"A Sceptre Shall Rise"
(The Genesis of Israel)
The Generations of Israel, the Second Adam
Sargon is considered to be the first Semitic king of Mesopotamia. He took the throne at a time when the Akkadian (Semitic) language was becoming predominant both as the common tongue and in the royal court in Mesopotamia. Sargon was Semitic, however no more so than his royal predecessors. It was shown in Chapter 4 that Nimrod (Enmerkar/Narmer) was both the natural son of Cush (Agga/Aha) and the legal heir of Shem (Etana/Semerkhet). The Old Kingdom pharaohs and Mesopotamian kings who descended from Nimrod were simultaneously Hamitic and Semitic. Sargon was no exception.
And like Nimrod, Sargon was the son of a "barren" princess. He was sired by a rival prince on the behalf of his legal father Akki (Aki-galaguba), the priest-king of Lagash. Sargon could claim inheritance from two rival lines. Early in his life, this was not an advantage but a liability. His claim to kingship was not fully recognized. He was perceived as a threat. What should have been his by right was not attained without a fight.
Sargon was big, bold and beautiful. Yet, he had at least two factors ruling against him. First of all, he was not the biological son of his father. Secondly, his father was himself probably not the true son of the reigning king, Ur-Zababa, but a brother or legal heir. In other words, Sargon was the adopted son (ben) of a tanist (yem), a "ben-yem."a By law, he was as legitimate as any other royal prince. In practice, his pedigree was a disappointment and he faced discrimination. Both his legal father and especially Ur-Zababa would have preferred to carry on their respective dynasties through a true son. They did not want to place the natural son of a rival prince upon the throne until all other options had been exhausted. Therefore, it is expected that either or both of them were still actively trying to father such a son, or considering the appointment of sons born to them through minor wives. Sargon was certainly a leading candidate for the throne, however his status was also extremely precarious.
The young prince Sargon was naturally anxious for the old king Ur-Zababa to pass on. This would guarantee his father's succession, and in turn compel his father to appoint him as the next co-regent. According to the legend,b Sargon was a little too eager. He dreamed that on his own behalf Ur-Zababa was to be "drowned in a river of blood." He also had the poor judgment to boast of it to the king himself. Not surprisingly, Ur-Zababa became paranoid, and had Sargon hand deliver his own execution order. It was Lugalzaggesi of Umma who was charged with performing the unpleasant task, possibly because he was Sargon's closest blood relative.c Needless to say, the writ was not carried out. It is not possible to discern from the broken text of the story whether Sargon did not submit the dispatch, or Lugalzaggesi refused to act upon it. Irrespective, Lugalzaggesi did not fail to recognize that the disgrace of the heir apparent Sargon represented an open invitation for him to claim the throne for himself.
Lugalzaggesi attacked and destroyed the cities of Kish and Lagash. He not only deposed Ur-Zababa, but also the tanist Urukagina in Lagash. (In Chapter 5, it was shown that Urukagina was likely an alternate name of Akki, who was ensi of Lagash and legal father of Sargon.)d Urukagina is the first known reformer of Post-Flood civilization, and a champion of the "little guy."e The world of the Patriarchs had been nearly depopulated by the Flood and subsequent re-conquest of Nimrod. By the time of Urukagina, it was again teaming with the offspring of Noah. These descendants were not to be oppressed, but blessed. A noble society was not to be ruled by might, but by law. Nevertheless, high-minded Urukagina was brought low by Lugalzaggesi, an "old school" brute and braggart. Lugalzaggesi had not only opposed constructive change, but also crushed any dynastic hopes of Sargon. The bitterness of Sargon boiled for two decades while the pax Lugalzaggesi prospered.
Lugalzaggesi imposed his peace from the Persian Gulf to the Mediterranean Sea. However, he was only able to secure token submission of Egyptian princes at best. In Egypt, Sargon was called Inyotef, "Born of Yo," but connoting "Beloved of Yo" to Semitic speakers. The Hebrew root tef means "beloved," and corresponds to the Egyptian root mer, as in the Egyptian name Mery-re, "Beloved of Re." It also relates to the name of Sargon at Lagash, that is, Ningirsu-kiag, "Beloved of Ningirsu/Ninurta." After the coup of Lugalzaggesi, Sargon became known as Mar-Yamina and Ben-Yamina,f both of which have the meaning "Son of the South."g However, in Hebrew, Mar-Yamina does not connote "Son of the South," "Beloved of the South," or even "Son of the Tanist," but "Bitter, Rebellious, Terrifying Lord of the South."1 To the south of Mesopotamia the strength of Sargon continued to grow along with his resentment toward Lugalzaggesi. When Sargon deposed Lugalzaggesi, he was no longer a mere bin-yem or ben-yamina on the run. He emerged as the Biblical Benjamin, which means "Son of the Strong Hand." He proved himself to be the strongest "son" of Ur-Zababa by prevailing over all of his brothers. This royal but "red-haired step-child" broke in through the back door and seized ownership of the house.
Lugalzaggesi had shown no mercy on the reformer Urukagina, nor any respect for the holy precincts of Kish and Lagash. The angry Sargon showed no mercy on him, regardless of what their blood ties might have been. Nor was he lenient with any other prince or city that resisted his rule. Sar-gon is a Semitic name. However, in Sumerian, the root gon/gun means "to swallow." Sar-gon would then connote "Lord Gulper," or Lord Bela in Hebrew. The Hebrew name Bela means "swallow, destruction" and is an obvious allusion to Bilah, the Semitic name of Nimrod used in the Sumerian king-list.
Another Biblical epithet of Sargon was in fact Bela, which was also a play on the Sumerian a-bala, "drawing water" and the Sumerian ba.al, "hostility, enemies." Sargon seized power with a vengeance. By his own admission he destroyed cities. According to legend, he "caused thousands of clay tablets, engraved with timeless legends, precepts of wisdom, manuals of medicine and magic, produced by generations of scribes, to be thrown into the Euphrates."h The epithet of Bela was also shared with his co-regent, Rimush. The name of Rim-ush (Rim-u) also connotes "Destroyer" in Sumerian.i His son and heir would have campaigned with Sargon and for him. Their combined reign was known both for both constructive and intensely destructive change.
