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Bust of Psamtik I, Metropolitan Museum of Art
|Reign||664–610 BC (26th Dynasty)|
|Children|| Necho II |
Wahibre Psamtik I (Ancient Egyptian: wꜣḥ-jb-rꜥ psmṯk, known by the Greeks as Psammeticus or Psammetichus (Latinization of Ancient Greek : Ψαμμήτιχος, romanized: Psammḗtikhos), who ruled 664–610 BC, was the first of three kings of that name of the Saite, or Twenty-sixth Dynasty of Egypt.
Historical references for what the Greeks referred to as the Dodecarchy, a loose confederation of twelve Egyptian territories, based on the traditional nomes, and the rise of Psamtik I in power, establishing the Saitic Dynasty, are recorded in Herodotus's Histories , Book II: 151–157. From cuneiform texts, it was discovered that twenty local princelings were appointed by Esarhaddon and confirmed by Ashurbanipal to govern Egypt.
Necho I, the father of Psamtik by his queen Istemabet, was the chief of these kinglets, but they seem to have been quite unable to lead the Egyptians under the hated Assyrians against the more sympathetic Nubians. The labyrinth built by Amenemhat III of the Twelfth Dynasty of Egypt is ascribed by Herodotus to the Dodecarchy, which must represent this combination of rulers.
Necho I died in 664 BC when the Kushite king Tantamani tried unsuccessfully to seize control of lower Egypt from the Assyrian Empire. After his father's death, within the first ten years of his reign, Psamtik both united all of Egypt and freed it from Assyrian control.
Psamtik reunified Egypt in his ninth regnal year when he dispatched a powerful naval fleet in March 656 BC to Thebes and compelled the existing God's Wife of Amun at Thebes, Shepenupet II, daughter of the former Kushite Pharaoh Piye, to adopt his daughter Nitocris I as her heiress in the so-called Adoption Stela.
Psamtik's victory destroyed the last vestiges of the Nubian Twenty-fifth Dynasty's control over Upper Egypt under Tantamani since Thebes now accepted his authority. Nitocris would hold her office for 70 years from 656 BC until her death in 585 BC. Thereafter, Psamtik campaigned vigorously against those local princes who opposed his reunification of Egypt. One of his victories over certain Libyan marauders is mentioned in a Year 10 and Year 11 stela from the Dakhla Oasis.
Psamtik won Egypt's independence from the Assyrian Empire and restored Egypt's prosperity during his 54-year reign. The pharaoh proceeded to establish close relations with archaic Greece and also encouraged many Greek settlers to establish colonies in Egypt and serve in the Egyptian army. In particular, he settled some Greeks at Tahpanhes (Daphnae).
The Greek historian Herodotus conveyed an anecdote about Psamtik in the second volume of his Histories (2.2). During his visit to Egypt, Herodotus heard that Psammetichus ("Psamṯik") sought to discover the origin of language by conducting an experiment with two children. Allegedly he gave two newborn babies to a shepherd, with the instructions that no one should speak to them, but that the shepherd should feed and care for them while listening to determine their first words. The hypothesis was that the first word would be uttered in the root language of all people. When one of the children cried "βεκός" (bekós) with outstretched arms, the shepherd reported this to Psammetichus, who concluded that the word was Phrygian because that was the sound of the Phrygian word for "bread". Thus, they concluded that the Phrygians were an older people than the Egyptians, and that Phrygian was the original language of men. There are no other extant sources to verify this story.
Psamtik's chief wife was Mehytenweskhet, the daughter of Harsiese, the vizier of the North and High Priest of Atum at Heliopolis. Psamtik and Mehytenweskhet were the parents of Necho II, Merneith, and the Divine Adoratrice Nitocris I.[ citation needed ]
Psamtik's father-in-law—the aforementioned Harsiese—was married three times: to Sheta, with whom he had a daughter named Naneferheres, to Tanini and, finally, to an unknown woman, by whom he had both Djedkare, the vizier of the South and Mehytenweskhet. [ better source needed ] Harsiese was the son of vizier Harkhebi, and was related to two other Harsieses, both viziers, who were a part of the family of the famous Mayor of Thebes Montuemhat.[ citation needed ]
On 9 March 2017, Egyptian and German archaeologists discovered a colossal statue about 7.9 metres (26 ft) in height at the Heliopolis site in Cairo. Made of quartzite, the statue was found in a fragmentary state, with the bust, the lower part of the head and the crown submerged in groundwater.
It has been confirmed to be of Psamtik I due to engravings found that mentioned one of the pharaoh's names on the base of the statue.
A spokesperson at the time commented that "If it does belong to this king, then it is the largest statue of the Late Period that was ever discovered in Egypt."The head and torso are expected to be moved to the Grand Egyptian Museum.
The statue (colossus) was sculpted in the ancient classical style of 2000 BC, establishing a resurgence to the greatness and prosperity of the classical period of old. However, from the many gathered fragments (now 6,400 of them) of quartzite collected, it has also been established that the colossus was at some time deliberately destroyed. Certain discoloured & cracked rock fragments show evidence of having been heated to high temperatures then shattered (with cold water), a typical way of destroying ancient colossi.[ citation needed ]
Amasis II or Ahmose II was a pharaoh of the Twenty-sixth Dynasty of Egypt, the successor of Apries at Sais. He was the last great ruler of Egypt before the Persian conquest.
The 7th century BC began the first day of 700 BC and ended the last day of 601 BC.
Necho II of Egypt was a king of the 26th Dynasty, which ruled out of Saite. Necho undertook a number of construction projects across his kingdom. In his reign, according to the Greek historian Herodotus, Necho II sent out an expedition of Phoenicians, which in three years sailed from the Red Sea around Africa to the Strait of Gibraltar and back to Egypt. His son, Psammetichus II, upon succession may have removed Necho's name from monuments.
