of gold;" the latter killed twenty-one of the enemy, carrying off their hands as trophies, captured a chariot, took one prisoner, and obtained as reward a valuable collection of jewellery, consisting of collars, bracelets, sculptured lions, choice vases, and costly weapons. A stele, erected on the banks of the Euphrates not far from the scene of the battle, marked the spot which the conqueror wished to be recognised henceforth as the frontier of his empire. He re-entered Thebes with immense booty, by which gods as well as men profited, for he consecrated a part of it to the embellishment of the temple of Amon, and the sight of the spoil undoubtedly removed the lingering prejudices which the people had cherished against expeditions beyond the isthmus. Thūtmosis was held up by his subjects to the praise of posterity as having come into actual contact with that country and its people, which had hitherto been known to the Egyptians merely through the more or less veracious tales of exiles and travellers. The aspect of the great river of the Naharaim, which could be compared with the Nile for the volume of its waters, excited their admiration. They were, however, puzzled by the fact that it flowed from north to south, and even were accustomed to joke at the necessity of reversing the terms employed in Egypt to express going up or down the river. This first Syrian campaign became the model for most of those subsequently undertaken by the Pharaohs. It took the form of a bold advance of troops, directed from Zalū towards the north-east, in a diagonal line through the country, who routed on the way any armies which might be opposed to them, carrying by assault such towns as were easy of capture, while passing by others which seemed strongly defended—pillaging, burning, and slaying on every side. There was no suspension of hostilities, no going into winter quarters, but a triumphant return of the expedition at the end of four or five months, with the probability of having to begin fresh operations in the following year should the vanquished break out into revolt.*
* From the account of the campaigns of Amenōthes II., I thought we might conclude that this Pharaoh wintered in Syria at least once; but the text does not admit of this interpretation, and we must, therefore, for the present give up the idea that the Pharaohs ever spent more than a few months of the year on hostile territory.
The troops employed in these campaigns were superior to any others hitherto put into the field. The Egyptian army, inured to war by its long struggle with the Shepherd-kings, and kept in training since the reign of Āhmosis by having to repulse the perpetual incursions of the Ethiopian or Libyan barbarians, had no difficulty, in overcoming the Syrians; not that the latter were wanting in courage or discipline, but owing to their limited supply of recruits, and the political disintegration of the country, they could not readily place under arms such enormous numbers as those of the Egyptians. Egyptian military organisation had remained practically unchanged since early times: the army had always consisted, firstly, of the militia who held fiefs, and were under the obligation of personal service either to the prince of the nome or to the sovereign; secondly, of a permanent force, which was divided into two corps, distributed respectively between the Sa'id and the Delta. Those companies which were quartered on the frontier, or about the king either at Thebes or at one of the royal residences, were bound to hold themselves in readiness to muster for a campaign at any given moment. The number of natives liable to be levied when occasion required, by "generations," or as we should say by classes, may have amounted to over a hundred thousand men,* but they were never all called out, and it does not appear that the army on active service ever contained more than thirty thousand men at a time, and probably on ordinary occasions not much more than ten or fifteen thousand.**
* The only numbers which we know are those given by Herodotus for the Saļte period, which are evidently exaggerated. Coming down to modern times, we see that Mehemet-Ali, from 1830 to 1840, had nearly 120,000 men in Syria, Egypt, and the Sudan; and in 1841, at the time when the treaties imposed upon him the ill-kept obligation of reducing his army to 18,000 men, it still contained 81,000. We shall probably not be far wrong in estimating the total force which the Pharaohs of the XVIIIth dynasty, lords of the whole valley of the Nile, and of part of Asia, had at their disposal at 120,000 or 130,000 men; these, however, were never all called out at once. ** We have no direct information respecting the armies acting in Syria; we only know that, at the battle of Qodshū, Ramses II. had against him 2500 chariots containing three men each, making 7500 charioteers, besides a troop estimated at the Ramesseum at 8000 men, at Luxor at 9000, so that the Syrian army probably contained about 20,000 men. It would seem that the Egyptian army was less numerous, and I estimate it with great hesitation at about 15,000 or 18,000 men: it was considered a powerful army, while that of the Hittites was regarded as an innumerable host. A passage in the Anastasi Papyrus, No. 1, tells us the composition of a corps led by Ramses II. against the tribes in the vicinity of Qocoīr and the Rahanū valley; it consisted of 5000 men, of whom 620 were Shardana, 1600 Qahak, 70 Mashaūasha, and 880 Negroes.
The infantry was, as we should expect, composed of troops of the line and light troops. The former wore either short wigs arranged in rows of curls, or a kind of padded cap by way of a helmet, thick enough to deaden blows; the breast and shoulders were undefended, but a short loin-cloth was wrapped round the hips, and the stomach and upper part of the thighs were protected by a sort of triangular apron, sometimes scalloped at the sides, and composed of leather thongs attached to a belt. A buckler of moderate dimensions had been substituted for the gigantic shield of the earlier Theban period; it was rounded at the top and often furnished with a solid metal boss, which the experienced soldiers always endeavoured to present to the enemy's lances and javelins. Their weapons consisted of pikes about five feet long, with broad bronze or copper points, occasionally of flails, axes, daggers, short curved swords, and spears; the trumpeters were armed with daggers only, and the officers did not as a rule encumber themselves with either buckler or pike, but bore and axe and dagger, an occasionally a bow.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph taken by Naville.
The light infantry was composed chiefly of bowmen—pidātū—the celebrated archers of Egypt, whose long bows and arrows, used with deadly skill, speedily became renowned throughout the East; the quiver, of the use of which their ancestors were ignorant, had been borrowed from the Asiatics, probably from the Hyksōs, and was carried hanging at the side or slung over the shoulder. Both spearmen and archers were for the most part pure-bred Egyptians, and were divided into regiments of unequal strength, each of which usually bore the name of some god—as, for example, the regiment of Ra or of Phtah, of Arnon or of Sūtkhū*—in which the feudal contingents, each commanded by its lord or his lieutenants, fought side by side with the king's soldiers furnished from the royal domains. The effective force of the army was made up by auxiliaries taken from the tribes of the Sahara and from the negroes of the Upper Nile.**
* The army of Ramses II. at the battle of Qodshū comprised four corps, which bore the names of Amon, Rā, Phtah, and Sūtkhū. Other lesser corps were named the Tribe of Pharaoh, the Tribe of the Beauty of the Solar dish. These, as far as I can judge, must have been troops raised on the royal domains by a system of local recruiting, who were united by certain common privileges and duties which constituted them an hereditary militia, whence they were called tribes. ** These Ethiopian recruits are occasionally represented in the Theban tombs of the XVIIIth dynasty, among others in the tomb of Pahsūkhīr.
These auxiliaries were but sparingly employed in early times, but their numbers were increased as wars became more frequent and necessitated more troops to carry them on. The tribes from which they were drawn supplied the Pharaohs with an inexhaustible reserve; they were courageous, active, indefatigable, and inured to hardships, and if it had not been for their turbulent nature, which incited them to continual internal dissensions, they might readily have shaken off the yoke of the Egyptians. Incorporated into the Egyptian army, and placed under the instruction of picked officers, who subjected them to rigorous discipline, and accustomed them to the evolutions of regular troops, they were transformed from disorganised hordes into tried and invincible battalions.*
* The armies of Hātshopsītū already included Libyan auxiliaries, some of which are represented at Deīr el- Baharī; others of Asiatic origin are found under Amenōthes IV., but they are not represented on the monuments among the regular troops until the reign of Ramses II., when the Shardana appear for the first time among the king's body- guard.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph.
The old army, which had conquered Nubia in the days of the Papis and Usirtasens, had consisted of these three varieties of foot-soldiers only, but since the invasion of the Shepherds, a new element had been incorporated into the modern army in the-shape of the chariotry, which answered to some extent to the cavalry of our day as regards their tactical employment and efficacy. The horse, when once introduced into Egypt, soon became fairly adapted to its environment. It retained both its height and size, keeping the convex forehead—which gave the head a slightly curved profile—the slender neck, the narrow hind-quarters, the lean and sinewy legs, and the long flowing tail which had characterised it in its native country. The climate, however, was enervating, and constant care had to be taken, by the introduction of new blood from Syria, to prevent the breed from deteriorating.*
* The numbers of horses brought from Syria either as spoils of war or as tribute paid by the vanquished are frequently recorded in the Annals of Thūtmosis III. Besides the usual species, powerful stallions were imported from Northern Syria, which were known by the Semitic name of Abīri, the strong. In the tombs of the XVIIIth dynasty, the arrival of Syrian horses in Egypt is sometimes represented.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph taken by Petrie.
The Pharaohs kept studs of horses in the principal cities of the Nile valley, and the great feudal lords, following their example, vied with each other in the possession of numerous breeding stables. The office of superintendent to these establishments, which was at the disposal of the Master of the Horse, became in later times one of the most important State appointments.*
* In the story of the conquest of Egypt by the Ethiopian Piōnkhi, studs are indicated at Hermopolis, at Athribis, in the towns to the east and in the centre of the Delta, and at Sais. Diodorus Siculus relates that, in his time, the foundations of 100 stables, each capable of containing 200 horses, were still to be seen on the western bank of the river between Memphis and Thebes.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph.
The first chariots introduced into Egypt were, like the horses, of foreign origin, but when built by Egyptian workmen they soon became more elegant, if not stronger than their models. Lightness was the quality chiefly aimed at; and at length the weight was so reduced that it was possible for a man to carry his chariot on his shoulders without fatigue. The materials for them were on this account limited to oak or ash and leather; metal, whether gold or silver, iron or bronze, being used but sparingly, and then only for purposes of ornamentation. The wheels usually had six, but sometimes eight spokes, or occasionally only four. The axle consisted of a single stout pole of acacia. The framework of the chariot was composed of two pieces of wood mortised together so as to form a semicircle or half-ellipse, and closed by a straight bar; to this frame was fixed a floor of sycomore wood or of plaited leather thongs. The sides of the chariot were formed of upright panels, solid in front and open at the sides, each provided with a handrail. The pole, which was of a single piece of wood, was bent into an elbow at about one-fifth of its length from the end, which was inserted into the centre of the axletree. On the gigantic T thus formed was fixed the body of the chariot, the hinder part resting on the axle, and the front attached to the bent part of the pole, while the whole was firmly bound together with double leather thongs. A yoke of hornbeam, shaped like a bow, to which the horses were harnessed, was fastened to the other extremity of the pole. The Asiatics placed three men in a chariot, but the Egyptians only two; the warrior—sinni—whose business it was to fight, and the shield-bearer—qazana—who protected his companion with a buckler during the engagement. A complete set of weapons was carried in the chariot—lances, javelins, and daggers, curved spear, club, and battle-axe—while two bow-cases as well as two large quivers were hung at the sides. The chariot itself was very liable to upset, the slightest cause being sufficient to overturn it. Even when moving at a slow pace, the least inequality of the ground shook it terribly, and when driven at full speed it was only by a miracle of skill that the occupants could maintain their equilibrium. At such times the charioteer would stand astride of the front panels, keeping his right foot only inside the vehicle, and planting the other firmly on the pole, so as to lessen the jolting, and to secure a wider base on which to balance himself. To carry all this into practice long education was necessary, for which there were special schools of instruction, and those who were destined to enter the army were sent to these schools when little more than children. To each man, as soon as he had thoroughly mastered all the difficulties of the profession, a regulation chariot and pair of horses were granted, for which he was responsible to the Pharaoh or to his generals, and he might then return to his home until the next call to arms. The warrior took precedence of the shield-bearer, and both were considered superior to the foot-soldier; the chariotry, in fact, like the cavalry of the present day, was the aristocratic branch of the army, in which the royal princes, together with the nobles and their sons, enlisted. No Egyptian ever willingly trusted himself to the back of a horse, and it was only in the thick of a battle, when his chariot was broken, and there seemed no other way of escaping from the mźlée, that a warrior would venture to mount one of his steeds. There appear, however, to have been here and there a few horsemen, who acted as couriers or aides-de-camp; they used neither saddle-cloth nor stirrups, but were provided with reins with which to guide their animals, and their seat on horseback was even less secure than the footing of the driver in his chariot.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph by Flinders Petrie.