In the Assyrian king-list, Sargon is named as Tudiya, "Beloved of Ya." His successor Rimush is called Adamu. Adamu is an adaptation of the Sumerian roots ri, "to beget" and ush, "a man." In the Babylonian king-list, Tudiya and his son Rimush are composited together as Tu-ub-ti-ya-mu-ta (Tudiya-muta).2 Mut means "man" and is a synonym of Adam. Collectively, the father and son combination of Sargon and Rimush were known as Bela in the Chronicles genealogies, but were dubbed as the second Adam by the author of Genesis. They were both credited with the Semiticization of Mesopotamia, and with the creation of what was later known as Israel, a federation of tribal nations in Canaan.
The Egyptian name of Sargon was Inyotef, "Born/Beloved of Yo," as noted above. It is a faithful rendition of the Babylonian name Tudiya, "beloved of Ya." That is, the root tef in Inyo-tef is an Egyptianized form of the Hebrew root tseph/tsaph.j In addition to "beloved," this root connotes "crowned." To a Semitic speaker, Inyotef suggests "Ruling by/as God." It is the origin of the Biblical name Israel. Another innovation of Sargon was an increased emphasis on divine kingship. Sargon did not invent the idea of divine kingship. However, he did make it more explicit. After over twenty years of unrequited thirst for power, he relished every drop of glory.
According to the Biblical typing, Israel was first called Jacob. Tef is in turn synonymous with another Hebrew word chob,k meaning "a cherisher." A Hebrew equivalent of the names Tudiya and Inyotef is Yechub, meaning "Cherished/Cherisher of God." However, in the Bible the name of Inyotef/Tudiya is not written simply as Yechub, but was deliberately modified to Ya'aqob (Jacob). Instead of meaning "Beloved of God," "Crowned by God" or "Ruling by/as God," the nickname Jacob takes on the very different meaning of "heal-catcher (i.e. supplanter)." Tudiya/Inyotef did not found a new dynasty through love of God and his fellow man alone, but by coldly overtaking a rival royal brother. With his triumph over Lugalzaggesi, Sargon was transformed from a "rebel of the south" to Ben-ye-minah, the "son appointed by God." Yechub the grabber became Israel, "He Rules as God."
The "dynasty" of Sargon is somewhat of a misnomer. It was a succession of usurpers. Sargon had deposed the usurper Lugal-zaggesi and made rebellion respectable. The sons of Sargon (Inyotef A) then took turns overthrowing each other. First Montuhotep II killed Montuhotep A (Rimush). Then Inyotef I (Naram-Sin) killed Montuhotep I (Manishtushu/Ur-Bau) and possibly his son Montuhotep II also. Finally, Inyotef II (Gudea) overthrew Inyotef I and his co-regent Sharkalisharri, "Ruler of Rulers." By virtue of being the final usurper of his generation, Gudea became "Benjamin son of Benjamin (Sargon)." Among the sons of Sargon, Gudea proved that he was the "son of the right/strong hand" by taking the throne by force from his brother Naram-Sin. In other words, he was the last brother standing. However, the epithet of Benjamin applied originally to Sargon himself. In the Book of Ezra (1:5; 4:1; 4:59; 10:9-10), the name of Benjamin is equated to Israel.
Benjamin is both a pseudonym of Sargon (Jacob-Israel) and a nickname of one of his prominent sons. Sargon was Benjamin. Gudea was Benjamin son of Israel. Like Sargon, Gudea has multiple Biblical identities. He is also called Uzziel, "Strong (One) of God," and Huppim/Hupham. The related names of Huppim and Hupham are synonymous with Tudiya and Inyotef. They have the meaning, "to cover," however they do not imply covering in the sense of loving and cherishing, but "acting secretly." Sargon had used the element of surprise when overthrowing Lugal-zaggesi. Gudea also appears as a world-class conniver. Like Sargon, Gudea became Israel, the "divinely appointed ruler," not by election but insurrection. And like Sargon, Gudea also chose the Egyptian name of Inyotef. Unlike Sargon and his immediate predecessor Naram-Sin, Gudea did not publicly glory in his divine status. He did not portray himself to be a living god, even if he privately considered himself to be such. The name Gudea itself connotes "proclaimed (as) God," which may have made more explicit declarations of divinity unnecessary. Despite their differences, both Sargon and Gudea are strongly the archetypes for the much later Patriarch Jacob, "the grabber." (See Chapter 15.)
There are four variants of the Benjamin genealogy in the Bible. Two are found among the "family records" of 1 Chronicles. One of these (1 Chron. 7:6-12) is a genealogy of the first Benjamin, Sargon. The other genealogy (1 Chron. 8:1-5) is actually a composite. It melds together the genealogy of Sargon with that of Gudea, both of whom were called Benjamin. The genealogy found in the Book of Genesis (46:21) and the one in the Book of Numbers (26:38-41) are variations of this composite Benjamin genealogy. (See Chart 11.)
Sargon and his rebel sons are pivotal in the Biblical formulation of history. Sargon (Inyotef A) became the ancestor and archetype of four prominent Jacob figures. The first was Gudea (Inyotef II), one of Sargon's own younger sons. The second was Senusret II, who grabbed the throne in the 12th Dynasty (Middle Kingdom) under very suspicious circumstances. He became the father of the archetypal Joseph. The third is Hyksos king Yakubher (Ammi-ditana) son of Samsu-iluna (Biblical Joktan), who reclaimed the throne after the death of Salitis (Abi-eshuuh) in the 15th (Hyksos) Dynasty. The last and most notable Jacob from the perspective of Genesis is Amenhotep II of the 18th Dynasty (see Chapter 15). Besides being a role model for later upstarts, Sargon was himself also considered to be a second Adam (Atum). Sargon (Inyotef) and the Egyptian Middle Kingdom pharaohs who succeeded him to the "divine" throne were compared somewhat loosely with the "god-kings" from before the Great Flood. The number, ordering and naming are not identical. Nevertheless, the concept that "history repeats itself" was very much established even at this early date (Chart 2).
As the narrative of Genesis moves forward in time, the descriptions become more detailed and comparisons between earlier and later Patriarchs more complete. In fact, every major Patriarch in the Torah is depicted as a repetition of at least one earlier ancestor. In this manner, the history of the Torah, rather than being a linear progression, spirals downward through time (Charts 3 &4). In the Torah, the accounts of all the major Patriarchs from Adam to Moses are composites made up of as matching pairs. Each of the early Patriarchs is the archetype or "father-figure" of a later Patriarch. Conversely, the life of each later Patriarch is modeled after that of a prominent ancestor. Rather than being fully unique, each character of the Torah is a product of two "parents." It is the dominant theme of the Torah, and a literary creation modeled after "genetics." Both sets of rulers (earlier and later) were stripped of their divine status by the Genesis author. However, they were all still claimed as great ancestors.
