Creationist Seeks Joseph’s Era in Egypt’s Eleventh Dynasty

  Mentuhotep II on a relief from his mortuary temple in Deir el-Bahari

Mentuhotep II on a relief from his mortuary temple in Deir el-Bahari

by

 Damien F. Mackey

 

Patrick Clarke, Egyptologist, and Creationist reviser of ancient history (to align it with the Bible), has completely abandoned the revised model as laid out by Dr. Immanuel Velikovsky of whom Clarke is most critical.

 Clarke’s investigation into the era of the biblical Joseph, son of Jacob, appears to have certain points in its favour, though, and may well be worthy of consideration.

 

 

Introduction

 

Patrick Clarke has attempted, in several articles for Creation Ministeries International [CMI]:

 

Immanuel Velikovsky’s most famous biblico-historical identifications, Queen Hatshepsut as the “Queen of Sheba”, and pharaoh Thutmose III as “King Shishak of Egypt”, are untenable. Clarke’s strength is his knowledge of Egyptian hieroglyphs, which he uses to good effect. It was not one of Velikovsky’s strengths, apparently, as Clarke is easily able to demolish Velikovsky’s hopeful identifications of objects on Thutmose III’s Karnak wall with items pertaining to King Solomon, his palace and the Temple. Dr. John Bimson had once done a similar demolition job on Velikovsky when he proved beyond doubt that Hatshepsut’s Punt expedition could not have been the same as the Queen of Sheba’s visit to King Solomon in Jerusalem (see “Hatshepsut” article below). And I have argued back in favour of them in, for example:Why Hatshepsut can be the ‘Queen of Sheba’https://www.academia.edu/3689991/Why_Hatshepsut_can_be_the_Queen_of_ShebaWhy Thutmose III can be ‘King Shishak of Egypt’

In the early C20th Harold H. Nelson, Professor Henry Breasted’s talented student, wrote a doctoral thesis entitled “The Battle of Megiddo”, in which Nelson painstakingly examined the topographical and tactical aspects… more abstractIn the early C20th Harold H. Nelson, Professor Henry Breasted’s talented student, wrote a doctoral thesis entitled “The Battle of Megiddo”, in which Nelson painstakingly examined the topographical and tactical aspects associated with Thutmose III’s “first campaign”, whose culmination Breasted believed to have been at the city of Megiddo. But did what Nelson uncover in this thesis really bear out Breasted’s presumptions?

Did Thutmose III Really Lay Siege To Megiddo? Part One B: Points Raised by R. Faulkner.

Essential to Part One (A) were observations made by Harold H. Nelson in his doctoral thesis entitled “The Battle of Megiddo” (1913) pertaining to topography and battle tactics. Egyptologist R. Faulkner published an a… more abstractEssential to Part One (A) were observations made by Harold H. Nelson in his doctoral thesis entitled “The Battle of Megiddo” (1913) pertaining to topography and battle tactics. Egyptologist R. Faulkner published an article of the same title, “The Battle of Megiddo” (1942), in which he lauded Nelson’s thesis as “admirable” and his “sketch-maps … indispensable to the student”. Faulkner gave as his justification for re-visiting the subject, not “any difference of opinion on topographical questions”, but “because a study of the hieroglyphic text … has led to somewhat different conclusions on various points regarding the operations”. Here I would like to recall some of what Faulkner had picked up.

Did Thutmose III Really Lay Siege To Megiddo? Part Two A: Chronologically Anchoring Thutmose III

Egyptologists believe that pharaoh Thutmose III had, in his ‘First Campaign’ against the ‘king of Kadesh’, in the C15th BC, assaulted the strong fort of Megiddo in northern Israel. Dr. Immanuel Velikovsky, however, i… more abstractEgyptologists believe that pharaoh Thutmose III had, in his ‘First Campaign’ against the ‘king of Kadesh’, in the C15th BC, assaulted the strong fort of Megiddo in northern Israel. Dr. Immanuel Velikovsky, however, in his Ages in Chaos (I), whilst accepting that Megiddo was the pharaoh’s target here, had lowered these dates by 500 years, to the C10th BC. For Velikovsky, Egypt’s foe was king Rehoboam, and Kadesh, the “Holy”, was Jerusalem. And Thutmose III was the biblical “Shishak king of Egypt” (I Kings 14:25). My own view, as expressed in Part One, is that Megiddo could not have been the location arrived at by the Egyptians – though I would accept Velikovsky’s dating of Thutmose III. So, what is the preferential geography for this ‘First Campaign’? And was “Kadesh” indeed Jerusalem?

Did Thutmose III Really Lay Siege To Megiddo? Part Two B: The Name “Shishak”.