The infantry was divided into platoons of six to ten men each, commanded by an officer and marshalled round an ensign, which represented either a sacred animal, an emblem of the king or of his double, or a divine figure placed upon the top of a pike; this constituted an object of worship to the group of soldiers to whom it belonged. We are unable to ascertain how many of these platoons, either of infantry or of chariotry, went to form a company or a battalion, or by what ensigns the different grades were distinguished from each other, or what was their relative order of rank. Bodies of men, to the number of forty or fifty, are sometimes represented on the monuments, but this may be merely by chance, or because the draughtsman did not take the trouble to give the proper number accurately. The inferior officers were equipped very much like the soldiers, with the exception of the buckler, which they do not appear to have carried, and certainly did not when on the march: the superior officers might be known by their umbrella or flabellum, a distinction which gave them the right of approaching the king's person.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph.
The military exercises to which all these troops were accustomed probably differed but little from those which were in vogue with the armies of the Ancient Empire; they consisted in wrestling, boxing, jumping, running either singly or in line at regular distances from each other, manual exercises, fencing, and shooting at a target; the war-dance had ceased to be in use among the Egyptian regiments as a military exercise, but it was practised by the Ethiopian and Libyan auxiliaries. At the beginning of each campaign, the men destined to serve in it were called out by the military scribes, who supplied them with arms from the royal arsenals. Then followed the distribution of rations. The soldiers, each carrying a small linen bag, came up in squads before the commissariat officers, and each received his own allowance.*
* We see the distribution of arms made by the scribes and other officials of the royal arsenals represented in the pictures at Medinet-Abu. The calling out of the classes was represented in the Egyptian tombs of the XVIIIth dynasty, as well as the distribution of supplies.
Once in the enemy's country the army advanced in close order, the infantry in columns of four, the officers in rear, and the chariots either on the right or left flank, or in the intervals between divisions. Skirmishers thrown out to the front cleared the line of march, while detached parties, pushing right and left, collected supplies of cattle, grain, or drinking-water from the fields and unprotected villages. The main body was followed by the baggage train; it comprised not only supplies and stores, but cooking-utensils, coverings, and the entire paraphernalia of the carpenters' and blacksmiths' shops necessary for repairing bows, lances, daggers, and chariot-poles, the whole being piled up in four-wheeled carts drawn by asses or oxen. The army was accompanied by a swarm of non-combatants, scribes, soothsayers, priests, heralds, musicians, servants, and women of loose life, who were a serious cause of embarrassment to the generals, and a source of perpetual danger to military discipline. At nightfall they halted in a village, or more frequently bivouacked in an entrenched camp, marked out to suit the circumstances of the case. This entrenchment was always rectangular, its length being twice as great as its width, and was surrounded by a ditch, the earth from which, being banked up on the inside, formed a rampart from five to six feet in height; the exterior of this was then entirely faced with shields, square below, but circular in shape at the top. The entrance to the camp was by a single gate in one of the longer sides, and a plank served as a bridge across the trench, close to which two detachments mounted guard, armed with clubs and naked swords.
Drawn by Boudier, from a photograph by Emil Brugsch-Bey.
The royal quarters were situated at one end of the camp. Here, within an enclosure, rose an immense tent, where the Pharaoh found all the luxury to which he was accustomed in his palaces, even to a portable chapel, in which each morning he could pour out water and burn incense to his father, Amon-Rā of Thebes. The princes of the blood who formed his escort, his shield-bearers and his generals, were crowded together hard by, and beyond, in closely packed lines, were the horses and chariots, the draught bullocks, the workshops and the stores.
Drawn by Boudier, from a photograph by Beato. It represents the camp of Ramses II. before Qodshū: the upper angle of the enclosure and part of the surrounding wall have been destroyed by the Khāti, whose chariots are pouring in at the breach. In the centre is the royal tent, surrounded by scenes of military life. This picture has been sculptured partly over an earlier one representing one of the episodes of the battle; the latter had been covered with stucco, on which the new subject was executed. Part of the stucco has fallen away, and the king in his chariot, with a few other figures, has reappeared, to the great detriment of the later picture.
The soldiers, accustomed from childhood to live in the open air, erected no tents or huts of boughs for themselves in these temporary encampments, but bivouacked in the open, and the sculptures on the faēades of the Theban pylons give us a minute picture of the way in which they employed themselves when off duty. Here one man, while cleaning his armour, superintends the cooking. Another, similarly engaged, drinks from a skin of wine held up by a slave. A third has taken his chariot to pieces, and t is replacing some portion the worse for wear. Some are sharpening their daggers or lances; others mend their loin-cloths or sandals, or exchange blows with fists and sticks. The baggage, linen, arms, and provisions are piled in disorder on the ground; horses, oxen, and asses are eating or chewing the cud at their ease; while here and there a donkey, relieved of his burden, rolls himself on the ground and brays with delight.*
* We are speaking of the camp of Thūtmosis III. near Ālūna, the day before the battle of Megiddo, and the words put into the mouths of the soldiers to mark their vigilance are the same as those which we find in the Ramesseum and at Luxor, written above the guards of the camp where Ramses II. is reposing.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph by Beato.
The success of the Egyptians in battle was due more to the courage and hardihood of the men than to the strategical skill of their commanders. We find no trace of manouvres, in the sense in which we understand the word, either in their histories or on their bas-reliefs, but they joined battle boldly with the enemy, and the result was decided by a more or less bloody conflict. The heavy infantry was placed in the centre, the chariots were massed on the flanks, while light troops thrown out to the front began the action by letting fly volleys of arrows and stones, which through the skill of the bowmen and slingers did deadly execution; then the pikemen laid their spears in rest, and pressing straight forward, threw their whole weight against the opposing troops. At the same moment the charioteers set off at a gentle trot, and gradually quickened their pace till they dashed at full speed upon the foe, amid the confused rumbling of wheels and the sharp clash of metal.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a drawing by Champolion.
The Egyptians, accustomed by long drilling to the performance of such evolutions, executed these charges as methodically as though they were still on their parade-ground at Thebes; if the disposition of the ground were at all favourable, not a single chariot would break the line, and the columns would sweep across the field without swerving or falling into disorder. The charioteer had the reins tied round his body, and could, by throwing his weight either to the right or the left, or by slackening or increasing the pressure through a backward or forward motion, turn, pull up, or start his horses by a simple movement of the loins: he went into battle with bent bow, the string drawn back to his ear, the arrow levelled ready to let fly, while the shield-bearer, clinging to the body of the chariot with one hand, held out his buckler with the other to shelter his comrade. It would seem that the Syrians were less skilful; their bows did not carry so far as those of their adversaries, and consequently they came within the enemy's range some moments before it was possible for them to return the volley with effect. Their horses would be thrown down, their drivers would fall wounded, and the disabled chariots would check the approach of those following and overturn them, so that by the time the main body came up with the enemy the slaughter would have been serious enough to render victory hopeless. Nevertheless, more than one charge would be necessary finally to overturn or scatter the Syrian chariots, which, once accomplished, the Egyptian charioteer would turn against the foot-soldiers, and, breaking up their ranks, would tread them down under the feet of his horses.*
* The whole of the above description is based on incidents from the various pictures of battles which appear on the monuments of Ramses II.
Nor did the Pharaoh spare himself in the fight; his splendid dress, the urasus on his forehead, and the nodding plumes of his horses made him a mark for the blows of the enemy, and he would often find himself in positions of serious danger. In a few hours, as a rule, the conflict would come to an end.
Once the enemy showed signs of giving way, the Egyptian chariots dashed upon them precipitously, and turned the retreat into a rout: the pursuit was, however, never a long One; some fortress was always to be found close at hand where the remnant of the defeated host could take refuge.* The victors, moreover, would be too eager to secure the booty, and to strip the bodies of the dead, to allow time for following up the foe.
* After the battle of Megiddo, the remnants of the Syrian army took refuge in the city, where Thūtmosis III. besieged them; similarly under Ramses II. the Hittite princes took refuge in Qodshū after their defeat.
The prisoners were driven along in platoons, their arms bound in strange and contorted attitudes, each under the charge of his captor; then came the chariots, arms, slaves, and provisions collected on the battle-field or in the camp, then other trophies of a kind unknown in modern warfare. When an Egyptian killed or mortally wounded any one, he cut off, not the head, but the right hand or the phallus, and brought it to the royal scribes. These made an accurate inventory of everything, and even Pharaoh did not disdain to be present at the registration. The booty did not belong to the persons who obtained it, but was thrown into a common stock which was placed at the disposal of the sovereign: one part he reserved for the gods, especially for his father Amon of Thebes, who had given him the victory; another part he kept for himself, and the remainder was distributed among his army. Each man received a reward in proportion to his rank and services, such as male or female slaves, bracelets, necklaces, arms, vases, or a certain measured weight of gold, known as the "gold of bravery." A similar sharing of the spoil took place after every successful engagement: from Pharaoh to the meanest camp-follower, every man who had contributed to the success of a campaign returned home richer than he had set out, and the profits which he derived from a war were a liberal compensation for the expenses in which it had involved him.
