The correct order of the first two kings of the Twenty-Fifth Dynasty has been the subject of a growing debate since Michael Bányai proposed a revision of the traditional chronological model in 2013. By placing Shabataka1 before Shabaka Bányai challenged the commonly accepted view according to which it was Shabaka who established the Twenty-Fifth Dynasty and secured Kushite control over all of Egypt after having re-conquered the North and disposed of his adversary Bocchoris of the Twenty-Fourth Dynasty. Since then Bányai’s proposal of modifying the sequence of the Kushite kings, thus making Shabataka Bocchoris’ opponent, has received a growing number of supporters who have brought forward additional arguments in favour of it.
The present article introduces new arguments based on a careful analysis of prosopographic, archaeological, and epigraphic data from the Eastern Desert and Thebes—especially relating to the Kushite Nile Level Records at Karnak—which provide the strongest evidence for the sequence “Shabaka—Shabataka” hitherto adduced.
The present article is not concerned with questions about absolute chronology or the wider historiographic consequences resulting from the reversal of the traditional order of the first two Kushite kings. These issues have already been addressed on several occasions by a number of Egyptologists endorsing the revised sequence,2 and are likely to occupy scholarly attention for some time to come. Instead, my aim is to present further evidence for the new model which is unambiguous and comes as close to definitively proving the sequence “Shabataka—Shabaka” as possible, thus providing a solid basis for future research on the history and chronology of Egypt and the Ancient Near East during the eighth and seventh centuries
1 The Basic Question and the State of the Debate
The chronological model of the Twenty-Fifth Dynasty as established by Kenneth Kitchen,3 Jürgen von Beckerath,4 and others5 was long deemed precise and robust, and the scope for modifications seemed to be restricted to identifying the precise date of the dynasty’s start. However, this appraisal changed in 1999 when Grant Frame (re-)published the Assyrian royal inscription at Tang-i Var in modern-day Iran.6 As was pointed out by Frame7 and later by Dan’el Kahn,8 the Tang-i Var inscription not only links the reign of King Sargon ii of Assyria with that of King Šapataku of Meluḫḫa (i.e., Shabataka), but also establishes April 706
In 2013, Michael Bányai proposed an altogether different chronological model for the Third Intermediate Period.13 While not all of his results were met with unanimous enthusiasm, one of the key elements of his argumentation—the reversal of the sequence of the first two Kushite kings—sparked lively discussions and led on to a workshop which was held at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster on 16 May 2014 under the auspices of Prof. Angelika Lohwasser.14 Since then, the revised model of the Kushite succession has attracted a growing number of supporters, among them initial sceptics such as myself,15 who have come to the conclusion that “the arguments speaking for the order Shabataka—Shabaka outweigh those in favour of the conventional order, both in their materiality as in their number.”16 Most recently, the new order has been introduced into a textbook on Egyptian royal tombs,17 and is even presented as uncommented communis opinio regarding Kushite chronology in a new general account of ancient Egyptian history.18
2 General Reflections on the Significance of Sources
However, as appears from the recent discussions,19 both chronological models are faced with counter-arguments and neither is reconcilable with the entire spectrum of available evidence. Thus, it becomes essential to carefully select the sources considered and weigh them according to their deemed level of significance. At this stage of the debate it is probably not the best way to proceed if one tried to tackle the basic and quite simple question of whether Shabaka or Shabataka ruled first by engaging in wide-ranging historical speculations. Owing to the complexity of the matter and the massive lacunae in our source material, historical reconstructions can be tailored to suit either of the two options without too much effort. Establishing the correct sequence of kings should therefore precede attempts at making sense of it in historical terms. We can certainly not claim to have enough preserved sources from the eighth century
2.1 Textual Sources and their Historical Implications
The early history of the Twenty-Fifth Dynasty is reflected in a number of contemporaneous as well as slightly more recent textual sources, among them Assyrian royal inscriptions, the “historical” sections of the stelae Kawa iv and v, and the different preserved versions of the Manethonian kinglist. Unfortunately, none of the nearly contemporaneous sources directly refer to a sequence of kings or designate a particular king as successor/heir of another king. The stelae Kawa iv and v in particular provide a pertinent example of the limits of historical reasoning based on ancient texts, since it is not the obvious association of Taharqa and Shabataka which has been put in doubt, but its chronological implication. Assuming that it was not the main aim of the author(s) of the two stelae to provide a comprehensive and coherent historical narrative, the identity of the “falcon (who) took off to heaven,” who is referred to in Kawa v, l. 15 as Taharqa’s predecessor, cannot be definitively established through a close reading of the two texts. While the probability of Shabataka, mentioned in Kawa iv, l. 8,20 and “the falcon (who) took off to heaven” of Kawa v, l. 1521 being one and the same seems high at first, one should bear in mind that assessing the probability of historical scenarios depends to a great extent on the general predictability of complex human behaviour and a large number of test cases to consider.22 Egyptologists usually do not fare too well regarding both factors.