Historically speaking, the Patriarch Jacob corresponds to pharaoh Amenhotep II of the Egyptian 18th Dynasty (See Chapter 15). Amenhotep II had two queens, Tia (Leah) and the more favored Merit-Amon (Rachel). As in the story of Patriarch Jacob, six princes were born to Tia (Leah) and two were the sons of Merit-Amon (Rachel). Jacob is characterized in the Bible as crafty, but also as a caring husband and father. He was accused of "stealing his brother's birthright." Nevertheless, he tried (somewhat unsuccessfully) to prevent similar strife from repeating itself among his own sons. Ultimately, he did as his father had done, and appointed a younger son to be his successor. In later life, Jacob is quoted as saying, "My years have been few and filled with affliction."l The Egyptian name Inyo(tef) is similar in form to the Hebrew aniyah, meaning "groaning, lamentation, sorrow." From Patriarch Jacob's depiction we can also gain a glimpse of the character of his archetype Sargon/Inyotef, and the price that he paid to establish a new dynasty.
The name of Israel is not introduced in the Book of Genesis until the account of the Patriarch Jacob, grandson of Abraham. This is long after the time of Sargon, the second Adam. A leading theme in the life of Patriarch Jacob (Amenhotep II) is how this brainy son of Isaac managed to prevail over his elder and more brawny twin brother Esau (Saussatar).m After wrestling with his brother and with "God" (his father Isaac), the Patriarch Jacob receives the "birthright" (kingly succession) and is declared to be Israel. Upon "grabbing" the throne, Amenhotep II, like the earlier Gudea, was renowned in the Bible (if not archaeology) for gathering expensive building materials from abroad, including timber from the forests of Lebanon, in order to build a magnificent temple. (See discussion in Chapter 9.) The title of Israel ("He Rules as God") was bestowed upon Amenhotep II (Patriarch Jacob). However, he was not the original Israel.
Jacob son of Isaac had twelve sons. Eight were by his two wives Leah and Rachel, and four were by two "concubines" Bilhah and Zilpah. These sons were given the familiar names of the twelve tribes of Israel. However, we can now understand that these tribes and tribal names predate the time of the Patriarch Jacob (Amenhotep II). They derive from Sargon (Inyotef) and his "dynasty." Sargon had many renowned sons. However, the "twelve sons" of the archetypal Jacob-Israel were the names of the twelve successors to his throne (see Charts 1 & 11). These powerful kings each founded one or more clans, which naturally were named after them. These clans or tribes initially settled in Egypt. They would not make their Exodus until the end of the Egyptian Middle Kingdom.
Adam and Seth: Inyotef and Montuhotep
There are three ways to approach the identification of Adam II and Seth. All three provide insight and are worth outlining.
In the genealogy of the second Adam (Sargon), Enosh is the first Patriarch of distinction. Patriarch Enosh corresponds to pharaoh Amenemhet I, founder of the Egyptian 12th Dynasty. We are told that it was not until his time that "men began to call upon the name of the Lord [Jehovah-Amen]." The kings were not of any particular interest to the Genesis author and no details are given. They are simply named as Seth and Adam. We do know from archaeology that prior to Amenemhet there were four kings named Inyotef and four others named Montuhotep. The name Montu is easily identified as an Egyptian form of the Biblical Seth.3 (Note) Rather than discriminating between the four predecessors of Enosh named Montuhotep (of whom the Genesis author does not seem to care about), it may have been easier to group them together and collectively call them Seth. The four kings named Inyotef would then correspond to Adam.
A second approach is to recognize that the immediate predecessor of Amenemhet was his uncle Montuhotep III. The predecessor of Montuhotep III was Inyotef II (Gudea). Inyotef II (Gudea) was the father of Montuhotep III and the grandfather of Amenemhet. Patriarch Adam could logically be determined in this way as Inyotef II (Gudea). His son Seth would literally correspond to Montuhotep III (Ugme). We cannot say for certain that Gudea was responsible for creating the new cult of the Amen. However, Gudea fancied himself as the humble servant of all the gods, which is consistent with the original spirit of Amen. Sargon declared himself a living god. However, Gudea compared himself to a lowly but loyal donkey, anxious to carry the burden of the gods. The name of Gu-dea, "proclaimed God," probably made it unnecessary for him to explicitly boast of divinity.
A third approach is to realize that it was Sargon who was looked upon as being the founder of a new dynastic house. Although Inyotef II (Gudea) is the more prominent figure from archaeology, his father Inyotef A (Sargon) was far more famous in legend. It is also Sargon who stands at the head of the Assyrian king-list. He is named as Tudiya, "Beloved of Ya." The Akkadian nickname Tudiya is derived from Sargon's Sumerian king name Ningirsu-kiag, "Beloved of the Lord Girsu (Geb/Ninurta)." The son and successor of Sargon is named in the Assyrian king-list as Adamu. The informal epithet Adamu is derived from the throne name of Rimush. In the Babylonian king-list, father and son are composited together under the name of Tu(ub)tiya-muta. Tu(ub)tiya is a variant of Tudiya. Mut ("man") is synonymous with Adam ("man"). Therefore, in the Babylonian view, Sargon and Rimush are collectively Tudiya-Adamu, "Beloved of God, Adam." From the perspective of Egypt, the most renowned Seth was Montuhotep II. It was this Seth who was considered founder of the Egyptian Middle Kingdom. He assumed the title of "Uniter of the Two Lands," and was remembered in the Book of Judges as Judge Ehud, which also means, "The Uniter."