The results of the first expedition of Thūtmosis I. were of a decisive character; so much so, indeed, that he never again, it would seem, found it necessary during the remainder of his life to pass the isthmus. Northern Syria, it is true, did not remain long under tribute, if indeed it paid any at all after the departure of the Egyptians, but the southern part of the country, feeling itself in the grip of the new master, accepted its defeat: Gaza became the head-quarters of a garrison which secured the door of Asia for future invasion,* and Pharaoh, freed from anxiety in this quarter, gave his whole time to the consolidation of his power in Ethiopia.
* This fact is nowhere explicitly stated on the monuments: we may infer it, however, from the way in which Thūtmosis III. tells how he reached Gaza without opposition at the beginning of his first campaign, and celebrated the anniversary of his coronation there. On the other hand, we learn from details in the lists that the mountains and plains beyond Gaza were in a state of open rebellion.
The river and desert tribes of this region soon forgot the severe lesson which he had given them: as soon as the last Egyptian soldier had left their territory they rebelled once more, and began a fresh series of inroads which had to be repressed anew year after year. Thūtmosis I. had several times to drive them back in the years II. and III., but was able to make short work of their rebellions. An inscription at Tombos on the Nile, in the very midst of the disturbed districts, told them in brave words what he was, and what he had done since he had come to the throne. Wherever he had gone, weapon in hand, "seeking a warrior, he had found none to withstand him; he had penetrated to valleys which were unknown to his ancestors, the inhabitants of which had never beheld the wearers of the double diadem." All this would have produced but little effect had he not backed up his words by deeds, and taken decisive measures to restrain the insolence of the barbarians. Tombos lies opposite to Hannek, at the entrance to that series of rapids known as the Third Cataract. The course of the Nile is here barred by a formidable dyke of granite, through which it has hollowed out six winding channels of varying widths, dotted here and there with huge polished boulders and verdant islets. When the inundation is at its height, the rocks are covered and the rapids disappear, with the exception of the lowest, which is named Lokoli, where faint eddies mark the place of the more dangerous reefs; and were it not that the fall here is rather more pronounced and the current somewhat stronger, few would suspect the existence of a cataract at the spot. As the waters go down, however, the channels gradually reappear. When the river is at its lowest, the three westernmost channels dry up almost completely, leaving nothing but a series of shallow pools; those on the east still maintain their flow, but only one of them, that between the islands of Tombos and Abadīn, remains navigable. Here Thūtmosis built, under invocation of the gods of Heliopolis, one of those brickwork citadels, with its rectangular keep, which set at nought all the efforts and all the military science of the Ethiopians: attached to it was a harbour, where each vessel on its way downstream put in for the purpose of hiring a pilot.*
The monarchs of the XIIth and XIIIth dynasties had raised fortifications at the approaches to Wady Haifa, and their engineers skilfully chose the sites so as completely to protect from the ravages of the Nubian pirates that part of the Nile which lay between Wady Haifa and Philse.*
* The foundation of this fortress is indicated in an emphatic manner in the Tombos inscription: "The masters of the Great Castle (the gods of Heliopolis) have made a fortress for the soldiers of the king, which the nine peoples of Nubia combined could not carry by storm, for, like a young panther before a bull which lowers its head, the souls of his Majesty have blinded them with fear." Quarries of considerable size, where Cailliaud imagined he could distinguish an overturned colossus, show the importance which the establishment had attained in ancient times; the ruins of the town cover a fairly large area near the modern village of Kerman.
Henceforward the garrison at Tombos was able to defend the mighty curve described by the river through the desert of Mahas, together with the island of Argo, and the confines of Dongola. The distance between Thebes and this southern frontier was a long one, and communication was slow during the winter months, when the subsidence of the waters had rendered the task of navigation difficult for the Egyptian ships. The king was obliged, besides, to concentrate his attention mainly on Asiatic affairs, and was no longer able to watch the movements of the African races with the same vigilance as his predecessors had exercised before Egyptian armies had made their way as far as the banks of the Euphrates. Thutmosis placed the control of the countries south of Assuan in the hands of a viceroy, who, invested with the august title of "Royal Son of Kūsh," must have been regarded as having the blood of Rā himself running in his veins.*
* The meaning of this title was at first misunderstood. Champollion and Rosellini took it literally, and thought it referred to Ethiopian princes, who were vassals or enemies of Egypt. Birch persists in regarding them as Ethiopians driven out by their subjects, restored by the Pharaohs as viceroys, while admitting that they may have belonged to the solar family.
Sura, the first of these viceroys whose name has reached us, was in office at the beginning of the campaign of the year III.* He belonged, it would seem, to a Theban family, and for several centuries afterwards his successors are mentioned among the nobles who were in the habit of attending the court. Their powers were considerable: they commanded armies, built or restored temples, administered justice, and received the homage of loyal sheikhs or the submission of rebellious ones.** The period for which they were appointed was not fixed by law, and they held office simply at the king's pleasure. During the XIXth dynasty it was usual to confer this office, the highest in the state, on a son of the sovereign, preferably the heir-apparent. Occasionally his appointment was purely formal, and he continued in attendance on his father, while a trusty substitute ruled in his place: often, however, he took the government on himself, and in the regions of the Upper Nile served an apprenticeship to the art of ruling.
* He is mentioned in the Sehźl inscriptions as "the royal son Sura." Nahi, who had been regarded as the first holder of the office, and who was still in office under Thutmosis III., had been appointed by Thutmosis I., but after Sura. ** Under Thutmosis III., the viceroy Nahi restored the temple at Semneh; under Tutankhamon, the viceroy Hui received tribute from the Ethiopian princes, and presented them to the sovereign.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph taken by Insinger.
This district was in a perpetual state of war—a war without danger, but full of trickery and surprises: here he prepared himself for the larger arena of the Syrian campaigns, learning the arts of generalship more perfectly than was possible in the manouvres of the parade-ground. Moreover, the appointment was dictated by religious as well as by political considerations. The presumptive heir to the throne was to his father what Horus had been to Osiris—his lawful successor, or, if need be, his avenger, should some act of treason impose on him the duty of vengeance: and was it not in Ethiopia that Horus had gained his first victories over Typhon? To begin like Horus, and flesh his maiden steel on the descendants of the accomplices of Sit, was, in the case of the future sovereign, equivalent to affirming from the outset the reality of his divine extraction.*
* In the Orbiney Papyrus the title of "Prince of Kūsh" was assigned to the heir-presumptive to the throne.
As at the commencement of the Theban dynasties, it was the river valley only in these regions of the Upper Nile which belonged to the Pharaohs. From this time onward it gave support to an Egyptian population as far as the juncture of the two Niles: it was a second Egypt, but a poorer one, whose cities presented the same impoverished appearance as that which we find to-day in the towns of Nubia. The tribes scattered right and left in the desert, or distributed beyond the confluence of the two Niles among the plains of Sennar, were descended from the old indigenous races, and paid valuable tribute every year in precious metals, ivory, timber, or the natural products of their districts, under penalty of armed invasion.*
* The tribute of the Ganbātiū, or people of the south, and that of Kūsh and of the Ūaūaīū, is mentioned repeatedly in the Annales de Thūtmosis III. for the year XXXI., for the year XXXIII., and for the year XXXIV. The regularity with which this item recurs, unaccompanied by any mention of war, following after each Syrian campaign, shows that it was an habitual operation which was registered as an understood thing. True, the inscription does not give the item for every year, but then it only dealt with Ethiopian affairs in so far as they were subsidiary to events in Asia; the payment was none the less an annual one, the amount varying in accordance with local agreement.
Among these races were still to be found descendants of the Mazaiū and Ūaūaīū, who in days gone by had opposed the advance of the victorious Egyptians: the name of the Uaūaīū was, indeed, used as a generic term to distinguish all those tribes which frequented the mountains between the Nile and the Red Sea,* but the wave of conquest had passed far beyond the boundaries reached in early campaigns, and had brought the Egyptians into contact with nations with whom they had been in only indirect commercial relations in former times.
* The Annals of Thūtmosis III. mention the tribute of Pūanīt for the peoples of the coast, the tribute of Uaūaīt for the peoples of the mountain between the Nile and the sea, the tribute of Kūsh for the peoples of the south, or Ganbātiū.
Drawn by Boudier, from a photograph by Insinger.
Some of these were light-coloured men of a type similar to that of the modern Abyssinians or Gallas: they had the same haughty and imperious carriage, the same well-developed and powerful frames, and the same love of fighting. Most of the remaining tribes were of black blood, and such of them as we see depicted on the monuments resemble closely the negroes inhabiting Central Africa at the present day.
They have the same elongated skull, the low prominent forehead, hollow temples, short flattened nose, thick lips, broad shoulders, and salient breast, the latter contrasting sharply with the undeveloped appearance of the lower part of the body, which terminates in thin legs almost devoid of calves. Egyptian civilization had already penetrated among these tribes, and, as far as dress and demeanour were concerned, their chiefs differed in no way from the great lords who formed the escort of the Pharaoh. We see these provincial dignitaries represented in the white robe and petticoat of starched, pleated, and gauffered linen; an innate taste for bright colours, even in those early times, being betrayed by the red or yellow scarf in which they wrapped themselves, passing it over one shoulder and round the waist, whence the ends depended and formed a kind of apron. A panther's skin covered the back, and one or two ostrich-feathers waved from the top of the head or were fastened on one side to the fillet confining the hair, which was arranged in short curls and locks, stiffened with gum and matted with grease, so as to form a sort of cap or grotesque aureole round the skull. The men delighted to load themselves with rings, bracelets, earrings, and necklaces, while from their arms, necks, and belts hung long strings of glass beads, which jingled with every movement of the wearer. They seem to have frequently chosen a woman as their ruler, and her dress appears to have closely resembled that of the Egyptian ladies. She appeared before her subjects in a chariot drawn by oxen, and protected from the sun by an umbrella edged with fringe. The common people went about nearly naked, having merely a loin-cloth of some woven stuff or an animal's skin thrown round their hips. Their heads were either shaven, or adorned with tufts of hair stiffened with gum. The children of both sexes wore no clothes until the age of puberty; the women wrapped themselves in a rude garment or in a covering of linen, and carried their children on the hip or in a basket of esparto grass on the back, supported by a leather band which passed across the forehead. One characteristic of all these tribes was their love of singing and dancing, and their use of the drum and cymbals; they were active and industrious, and carefully cultivated the rich soil of the plain, devoting themselves to the raising of cattle, particularly of oxen, whose horns they were accustomed to train fantastically into the shapes of lyres, bows, and spirals, with bifurcations at the ends, or with small human figures as terminations. As in the case of other negro tribes, they plied the blacksmith's and also the goldsmith's trade, working up both gold and silver into rings, chains, and quaintly shaped vases, some specimens of their art being little else than toys, similar in design to those which delighted the Byzantine Caesars of later date.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a painting on the tomb of Hūi.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph by Emil Brugsch-Bey.