In a similar fashion, one may feel inclined to equate Σαβακων/Sabacon, who is consistently named as the first king of the Twenty-Fifth Dynasty in the different versions of Manetho,23 with the “hieroglyphic” Shabaka for reasons of apparent similarity. As a consequence, Σεβιχως/Sebichos inevitably becomes a Greek rendering of Shabataka, despite the fact that the phonologic correspondence of the consonantal skeleton remains incomplete (> suppression of /t/). If one were to change the sequence of the two kings, the total incongruity would be similar, but in reverse order (thus, Σαβακων would constitute a defective rendering of Shabataka).24 As has been shown by Roman Gundacker among others, the Manethonian kinglist tradition preserves many valuable pieces of information on dynastic sequences and the identity of kings,25 but owing to the complexity of its transmission it is the knowledge of the contemporaneous historic evidence which helps to inform our understanding of the Manethonian tradition, and (usually) not the other way around.
These two examples are merely meant to demonstrate that the historical documents at our disposal are not suited to solve the problem of establishing the correct sequence of the Kushite kings and need to be relegated to later consideration.
2.2 Unequivocal Genealogical Data Tied to Individual Reigns
Another type of source which has a potential impact on the reconstruction of relative historical chronology is prosopographic/genealogical data. If one could establish, for example, that person A held a particular office during the reign of Shabataka, A’s son B the same office during the reign of Shabaka, and A’s grandson C followed suit in the reign of Taharqa, it would be nearly impossible to argue against this sequence of kings. Unfortunately, sources which provide evidence of the necessary quality are scarce and not well-distributed in space and time. The Theban papyrus document pLouvre E 3328c from the early reign of Taharqa26 seems to come close to this kind of evidence since it refers to the purchase of a slave in year 7 of Shabaka which provided the cause for a legal dispute under Taharqa and thus offers a valuable link between prosopographical data and historical chronology. However, also in this case the interpretation of the data given is not straightforward and depends on estimates of likelihood, i.e., whether one could imagine a time period of roughly 27 years (according to the conventional chronology) lying between the initial sale and the litigation or not.27
2.3 Unidirectional, Linear Evolution of Cultural Phenomena Tied to Individual Reigns
Linear developments in artistic style, the patterns of royal titularies, architectural motifs, or the general planning of monumental building projects may provide valuable hints about the correct royal succession if the specific stages can be tied to individual reigns or periods. Indeed, the writing of the divine name “Osiris” with a flagpole () has proven to be one of the most useful dating criteria for differentiating inscriptions of the second and early first millennia
2.4 Archaeological Sequence (Principle of Superposition)
Possibly the strongest tool for identifying the correct sequence between two consecutive rulers33 is to locate monuments or inscriptions of each in proximity to one another and establish their archaeological sequence conforming to the principles of superposition. This need not involve classical stratigraphy but can equally relate to the reuse (“usurpation”) of monuments or the superposition of epigraphic sources in the most literal sense. The fact that the Edifice of Taharqa by the Sacred Lake of Karnak incorporates reused blocks bearing the cartouches of Shabaka34 would suffice as proof that the latter’s reign was chronologically earlier than that of Taharqa, had it ever been called into question. As the materiality of well-established archaeological sequences is of superior argumentative power and may well provide the “smoking gun” which could put an end to this specific discussion, it must be our foremost goal to find an unambiguous archaeological sequence involving monuments/attestations of both Shabaka and Shabataka (see section 3.4).
3 Further Arguments for the Sequence Shabataka—Shabaka
The following paragraphs contain additional arguments for the sequence “Shabataka—Shabaka” arranged according to the different strategies of adducing evidence which have been laid out in section 2. As will become clear, the strength of the arguments increases from paragraph to paragraph. Although one may have opted to omit the weaker arguments altogether, they gain significance when considered in combination with the stronger ones.