So far in this series I have embraced the Velikovskian view that pharaoh Thutmose III had belonged to the C10th BC – rather than to the C15th BC, as according to the text books – and that he was at least contemporaneo… more abstractSo far in this series I have embraced the Velikovskian view that pharaoh Thutmose III had belonged to the C10th BC – rather than to the C15th BC, as according to the text books – and that he was at least contemporaneous with the biblical “Shishak king of Egypt”. I also argued, following Dr. Eva Danelius, that Thutmose III’s ‘First Campaign’, against the “king of Kadesh”, could not have been waged against Megiddo as is commonly thought. But, now, can Thutmose III be reconciled to “Shishak”, in both name and military aim?

Did Thutmose III Really Lay Siege To Megiddo? Part Two C: Was Rehoboam the “Chief of Qadesh”?

In his Ages in Chaos, I, Dr. Immanuel Velikovsky boldly proclaimed – against the general view that “Qadesh” was the famous city of that name on the Orontes – that (p. 163): “Kadesh, the first among the Palestinian c… more abstract In his Ages in Chaos, I, Dr. Immanuel Velikovsky boldly proclaimed – against the general view that “Qadesh” was the famous city of that name on the Orontes – that (p. 163): “Kadesh, the first among the Palestinian cities, was Jerusalem. The “wretched foe”, the king of Kadesh, was Rehoboam”. However, there is good reason now to think that this could not have been the case.

Regarding the Chief of Qadesh, Dr. I. Velikovsky had written in Ages in Chaos, I (Sphere Books, 1973, p. 143): “Who the king of the city of Kadesh was is not even asked”. So, who may he have been? I have previously … more abstractRegarding the Chief of Qadesh, Dr. I. Velikovsky had written in Ages in Chaos, I (Sphere Books, 1973, p. 143): “Who the king of the city of Kadesh was is not even asked”. So, who may he have been? I have previously (Part Two C) rejected Velikovsky’s identification of the Chief of Qadesh as king Rehoboam of Judah, son of Solomon. Here I begin my search for a new site and identification for “Qadesh” and its ruler.

Did Thutmose III Really Lay Siege To Megiddo? Part Three B: Qadesh and its Chief Re-visited.

An attempt will be made here to identify the ruler of Qadesh, who was Thutmose III’s chief foe during the pharaoh’s First Campaign, and whose aggressive activities against Egypt were, according to Thutmose, the very r… more abstractAn attempt will be made here to identify the ruler of Qadesh, who was Thutmose III’s chief foe during the pharaoh’s First Campaign, and whose aggressive activities against Egypt were, according to Thutmose, the very reason for this Egyptian military action.

Did Thutmose III Really Lay Siege To Megiddo? Part Three C: Road to Victory.

Whilst I have accepted Dr. I. Velikovsky’s revised chronology for pharaoh Thutmose III, as a contemporary of King Solomon of Israel (C10th BC), and, hence, an older contemporary of Solomon’s son, Rehoboam, I have reje… more abstractWhilst I have accepted Dr. I. Velikovsky’s revised chronology for pharaoh Thutmose III, as a contemporary of King Solomon of Israel (C10th BC), and, hence, an older contemporary of Solomon’s son, Rehoboam, I have rejected his view that the pharaoh’s ‘foe of Qadesh’ was Rehoboam himself, and that Qadesh (Kd-šw) referred to Jerusalem (the “Holy”). And in Part Three B I arrived at a new identification for the ruler of Qadesh, as the biblical Hadad, the Edomite, with Qadesh now referring to Qadesh-Barnea in the south. Also, with my rejection (along with others) of the pharaoh’s “Mkty” as Megiddo, in northern Israel, it remains to be determined if this “Mkty” can be related to Jerusalem (as according to Dr. E. Danelius), in support of Velikovsky’s Thutmose III = “Shishak”.

Did Thutmose III Really Lay Siege To Megiddo? Part Three D: The Karnak Treasures.

According to Dr. I. Velikovsky (Ages in Chaos, I, 1952, p. 155): The treasures brought by Thutmose III from Palestine [Israel] are reproduced on a wall of the Karnak temple. The bas-relief displays in ten rows… more abstractAccording to Dr. I. Velikovsky (Ages in Chaos, I, 1952, p. 155): The treasures brought by Thutmose III from Palestine [Israel] are reproduced on a wall of the Karnak temple. The bas-relief displays in ten rows the legendary wealth of Solomon. There are pictures of various precious objects, furnishings, vessels, and utensils of the Temple, of the palace, probably also of the shrines to foreign deities. Under each object a numerical symbol indicates how many of that kind were brought by the Egyptian king from Palestine: each stroke means one piece, each arch means ten pieces, each spiral one hundred pieces of the same thing. If Thutmose III had wanted to boast and to display all his spoils from the Temple and the Palace of Jerusalem by showing each object separately instead of using this number system, a wall a mile long would have required and even that would not have sufficed. …. But was Velikovsky right about this?