A wall-painting remains of a gold epergne, which represents men and monkeys engaged in gathering the fruit of a group of dōm-palms. Two individuals lead each a tame giraffe by the halter, others kneeling on the rim raise their hands to implore mercy from an unseen enemy, while negro prisoners, grovelling on their stomachs, painfully attempt to raise their head and shoulders from the ground. This, doubtless, represents a scene from the everyday life of the people of the Upper Nile, and gives a faithful picture of what took place among many of its tribes during a rapid inroad of some viceroy of Kush or a raid by his lieutenants.
The resources which Thūtmosis I. was able to draw regularly from these southern regions, in addition to the wealth collected during his Syrian campaign, enabled him to give a great impulse to building work. The tutelary deity of his capital—Amon-Rā—who had ensured him the victory in all his battles, had a prior claim on the bulk of the spoil; he received it as a matter of course, and his temple at Thebes was thereby considerably enlarged; we are not, however, able to estimate exactly what proportion fell to other cities, such as Kummeh, Elephantine,* Abydos,** and Memphis, where a few scattered blocks of stone still bear the name of the king. Troubles broke out in Lower Egypt, but they were speedily subdued by Thūtmosis, and he was able to end his days in the enjoyment of a profound peace, undisturbed by any care save that of ensuring a regular succession to his throne, and of restraining the ambitions of those who looked to become possessed of his heritage.***
* Wiedemann found his name there cut in a block of brown freestone. ** A stele at Abydos speaks of the building operations carried on by Thūtmosis I. in that town. *** The expressions from which we gather that his reign was disturbed by outbreaks of internal rebellion seem to refer to a period subsequent to the Syrian expedition, and prior to his alliance with the Princess Hātshopsītū.
His position was, indeed, a curious one; although de facto absolute in power, his children by Queen Ahmasi took precedence of him, for by her mother's descent she had a better right to the crown than her husband, and legally the king should have retired in favour of hie sons as soon as they were old enough to reign. The eldest of them, Uazmosū, died early.* The second, Amenmosu, lived at least to attain adolescence; he was allowed to share the crown with his father from the fourth year of the latter's reign, and he also held a military command in the Delta,** but before long he also died, and Thūtmosis I. was left with only one son—a Thūtmosis like himself—to succeed him. The mother of this prince was a certain Mūtnofrit,*** half-sister to the king on his father's side, who enjoyed such a high rank in the royal family that her husband allowed her to be portrayed in royal dress; her pedigree on the mother's side, however, was not so distinguished, and precluded her son from being recognised as heir-apparent, hence the occupation of the "seat of Horus" reverted once more to a woman, Hātshopsītū, the eldest daughter of Āhmasi.
* Uazmosū is represented on the tomb of Pahiri at El-Kab, where Mr. Griffith imagines he can trace two distinct Uazmosū; for the present, I am of opinion that there was but one, the son of Thūtmosis I. His funerary chapel was discovered at Thebes; it is in a very bad state of preservation. ** Amenmosū is represented at El-Kab, by the side of his brother Uazmosū. Also on a fragment where we find him, in the fourth year of his father's reign, honoured with a cartouche at Memphis, and consequently associated with his father in the royal power. *** Mūtnofrit was supposed by Mariette to have been a daughter of Thūtmosis II; the statue reproduced on p. 345 has shown us that she was wife of Thūtmosis I. and mother of Thūtmosis II.
Hātshopsītū herself was not, however, of purely divine descent. Her maternal ancestor, Sonisonbū, had not been a scion of the royal house, and this flaw in her pedigree threatened to mar, in her case, the sanctity of the solar blood. According to Egyptian belief, this defect of birth could only be remedied by a miracle,* and the ancestral god, becoming incarnate in the earthly father at the moment of conception, had to condescend to infuse fresh virtue into his race in this manner.
* A similar instance of divine substitution is known to us in the case of two other sovereigns, viz. Amenōthes III., whose father, Titmosis IV., was born under conditions analogous to those attending the birth of Thūtmosis I.; and Ptolemy Caesarion, whose father, Julius Cęsar, was not of Egyptian blood.
Drawn by Boudier, from a photograph by Naville.
The inscriptions with which Hātshopsītū decorated her chapel relate how, on that fateful night, Amon descended upon Ahmasi in a flood of perfume and light. The queen received him favourably, and the divine spouse on leaving her announced to her the approaching birth of a daughter, in whom his valour and strength should be manifested once more here below. The sequel of the story is displayed in a series of pictures before our eyes.
The protecting divinities who preside over the birth of children conduct the queen to her couch, and the sorrowful resignation depicted on her face, together with the languid grace of her whole figure, display in this portrait of her a finished work of art. The child enters the world amid shouts of joy, and the propitious genii who nourish both her and her double constitute themselves her nurses. At the appointed time, her earthly father summons the great nobles to a solemn festival, and presents to them his daughter, who is to reign with him over Egypt and the world.*
* The association of Hātshopsītū with her father on the throne, has now been placed beyond doubt by the inscriptions discovered and commented on by Naville in 1895.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph by Naville.
From henceforth Hātshopsītū adopts every possible device to conceal her real sex. She changes the termination of her name, and calls herself Hātshopsīū, the chief of the nobles, in lieu of Hātshopsītū, the chief of the favourites. She becomes the King Mākerī, and on the occasion of all public ceremonies she appears in male costume. We see her represented on the Theban monuments with uncovered shoulders, devoid of breasts, wearing the short loin-cloth and the keffieh, while the diadem rests on her closely cut hair, and the false beard depends from her chin.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph by M. de Mertens. This was the head of one of the sphinxes which formed an avenue at Deīr el-Baharī; it was brought over by Lepsius and is now in the Berlin Museum. The fragment has undergone extensive restoration, but this has been done with the help of fragments of other statues, in which the details here lost were in a good state of preservation.
She retained, however, the feminine pronoun in speaking of herself, and also an epithet, inserted in her cartouche, which declared her to be the betrothed of Amon—khnūmīt Amaūnū.*
* We know how greatly puzzled the early Egyptologists were by this manner of depicting the queen, and how Champollion, in striving to explain the monuments of the period, was driven to suggest the existence of a regent, Amenenthes, the male counterpart and husband of Hātshopsītū, whose name he read Amense. This hypothesis, adopted by Rosellini, with some slight modifications, was rejected by Birch. This latter writer pointed out the identity of the two personages separated by Champollion, and proved them to be one and the same queen, the Amenses of Manetho; he called her Amūn-nūm- hc, but he made her out to be a sister of Amenōthes I., associated on the throne with her brothers Thūtmosis I. and Thūtmosis IL, and regent at the beginning of the reign of Thūtmosis III. Hineks tried to show that she was the daughter of Thūtmosis I., the wife of Thūtmosis II. and the sister of Thūtmosis III.; it is only quite recently that her true descent and place in the family tree has been recognised. She was, not the sister, but the aunt of Thūtmosis III. The queen, called by Birch Amūn-nūm-het, the latter part of her name being dropped and the royal prenomen being joined to her own name, was subsequently styled Ha-asū or Hatasū, and this form is still adopted by some writers; the true reading is Hātshopsītū or Hātshopsītū, then Hātshopsīū, or Hātshepsīū, as Naville has pointed out.
Her father united her while still young to her brother Thūtmosis, who appears to have been her junior, and this fact doubtless explains the very subordinate part which he plays beside the queen. When Thūtmosis I. died, Egyptian etiquette demanded that a man should be at the head of affairs, and this youth succeeded his father in office: but Hātshopsītū, while relinquishing the semblance of power and the externals of pomp to her husband,* kept the direction of the state entirely in her own hands. The portraits of her which have been preserved represent her as having refined features, with a proud and energetic expression. The oval of the face is elongated, the cheeks a little hollow, and the eyes deep set under the arch of the brow, while the lips are thin and tightly closed.
* It is evident, from the expressions employed by Thūtmosis I. in associating his daughter with himself on the throne, that she was unmarried at the time, and Naville thinks that she married her brother Thūtmosis II. after the death of her father. It appears to me more probable that Thūtmosis I. married her to her brother after she had been raised to the throne, with a view to avoiding complications which might have arisen in the royal family after his own death. The inscription at Shutt-er-Ragel, which has furnished Mariette with the hypothesis that Thūtmosis I. and Thūtmosis IL reigned simultaneously, proves that the person mentioned in it, a certain Penaīti, flourished under both these Pharaohs, but by no means shows that these two reigned together; he exercised the functions which he held by their authority during their successive reigns.
She governed with so firm a hand that neither Egypt nor its foreign vassals dared to make any serious attempt to withdraw themselves from her authority. One raid, in which several prisoners were taken, punished a rising of the Shaūsū in Central Syria, while the usual expeditions maintained order among the peoples of Ethiopia, and quenched any attempt which they might make to revolt. When in the second year of his reign the news was brought to Thutmosis II. that the inhabitants of the Upper Nile had ceased to observe the conditions which his father had imposed upon them, he "became furious as a panther," and assembling his troops set out for war without further delay. The presence of the king with the army filled the rebels with dismay, and a campaign of a few weeks put an end to their attempt at rebelling.
The earlier kings of the XVIIIth dynasty had chosen for their last resting-place a spot on the left bank of the Nile at Thebes, where the cultivated land joined the desert, close to the pyramids built by their predecessors. Probably, after the burial of Amenōthes, the space was fully occupied, for Thutmosis I. had to seek his burying-ground some way up the ravine, the mouth of which was blocked by their monuments. The Libyan chain here forms a kind of amphitheatre of vertical cliffs, which descend to within some ninety feet of the valley, where a sloping mass of detritus connects them by a gentle declivity with the plain.
Drawn by Boudier, from a photograph by Emil Brugsch-Bey.
The great lords and the queens in the times of the Antufs and the Usirtasens had taken possession of this spot, but their chapels were by this period in ruins, and their tombs almost all lay buried under the waves of sand which the wind from the desert drives perpetually over the summit of the cliffs. This site was seized on by the architects of Thūtmosis, who laid there the foundations of a building which was destined to be unique in the world. Its ground plan consisted of an avenue of sphinxes, starting from the plain and running between the tombs till it reached a large courtyard, terminated on the west by a colonnade, which was supported by a double row of pillars.
Drawn by Bouclier, from a photograph supplied by Naville.
Above and beyond this was the vast middle platform,* connected with the upper court by the central causeway which ran through it from end to end; this middle platform, like that below it, was terminated on the west by a double colonnade, through which access was gained to two chapels hollowed out of the mountain-side, while on the north it was bordered with excellent effect by a line of proto-Dorio columns ranged against the face of the cliff.
* The English nomenclature employed in describing this temple is that used in the Guide to Deir el-Bahari, published by the Egypt Exploration Fund.—Tr.