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Apries is the name by which Herodotus and Diodorus designate Wahibre Haaibre, a pharaoh of Egypt, the fourth king of the Twenty-sixth dynasty of Egypt. He was equated with the Waphres of Manetho, who correctly records that he reigned for 19 years. Apries is also called Hophra in Jeremiah 44:30.
Psamtik II was a king of the Saite-based Twenty-sixth dynasty of Egypt. His prenomen, Nefer-Ib-Re, means "Beautiful [is the] Heart [of] Re." He was the son of Necho II.
Menkheperre Necho I was a ruler of the ancient Egyptian city of Sais. He was the first securely attested local Saite king of the 26th Dynasty of Egypt who reigned for 8 years according to Manetho's Aegyptiaca. Egypt was reunified by his son Psamtik I.
Psamtik III was the last Pharaoh of the Twenty-sixth Dynasty of Egypt from 526 BC to 525 BC. Most of what is known about his reign and life was documented by the Greek historian Herodotus in the 5th century BC. Herodotus states that Psamtik had ruled Egypt for only six months before he was confronted by a Persian invasion of his country led by King Cambyses II of Persia. Psamtik was subsequently defeated at the Battle of Pelusium, and fled to Memphis where he was captured. The deposed pharaoh was carried off to Susa in chains, and later committed suicide.
Tantamani, Tanutamun or Tanwetamani (Egyptian) or Tementhes (Greek) was a Pharaoh of Egypt and the Kingdom of Kush located in Northern Sudan and a member of the Nubian or Twenty-fifth dynasty of Egypt. His prenomen or royal name was Bakare which means "Glorious is the Soul of Re."
The Third Intermediate Period of Ancient Egypt began with the death of Pharaoh Ramesses XI in 1070 BC, which ended the New Kingdom, and was eventually followed by the Late Period. Various points are offered as the beginning for the latter era, though it is most often regarded as dating from the foundation of the Twenty-Sixth Dynasty by Psamtik I in 664 BC, following the expulsion of the Nubian Kushite rulers of the Twenty-fifth Dynasty by the Assyrians under King Assurbanipal. The concept of a "Third Intermediate Period" was coined in 1978 by British Egyptologist Kenneth Kitchen.
Napata was a city of ancient Nubia on the west bank of the Nile at the site of modern Karima, Sudan. It was the southernmost permanent settlement in the New Kingdom of Egypt and the main Nubian cult centre of Amun. It was the sometime capital of the Nubian Twenty-fifth Dynasty and, after its fall in 663 BC, of the Kingdom of Kush. In 593 BC, it was sacked by the Egyptians and the Kushite capital was relocated to Meroë. The city was sacked a second time by the Romans in 23 BC but was rebuilt and continued as an important centre of the Amun cult.
The Late Period of ancient Egypt refers to the last flowering of native Egyptian rulers after the Third Intermediate Period in the 26th Saite Dynasty founded by Psamtik I, but includes the time of Achaemenid Persian rule over Egypt after the conquest by Cambyses II in 525 BC as well. The Late Period existed from 664 BC until 332 BC, following a period of foreign rule by the Nubian 25th dynasty and beginning with a short period of Neo-Assyrian suzerainty, with Psamtik I initially ruling as their vassal. The period ended with the conquests of the Persian Empire by Alexander the Great and establishment of the Ptolemaic dynasty by his general Ptolemy I Soter, one of the Hellenistic diadochi from Macedon in northern Greece. With the Macedonian Greek conquest in the latter half of the 4th century BC, the age of Hellenistic Egypt began.
Nitocris I served as the heir to, and then, as the Divine Adoratrice of Amun or God's Wife of Amun for a period of more than seventy years, between 655 BC and 585 BC.
Shepenupet II was an ancient Egyptian princess of the 25th Dynasty who served as the high priestess, the Divine Adoratrice of Amun, from around 700 BC to 650 BC. She was the daughter of the first Kushite pharaoh Piye and sister of Piye's successors, Shabaka and Taharqa.
The Twenty-fifth Dynasty of Egypt, also known as the Nubian Dynasty or the Kushite Empire, was the last dynasty of the Third Intermediate Period of Egypt that occurred after the Nubian invasion.
Mehytenweskhet (Mehtenweskhet) was the daughter of the High Priest of Re Harsiese, and the Great Royal Wife of Psamtik I. She dates to the Twenty-sixth dynasty of Egypt.
Mentuemhat or Montuemhat was a Theban official from ancient Egypt who lived during the Twenty-fifth Dynasty of Egypt and Twenty-sixth Dynasty of Egypt. He was the Fourth Priest of Amun in Thebes.
The Twenty-sixth Dynasty of Egypt was the last native dynasty to rule Egypt before the Persian conquest in 525 BC. The dynasty's reign is also called the Saite Period after the city of Sais, where its pharaohs had their capital, and marks the beginning of the Late Period of ancient Egypt.
The Sack of Thebes took place in 663 BC in the city of Thebes at the hands of the Neo-Assyrian Empire under king Ashurbanipal, then at war with the Kushite Twenty-fifth Dynasty of Egypt under Tantamani. After a long struggle for the control of the Levant which had started in 705 BC, the Kushites had gradually lost control of Lower Egypt and, by 665 BC, their territory was reduced to Upper Egypt and Nubia. Helped by the unreliable vassals of the Assyrians in the Nile Delta region, Tantamani briefly regained Memphis in 663 BC, killing Necho I of Sais in the process.
The Assyrian conquest of Egypt covered a relatively short period of the Neo-Assyrian Empire from 677 BCE to 663 BCE.
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Rulers of the Ancient Near East