3.1 Historical Considerations
Even before the start of the debate some Egyptologists have been puzzled by the fact that the Kushite addition to the Libyan Period Chapel of Osiris Heqadjet at Karnak associates the God’s Wives of Amun Shepenupet i—a daughter of the Libyan Period king Osorkon iii—and her successor Amenirdis i—daughter of Kashta—with King Shabataka and not with his presumed predecessor Shabaka.35 That the two God’s Wives are presented as if both were still alive (i.e., accompanied by the epithet Ꜥnḫ.tj ḏ.t as opposed to mꜢꜤ.t ḫrw)36 provided a challenge to the conventional chronological model since it seemed to imply that Shepenupet i must have officiated into very old age (even if it was acknowledged that Amenirdis i appears as the one who consecrated the Kushite part of the chapel and takes clear precedence in its decorative programme37 ). Since the status designation Ꜥnḫ.tj ḏ.t is not necessarily to be taken literally,38 the preferred solution of this chronological conundrum has been to assume that Shepenupet i had died before Amenirdis i and Shabataka commissioned the decoration of the chapel’s anteroom.39 However, the question whether Shepenupet i was dead or still alive at that time is of only minor concern to my argument. More significant seems the fact that the constellation of protagonists in the decoration is odd as such and appears to be chronologically out of place. The Chapel of Osiris Heqadjet is the only Theban monument directly associating members of the Theban Twenty-Third Dynasty with Kushite rulers. In addition, it is also unique in representing Shepenupet i and Amenirdis i officiating side-by-side. Apart from her funerary chapel40 no other known monument of/for Amenirdis i features a depiction of Shepenupet i. All this points to the Chapel of Osiris Heqadjet constituting a sort of architectural “hinge” which served to connect the Libyan and the Kushite political and cultural spheres. As has already been pointed out by Gerard Broekman, such an undertaking would make sense in a situation of political change and re-calibration, but it would seem slightly out of place at a time of firmly established Kushite domination over the Theban territory.41 What is more, in those instances where Amenirdis i is associated with a living (and identifiable) Kushite king outside the Chapel of Osiris Heqadjet, it is Shabaka and not Shabataka.42 In contrast, the only artefact mentioning Shepenupet i and Amenirdis i on a par is the well-known re-used granite vessel in the Museo Barracco in Rome, which also bears the cartouche of King Nimlot D, justified—a known contemporary of Piankhy.43 While the inscriptions on this vessel may well predate the decoration of the Kushite anteroom in the Chapel of Osiris Heqadjet, it is still noteworthy that outside of filiations the association of the living Amenirdis i with Shepenupet i bears no connection to Shabaka’s reign. Thus, one arrives at the interesting opposition “Amenirdis i/Shepenupet i/Nimlot D” and “Amenirdis i/Shepenupet i/Shabataka” on the one hand, and “Amenirdis i/Shabaka” on the other hand. Arguably, this observation does not bear great significance if taken on its own, but it has some import if considered together with section 3.3 below.
3.2 Genealogical Data: Expedition Inscriptions from the Eastern Desert
Certain pieces of genealogical information stemming from rock inscriptions/graffiti of the Eastern Desert can be roughly related to reigns of the Twenty-Fifth and the early Twenty-Sixth Dynasties and provide a welcome additional perspective on the topic of this paper without being “hard evidence” themselves.
During the Kushite and early Saite Periods a number of expeditions were sent to the wadis of the Eastern Desert to procure hard stones and other natural resources for the centrally administered building projects of the time. Some of these expeditions can be linked to a family of stonemasons or overseersof stonemasons who seem to have played an important role in these endeavours for at least three generations. The first generation is represented by the stonemason (jky) P(Ꜣ)-sn-n-Ḫnsw, who—according to the already mentioned graffito Wadi Hammamat M 187—participated in an expedition dated to Year 12 of Shabaka and carried out under the auspices of the God’s Wife of Amun Amenirdis i.44 Although definitive proof is lacking I consider it quite likely that this expedition was administratively45 and chronologically related to the one referred to in the right column of the famous Wadi Gasus “double date” graffiti, which associates Amenirdis (i) with Year 12 of an unnamed king.46 A generation later, “the stonemason of the domain of the God’s Wife of Amun, Ḳrj=f-r-Jmn, named P(Ꜣ)-ṯḫ, son of the overseer <of stonemasons> of the domain of the God’s Wife of Amun, P(Ꜣ)-sn-n-Ḫnsw, son of the stonemason of the domain of the God’s Wife of Amun, P(Ꜣ)-jwḫꜢ,” is attested in Wadi Hammamat graffito M 70 without date or indication of the respective reign.47 Another son of P(Ꜣ)-sn-n-Ḫnsw, the “overseer of stonemasons, Wn-Jmn,” left a graffito (M 102) nearby,48 likewise lacking a date or royal cartouche. However, the graffiti M 176 and M 189, which are located near M 187 and not too far from M 70 and M 102, comprise isolated nomen cartouches of King Taharqa49 and thereby testify to contemporaneous activities in the region. Graffito G 12850 in the same general area as M 70 and M 102 mentions a “stonemason of the domain of the God’s Wife of Amun, Jr.t-Ḥr-r=w” and may belong to either of these Kushite expeditions as well. The activities in the reign of Taharqa were perhaps connected with a contemporaneous mission to the Wadi Gasus, since the left column of the Wadi Gasus “double date” graffiti—associating a God’s Wife Shepenupet with a regnal year 19—is most likely to refer to Shepenupet ii and Year 19 of Taharqa,51 the only Kushite king who is known to have reigned for so long.