This northern colonnade was never completed, but the existing part is of as exquisite proportions as anything that Greek art has ever produced. At length we reach the upper platform, a nearly square courtyard, cutting on one side into the mountain slope, the opposite side being enclosed by a wall pierced by a single door, while to right and left ran two lines of buildings destined for purposes connected with the daily worship of the temple. The sanctuary was cut out of the solid rock, but the walls were faced with white limestone; some of the chambers are vaulted, and all of them decorated with bas-reliefs of exquisite workmanship, perhaps the finest examples of this period. Thūtmosis I. scarcely did more than lay the foundations of this magnificent building, but his mummy was buried in it with great pomp, to remain there until a period of disturbance and general insecurity obliged those in charge of the necropolis to remove the body, together with those of his family, to some securer hiding-place.* The king was already advanced in age at the time of his death, being over fifty years old, to judge by the incisor teeth, which are worn and corroded by the impurities of which the Egyptian bread was full.
* Both E. de Rougé and Mariette were opposed to the view that the temple was founded by Thūtmosis I., and Naville agrees with them. Judging from the many new texts discovered by Naville, I am inclined to think that Thūtmosis I. began the structure, but from plans, it would appear, which had not been so fully developed as they afterwards became. Prom indications to be found here and there in the inscriptions of the Ramesside period, I am not, moreover, inclined to regard Deīr el-Bāhāri as the funerary chapel of tombs which were situated in some unknown place elsewhere, but I believe that it included the burial-places of Thūtmosis I., Thūtmosis II., Queen Hātshopsītū, and of numerous representatives of their family; indeed, it is probable that Thūtmosis III. and his children found here also their last resting-place.
Drawn by Boudier, from a photograph taken by Emil Brugsch-Bey.
The body, though small and emaciated, shows evidence of unusual muscular strength; the head is bald, the features are refined, and the mouth still bears an expression characteristic of shrewdness and cunning.*
* The coffin of Thūtmosis I. was usurped by the priest-king Pinozmū I., son of Piōnkhi, and the mummy was lost. I fancy I have discovered it in mummy No. 5283, of which the head presents a striking resemblance to those of Thūtmosis II. and III.
Thūtmosis II. carried on the works begun by his father, but did not long survive him.* The mask on his coffin represents him with a smiling and amiable countenance, and with the fine pathetic eyes which show his descent from the Pharaohs of the XIIth dynasty.
* The latest year up to the present known of this king is the IInd, found upon the Aswan stele. Erman, followed by Ed. Meyer, thinks that Hātshop-sītū could not have been free from complicity in the premature death of Thūtmosis II.; but I am inclined to believe, from the marks of disease found on the skin of his mummy, that the queen was innocent of the crime here ascribed to her.
Drawn by Boudier, from a photograph in the possession of Emil Brugsch Bey.
His statues bear the same expression, which indeed is that of the mummy itself. He resembles Thūtmosis I., but his features are not so marked, and are characterised by greater gentleness. He had scarcely reached the age of thirty when he fell a victim to a disease of which the process of embalming could not remove the traces. The skin is scabrous in patches, and covered with scars, while the upper part of the skull is bald; the body is thin and somewhat shrunken, and appears to have lacked vigour and muscular power. By his marriage with his sister, Thūtmosis left daughters only,* but he had one son, also a Thūtmosis, by a woman of low birth, perhaps merely a slave, whose name was Isis.** Hātshopsītū proclaimed this child her successor, for his youth and humble parentage could not excite her jealousy. She betrothed him to her one surviving daughter, Hātshopsītū II., and having thus settled the succession in the male line, she continued to rule alone in the name of her nephew who was still a minor, as she had done formerly in the case of her half-brother.
* Two daughters of Queen Hātshopsītū I. are known, of whom one, Nofīrūrī, died young, and Hātshopsītū II. Marītrī, who was married to her half-brother on her father's side, Thūtmosis III., who was thus her cousin as well. Amenōthes II. was offspring of this marriage. ** The name of the mother of Thūtmosis III. was revealed to us on the wrappings found with the mummy of this king in the hiding-place of Deīr el-Baharī; the absence of princely titles, while it shows the humble extraction of the lady Isis, explains at the same time the somewhat obscure relations between Hātshopsītū and her nephew.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph in the possession of Emil Brugsch-Bey.
Her reign was a prosperous one, but whether the flourishing condition of things was owing to the ability of her political administration or to her fortunate choice of ministers, we are unable to tell. She pressed forward the work of building with great activity, under the direction of her architect Sanmūt, not only at Deīr el-Baharī, but at Karnak, and indeed everywhere in Thebes. The plans of the building had been arranged under Thūtmosis I., and their execution had been carried out so quickly, that in many cases the queen had merely to see to the sculptural ornamentation on the all but completed walls.
This work, however, afforded her sufficient excuse, according to Egyptian custom, to attribute the whole structure to herself, and the opinion she had of her own powers is exhibited with great naiveness in her inscriptions. She loves to pose as premeditating her actions long beforehand, and as never venturing on the smallest undertaking without reference to her divine father.
This is what I teach to mortals who shall live in centuries to come, and whose hearts shall inquire concerning the monument which I have raised to my father, speaking and exclaiming as they contemplate it: as for me, when I sat in the palace and thought upon him who created me, my heart prompted me to raise to him two obelisks of electrum, whose apices should pierce the firmaments, before the noble gateway which is between the two great pylons of the King Thūtmosis I. And my heart led me to address these words to those who shall see my monuments in after-years and who shall speak of my great deeds: Beware of saying, 'I know not, I know not why it was resolved to carve this mountain wholly of gold!' These two obelisks, My Majesty has made them of electrum for my father Anion, that my name may remain and live on in this temple for ever and ever; for this single block of granite has been cut, without let or obstacle, at the desire of My Majesty, between the first of the second month of Pirīfc of the Vth year, and the 30th of the fourth month of Shomū of the VIth year, which makes seven months from the day when they began to, quarry it. One of these two monoliths is still standing among the ruins of Karnak, and the grace of its outline, the finish of its hieroglyphics, and the beauty of the figures which cover it, amply justify the pride which the queen and her brother felt in contemplating it.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph by M. de Mortens: the original is in the Berlin Museum, whither Lepsius brought it. Sanmūt is squatting and holding between his arras and knees the young king Thūt-mosis III,, whose head with the youthful side lock appears from under his chin.
The tops of the pyramids were gilt, so that "they could be seen from both banks of the river," and "their brilliancy lit up the two lands of Egypt:" needless to say these metal apices have long disappeared.
Later on, in the the queen's reign, Amon enjoined a work which was more difficult to carry out. On a day when Hātshopsītū had gone to the temple to offer prayers, "her supplications arose up before the throne of the Lord of Karnak, and a command was heard in the sanctuary, a behest of the god himself, that the ways which lead to Pūanīt should be explored, and that the roads to the 'Ladders of Incense' should be trodden."*
* The word "Ladders" is the translation of the Egyptian word "Khātiū," employed in the text to designate the country laid out in terraces where the incense trees grew; cf. with a different meaning, the "ladders" of the eastern Mediterranean.
Gums required for the temple service had hitherto reached the Theban priests solely by means of foreign intermediaries; so that in the slow transport across Africa they lost much of their freshness, besides being defiled by passing through impure hands. In addition to these drawbacks, the merchants confounded under the one term "Anīti" substances which differed considerably both in value and character, several of them, indeed, scarcely coming under the category of perfumes, and hence being unacceptable to the gods. One kind, however, found favour with them above all others, being that which still abounds in Somali-land at the present day—a gum secreted by the incense sycomore.*
* From the form of the trees depicted on the monument, it is certain that the Egyptians went to Pūanīt in search of the Boswellia Thurifera Cart.; but they brought back with them other products also, which they confounded together under the name "incense."
Drawn by Fauchon-Gudin, from a photograph by Gayet.
It was accounted a pious work to send and obtain it direct from the locality in which it grew, and if possible to procure the plants themselves for acclimatisation in the Nile valley. But the relations maintained in former times with the people of these aromatic regions had been suspended for centuries. "None now climbed the 'Ladders of Incense,' none of the Egyptians; they knew of them from hearsay, from the stories of people of ancient times, for these products were brought to the kings of the Delta, thy fathers, to one or other of them, from the times of thy ancestors the kings of the Said who lived of yore." All that could be recalled of this country was summed up in the facts, that it lay to the south or to the extreme east, that from thence many of the gods had come into Egypt, while from out of it the sun rose anew every morning. Amon, in his omniscience, took upon himself to describe it and give an exact account of its position. "The 'Ladders of Incense' is a secret province of Tonūtir, it is in truth a place of delight. I created it, and I thereto lead Thy Majesty, together with Mūt, Hāthor, Uīrīt, the Lady of Pūanīt, Uīrīt-hikaū, the magician and regent of the gods, that the aromatic gum may be gathered at will, that the vessels may be laden joyfully with living incense trees and with all the products of this earth." Hātshopsītū chose out five well-built galleys, and manned them with picked crews. She caused them to be laden with such merchandise as would be most attractive to the barbarians, and placing the vessels under the command of a royal envoy, she sent them forth on the Bed Sea in quest of the incense.
We are not acquainted with the name of the port from which the fleet set sail, nor do we know the number of weeks it took to reach the land of Pūanīt, neither is there any record of the incidents which befell it by the way. It sailed past the places frequented by the mariners of the XIIth dynasty—Suakīn, Massowah, and the islands of the Ked Sea; it touched at the country of the Ilīm which lay to the west of the Bab el-Mandeb, went safely through the Straits, and landed at last in the Land of Perfumes on the Somali coast.* There, between the bay of Zeīlah and Bas Hafun, stretched the Barbaric region, frequented in later times by the merchants of Myos Hormos and of Berenice.
* That part of Pūanīt where the Egyptians landed was at first located in Arabia by Brugsch, then transferred to Somali-land by Mariette, whose opinion was accepted by most Egyptologists. Dumichen, basing his hypothesis on a passage where Pūanīt is mentioned as "being on both sides of the sea," desired to apply the name to the Arabian as well as to the African coast, to Yemen and Hadhramaut as well as to Somali-land; this suggestion was adopted by Lieblein, and subsequently by Ed. Meyer, who believed that its inhabitants were the ancestors of the Sabseans. Since then Krall has endeavoured to shorten the distance between this country and Egypt, and he places the Pūanīt of Hātshopsītū between Suakin and Massowah. This was, indeed, the part of the country known under the XIIth dynasty at the time when it was believed that the Nile emptied itself thereabouts into the Red Sea, in the vicinity of the Island of the Serpent King, but I hold, with Mariette, that the Pūanīt where the Egyptians of Hātshopsītū's time landed is the present Somali-land—a view which is also shared by Navillo, but which Brugsch, in the latter years of his life, abandoned.