The motivation for simplifying the dynasty of Inyotef-Sargon in the Book of Genesis was two-fold. First of all, it placed greater emphasis on Amenemhet and the emergence of Jehovah-Amen in particular. Secondly, it allowed the line of Sargon to be styled more closely after that of the earlier god-kings. Although condensed in Genesis, all eight predecessors of Amenemhet, that is, the four Inyotef's and four Montuhotep's, continued to be venerated, and were duly recorded in the various Biblical genealogies (see Charts 1 & 11). In most cases, these eight kings had at least one popular Hebrew epithet. Besides the lofty title of Israel, Sargon was also remembered as Benjamin and Bela. The pastoral narratives and colloquial names used in the Book of Genesis have masked the true identities of the Patriarchs as the Sovereign Lords of ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt. When recognized as a royal line, the succession of Patriarchs named in Genesis readily correlates to the king-lists of both Egypt and Mesopotamia. Stone Age Adam is the great progenitor of the gods, named in Egypt as the "self-created" Atum. Atum and his immediate successors match the list of Patriarchs following the first Adam. Bronze Age Adam is associated with Sargon the Great and his dynasty.
Enosh: Amenemhet I
Enosh, son of Seth, represents the historical pharaoh Amenemhet I, first king of the Egyptian 12th Dynasty. The Bible states that in the time of Enosh: "Men began to call on the name of the Lord," i.e., Yahweh-Amen. Amen-em-het means "Amen in the Forefront." With the reign of Amenemhet, the god "Yo" (Ea-Ptah) gave way to a new namesake of kings and men, that of Amun. Rather than apostasy, this change was seen as a step in the right direction by the author of Genesis. Amenemhet chose the Horus name, Wehem-meswet, "Repeater of Births." This designates his reign as yet another new beginning and himself as yet another Adam (Egyptian Atum/Tem). Enosh, meaning "a mortal, a man" is itself a synonym of Adam, and is derived from the word anash, meaning "frail, feeble." Enosh (or Henosh) is also an adaptation of this king's name in the Assyrian king-list, Hanu. At the city of Lagash, Amenemhet was variously known as Nam-hani, Nam-mahni and possibly also Nam-maghani.
Although he is considered the successor of Montuhotep III (Seth) in Egypt, he was the son of another prince named Senusret (designated by Egyptologists as Senusret A). The nominal founding of a new dynasty ("dynastic break") is evidence that he represented a collateral line. In Mesopotamia, his claim to the throne was based on his family ties both with Gudea (Inyotef II) and with Ur-Bau (Montuhotep I). Nam-hani married a daughter of Ur-Bau even as Gudea had done much earlier. In Lagash, Nam-hani was the third successor of Gudea. In Egypt, he was the third successor of Inyotef II (Gudea). Despite his high standing in Mesopotamia, Amenemhet seemed especially proud of his Egyptian heritage. He boasts of his birth to Nefert, a "Nubian woman"n from Elephantine Island in the Land of Seth, that is Upper Egypt. Amenemhet was first appointed Vizier of Upper Egypt before being named as successor of Montuhotep III. As pharaoh, Amenemhet I was a prolific builder in Egypt. He established a new capital in the Delta, which he named after himself, Amenemhet-Itj-Tawy, "Amenemhet, Seizer of the Two Lands."
In the genealogy of Benjamin, Amenemhet is called Bilhan son of Jedeiel.o Bilhan, which means "timid," i.e., pacified, is derived from the verb "to terrify." This name is an adaptation of the name Hani, and of Amenemhet's praenomen, Se-hetep-ib-re, "The Heart of Re is Contented." The god Re had punished Egypt with famine since the days of the pharaohs Djoser and Snofru. At last, in the reign of Amenemhet good floods began to return. In fact, the king claimed that his coming had been prophesied in the time of Snofru! This "prophesy" was still a popular school exercise in the Egyptian New Kingdom.p In it, Amenemhet is called "The Son of Man," which later became one of the most popular epithets of Jesus in the Gospels. It was said that the coming of Amenemhet would signal the end of Egypt's impoverishment.
Amenemhet I is also the archetypal Manasseh. Manasseh is another variant of the name Amen and means, "made to forget." The dynasty of Sargon was characterized by turmoil. One brother usurped the station of the next. After Gudea, the transfer of power became somewhat more orderly. However, Amenemhet was not without rivals. Shattered pottery from this period in Egypt was inscribed with death wishes for Zebulon (Wegaf?), Ameni (Amenemhet I?), and Senusret the younger (Senusret I?). The curses include: "Ameni, born to Hetep [Nefert?] and son of Senusret [Senusret A?], shall die."q (From this pottery we also have possibly the earliest reference to the city of Jerusalem. During this time period, Jerusalem would not have refered to Jebus/Salem in Palestine, but to Western Thebes in Egypt.) These may have been idle threats. However, as almost all of his predecessors, Amenemhet's reign did not end in peace. He too fell victim to a usurper.
The devotion of Amenemhet to building up Egypt may have led to the neglect and loss of his throne in Mesopotamia. Ur-Nammu, founder of the 3rd Dynasty of Ur claims responsibility for killing Nam-hani (Amenemhet I). The Egyptian texts provide additional information. The Instruction of Amenemhet, written after the death of Amenemhet, serves to explain how "Amenemhet the Triumphant" could have suffered such an ignominious fate.r We are told that the weary king had laid down to rest when he was surprised in the night. His men were overcome and Amenemhet was left defenseless. The interloper is not named, which would have served to immortalize his treachery. However the Instruction does name him as a former recipient of Amenemhet's favor and support, who had turned ungratefully against him. Ur-Nammu and Nam-hani were certainly close family relations, and probably on friendly terms in earlier days.
It is expected that the whereabouts of Amenemhet would have been a well-guarded secret, especially if he was away from a fortified city. Therefore, it must have been suspected that there was an informant at the court who had betrayed the king's position or itinerary. According to the Tale of Sinuhe, the crown prince Senusret was campaigning with the military when he learned of the death of his father Amenemhet. His courtier Sinuhe overheard Senusret talking to other aides and suddenly became terrified. Sinuhe fled the country in search of refuge. Presumably, he feared that he would become a victim in the coming bloodbath.
Kenan: Senusret I
The next pharaoh, Senusret I, corresponds to the Patriarch Kenan. The name Kenan means, "fixed," and is derived from qen, "a nest," and qanan "to nestle." Nestled about Senusret's own pyramid were nine smaller pyramids for the many royal ladies of his reign. Senusret is the archetypal Ephraim, meaning "doubly fruitful." Because of his many marriages and royal children, Senusret I became the eponymous ancestor of two tribes of Israel, namely Ephraim and Asher. In the separate genealogy of his father Manasseh (1 Chron. 7:14), Ephraim is called Asriel. The name Asriel (Ashriel) is in turn derived from the same Hebrew root as Asher. In the two Middle Kingdom genealogies of Benjamin, he is variously called Kenaanah, Shaharaim (1 Chron 7:10) and Ahishahar (1 Chron 8:8). Kenaanah is a variant of Kenan. Ahishahar means "brother of the dawn."