 

Patrick Clarke reminds me somewhat of an earlier revisionist with SIS, Lester Mitcham, who made a habit of tearing apart the efforts of fellow revisionists, earning himself the description of a ‘nit picker’ from David Rohl who was then valiantly trying to bring some sort of cohesion to the highly complex Third Intermediate Period of Egyptian history – a historian’s greatest nightmare. Whilst the critical/analytical approach is necessary, forcing one to a deeper evaluation of things, ‘keeping us all honest’ as a colleague has recently noted, those who excel in this approach seem rarely, if ever, to come up with a compelling alternative. I discussed Mitcham’s case in my:

 

Bringing New Order to Mesopotamian History and Chronology

 

https://www.academia.edu/8042890/Bringing_New_Order_to_Mesopotamian_History_and_Chronology

 

Mitcham’s attempted Mesopotamian revision was a poor thing, I believe, and certainly failed to gain any stout adherents. And Clarke, whilst being confident that he has obliterated Hatshepsut and Thutmose III as candidates for, respectively, “Sheba” and “Shishak”, has, despite promises for the future, failed to propose any suitable candidates of his own.

 

 

Regarding Joseph of Egypt

 

 

 

  1.  
  • Joseph’s Zaphenath Paaneah—a chronological keydismisses the possibility that perhaps the most favoured candidate for Joseph, vizier Imhotep of Egypt’s Third Dynasty, could be Joseph. He does this partly on his basis that the “godly” Joseph would not have borne such a pagan name: “Imhotep translates as Content is Horus (lit. Horus who is content). Again the question must be asked, ‘How happy would the godly Joseph have been to bear the name of the Egyptian sky god, Horus?’”Moreover, Mordecai was, according to my reconstruction at least, none other than the godly Daniel himself:https://www.academia.edu/5365514/Belshazzar_s_Feast_in_the_Book_of_EstherClarke, moreover, shrinks from any thought that Imhotep and the Third Dynasty might be able to be shifted down the time scale by some 700 years, though he is prepared to shift his candidate for Joseph’s pharaoh by 300 years: “… [he] appears to meet these requirements perfectly, needing a movement of three centuries rather that the stress-inducing seven centuries required by Wyatt [for Imhotep] …”.     So, is Velikovsky too ‘ungodly’ for the likes of Creationist Clarke, who must therefore find a model alternative to Velikovsky’s? I don’t know for sure, but my own view is that Creationism may not be quite as godly as its exponents may think it to be. In fact, I believe that it can be quite un-biblical. See my: What Exactly is Creation Science?https://www.academia.edu/3690017/What_Exactly_is_Creation_Science 
  • Velikovsky was a Jewish nationalist, according to Martin Sieff in his most interesting paper, “Velikovsky and His Heroes”: http://saturniancosmology.org/files/.cdrom/journals/review/12 and consequently his heroes seem to have been more the ‘baddies’ of the Bible (Saul, Ahab), rather than the ‘goodies’ (Moses, Isaiah). But whether or not Velikovsky believed in God, not to have done so would not disqualify him from being able to arrive at a right synchronism for the Eighteenth Egyptian Dynasty, which I believe he achieved. Sure, his original model was defective and needed modifications in various places. But the final result has been an impressive platform for the re-building of ancient history upon proper foundations. His critics, including Clarke, have not been able to come anywhere near it.
  • https://www.academia.edu/3689825/Distancing_Oneself_from_Velikovsky
  • Distancing Oneself from Velikovsky
  • But it is not only certain ‘godly’ Creationists who appear to have difficulty in giving any credibility to Velikovsky. I have been critical of how former Velikovsky-inspired revisionists have come to light with their so-called ‘new chronologies’ as if Velikovsky had never existed:
  • More on this in the next section (ii).
  • Belshazzar’s Feast in the Book of Esther?
  • I would reply, ‘How happy would have been the godly Mordecai of the Book of Esther to have borne the name of the god Marduk (= Mordecai)?’
  • Some Points of Favour re Clarke’s article——————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–While Clarke, owing to his complete rejection of Velikovsky, may have placed himself in a kind of no man’s land, without any hope now of his finding “Sheba”, or “Shishak”, or biblical others, he may have managed to score points in “Joseph’s Zaphenath Paaneah”, already mentioned. As I said, Clarke’s strong point is his knowledge of the hieroglyphs, and it is in this regard that he may have trumped previous efforts of which there have been many. Thus Clarke: “A search of the literature reveals a bewildering number of solutions offered to the meaning of the Egyptian name of Joseph, Zaphenath Paaneah (Heb. Tsophnath Pa`neach—pronounced tsof·nath’ pah·nā’·akh)”. In providing his own solution to the problem of the Egyptian name, Clarke begins with this realistic tribute to the cultured Moses:Moses spent four decades living as an Egyptian where “[he] was learned in all the wisdom of the Egyptians, and was mighty in words (Greek logos) and deeds” (Acts 7:22). This clearly implies that Moses was very accomplished in the use of words; and not just in speaking. The Egyptian system of teaching was very thorough and, after four decades of life in the royal household, Moses would have understood the complexities and applications of the Egyptian language and court etiquette. Therefore his choice of the Hebrew, Zaphenath Paaneah, is very likely to be a valid transliteration into Hebrew from the original Egyptian.Having explained the first part of the name, “Zaphenath” as a title, according to Egyptian norm, Clarke then proceeds to decipher the second part, “Paaneah”, which is the name by which Joseph will now be called. And I think that what he comes up with here is excellent. Clarke explains:The second section, p3nn’i3ḫ , is a proper name, and like the ending ‘ty of ḏf3n‘ty, exhibits Archaic traits. This name, p3nn’i3ḫ, is also composed of three elements—p3n ; n’i ; 3ḫ . The first part, p3n, ‘he of’ is written but there is no grammatical or historical evidence for it necessarily being vocalized. The second part, n’i, and the third, 3ḫ, combine to express Joseph’s new Egyptian name literally as [p3n]n’i3ḫ ‘[He of the] Excellent/Gracious Spirit’ where n’i translates as ‘excellent/gracious’ and 3ḫ translates as ‘spirit’.Clarke’s argument that a name such as the one given to Joseph, “Zaphenath Paaneah”, and the Joseph story in general, are most appropriate in an Eleventh Dynasty (Early Middle Kingdom) context, is quite in accord with the following table that I gave in my:Jacob, Pharaoh and the Famine. Part Three: Jacob Blesses Pharaohhttps://www.academia.edu/20364150/Jacob_Pharaoh_and_the_Famine._Part_Three_Jacob_Blesses_Pharaoh