The first stations which the latter encountered beyond Cape Direh—Avails, Malao, Mundos, and Mosylon—were merely open roadsteads offering no secure shelter; but beyond Mosylon, the classical navigators reported the existence of several wadys, the last of which, the Elephant River, lying between Bas el-Eīl and Cape Guardafui, appears to have been large enough not only to afford anchorage to several vessels of light draught, but to permit of their performing easily any evolutions required. During the Roman period, it was there, and there only, that the best kind of incense could be obtained, and it was probably at this point also that the Egyptians of Hātshopsītū's time landed. The Egyptian vessels sailed up the river till they reached a place beyond the influence of the tide, and then dropped anchor in front of a village scattered along a bank fringed with sycomores and palms.*
* I have shown, from a careful examination of the bas- reliefs, that the Egyptians must have landed, not on the coast itself, as was at first believed, but in the estuary of a river, and this observation has been accepted as decisive by most Egyptologists; besides this, newly discovered fragments show the presence of a hippopotamus. Since then I have sought to identify the landing-place of the Egyptians with the most important of the creeks mentioned by the Gręco-Roman merchants as accessible for their vessels, viz. that which they called the Elephant River, near to the present Ras el-Fīl.
The huts of the inhabitants were of circular shape, each being surmounted with a conical roof; some of them were made of closely plaited osiers, and there was no opening in any of them save the door. They were built upon piles, as a protection from the rise of the river and from wild animals, and access to them was gained by means of moveable ladders. Oxen chewing the cud rested beneath them. The natives belonged to a light-coloured race, and the portraits we possess of them resemble the Egyptian type in every particular. They were tall and thin, and of a colour which varied between brick-red and the darkest brown. Their beards were pointed, and the hair was cut short in some instances, while in others it was arranged in close rows of curls or in small plaits. The costume of the men consisted of a loin-cloth only, while the dress of the women was a yellow garment without sleeves, drawn in at the waist and falling halfway below the knee.
The royal envoy landed under an escort of eight soldiers and an officer, but, to prove his pacific intentions, he spread out upon a low table a variety of presents, consisting of five bracelets two gold necklaces, a dagger with strap and sheath complete, a battle-axe, and eleven strings of glass beads.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph.
The inhabitants, dazzled by the display of so many valuable objects, ran to meet the new-comers, headed by their sheikh, and expressed a natural astonishment at the sight of the strangers. "How is it," they exclaimed, "that you have reached this country hitherto unknown to men? Have you come down by way of the sky, or have you sailed on the waters of the Tonūtir Sea? You have followed the path of the sun, for as for the king of the land of Egypt, it is not possible to elude him, and we live, yea, we ourselves, by the breath which he gives us." The name of their chief was Parihū, who was distinguished from his subjects by the boomerang which he carried, and also by his dagger and necklace of beads: his right leg, moreover, appears to have been covered with a kind of sheath composed of rings of some yellow metal, probably gold.* He was accompanied by his wife Ati, riding on an ass, from which she alighted in order to gain a closer view of the strangers. She was endowed with a type of beauty much admired by the people of Central Africa, being so inordinately fat that the shape of her body was scarcely recognisable under the rolls of flesh which hung down from it. Her daughter, who appeared to be still young, gave promise of one day rivalling, if not exceeding, her mother in size.**
* Mariette compares this kind of armour to the "dangabor" of the Congo tribes, but the "dangabor "is worn on the arm. Livingstone saw a woman, the sister of Sebituaneh, the highest lady of the Sesketeh, who wore on each leg eighteen rings of solid brass as thick as the finger, and three rings of copper above the knee. The weight of these shining rings impeded her walking, and produced sores on her ankles; but it was the fashion, and the inconvenience became nothing. As to the pain, it was relieved by a bit of rag applied to the lower rings. ** These are two instances of abnormal fat production—the earliest with which we are acquainted.
After an exchange of compliments, the more serious business of the expedition was introduced. The Egyptians pitched a tent, in which they placed the objects of barter with which they were provided, and to prevent these from being too great a temptation to the natives, they surrounded the tent with a line of troops.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph by Emil Brugsch-Bey.
The main conditions of the exchange were arranged at a banquet, in which they spread before the barbarians a sumptuous display of Egyptian delicacies, consisting of bread, beer, wine, meat, and carefully prepared and flavoured vegetables. Payment for every object was to be made at the actual moment of purchase. For several days there was a constant stream of people, and asses groaned beneath their burdens. The Egyptian purchases comprised the most varied objects: ivory tusks, gold, ebony, cassia, myrrh, cynocephali and green monkeys, greyhounds, leopard skins, large oxen, slaves, and last, but not least, thirty-one incense trees, with their roots surrounded by a ball of earth and placed in large baskets. The lading of the ships was a long and tedious affair. All available space being at length exhausted, and as much cargo placed on board as was compatible with the navigation of the vessel, the squadron set sail and with all speed took its way northwards.
Drawn by Bouclier, from a photograph by Beato.
The Egyptians touched at several places on the coast on their return journey, making friendly alliances with the inhabitants; the Him added a quota to their freight, for which room was with difficulty found on board,—it consisted not only of the inevitable gold, ivory, and skins, but also of live leopards and a giraffe, together with plants and fruits unknown on the banks of the Nile.*
* Lieblein thought that their country was explored, not by the sailors who voyaged to Pūanīt, but by a different body who proceeded by land, and this view was accepted by Ed. Meyer. The completed text proves that there was but a single expedition, and that the explorers of Pūanīt visited the Ilīm also. The giraffe which they gave does not appear in the cargo of the vessels at Pūanīt; the visit must, therefore, have been paid on the return voyage, and the giraffe was probably represented on the destroyed part of the walls where Naville found the image of this animal wandering at liberty among the woods.
The fleet at length made its reappearance in Egyptian ports, having on board the chiefs of several tribes on whose coasts the sailors had landed, and "bringing back so much that the like had never been brought of the products of Pūanīt to other kings, by the supreme favour of the venerable god, Amon Rā, lord of Karnak." The chiefs mentioned were probably young men of superior family, who had been confided to the officer in command of the squadron by local sheikhs, as pledges to the Pharaoh of good will or as commercial hostages. National vanity, no doubt, prompted the Egyptians to regard them as vassals coming to do homage, and their gifts as tributes denoting subjection. The Queen inaugurated a solemn festival in honour of the explorers. The Theban militia was ordered out to meet them, the royal flotilla escorting them as far as the temple landing-place, where a procession was formed to carry the spoil to the feet of the god. The good Theban folk, assembled to witness their arrival, beheld the march past of the native hostages, the incense sycomores, the precious gum itself, the wild animals, the giraffe, and the oxen, whose numbers were doubtless increased a hundredfold in the accounts given to posterity with the usual official exaggeration. The trees were planted at Deīr el-Baharī, where a sacred garden was prepared for them, square trenches being cut in the rock and filled with earth, in which the sycomore, by frequent watering, came to flourish well.*
* Naville found these trenches still filled with vegetable mould, and in several of them roots, which gave every indication of the purpose to which the trenches were applied. A scene represents seven of the incense sycomores still growing in their pots, and offered by the queen to the Majesty "of this god Amonrā of Karnak."
The great heaps of fresh resin were next the objects of special attention. Hātshopsītū "gave a bushel made of electrum to gauge the mass of gum, it being the first time that they had the joy of measuring the perfumes for Amon, lord of Karnak, master of heaven, and of presenting to him the wonderful products of Pūanīt. Thot, the lord of Hermo-polis, noted the quantities in writing; Safkhītābūi verified the list. Her Majesty herself prepared from it, with her own hands, a perfumed unguent for her limbs; she gave forth the smell of the divine dew, her perfume reached even to Pūanīt, her skin became like wrought gold,* and her countenance shone like the stars in the great festival hall, in the sight of the whole earth."
* In order to understand the full force of the imagery here employed, one must remember that the Egyptian artists painted the flesh of women as light yellow.
Hātshopsītū commanded the history of the expedition to be carved on the wall of the colonnades which lay on the west side of the middle platform of her funerary chapel: we there see the little fleet with sails spread, winging its way to the unknown country, its safe arrival at its destination, the meeting with the natives, the animated palavering, the consent to exchange freely accorded; and thanks to the minuteness with which the smallest details have been portrayed, we can as it were witness, as if on the spot, all the phases of life on board ship, not only on Egyptian vessels, but, as we may infer, those of other Oriental nations generally. For we may be tolerably sure that when the Phoenicians ventured into the distant parts of the Mediterranean, it was after a similar fashion that they managed and armed their vessels.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph by Beato.
Although the natural features of the Asiatic or Greek coast on which they effected a landing differed widely from those of Pūanīt, the Phoenician navigators were themselves provided with similar objects of exchange, and in their commercial dealings with the natives the methods of procedure of the European traders were doubtless similar to those of the Egyptians with the barbarians of the Red Sea.
Hātshopsītū reigned for at least eight years after this memorable expedition, and traces of her further activity are to be observed in every part of the Nile valley. She even turned her attention to the Delta, and began the task of reorganising this part of her kingdom, which had been much neglected by her predecessors. The wars between the Theban princes and the lords of Avaris had lasted over a century, and during that time no one had had either sufficient initiative or leisure to superintend the public works, which were more needed here than in any other part of Egypt. The canals were silted up with mud, the marshes and the desert had encroached on the cultivated lands, the towns had become impoverished, and there were some provinces whose population consisted solely of shepherds and bandits. Hātshopsītū desired to remedy these evils, if only for the purpose of providing a practicable road for her armies marching to Zalū en route for Syria.*
* This follows from the great inscription at Stabl-Antar, which is commonly interpreted as proving that the Shepherd- kings still held sway in Egypt in the reign of Thūtmosis III., and that they were driven out by him and his aunt. It seems to me that the queen is simply boasting that she had repaired the monuments which had been injured by the Shepherds during the time they sojourned in Egypt, in the land of Avaris. Up to the present time no trace of these restorations has been found on the sites. The expedition to Pūanīt being mentioned in lines 13, 14, they must be of later date than the year IX. of Hātshopsītū and Thūtmosis III.
She also turned her attention to the mines of Sinai, which had not been worked by the Egyptian kings since the end of the XIIth dynasty. In the year XVI. an officer of the queen's household was despatched to the Wady Magharah, the site of the ancient works, with orders to inspect the valleys, examine the veins, and restore there the temple of the goddess Hāthor; having accomplished his mission, he returned, bringing with him a consignment of those blue and green stones which were so highly esteemed by the Egyptians.
Meanwhile, Thūtmosis III. was approaching manhood, and his aunt, the queen, instead of abdicating in his favour, associated him with herself more frequently in the external acts of government.*
* The account of the youth of Thūtmosis III., such as Brugsch made it out to be from an inscription of this king, the exile of the royal child at Būto, his long sojourn in the marshes, his triumphal return, must all be rejected. Brugsch accepted as actual history a poetical passage where the king identifies himself with Horus son of Isis, and goes so far as to attribute to himself the adventures of the god.