Shaharaim means "double sunrise." Shaharaim is similar in form to Eph(a)raim, but is actually derived from Senusret's throne name Kheper-ka-re, "The Soul of Re Comes into Being."s Kheperkare includes the name of the sun god, Re, and also Re in his rising form, Kheper.
Senusret served as co-regent during the final 10 years of Amenemhet's 30-year reign. However, in the dawn of his career, the prospects of Senusret were not as rosy. He became the "eldest son" of Amenemhet, but was initially a younger son. Kenaanah is listed as the fourth son of Bilhan (Enosh/Manasseh), i.e., the fourth son of Amenemhet. In the first 20 years of Amenemhet's reign, one or more other co-regents would have ruled alongside their father. The eldest son of Bilhan in the genealogy of Benjamin is called Jehush. The name Jehush indicates that this son was being typecast as a mighty warrior like Rimush, the favored son of Sargon.
The name Kenan is also a variant of Cain. By this choice of epithet, the Genesis author signified that Senusret played the role of Cain among the Middle Kingdom pharaohs. If Senusret was responsible for the death of a more favored brother, he was not disgraced for it. In the Age of the Gods, divine kingship continued through Cain (Anu) who had killed Abel (Alal). The kingly line of the Middle Kingdom continued through Senusret. The likely identity of the ill-fated co-regent that preceded him is that of Wegaf, who is listed as the first pharaoh of the unlucky 13th Dynasty. This was primarily a grouping of Middle Kingdom co-regents who predeceased their fathers, but also included kingly lines that were contemporary with the 12th Dynasty.
The so-called Instruction of Amenemhet was not written by Amenemhet himself, but by his son and successor Senusret. In this work, Senusret claimed that his departed father spoke to him in a dream. By dictating the auto-eulogy of Amenemhet, Senusret both confirms the divinity of his father and his own right to succeed him. The Instruction also sets the tone for a courtly house cleaning. Upon the death of Amenemhet, Senusret had the power to eliminate any courtiers who may have been suspected of betraying his father. He would also have disposed of any who had objected to his earlier election as co-regent. Whether rumors of Wegaf's murder were true or not, those who had whispered not so quietly behind Senusret's back were now going to be silenced. Treason in association with the death of his father would have made a convenient accusation. This may have been the primary concern of Sinuhe and the reason for his flight.
Mahalalel: Amenemhet II
The first priority of Senusret I (Kenan) was securing the mineral wealth of Nubia and the Sinai. Senusret I (Kenan) was renowned as a trafficker, not only of foreign goods, but also foreign wives. The variant Kenaanah means merchant. Through this kind of diplomacy, relations seem to have been "normalized" with the rival house of Ur-Nammu in Mesopotamia. However, upon the death of his father, Senusret did something a bit out of the ordinary. The "doubly fruitful" Ephraim established a dual co-regency with his two leading sons. The more prominent of the two is the Patriarch Mahalalel ("praised of God"). The name Mahalalel is synonymous with the more familiar epithet of Judah, "praised, celebrated." However, Mahalalel was chosen in order to associate him with the pre-Flood Patriarch of Mehujael. Mehujael means "smitten of God," and was identified in Chapter 3 as the celebrated but slain Osiris. Like Osiris, Amenemhet II was brutally killed. And like the archetypal Judah, Rimush son of Sargon, Amenemhet II was murdered by a jealous brother (see next section).
Prior to his death, Amenemhet II had ruled alongside Senusret for 33 years. Together, they led a strong recovery from the setback associated with the death of the first Amenemhet. At the Temple of Montu at el-Tod (just south of Hermonthis on the opposite side of the Nile) were found items from Greece and Mesopotamia. The first Amenemhet had been killed when his camp was attacked at night. The second Amenemhet would also be killed in an ambush. In fact, we are told that two sons of Ephraim died in a raid. 1 Chron. 7:21 (NIV) states, "Ezer and Elead were killed by the native-born men of Gath, when they went down to seize their livestock."
The death of two pharaohs, especially in the act of seizing property, was a huge embarrassment and a bitter tragedy for the family. As Re had mourned for Osiris, the setting sun god Ephraim grieved over his embalmed sons "for many days." Elead, also called Shuthelah in 1 Chronicles 7, is the younger but "stronger" son of Ephraim.t He is the Patriarch Mehalalel of Genesis. His older brother Ezer is variously named as Zabad in 1 Chronicles 7. Zabad and Issachar were equivalent (interchangeable) Hebrews names, much like John and Jack in English. Issachar is the Hebrew form of the Egyptian name Sekhemkare, a pharaoh of the 13th Dynasty list.u
House of Jacob (12th Dynasty)
Jared: Senusret II
It became necessary for Ephraim to replace the two fallen heirs with a younger son. In other words he was forced to name new co-regent and successor. There were other prominent princes in the reign of Senusret I. These included Khnumhotep (II) of Beni Hassan, Sarenput (II) at Elephantine and Djehutyhotep of Bersha. The exact relationship of these princes with Senusret I is not known. According to 1 Chron. 7:20-23, the slain sons of the elderly Ephraim (Senusret I) were replaced by a younger son named Bered. On account of the tragic event, the name Bered was changed to Beriah ("trouble"). After three decades of steady expansion, Senusret I died in humiliation and grief. His successor was called or assumed the name of Senusret II.
Perhaps the biggest source of trouble facing the new pharaoh was in turning excess floodwater from a bane into a bumper crop. The diversion of Nile water into the artificial lake region of the Faiyum was a desperate and initially successful attempt to increase food production. The project would have sustained a larger population and a bigger army with which to compete with their rivals, not only in Egypt and Canaan, but also in Mesopotamia.
