Mythos 39 – Prehistoric Egypt

 

The fact is that Egyptologists aren’t collectively sure when Egypt was unified, or by whom. Scholarly dates of unification range from 5,400 years ago(1)James Henry Brested (1906) Ancient Records of Egypt: Historical Documents from the Earliest Times to the Persian Conquest, collected, edited, and translated, with Commentary, Volume 1, Sections 58–75 to 5,000 years ago.(2)Ian Shaw (2000) Oxford History of Ancient Egypt, Pages 479–483 Various Egyptologists have also proposed differing views as to who unified Egypt, including Narmer, Menes, Scorpion, Scorpion II, Ka, and Hor-Aha.(3)Stephan Seidlmayer (2010) “The Rise of the State to the Second Dynasty” Egypt: The World of the Pharaohs The most widely accepted version of the unification was that King Memes unified the two kingdoms around 5,100 years ago, generally stated as 3,100 BC. This date is derived from Manetho’s Aegyptiaca, as is the name Menes for the first King of a unified Egypt. Manetho was an Egyptian historian and priest from Tjebnutjer, modern Sebennytos, who lived during the Ptolemaic era, approximately 2,300 years ago. Although he was Egyptian and his topics dealt with Egyptian matters, he wrote in the Greek language. The Aegyptiaca (Ἀιγυπτιακά), the “History of Egypt”, may have been Manetho’s largest work, and certainly the most important to Egyptologists. It was organized chronologically and divided into three volumes; the division of rulers into dynasties is believed to have been Manetho’s innovation.

5,100 Year OId Scorpion Macehead

5,100 Year OId Scorpion Macehead

Other important ancient Egyptian king lists also state Menes, in his Egyptian form of Meni, as the first king of the unified Kingdom of Egypt including the Turin King List from around 3,200 years ago, and the Abydos King List from around 3,300 years ago. One of these lists could have been Manetho’s source, as well as the source for Herodotus who listed King Min as the first King of Egypt in his work Histories (Ἱστορίαι) around 2,450 years ago. Unfortunately the virtual complete lack of any mention of Menes in the archaeological record,(4)I. E. S. Edwards (1971) “The early dynastic period in Egypt” The Cambridge Ancient History 1, Page 11 and the comparative wealth of evidence of the proto-dynastic Narmer in the archaeological record, has given Narmer a firm claim(5)Alan B. Lloyd (1994) Herodotus: Book II, Page 7 to the unification of Upper and Lower Egypt, and has given rise to a theory that Menes was Narmer.

The various surviving king lists are used to reconstruct the history of Egypt throughout the dynastic era from unification until the conquest of Alexander circa 3,350 years ago (332 BC).(6)Trudy Ring, et al. editors (1994) International dictionary of historic places. Pages 49 and 320 Oddly they are not generally used to reconstruct pre-dynastic times, even though several do include the names of pre-dynastic kings. These pre-dynastic kings are generally dismissed as myths, as they include the names of gods and demi-gods. According the Manetho, directly before Menes and the first dynasty, Egypt was ruled for 350 years by 10 kings based in Thinis. The archaeological site of Thinis has never been located,(7)David A. Anderson (1999) “Abydos, Predynastic sites” in Kathryn A. Bard Encyclopedia of the archaeology of ancient Egypt, Page 105 however the in the Book of the Dead, Thinis was a place in the sky.(8)Gerald Massey (1907) Ancient Egypt: The light of the world 2, Page 637 Prior to the 10 Kings from Thinis, Mantho recorded that there were 30 kings, that ruled for 1,790 years from Memphis. Prior to that Manetho stated that Egypt was first ruled by a series of gods, and then a dynasty of demi-gods, although he did not state how long they ruled for. Even just considering the kings from Thinis and Memphis, Egyptologist should consider an additional 2,140 years before unification circa 5,100 years ago, as the beginning of Egyptian history, which would place it at around 7,250 years ago. This time period correlates to the Neolithic period of Egyptian pre-history, which includes artifacts from between approximately 8,000 and 5,000 years ago. Around 8,000 years ago, Neolithic settlements appeared all over Egypt.(9)Donald B. Redford (1992) Egypt, Canaan, and Israel in Ancient Times, Page 6

The Turin King List from around 3,200 years ago includes a remarkably similar list of dynastic kings, as well as mention of similar pre-dynastic dynasties, although the Turin list is extremely damaged in the predynastic era, only providing a total number of years for the dynasties before Meni as 36,620 years.(10)R. A. Schwaller de Lubicz (1982) “Sacred Science: the King of Pharaonic Theocracy” Inner Traditions International. One ancient fragment from Manetho does dates the reign of the first Egyptian God Ptah to 36,525 years before Menes(11)E. Richmond Hodges (1876) The Old Egyptian Chronicle, Page 136-7 and so dates the foundation of Egypt to about 41,550 years ago. This date is remarkably similar to the beginning of the rule of Ubara-Tutu in the Sumerian King list circa 40,950 years ago. Given that Egyptologist dispute the date of unification by around 400 years, and Assyriologist likewise dispute the exact date when the Sumerian Kings ruled, the two dates are all the more remarkable. Both these dates are also remarkably close to the date of the Laschamp event circa 41,400 (±2,000) years ago, when the Earth’s magnetic field inexplicably reversed for a few hundred years.

References   [ + ]

1. James Henry Brested (1906) Ancient Records of Egypt: Historical Documents from the Earliest Times to the Persian Conquest, collected, edited, and translated, with Commentary, Volume 1, Sections 58–75
2. Ian Shaw (2000) Oxford History of Ancient Egypt, Pages 479–483
3. Stephan Seidlmayer (2010) “The Rise of the State to the Second Dynasty” Egypt: The World of the Pharaohs
4. I. E. S. Edwards (1971) “The early dynastic period in Egypt” The Cambridge Ancient History 1, Page 11
5. Alan B. Lloyd (1994) Herodotus: Book II, Page 7
6. Trudy Ring, et al. editors (1994) International dictionary of historic places. Pages 49 and 320
7. David A. Anderson (1999) “Abydos, Predynastic sites” in Kathryn A. Bard Encyclopedia of the archaeology of ancient Egypt, Page 105
8. Gerald Massey (1907) Ancient Egypt: The light of the world 2, Page 637
9. Donald B. Redford (1992) Egypt, Canaan, and Israel in Ancient Times, Page 6
10. R. A. Schwaller de Lubicz (1982) “Sacred Science: the King of Pharaonic Theocracy” Inner Traditions International.
11. E. Richmond Hodges (1876) The Old Egyptian Chronicle, Page 136-7