She was forced to yield him precedence in those religious ceremonies which could be performed by a man only, such as the dedication of one of the city gates of Ombos, and the foundation and marking out of a temple at Medinet-Habū; but for the most part she obliged him to remain in the background and take a secondary place beside her. We are unable to determine the precise moment when this dual sovereignty came to an end. It was still existent in the XVIth year of the reign, but it had ceased before the XXIInd year. Death alone could take the sceptre from the hands that held it, and Thūtmosis had to curb his impatience for many a long day before becoming the real master of Egypt. He was about twenty-five years of age when this event took place, and he immediately revenged himself for the long repression he had undergone, by endeavouring to destroy the very remembrance of her whom he regarded as a usurper. Every portrait of her that he could deface without exposing himself to being accused of sacrilege was cut away, and he substituted for her name either that of Thūtmosis I. or of Thūtmosis II.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph by Petrie.
A complete political change was effected both at home and abroad from the first day of his accession to power. Hātshopsītū had been averse to war. During the whole of her reign there had not been a single campaign undertaken beyond the isthmus of Suez, and by the end of her life she had lost nearly all that her father had gained in Syria; the people of Kharu had shaken off the yoke,* probably at the instigation of the king of the Amorites,** and nothing remained to Egypt of the Asiatic province but Gaza, Sharūhana,*** and the neighbouring villages. The young king set out with his army in the latter days of the year XXII. He reached Gaza on the 3rd of the month of Pakhons, in time to keep the anniversary of his coronation in that town, and to inaugurate the 24th year of his reign by festivals in honour of his father Amon.**** They lasted the usual length of time, and all the departments of State took part in them, but it was not a propitious moment for lengthy ceremonies.
* E. de Rougé thought that he had discovered, in a slightly damaged inscription bearing upon the Pūanīt expedition, the mention of a tribute paid by the Lotanū. There is nothing in the passage cited but the mention of the usual annual dues paid by the chiefs of Pūanīt and of the Ilīm. ** This is at least what may be inferred from the account of the campaign, where the Prince of Qodshū, a town of the Amaūru (Amorites), figures at the head of the coalition formed against Thūtmosis III. *** This is the conclusion to be adopted from the beginning of the inscription of Thūtmosis III.: "Now, during the duration of these same years, the country of the Lotanū was in discord until other times succeeded them, when the people who were in the town of Sharūhana, from the town of Yūrza, to the most distant regions of the earth, succeeded in making a revolt against his Majesty." **** The account of this campaign has been preserved to us on a wall adjoining the granite sanctuary at Karnak.
The king left Gaza the following day, the 5th of Pakhons; he marched but slowly at first, following the usual caravan route, and despatching troops right and left to levy contributions on the cities of the Plain—Migdol, Yapu (Jaffa), Lotanū, Ono—and those within reach on the mountain spurs, or situated within the easily accessible wadys, such as Sauka (Socho), Hadid, and Harīlu. On the 16th day he had not proceeded further than Yahmu, where he received information which caused him to push quickly forward. The lord of Qodshū had formed an alliance with the Syrian princes on the borders of Naharaim, and had extorted from them promises of help; he had already gone so far as to summon contingents from the Upper Orontes, the Litany, and the Upper Jordan, and was concentrating them at Megiddo, where he proposed to stop the way of the invading army. Thūtmosis called together his principal officers, and having imparted the news to them, took counsel with them as to a plan of attack. Three alternative routes were open to him. The most direct approached the enemy's position on the front, crossing Mount Carmel by the saddle now known as the Umm el-Fahm; but the great drawback attached to this route was its being so restricted that the troops would be forced to advance in too thin a file; and the head of the column would reach the plain and come into actual conflict with the enemy while the rear-guard would only be entering the defiles in the neighbourhood of Aluna. The second route bore a little to the east, crossing the mountains beyond Dutīna and reaching the plain near Taānach; but it offered the same disadvantages as the other. The third road ran north of Zafīti, to meet the great highway which cuts the hill-district of Nablūs, skirting the foot of Tabor near Jenīn, a little to the north of Megiddo. It was not so direct as the other two, but it was easier for troops, and the king's generals advised that it should be followed. The king was so incensed that he was tempted to attribute their prudence to cowardice. "By my life! by the love that Rā hath for me, by the favour that I enjoy from my master Amon, by the perpetual youth of my nostril in life and power, My Majesty will go by the way of Aluna, and let him that will go by the roads of which ye have spoken, and let him that will follow My Majesty. What will be said among the vile enemies detested of Rā: 'Doth not His Majesty go by another way? For fear of us he gives us a wide berth,' they will cry." The king's counsellors did not insist further. "May thy father Amon of Thebes protect thee!" they exclaimed; "as for us, we will follow Thy Majesty whithersoever thou goest, as it befitteth a servant to follow his master." The word of command was given to the men; Thūtmosis himself led the vanguard, and the whole army, horsemen and foot-soldiers, followed in single file, wending their way through the thickets which covered the southern slopes of Mount Carmel.*
* The position of the towns mentioned and of the three roads has been discussed by E. de Rougé, also by P. de Saulcy, who fixed the position of Yahmu at El-Kheimeh, and showed that the Egyptian army must have passed through the defiles of Umm el-Rahm. Conder disagreed with this opinion in certain respects, and identified Aluna, Aruna, at first with Arrabeh, and afterwards with Arraneh; he thought that Thūtmosis came out upon Megiddo from the south-east, and he placed Megiddo at Mejeddah, near Beisan, while Tomkins placed Aruna in the Wady el-Arriān. W. Max Millier seems to place Yahinu too much to the north, in the neighbourhood of Jett.
They pitched their camp on the evening of the 19th near Aluna, and on the morning of the 20th they entered the wild defiles through which it was necessary to pass in order to reach the enemy. The king had taken precautionary measures against any possible attempt of the natives to cut the main column during this crossing of the mountains. His position might at any moment have become a critical one, had the allies taken advantage of it and attacked each battalion as it issued on to the plain before it could re-form. But the Prince of Qodshū, either from ignorance of his adversary's movements, or confident of victory in the open, declined to take the initiative. Towards one o'clock in the afternoon, the Egyptians found themselves once more united on the further side of the range, close to a torrent called the Qina, a little to the south of Megiddo. When the camp was pitched, Thūtmosis announced his intention of engaging the enemy on the morrow. A council of war was held to decide on the position that each corps should occupy, after which the officers returned to their men to see that a liberal supply of rations was served out, and to organise an efficient system of patrols. They passed round the camp to the cry: "Keep a good heart: courage! Watch well, watch well! Keep alive in the camp!" The king refused to retire to rest until he had been assured that "the country was quiet, and also the host, both to south and north." By dawn the next day the whole army was in motion. It was formed into a single line, the right wing protected by the torrent, the left extended into the plain, stretching beyond Megiddo towards the north-west. Thūtmosis and his guards occupied the centre, standing "armed in his chariot of electrum like unto Horus brandishing his pike, and like Montū the Theban god." The Syrians, who had not expected such an early attack, were seized with panic, and fled in the direction of the town, leaving their horses and chariots on the field; but the citizens, fearing lest in the confusion the Egyptians should effect an entrance with the fugitives, had closed their gates and refused to open them. Some of the townspeople, however, let down ropes to the leaders of the allied party, and drew them up to the top of the ramparts: "and would to heaven that the soldiers of His Majesty had not so far forgotten themselves as to gather up the spoil left by the vile enemy! They would then have entered Megiddo forthwith; for while the men of the garrison were drawing up the Lord of Qodshū and their own prince, the fear of His Majesty was upon their limbs, and their hands failed them by reason of the carnage which the royal urous carried into their ranks." The victorious soldiery were dispersed over the fields, gathering together the gilded and silvered chariots of the Syrian chiefs, collecting the scattered weapons and the hands of the slain, and securing the prisoners; then rallying about the king, they greeted him with acclamations and filed past to deliver up the spoil. He reproached them for having allowed themselves to be drawn away from the heat of pursuit. "Had you carried Megiddo, it would have been a favour granted to me by Rā my father this day; for all the kings of the country being shut up within it, it would have been as the taking of a thousand towns to have seized Megiddo." The Egyptians had made little progress in the art of besieging a stronghold since the times of the XIIth dynasty. When scaling failed, they had no other resource than a blockade, and even the most stubborn of the Pharaohs would naturally shrink from the tedium of such an undertaking. Thūtmosis, however, was not inclined to lose the opportunity of closing the campaign by a decisive blow, and began the investment of the town according to the prescribed modes.
Drawn by Boudier, from a photograph by Beato.
His men were placed under canvas, and working under the protection of immense shields, supported on posts, they made a ditch around the walls, strengthening it with a palisade. The king constructed also on the east side a fort which he called "Manakhpirrī-holds-the-Asiatics." Famine soon told on the demoralised citizens, and their surrender brought about the submission of the entire country. Most of the countries situated between the Jordan and the sea—Shunem, Cana, Kinnereth, Hazor, Bedippa, Laish, Merom, and Acre—besides the cities of the Haurān—Hamath, Magato, Ashtarōth, Ono-repha, and even Damascus itself—recognised the suzerainty of Egypt, and their lords came in to the camp to do homage.*
* The names of these towns are inscribed on the lists of Karnak published by Mariette.
The Syrian losses did not amount to more than 83 killed and 400 prisoners, showing how easily they had been routed; but they had abandoned considerable supplies, all of which had fallen into the hands of the victors. Some 724 chariots, 2041 mares, 200 suits of armour, 602 bows, the tent of the Prince of Qodshū with its poles of cypress inlaid with gold, besides oxen, cows, goats, and more than 20,000 sheep, were among the spoil. Before quitting the plain of Bsdraelon, the king caused an official survey of it to be made, and had the harvest reaped. It yielded 208,000 bushels of wheat, not taking into account what had been looted or damaged by the marauding soldiery. The return homewards of the Egyptians must have resembled the exodus of some emigrating tribe rather than the progress of a regular army
Thūtmosis caused a long list of the vanquished to be engraved on the walls of the temple which he was building at Karnak, thus affording the good people of Thebes an opportunity for the first time of reading on the monuments the titles of the king's Syrian subjects written in hieroglyphics. One hundred and nineteen names follow each other in unbroken succession, some of them representing mere villages, while others denoted powerful nations; the catalogue, however, was not to end even here. Having once set out on a career of conquest, the Pharaoh had no inclination to lay aside his arms. From the XXIIth year of his reign to that of his death, we have a record of twelve military expeditions, all of which he led in person. Southern Syria was conquered at the outset—the whole of Kharū as far as the Lake of Grennesareth, and the Amorite power was broken at one blow.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph.