It was in the reign of Senusret II that prince Khnumhotep (II) received ambassadors and gifts from Abi-Shu of the Hyksos, "rulers of foreign lands," i.e., Mesopotamia. About this time, the reigning king of the 3rd Dynasty of Ur would have been Shu-Sin. For propaganda purposes, a routine state visit from Mesopotamian dignitaries and customary exchange of gifts may have been boasted of as tribute. However, the presence of Hyksos ambassadors indicates that the might of Egypt was on the increase and the rulers of Mesopotamia were eager to maintain good relations and spy on their progress. It is interesting that the Hyksos did not come to Senusret II, but to Khnumhotep (II) of the old regime. Leading princes of the reign of Senusret I such as Khnumhotep II, Sirenput II and Djehutihotep retained their power into the reign of Senusret II.v Rather than forcing the submission of these nomarchs, Senusret was compelled (as were the Hyksos) to induce their cooperation with gifts and honors. However, there were younger princes who were not so easily placated. After about a decade of rule, the sons of the fallen pharaohs Amenemhet II and Sekhemkare became old enough to understand what had been taken from them, and strong enough to take it back.
The Genesis author does not call Senusret II by the name of Beriah or Bered, but Jered. In the Genesis list, Jered follows Mahalalel. The name Jered means "fallen, cast down." The pseudonym of Jered was chosen in order to forge a connection with the Ante-Diluvian Patriarch Irad. This typecasting suggests that Senusret II had something to do with the deaths of his predecessors. It was Irad (Re) who arranged for a trap to be set for Mehujael (Osiris), which led to his vicious murder. Re was brought to justice for his role in the crime. We must now suspect that the men of Gath were prepared for the raid of Amenemhet II and Sekhemkare on their livestock. In other words, Amenemhet II and Sekhemkare thought they had the element of surprise on their own side. However, they were the ones who were ambushed by conspiracy of the future pharaoh Senusret II. The role of Senusret II as a 12th Dynasty "Jacob the grabber" will be explored further in the next chapter.
Enoch II: Auibre Hor (Wahibre)
In the Genesis narrative, the lines of the two Adam's are twisted together. One artifact of this literary device is that attributes of the earlier group of "god-kings" appear to be mixed up with those of the later group. Conversely, attributes of the later line of Adam are obviously much more appropriate for the earlier gods. The cross coupling was probably intended, but it does lead to some confusion. For example, extraordinary life spans are attached to the second line of Adam, which correspond to the Middle Kingdom pharaohs. These pharaohs were renowned for their long reigns, but they did not live exceptionally long lives by today's standard. It was the gods who possessed great longevity. However, we are not told how long each Patriarch descending from the first Adam lived. The fantastical life spans of those earlier god-kings are instead attached to the second line of Adam.
In Chapter 3, it was noted that the 777 years attributed to Lamech was only a symbolic figure. The number seven was the number of Thoth (Lamech I), it was the number of the Great Pyramid, and also the Biblical number of completion. The Patriarch Enoch was said to live 365 years. This figure of 365 is likewise highly symbolic. The god Enki (Enoch) was "Lord of the Earth," and responsible for determining the properties of Earth. Of course, 365 is the number of whole days in one year. The Earth revolves around the Sun in approximately 365.25 days. The 365 years of Enoch are the fewest of all the early Patriarchs. However, there is no indication that the life span of the god Enki was in any way cut short. In the lore of Mesopotamia, Ea-Enki remained alive (if not fully active) right up until the time of the Great Flood. He did "vanish" at this time, but so did the rest of the pantheon.
The premature disappearance of Enoch would then seem to apply more to the second Patriarch by that name. It was once considered possible that an ephemeral 13th Dynasty pharaoh named Au-ibre Hor actually belonged to the late 12th Dynasty. The rationale for this was that Au-ibre Hor had been buried within the pyramid complex of the 12th Dynasty pharaoh Amenemhet III at Dahshur. In addition to the coffin and mummy of Au-ibre Hor, his tomb also contained a funerary chest inscribed with the praenomen of Amenemhet III, Nymaatre.w According to the Turin king-list, Auibre ruled for only a matter of months. However, there is a variant of Au-ibre in the Egyptian 13th Dynasty, that being Wah-ibre, who was considered to rule for over 11 years. If these two pharaohs were actually one and the same, then Wah-ibre/Au-ibre Hor would have been appointed as co-regent very early in the reign of Senusret II.
Auibre Hor is best known for another item found in his tomb. This is a full-scale "ka-statue" of the naked Auibre Hor in a striding pose. Nudity in burial statues may have symbolized rebirth along with the removal of guilt for the sins of one's lifetime. The media of carved wood accentuates the natural state of the pharaoh. Antenna-like arms of the ka symbol protruding from his head, and the spooky inlaid eyes of the statue lend an alien quality to the departed Auibre.x The first Enoch, that is the god Enki, was believed to have ascended to heaven on more than one occasion. However, the disappearance of the second Enoch can be attributed to more mundane factors. Au-ibre maimed a rival prince and was forced into exile. He was given refuge in Mesopotamia and eventually was able to renew his kingship. During the reign of Amenemhet III, he returned to Egypt with a vengeance. We shall also return to this mysterious figure in the next chapter, and learn more about his sudden departure from Egypt, if not from the world.
House of Judah (12th Dynasty)
Methuseleh: Senusret III
Senusret II (Jared) and Auibre-Hor (Enoch) were succeeded, and quite probably also deposed by the warrior king Senusret III. In Genesis, Senusret III is called the Patriarch Methuseleh ("Man of the Missle") and by association was considered a repetition of the earlier Patriarch Mehushael (Horus). As Horus became the champion of his fallen father Osiris, so Senusret III avenged the death of his father Amenemhet II, the Middle Kingdom Osiris. He usurped the place of the usurper. One of his Biblical epithets is Malkiel, "king (appointed) by God," which hails back to the earlier grabber, Sargon/Israel, "ruler by right/God."
His father Amenemhet II had a world-view. The towering Senusret III also looked outward. According to Manetho, Senusret stood seven feet and two inches tall. Herodotus makes him a more modest six feet and six inches. One Biblical epithet of Senusret is Ishod, "man of great size."y The legendary long legs of Senusret were certainly put to good use in his wide travels. Another Biblical epithet of Senusret is Shashak, the "pedestrian." Although not confirmed by archaeology, Manetho asserted that Senusret "conquered all Asia in 9 years and Europe as far as Thrace."z Senusret assumed the Kassite (Indian/Sanskrit) name of Gandash. In China, he was remembered as Kun, founder of the very first imperial dynasty of China.