The last traceable generation of this dynasty of stonemasons is represented by the prolific “chief of stonemasons of the domain of Amun, P(Ꜣ)-dj-Wsjr,” who left five graffiti in the central area of the Wadi Hammamat, namely M 44, M 52, M 68, M 128 (each providing name, title and filiation) and M 51.52 The latter stands out in being a carefully executed rock inscription commissioned by the fourth prophet of Amun and overseer of all Upper Egypt, Montuemhat, which identifies P(Ꜣ)-dj-Wsjr as its creator in a separate text column. A rather crude stela (or detached rock inscription?) from Umm el-Howeitat near Wadi Gasus53 provides further evidence of the association between P(Ꜣ)-dj-Wsjr and Montuemhat.54 Its inscription relates the inauguration of the (lead) mine of Umm el-Howeitat in Year 16 (? > 14[+2]) of King Psamtek i (corresponding to 649
As none of these graffiti make any mention of King Shabataka, their value for the present investigation may seem negligible (unless one wished to equate absence of evidence with evidence of absence).
Despite this fact, however, a chronological analysis of the reconstructed expedition events (see Table 1) is able to reveal a certain pattern of potential significance. Under the (admittedly contestable) presupposition that all large-scale expeditions to the Wadi Hammamat/Wadi Gasus region conducted during the Twenty-Fifth and early Twenty-Sixth Dynasties have left their mark in form of graffiti and rock inscriptions, the temporal distance between the recorded events conforms much better to a chronology based on the revised sequence of Kushite kings than to the traditional model.
According to the traditional chronology, the intervals between the recorded expeditions amount to 39 and 23 years respectively. The gap between the attested events of Year 12 of Shabaka and Year 19 of Taharqa extends to almost 40 years and is thus nearly twice as long as the interval between Year 19 of Taharqa and Year 16(?) of Psamtek i. In contrast, employing the revised chronological model results in more regular intervals of 22 and 23 years respectively. This being so, one must be cautious not to assume that major state-sponsored expeditions to the Eastern Desert were “natural phenomena” only occurring at regular intervals.55 Rather, they may have been subject to short-term political and economic considerations—perhaps often tied to specific building projects—, and seemingly regular patterns may be nothing more than analytical “artefacts.” Despite this necessary qualification, the observation is nevertheless in line with related arguments pointing to the fact that Shabaka’s royal agenda has more in common with that of Taharqa than that of Shabataka (see the following section).
a Based on Hornung, Krauss and Warburton, eds., Ancient Egyptian Chronology, 494.
b Based on Broekman, “Some consequences of the reversion of the order Shabaka—Shabataka.”
3.3 “Linear” Cultural Evolutions: Building Activities and Royal Display
It is not easy to decide whether there exist any unidirectional, linear developments within the ancient Egyptian cultural sphere which are on the one hand securely tied to specific reigns and on the other hand lend themselves to being used as chronological markers on the small scale. The patterns of attention which certain kings devoted to specific places and building complexes may be seen as one such example because they promise to offer valuable indicators of chronological continuity/discontinuity. Unfortunately, their analysis usually incorporates a high degree of ambiguity as chronological distance may not be the only reason for a king to ignore or neglect projects commissioned/promoted by his immediate predecessors.
3.3.1 Building Activities
When considering the few building activities at Thebes securely dated to the reign of Shabataka one cannot help noting that almost all of them are connected with areas and projects bearing a great significance for the last rulers of the Theban Twenty-Third Dynasty. Apart from the enlargement of the already mentioned Chapel of Osiris Heqadjet in the north-eastern district of the Temple of Amun-Re at Karnak (see section 3.1), Shabataka was also involved in the erection of a small chapel dedicated to an Osirian form of Amun near the south-eastern corner of the Sacred Lake of Amun-Re.56 As recent research has demonstrated,57 this Kushite chapel lay close to another small chapel decorated under King Osorkon iii and together with the latter seems to have once formed part of a large building complex to the east of the “sacred storehouse” of Psammuthis.58 Disregarding Shabataka’s activities at the quay of the Temple of Amun-Re (see the following section), no other building projects of his are known from Karnak.59 In contrast, Shabaka was responsible for several substantial construction works at Karnak,60 and it is noteworthy that he devoted special attention to gates61 and colonnades,62 thus foreshadowing the large-scale refurbishment of the processional infrastructure at Thebes by Taharqa.63 A comparable pattern emerges at Luxor Temple, where Shabataka was commemorated by a relief panel inserted into the existing decoration on the rear wall of the main sanctuary,64 while Shabaka’s activities involved the re-decoration of the gate of the first pylon65 as well as the construction of a small kiosk66 later to be dismantled.