The three succeeding campaigns consolidated the rule of Egypt in the country of the Negeb, which lay to the south-west of the Dead Sea, in Phoenicia, which prudently resigned itself to its fate, and in that part of Lotanii occupying the northern part of the basin of the Orontes.**
* We know of these three campaigns from the indirect testimony of the Annals, which end in the year XXIX. with the mention of the fifth campaign. The only dated one is referred to the year XXV., and we know of that of the Negeb only by the Inscription of Amenemhabī, 11. 3-5: the campaign began in the Negeb of Judah, but the king carried it to Naharaim the same year.
None of these expeditions appear to have been marked by any successes comparable to the victory at Megiddo, for the coalition of the Syrian chiefs did not survive the blow which they then sustained; but Qodshū long remained the centre of resistance, and the successive defeats which its inhabitants suffered never disarmed for more than a short interval the hatred which they felt for the Egyptian.
On One Of The Pylons Of The Temple At Karnak. Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, from a photograph by Emil Brugsch-Bey.
During these years of glorious activity considerable tribute poured in to both Memphis and Thebes; not only ingots of gold and silver, bars and blocks of copper and lead, blocks of lapis-lazuli and valuable vases, but horses, oxen, sheep, goats, and useful animals of every kind, in addition to all of which we find, as in Hātshopsītū's reign, the mention of rare plants and shrubs brought back from countries traversed by the armies in their various expeditions. The Theban priests and savants exhibited much interest in such curiosities, and their royal pupil gave orders to his generals to collect for their benefit all that appeared either rare or novel. They endeavoured to acclimatise the species or the varieties likely to be useful, and in order to preserve a record of these experiments, they caused a representation of the strange plants or animals to be drawn on the walls of one of the chapels which they were then building to one of their gods. These pictures may still be seen there in interminable lines, portraying the specimens brought from the Upper Lotanū in the XXVth year of Thūtmosis, and we are able to distinguish, side by side with many plants peculiar to the regions of the Euphrates, others having their habitat in the mountains and valleys of tropical Africa.
This return to an aggressive policy on the part of the Egyptians, after the weakness they had exhibited during the later period of Hātshopsītū's regency, seriously disconcerted the Asiatic sovereigns. They had vainly flattered themselves that the invasion of Thūtmosis I. was merely the caprice of an adventurous prince, and they hoped that when his love of enterprise had expended itself, Egypt would permanently withdraw within her traditional boundaries, and that the relations of Elam with Babylon, Carchemish with Qodshū, and the barbarians of the Persian Gulf with the inhabitants of the Iranian table-land would resume their former course. This vain delusion was dispelled by the advent of a new Thūtmosis, who showed clearly by his actions that he intended to establish and maintain the sovereignty of Egypt over the western dependencies, at least, of the ancient Chaldęan empire, that is to say, over the countries which bordered the middle course of the Euphrates and the coasts of the Mediterranean. The audacity of his marches, the valour of his men, the facility with which in a few hours he had crushed the assembled forces of half Syria, left no room to doubt that he was possessed of personal qualities and material resources sufficient to carry out projects of the most ambitious character. Babylon, enfeebled by the perpetual dissensions of its Cossęan princes, was no longer in a position to contest with him the little authority she still retained over the peoples of Naharaim or of Coele-Syria; protected by the distance which separated her from the Nile valley, she preserved a sullen neutrality, while Assyria hastened to form a peaceful alliance with the invading power. Again and again its kings sent to Thūtmosis presents in proportion to their resources, and the Pharaoh naturally treated their advances as undeniable proofs of their voluntary vassalage. Each time that he received from them a gift of metal or lapis-lazuli, he proudly recorded their tribute in the annals of his reign; and if, in exchange, he sent them some Egyptian product, it was in smaller quantities, as might be expected from a lord to his vassal.*
* The "tribute of Assūr" is mentioned in this way under the years XXIII. and XXIV. The presents sent by the Pharaoh in return are not mentioned in any Egyptian text, but there is frequent reference to them in the Tel el-Amarna tablets. It may be mentioned here that the name of Nineveh does not occur on the Egyptian monuments, but only that of the town Nīi, in which Champollion wrongly recognised the later capital of Assyria.
Sometimes there would accompany the convoy, surrounded by an escort of slaves and women, some princess, whom the king would place in his harem or graciously pass on to one of his children; but when, on the other hand, an even distant relative of the Pharaoh was asked in marriage for some king on the banks of the Tigris or Euphrates, the request was met with a disdainful negative: the daughters of the Sun were of too noble a race to stoop to such alliances, and they would count it a humiliation to be sent in marriage to a foreign court.
Drawn by Faucher-Gudin, after Champollion.
Free transit on the main road which ran diagonally through Kharū was ensured by fortresses constructed at strategic points,* and from this time forward Thūtmosis was able to bring the whole force of his army to bear upon both Coele-Syria and Naharaim.** He encamped, in the year XXVII., on the table-land separating the Afrīn and the Orontes from the Euphrates, and from that centre devastated the district of Ūānīt,*** which lay to the west of Aleppo; then crossing "the water of Naharaim" in the neighbourhood of Carchemish, he penetrated into the heart of Mitanni.
* The castle, for instance, near Megiddo, previously referred to, which, after having contributed to the siege of the town, probably served to keep it in subjection. ** The accounts of the campaigns of Thūtmosis III. have been preserved in the Annals in a very mutilated condition, the fragments of which were discovered at different times. They are nothing but extracts from an official account, made for Amon and his priests. *** The province of the Tree Ūanū; cf. with this designation the epithet "Shad Erini," "mountain of the cedar tree," which the Assyrians bestowed on the Amanus.
The following year he reappeared in the same region. Tunipa, which had made an obstinate resistance, was taken, together with its king, and 329 of his nobles were forced to yield themselves prisoners. Thūtmosis "with a joyous heart" was carrying them away captive, when it occurred to him that the district of Zahi, which lay away for the most part from the great military highroads, was a tempting prey teeming with spoil. The barns were stored with wheat and barley, the cellars were filled with wine, the harvest was not yet gathered in, and the trees bent under the weight of their fruit. Having pillaged Senzaūrū on the Orontes,* he made his way to the westwards through the ravine formed by the Ishahr el-Kebīr, and descended suddenly on the territory of Arvad. The towns once more escaped pillage, but Thutmosis destroyed the harvests, plundered the orchards, carried off the cattle, and pitilessly wasted the whole of the maritime plain.
* Senzaūrū was thought by Ebers to be "the double Tyre." Brugsch considered it to be Tyre itself. It is, I believe, the Sizara of classical writers, the Shaizar of the Arabs, and is mentioned in one of the Tel el-Amarna tablets in connection with Nīi.
There was such abundance within the camp that the men were continually getting drunk, and spent their time in anointing themselves with oil, which they could do only in Egypt at the most solemn festivals. They returned to Syria in the year XXX., and their good fortune again favoured them. The stubborn Qodshū was harshly dealt with; Simyra and Arvad, which hitherto had held their own, now opened their gates to him; the lords of Upper Lotanū poured in their contributions without delay, and gave up their sons and brothers as hostages. In the year XXXI., the city of Anamut in Tikhisa, on the shores of Lake Msrana, yielded in its turn;* on the 3rd of Pakhons, the anniversary of his coronation, the Lotanū renewed their homage to him in person.
* The site of the Tikhisa country is imperfectly defined. Nisrana was seemingly applied to the marshy lake into which the Koweik flows, and it is perhaps to be found in the name Kin-nesrīn. In this case Tikhisa would be the country near the lake; the district of the Grseco-Roruan Chalkis is situated on the right of the military road.
The return of the expedition was a sort of triumphal procession. At every halting-place the troops found quarters and provisions prepared for them, bread and cakes, perfumes, oil, wine, and honey being provided in such quantities that they were obliged on their departure to leave the greater part behind them. The scribes took advantage of this peaceful state of affairs to draw up minute accounts of the products of Lotanū—corn, barley, millet, fruits, and various kinds of oil—prompted doubtless by the desire to arrive at a fairly just apportionment of the tribute. Indeed, the results of the expedition were considered so satisfactory that they were recorded on a special monument dedicated in the palace at Thebes. The names of the towns and peoples might change with every war, but the spoils suffered no diminution. In the year XXXIII., the kingdoms situated to the west of the Euphrates were so far pacified that Thutmosis was able without risk to carry his arms to Mesopotamia. He entered the country by the fords of Carchemish, near to the spot where his grandfather, Thutmosis I., had erected his stele half a century previously. He placed another beside this, and a third to the eastward to mark the point to which he had extended the frontier of his empire.. The Mitanni, who exercised a sort of hegemony over the whole of Naharaim, were this time the objects of his attack. Thirty-two of their towns fell one after another, their kings were taken captive and the walls of their cities were razed, without any serious resistance. The battalions of the enemy were dispersed at the first shock, and Pharaoh "pursued them for the space of a mile, without one of them daring to look behind him, for they thought only of escape, and fled before him like a flock of goats." Thutmosis pushed forward as far certainly as the Balikh, and perhaps on to the Khabur or even to the Hermus; and as he approached the frontier, the king of Singar, a vassal of Assyria, sent him presents of lapis-lazuli.
When this prince had retired, another chief, the lord of the Great Kkati, whose territory had not even been threatened by the invaders, deemed it prudent to follow the example of the petty princes of the plain of the Euphrates, and despatched envoys to the Pharaoh bearing presents of no great value, but testifying to his desire to live on good terms with Egypt. Still further on, the inhabitants of Nīi begged the king's acceptance of a troop of slaves and two hundred and sixty mares; he remained among them long enough to erect a stele commemorating his triumph, and to indulge in one of those extensive hunts which were the delight of Oriental monarchs. The country abounded in elephants. The soldiers were employed as beaters, and the king and his court succeeded in killing one hundred and twenty head of big game, whose tusks were added to the spoils. These numbers indicate how the extinction of such animals in these parts was brought about. Beyond these regions, again, the sheikhs of the Lamnaniū came to meet the Pharaoh. They were a poor people, and had but little to offer, but among their gifts were some birds of a species unknown to the Egyptians, and two geese, with which, however, His Majesty deigned to be satisfied.*
* The campaign of the year XXXI. It is mentioned in the Annals of Thulmosis III., 11. 17-27; the reference to the elephant-hunt occurs only in the Inscription of Amenemhabi, 11. 22, 23; an allusion to the defeat of the kings of Mitanni is found in a mutilated inscription from the tomb of Manakhpirrīsonbū. It was probably on his return from this campaign that Thūtmosis caused the great list to be engraved which, while it includes a certain number of names assigned to places beyond the Euphrates, ought necessarily to contain the cities of the Mitanni.
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