In Mesopotamia, he was first known as Gunganum, king of Lagash. At this time, Ibbi-Sin was king of the still powerful 3rd Dynasty of Ur. However, Ibbi-Sin was overthrown by one of his own ministers named Ishbi-Erra. It was said of Ishbi-Erra that he was "not of Sumerian seed." This was probably no more than name-calling. Ishbi-Erra had been a high-ranking minister of Ibbi-Sin. Senusret III evidently made an alliance with Ishbi-Erra and encouraged his rebellion. After Senusret III took possession of Ur, the daughters of Ishbi-Erra stayed on as high priestesses in that city. Moreover, Ishbi-Erra himself was allowed to retain the throne of Isin. As lord of all Mesopotamia, Senusret would later assume the lofty title of Suma-abum.
There is a "striking" resemblance between the name Methuseleh "Man of the Missle/Spear" and that of Senusret meaning "Man of (the goddess) Sret." The Egyptian sret would have been similar in pronunciation to the Hebrew seleh. Sret, also written as Wosret, was the manifestation of Isis as the Earth Goddess or Goddess of the Mines. Another Biblical name for Methuseleh is Resheph son of Beriah. Senusret III was not the literal son of Senusret II (Beriah), however he was his political successor. The name Resheph means "thunderbolt." This nickname links the famous military man Senusret III (a.k.a. Sesostris) to the patron Greek god Zeus.
In the Bible, the long-lived Methuseleh dies one year before the Flood. After a sole reign of over 39 years, Senusret III died about one year before the cataclysmic flood of the Nile that occurred at the end of the 12th Dynasty in Egypt.aa The timing of Senusret's conquest is remarkable. Only a year after his death, Egypt was itself overcome by uncontrollable flooding. Rather than bringing down the line of the Middle Kingdom pharaohs, it provided the impetus to make Mesopotamia the primary court once again.
In the Babylonian king-list, Sumu-abum (Senusret III) is followed by Sumulael (Amenemhet III). However, in the Larsa king-list, there is an additional king between Gungunum (Senusret III) and Sumu-El (Amenemhet III). This king is called Abisare. Abisare would have been the first co-regent of Senusret III, and was probably a younger brother rather than a true son. In the genealogy of Manasseh (Amenemhet I), he is named as Abi-ezer, "Father of Help."ab The name Abi-ezer corresponds closely to Abi-sare. It also corresponds to Azarah ("helper") in the Assyrian king-list. Among the 13th Dynasty group of co-regents, the name of Khen-djer is the closest match. The Egyptian word djer is equivalent in meaning to the Semitic ezer/azar.
An artifact of the Egyptian king-list is that the 12th and 13th Dynasties are interleaved rather than being sequential (See Chart 6).ac The Middle Kingdom pharaohs were renowned for their long reigns. Moreover, the Middle Kingdom was also noted for the practice of co-regency. A number of these co-regents did not survive their long-lived fathers to reign in their own right, but were nevertheless considered pharaohs. Abi-sare/Azarah would be one such ruler included in the 13th Dynasty king-list. The small but influential Biblical clan of the Ken-ites probably has its origin in this pharaoh Khendjer.
The association made by the author of Genesis between Khendjer/Abisare and Lamech indicates that this pharaoh was involved in some kind of murder scandal. Although djer means "help," the full name Khendjer has the curious meaing of "Boar." This also associated this pharaoh with the patron god of Seth, murderer of Osiris. The "crime" of Khendjer and his "punishment" will be discussed in the following chapter.
Between Sesostris (Senusret III) and the female ruler Skemiophirs (Queen Sobeknofru), Manetho lists three pharaohs, namely, Lamares, Ameres and Ammenemes. Two of these three names must correspond to last two pharaohs of the Middle Kingdom, Amenemhet III and Amenemhet IV. The Biblical name of Lamech bears an obvious resemblance to that of the Greek Lamares. In the Book of Genesis, the "son" of Methuseleh is named as Lamech. Manetho notes that Lamares "built the Labyrinth in Arsinoead to be his tomb." Khendjer built a labyrinthine pyramid at Saqqara. However, the structure more typically associated with the Labyrinth of legend belonged to the Pyramid complex of his replacement Amenemhet III. Possibly, this structure was started by Khendjer, but subsequently usurped and finished by Amenemhet III. Manetho gives Lamares a reign of eight years. Abi-sare is thought to have ruled for about 10 years at Larsa. The length of Khendjer's reign is not known.
Noah: Amenemhet III
After the death or disgrace of Khendjer, the next co-regent of Senusret was Amenemhet III. Amenemhet ruled for about 45 years. About 30 of those 45 years were alongside Senusret III. Amenemhet III was a king of the late Egyptian Middle Kingdom. However the circumstances of his reign provided a convenient place for a "flash back" to a great hero and event of a much earlier age. Amenemhet was seen as a repetition of the Great Flood survivor Utnapishtim, who was memorialized in the Gilgamesh legends and in the Bible beginning with Genesis 6.
Senusret III recorded the annual flood level of the Nile during the first eight years of his reign. When Amenemhet III was appointed co-regent, he assumed this responsibility. Many of these readings have now been destroyed, however enough remain to indicate that Egypt was being vexed with greater and greater amounts of river water during this time period. The troubled expressions on the faces of Amenemhet III and Senusret III suggest that there were more disastrous floods than beneficial ones.
The chosen throne name (praenomen) of Amenemhet III was Ny-maatre, which means "Belonging to the Justice/Truth of (the god) Re." His Babylonian name was Sumulael. The suffix "la-el" also means "belonging to God." Ny, or Noah II as he is called in the Bible,ae was the Patriarch who was forced to cope with the actual Middle Kingdom Flood. He was not entirely successful in this endeavor, and the statuary of his reign attempts to portray him as empathizing with the suffering of the people. However, in Mesopotamia there must have been much cause for rejoicing. An article of jewelry belonging to princess Merit, daughter of Senusret III, names Amenemhet III as "the good god, lord of both lands and all foreign lands."af The fortunes of Amenemhet III now lay beyond the borders of Egypt.