As has already been remarked by Bányai67 and Broekman,68 even stronger evidence for the chronological proximity of Shabaka and Taharqa comes from the Small Temple at Medinet Habu, where Taharqa seems to have directly continued the decoration of the pylon begun under Shabaka, with no indication of Shabataka having ever contributed to the project. Taken together these observations are not suited to provide a definitive answer to the problem of the Kushite succession, but they add to the general impression that the chronological and ideological distance between Taharqa and Shabataka exceeded that between Taharqa and Shabaka.69
3.3.2 Archaism and Titulary
Another hint supporting the assumption that Shabataka is more closely related to the time of Piankhy than to that of Taharqa comes from his titulary as evidenced by Nile Level Record (
3.4 Archaeological Sequence: The Nile Level Records
Ever since the first comprehensive publication by von Beckerath in 1966,75 the Nile Level Records (
Finally we have the Nile Level Records (
nlr) on the quay wall of the temple of Amun at Karnak, from which information about the sequence of Shabako and Shebitku may be deduced. As said by Lauffray, “Les Abords Occidentaux,” 86, the most ancient texts are found exactly in the central part of the wall, whereas those on the lateral parts are posterior to Shabako. However nlrNo. 33, with a length of about seven meters, of Shebitku’s 3rd regnal year, is prominently positioned in the central part, just above nlrNo. 30 of year 2 of Shabako, outreaching this text at both sides. nlrNo. 31 of Shabako—the year being illegible—was inscribed close to the right edge of the wall, on a distance of about six meters from No. 30, on a level with text No. 33 of Shebitku. If Shabako would have preceded Shebitku the space above nlrNo. 30 would have been more than enough for having nlrNo. 31 inscribed in it, just above No. 30, and to all probability Shabako would have done so. However, on the assumption that Shebitku preceded Shabako, the former already occupied that space, which forced Shabako to have nlrNo. 31 inscribed somewhere to the right of Shebitku’s Nile text.78
I believe that Broekman’s observation possesses highest relevance for the problem of the early Kushite succession, and an elaboration of his arguments presented in the following paragraphs seems indeed suited to put an end to this particular discussion.
The vertical position of the
Judging from the chronological sequence of the
For this reason, it is imperative not to stop at general considerations regarding the positioning of the
What immediately catches the eye is the regular and generous spacing of the individual signs in Shabataka’s monumental text.
However, this impression may be due to a photographic illusion fostered by peculiar lighting conditions, and should not be taken as evidence on its own right. A personal examination of this section of the inscriptions in September 2016 yielded no clear result as both signs have suffered greatly from weathering and erosion since the 1920s and their outlines are now rather blurred.
Irrespective of the dubious case of Fig. 4, the evidence described above and illustrated in Fig. 2 is in my opinion sufficient to reach a definitive conclusion regarding the order of kings during the early Twenty-Fifth Dynasty:
The carvers of
The preceding paragraphs lead to the following conclusions:
- The analysis of posthumous sources and modern judgements on the probability of historical scenarios are indispensable tools for the historian, but they should not be given precedence over the study of significant contemporaneous archaeological data, if available.
- Establishing the correct order of the first two kings of the Twenty-Fifth Dynasty is a problem which should, and which can, be considered separately from more wide-ranging questions on the chronology and history of Egypt, Nubia, and the Ancient Near East during the late eighth century
bce. Nevertheless, the entire enterprise becomes meaningless if not followed by exactly such contextualising studies. It is therefore not a matter of relevance, but of priority.
- Upholding the traditional sequence of reigns and considering only the contemporaneous Egyptian sources leads to the impression that the reign of Shabataka was marked by a stark discontinuity in almost all categories of the archaeological record, a phenomenon which cannot be properly accounted for. Adopting chronological models which extend the reign of Shabataka to more than 15 years makes this discontinuity appear even more peculiar.
- The archaeological/epigraphic evidence of the Nile Level Records at Karnak provides in my opinion the strongest support for the reversal of the traditional sequence of kings hitherto put forward. It is also compatible with more general considerations regarding the regaining of Kushite dominance over Egypt after Piankhy’s campaigns. Quite obviously,
nlrno. 33 of Year 3 served Shabataka to make a strong political statement and assert his legitimacy as an Egyptian pharaoh, at least at Thebes. His journey to the City of Amun and the rituals he might have performed there were perhaps nothing more than a first step in his larger endeavour of (re-)conquering northern Upper Egypt and the entire Delta. The supposed Memphite synchronism between Year 2 of a Kushite king (Shabaka/Shabataka?) and Year 6 of Bocchoris does certainly not speak against such a scenario, since the evidence for it has been shown to be elusive at best.86 If—as seems likely—Shabataka regarded his visit to Thebes as an important opportunity to stage his political claims, he was probably also responsible for commissioning the enlargement of the quay tribune giving access to the temple of “his father” Amun on exactly this occasion.
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Instead of the commonly employed name forms “Shebitku” and “Shabako” the more “neutral” renderings “Shabataka” and “Shabaka” are adopted in this article. This is because they conform to Egyptological conventions of pronouncing unvocalised hieroglyphic texts without implying particular vocalisation patterns whose reconstructions are potentially erroneous. For the mismatch between “Shabataka” and Σεβιχως, which provided the first two vocals in “Shebitku,” see section 2.1. I would like to thank Jeremy Pope for sharing with me his views on this issue.