 

  1.  
  2. And he gives a table 1 listing some of these.
  3. It wasn’t necessarily always a ‘re-establishment of Old Kingdom policies’, or a ‘return to Old Kingdom values’. It was, rather, a ‘never having left the Old Kingdom!’
  4.  
Patriarch Old Kingdom Middle Kingdom Archaeology
Abraham 0-I X (?) EBI
Joseph [II]- III XI EBII
Moses IV-VI XII (XIII) EBIII
Joshua (Conquest) MBI on EB III/IV
Anarchy in Egypt VII-IX (?) XIII-XVII

 

aligning the Eleventh Dynasty with the Third Dynasty (Imhotep’s). (Famine dynasties).

His choice of Joseph’s Famine pharaoh is the impressive Mentuhotep II Nebhepetre.

However, a failure to appreciate that the so-called ‘Old’ and ‘Middle’ Kingdom(s) of Egypt were, in part, contemporaneous, leads Clarke to a statement such as this one:

Mentuhotep reestablished [sic] the foreign policies of the Old Kingdom, sending military expeditions against the Libyan tribes to the west, and the Bedouin to the east in Sinai. He began the process of bringing Nubia back under Egyptian control, for the purposes of mining and trade.38

 

On this, see my:

 

Egypt’s Old and Middle Kingdoms Far Closer in Time than Conventionally Thought

 

https://www.academia.edu/3690058/Egypt_s_Old_and_Middle_Kingdoms_Far_Closer_in_Time_than_Conventionally_Thought

It wasn’t necessarily always a ‘re-establishment of Old Kingdom policies’, or a ‘return to Old Kingdom values’. It was, rather, a ‘never having left the Old Kingdom!’

 

Strangely, Clarke does not refer to any actual Eleventh Dynasty Famine.

Dr. J. Osgood will locate it, archaeologically, to Late Bronze II (“From Abraham to Exodus”: http://creation.com/from-abraham-to-exodus).

And typically, Clarke does not end up finding his man, Joseph: “Unfortunately, most of the tombs of 11th Dynasty officials have been vandalized, which makes it impossible to identify a named official of the time as Joseph”.

Though I think that his deciperment of Joseph’s name may now provide a positive clue.

More on that later.

 

 

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s