Cf. Payraudeau, “Retour sur la succession Shabaqo—Shabataqo”; Bányai, et al., “Die Reihenfolge der kuschitischen Könige”; Broekman, “The order of succession between Shabaka and Shabataka,” “Genealogical considerations,” and “Some consequences of the reversion of the order Shabaka—Shabataka”; Jansen-Winkeln, “Beiträge zur Geschichte der Dritten Zwischenzeit,” 33–40.
Kitchen, The Third Intermediate Period 2, 148–73, 378–98.
Beckerath, Chronologie des pharaonischen Ägypten, 89–93.
E.g., Bierbrier, The Late New Kingdom in Egypt, 102–08. For an earlier dissenting view see Depuydt, “The date of Piye’s Egyptian campaign.”
Frame, “The Inscription of Sargon ii at Tang-i Var.”
Frame, “The Inscription of Sargon ii at Tang-i Var,” 52–54.
Kahn, “The Inscription of Sargon ii at Tang-i Var and the Chronology of Dynasty 25,” 8.
Questioning the chronological implications of the Tang-i Var inscription, Kitchen stresses the fact that Šapataku is not referred to as King of Muṣri in the text, which in his opinion removes any necessity to alter the traditional chronological model and shift the accession date of Shabataka as King of Egypt to before 702
Redford, “A Note on the Chronology of Dynasty 25 and the Inscription of Sargon ii at Tang-i Var.”
Kahn, “The Inscription of Sargon ii at Tang-i Var and the Chronology of Dynasty 25.”
Jansen-Winkeln, “The Chronology of the Third Intermediate Period,” 261–63. See also Hornung, Krauss, and Warburton, eds., Ancient Egyptian Chronology, 494, tab.
Bányai, “Ein Vorschlag zur Chronologie der 25. Dynastie in Ägypten.”
Cf. Lohwasser, “Vorbemerkung,” in Bányai, et al., “Die Reihenfolge der kuschitischen Könige,” 115–16.
Cf. Jurman, in Bányai, et al., “Die Reihenfolge der kuschitischen Könige,” 172–73; Jansen-Winkeln, “Beiträge zur Geschichte der Dritten Zwischenzeit,” 40.
Broekman, “The order of succession between Shabaka and Shabataka,” 17.
Dodson, The Royal Tombs of Ancient Egypt, 115, 149.
Agut and Moreno García, L’Égypte des pharaons, 552–55.
See esp. Bányai, et al., “Die Reihenfolge der kuschitischen Könige.”
Macadam, Kawa i, 14–21, pl. 7; Jansen-Winkeln, Inschriften der Spätzeit iii, 133, no. 48.74, l. 8.
Macadam, Kawa i, 22–32, pl. 9; Jansen-Winkeln, Inschriften der Spätzeit iii, 137, no. 48.75, l. 15.
For a deconstruction of arguments based on Kawa iv and v which favour the traditional sequence see Payraudeau, “Retour sur la succession Shabaqo—Shabataqo,” 122–23; Broekman, “The order of succession between Shabaka and Shabataka,” 28–30.
Cf. Waddell, ed., Manetho, 166–69; Mosshammer, ed., Georgii Syncelli Ecloga Chronographica, 84; Wallraff, ed., Iulius Africanus Chronographiae, 114–15.
Cf. Payraudeau, “Retour sur la succession Shabaqo—Shabataqo,” 119.
Gundacker, “The Chronology of the Third and Fourth Dynasties,” 154–66.
See Malinine, “Un jugement rendu à Thèbes sous la xxve dynastie”; Jansen-Winkeln, Inschriften der Spätzeit iii, 216–19, no. 48.157.
Cf. Payraudeau, “Retour sur la succession Shabaqo—Shabataqo,” 119; Broekman, “The order of succession between Shabaka and Shabataka,” 28.
Leahy, “The Name of Osiris Written .”
For the discussion on the royal tombs and stylistic developments in the related burial assemblages, see Payraudeau, “Retour sur la succession Shabaqo—Shabataqo,” 120; Broekman, in Bányai, et al., “Die Reihenfolge der kuschitischen Könige,” 151–52; Broekman, “The order of succession between Shabaka and Shabataka,” 21–23.
Cf. Payraudeau, “Retour sur la succession Shabaqo—Shabataqo,” 123.
Cf., e.g., Jurman, “Legitimisation through innovative tradition,” 201–12. See also Jurman, in Bányai, et al., “Die Reihenfolge der kuschitischen Könige,” 172–73.
For the use of subtle stylistic traits as a dating criterion for monuments of the late eighth and early seventh centuries
This does not apply to cases where the reigns of the respective kings overlap partially, or where a prolonged struggle for power resulted in a complex alternation of reigns (cf., e.g., the conflicts between Ptolemy vi Philometor and Ptolemy vii[i] Euergetes ii).
Leclant, Recherches sur les monuments thébains, 77–78, § 17bis and “The Architecture of the Edifice,” 5–8;
Leclant, Recherches sur les monuments thébains, 53; Bierbrier, The Late New Kingdom in Egypt, 103; Ayad, “The Transition from Libyan to Nubian Rule,” 41; Dodson, Afterglow of Empire, 159; Morkot, “The Late Libyan and Kushite God’s Wives,” 112–13. Broekman was the first who directed due attention to this issue in relation to the debate about the correct order of the Kushite kings. See Broekman, “The order of succession between Shabaka and Shabataka,” 25–26.
Cf. Jansen-Winkeln, Inschriften der Spätzeit iii, 41–46, no. 47.6. For the conscious use of the epithets Ꜥnḫ(.tj) and mꜢꜤ(.t) ḫrw to characterise a person as being alive or dead cf. the inscriptions of the famous calcite-alabaster statue of Amenirdis i in the Cairo Museum,
Leclant, Recherches sur les monuments thébains, 53–54; Redford, “An Interim Report,” 21; Ayad, God’s Wife, God’s Servant, 132; Koch, „Die den Amun mit ihrer Stimme zufriedenstellen“, 25.
See, e.g., Murnane, Ancient Egyptian Coregencies, 267–72, although he is not absolutely right in equating dj Ꜥnḫ(.tj) with Ꜥnḫ(.w)/.tj.
E.g., Kitchen, The Third Intermediate Period 2, 480, Tab. 13 b; most recently Koch, „Die den Amun mit ihrer Stimme zufriedenstellen“, 116.
Hölscher, Medinet Habu v, 22, Pl. 13 b; Jansen-Winkeln, Inschriften der Spätzeit iii, 269, no. 51.17. The funerary chapel of Amenirdis i was decorated in large parts, if not in its entirety, during the tenure of Shepenupet ii. See Koch, „Die den Amun mit ihrer Stimme zufriedenstellen“, 30.
Broekman, “The order of succession between Shabaka and Shabataka,” 26.
Namely, in Chapel b of North Karnak (Mariette, Karnak, Pl. 45c;
Bongrani Fanfoni, “Un nuovo documento,” esp. 71 w. fig.; Jansen-Winkeln, Inschriften der Spätzeit ii, 366, no. 36.1. See also Meffre, “Political Changes in Thebes during the Late Libyan Period,” 52–53.
Couyat and Montet, Les inscriptions, 96, no. 187, Pl. xxxv.
The Wadi Hammamat and the Wadi Gasus lie in the same general region of the Eastern Desert and any expedition moving through the Wadi Hammamat to the Red Sea at Quseir can approach the Wadi Gasus area quite easily by ship, since it is located not far from the harbour site of Mersa Gawasis. Alternatively, there existed a north-south desert route connecting the Wadi Hammamat with the Wadi Hammamh, finally leading to Wadi Gasus. See Bard, Fattovich, and Manzo, “The ancient harbor at Mersa / Wadi Gawasis,” 551–52 with Fig. 16.
For the discussions on the dating of the Wadi Gasus graffiti see, e.g., Jurman, “Die Namen des Rudjamun,” 88–89 with further references. Arguing that the lack of a royal name within the two columns indicates that the dates refer to one and the same reign, Koch chooses to associate the Year 12 date rather with the reign of Taharqa. Koch, „Die den Amun mit ihrer Stimme zufriedenstellen“, 43. Similarly, Pope, “Shepenwepet ii and the Kingdom of Kush,” 361. However, within the sphere of the Kushite God’s Wives of Amun, the absence of royal cartouches and the lack of explicit differentiation between two kings should not come as a surprise. Cf. Leclant, Recherches sur les monuments thébains, 374–82.
Couyat and Montet, Les inscriptions, 61, no. 70, Pl. xvii.
Couyat and Montet, Les inscriptions, 71, no. 102.
Couyat and Montet, Les inscriptions, 95, no. 176; 97, no. 189. For the different locations of the graffiti referred to, see Gundlach, “Wadi Hammamat.”
Goyon, Nouvelles inscriptions ruprestres, 131, no. 128, Pl. xxxiii.
Jurman, “Die Namen des Rudjamun,” 88–89.
Couyat and Montet, Les inscriptions, 48, no. 44, Pl. xiii; 52–53, no. 51, Pl. x; 53, no. 52; 60–61, no. 68, Pl. xxvii; 86, no. 128.
For the location of Umm el-Howeitat in relation to Wadi Gasus see Khalil and McClay, “Structural control on syn-rift sedimentation,” 1023, Fig. 5.
Vikentiev, “Les trois inscriptions concernant la mine de plomb d’Oum Huetat,” 179–86, Pl. i.
As demonstrated by Hikade, the preserved records of expeditions to the Wadi Hammamat during the New Kingdom do not exhibit a regular pattern. Hikade, Das Expeditionswesen im ägyptischen Neuen Reich, 274.
Now at the Ägyptisches Museum Berlin,
Masson, “Offering Magazines,” 591–600.
For a block with elements of Shabataka’s titulary which Leclant thought to have come from Thebes, see Leclant, Recherches sur les monuments thébains, 190, §49, C, i; 340–43.
Leclant, Recherches sur les monuments thébains, 335–40; for recent results of investigations on the Treasury of Shabaka see Licitra, et al., “A Major Development Project”; Licitra, “Gérer les richesses du temple à l’époque koushito-saïte.”
Leclant, Recherches sur les monuments thébains, 17, § 5; 36–41, § 10. On the Kushite gates of the Temple of Ptah see most recently Biston-Moulin and Thiers, Le temple de Ptah à Karnak, vol. i, xvi–xvii; 73–97 (Porte B); 109–24 (Porte D); vol. ii, 41–59 (Porte B); 69–78 (Porte D).
Leclant, Recherches sur les monuments thébains, 19, § 7.
Cf. Leclant, Recherches sur les monuments thébains, 200–16; Arnold, Temples of the Last Pharaohs, 51–58; Morkot, The Black Pharaohs, 239–47.
Leclant, Recherches sur les monuments thébains, 134–37, § 38, Pls. lxxvii–lxxix.
Leclant, Recherches sur les monuments thébains, 137–39, § 39, Pl. lxxx (erroneously identified as colonnade); Van Siclen, “A kiosk (?) of Shabako at Luxor temple.”
Bányai, “Ein Vorschlag zur Chronologie der 25. Dynastie in Ägypten,” 76–77.
Broekman, “The order of succession between Shabaka and Shabataka,” 28.
In terms of political affiliations, the situation may have been quite different, given that there are certain hints at conflicts between Taharqa and Shabaka. See Leclant, Recherches sur les monuments thébains, 77–78, § 17bis (on blocks of Shabaka re-used for Taharqa’s Edifice by the Sacred Lake); Depuydt, “Glosses to Jerome’s Eusebios” (in accordance with the then prevalent chronological model Depuydt equated Latin “Sebio” with Shabataka). For a revised interpretation of these passages, see Payraudeau, “Retour sur la succession Shabaqo—Shabataqo,” 122–23.
Beckerath, “The Nile Level Records at Karnak,” 53, no. 33 and “Die Nilstandsinschrift vom 3. Jahr Schebitkus am Kai von Karnak,” 7; Jansen-Winkeln, Inschriften der Spätzeit iii, 40, no. 47.5.
See, e.g., Fazzini, “Several Objects, and Some Aspects of the Art of the Third Intermediate Period,” 122–25; Ritner, “Libyan vs. Nubian as the Ideal Egyptian,” 309.
For a different, yet consonant, approach towards the ideological and chronological implications of Shabataka’s titulary in
Attested on a fragmentary obelisk from Kadakol, Sudan (Khartoum, Sudan National Museum inv.-no. 462). See Jurman, “Legitimisation through innovative tradition,” 203–05.
Munich, Staatliches Museum Ägyptischer Kunst, Gl. 127. Beckerath, “Ein Torso des Mentemḥēt in München,” 2–3, Fig. 2; Jansen-Winkeln, Inschriften der Spätzeit iii, 204, no. 48.143.
Beckerath, “The Nile Level Records at Karnak.”
Cf. Kitchen, The Third Intermediate Period2, 130–32, § 103; Jansen-Winkeln, “The Chronology of the Third Intermediate Period,” 234; Ritner, The Libyan Anarchy, 34–44, no. 7. See already Legrain, “Les crues du Nil depuis Sheshonq ier jusqu’à Psametik.”
Broekman, “The Nile Level Records.”
Broekman, in Bányai, et al., “Die Reihenfolge der kuschitischen Könige,” 172. See also Broekman, “The order of succession between Shabaka and Shabataka,” 25.
Based on Broekman, “The Nile Level Records.”
Cf. Beckerath, “The Nile Level Records at Karnak,” 44 w. Fig.; Broekman, “The Nile Level Records,” 171.
Lauffray, “Abords occidentaux,” 86 w. Fig. 6bis and “La tribune du quai de Karnak,” 58 w. Fig. 9; Traunecker, “Les élélments historiques.”
For the contentious
Already remarked in Broekman, “The order of succession between Shabaka and Shabataka,” 25.
Among the few published images available are Legrain, Les temples de Karnak, 11, Fig. 11; 12, Fig. 12; Lauffray, “Abords occidentaux,” 88, Fig. 6; Dodson, Afterglow of Empire, 130, Fig. 97. For references to further images of the quay tribune see
The photo negatives and some prints are now housed in the archives of the Chicago House at Luxor. I am indebted to John A. Larson Jr. and Kiersten Neumann for making available to me high-resolution scans of the Epigraphic Survey negative nos. 8744 and 8745.
Payraudeau, “Retour sur la succession Shabaqo—Shabataqo,” 119; Jansen-Winkeln, “Beiträge zur Geschichte der Dritten Zwischenzeit,” 33–35.