Shem: Amenemhet IV
Upon the death of Senusret III, Amenemhet III became master of the realm and appointed a co-regent of his own, Amenemhet IV. Although they shared a common Egyptian name, this designated successor was probably not a son of Amenemhet III. Amenemhet IV was more likely a younger brother of Senusret III. The name Shem is synonymous with the Egyptian Het, "forefront, renown." Another Biblical nickname for Shem is Tahan son of Telah (Chart 7). Tahan, which means "station," is synonymous with the name Shem, "conspicuous position." Tahan is derived from the Hebrew word chanah, which is a variant of Hanan/Amen. As the pseudonym Shem indicates, this king was also more concerned with the land of Mesopotamia (Shumer) than that of Egypt. When he succeeded to the greater throne upon the deaths of Amenemhet III and Amenemhet IV, Egypt was devastated. The primary royal court was eventually moved back to Mesopotamia. Although there is little or no evidence of the Patriarch Shem in Egypt, he was somewhat better attested in Babylonian as the wise king and appointee of judges, Sabium.
Shem (Sabium/Amenemhet IV) is portrayed as the dominant Patriarch after the Great Flood of Egypt. This was necessary in order for the Genesis author to pattern the Egyptian Middle Kingdom after the earlier time of the gods. Like Etana, the first Shem, the second Shem had powerful rivals. During the late Middle Kingdom, Mesopotamia was being conquered by Egyptian kings and princes. The five "sons" of Shem given in Genesis 10:22 is a "Who's Who" of contemporary powers. Although Aram is listed fifth, his sons are given priority over the others. He was the first of this group to achieve kingship. In fact, his kingship actually preceded that of Shem himself.
House of Issachar (12th Dynasty)
Aram: Sobekhotep II
Senusret III had help in disposing of Senusret II. At least one son of Sekhemkare was also involved in avenging the death of his own father. This son received or took a share of the throne for his role in the coup. The Biblical record of this event is found in 1 Chronicles 2:22-23. In that brief account, Patriarch Jered (Senusret II) is called by the variant of Jair. We are told that he ruled 23 towns in the region of Gilead (Amenemhet II) son of Makir (Senusret I). The territory of Jair and 37 others towns were captured by two princes named Geshur and Aram. Geshur is likely either a pseudonym of Senusret III, or a variant of Asshur, the brother of Aram.
Senusret III was obliged to recognize the right of Aram to re-establish the kingship of his fallen father Sekhemkare. In the Bible, Aram is also called Shechem. Both names have the same meaning, "highlands." Shechem is also an obvious Hebraized form of the Egyptian name Sekhem-kare. In Egypt, Aram/Shechem was known first as Prince Montuhotep (Aram is synonymous with Montu), and later as pharaoh Sobekhotep II. The crocodile god Sobek was also seen as a form of the god of war and chaos, Montu. In honor and identification with his father, he took the throne name (praenomen) of Sekhemkare-khu-tawy, that is Sekhemkare "Protector of the Two Lands (of Egypt)."
Aram also became a powerful king in Mesopotamia under the name Rim-Sin. His brother Asshur founded a new dynasty in Assryia of Mesopotamia, as the name Asshur implies. In Egypt, Asshur was known as Prince Haankhaf. He was the father of the future pharaohs Neferhotep (Sin-Muballit), Si-Hathor (Zimri-Lim) and Sobekhotep IV (Shamshi-Adad). Chart 15 shows the chronology and relationships between the three rival lines of Jacob, Judah and Issachar in the 12th Dynasty.
Arphaxad: Sobekhotep III
One of the sons of Sobekhotep II (Shechem/Aram/Montu-hotep) was named Amenemhet. This prince assumed the epithet, "(son of?) the avenger of his father." This again points to a vendetta against Senusret II on the part of the sons and even grandsons of Sekhemkare. It appears that this prince became pharaoh Sobekhotep III. He took the praenomen of Sekhemkare se-wadj-tawy, that is Sekhemkare "who makes the Two Lands to flourish."ag
Shelah: Neferhotep I
Sobekhotep III was in turn succeeded by his cousin Neferhotep I, the eldest or most favored son of Prince Haankhaf (Chart 8). This pharaoh corresponds to the Patriarch Shelah. Another Biblical name for Shelah/Salah is Ammihud ("people of splendor"). The Hebrew word hud means "beauty, splendor," and is synonymous with the Egyptian word nefer. The Babylonian name of Neferhotep I was Sin-muballit.ah Shelah has meaning of "breaking or forsaking weapons." It is probably derived from the name Mu-ballit, or is a pun on this name.ai
- Yem is a proto-Indo-European root meaning "twin" or tanist. J.P. Mallory, In Search of the Indo-Europeans, p 140.
- For translations of the Sargon Legend, see: www-etcsl.orient.ox.ac.uk/index.htm, www.piney.com/BabSarLeg2.html, www.earth-history.com/sumer-sargon-legend.htm
- An expression used in the contemporary Instruction of Merikare from Egypt indicates that it may have been expected that Lugal-zaggesi "kill his 'son' [Sargon] for the sake of his 'brother' [Ur-Zababa]."
- If not one and the same, Urukagina would certainly have been a very close male relative of Akki, perhaps his father.
- S.N. Kramer, The Sumerians, pp 35, 58, 75, 79-83, 124.
- Joan Oates writes, "Another tribal federation of this period [of Hammurabi] were the Maru- or Binu-Yamina, a name meaning 'Sons of the South' which is linguistically related to the Old Testament tribal name of Benjamin." Babylon, p 56.
- Mer and Mar are different roots, however they lend themselves in this case to word play between Egyptian, Sumerian and Akkadian languages, and even between dialects of Akkadian and Canaanite.
- Pierre Levy, Cyberculture, Introduction, University of Minnesota Press (http://www.upress.umn.edu/Cyberculture.html)
- from the root rim/erim/erin, "enemy, destruction, hostile, evil." The direct meaning of Ri-mush in Sumerian may have been something like: "Surging/Flood Serpent," "Inundation Inspector" or "Far/Place Explorer"; or from Ri-mu: "Well-Formed Begetting/Plan" or "Take/Exchange an Oath/Name."
- English spelling: zeph/zaph. Related Hebrew words based on this root are tsepheth ("to encircle"); tsephiyrah ("a crown, as encircling the head"); tsaphan ("to hide by covering over"); and tsaphah ("expansion, overlay").
- Chob is a contraction of the word chabab, meaning "to hide (as in the bosom), i.e. to cherish (with affection), to love." The Biblical name Yechubbah means "hidden."
- Gen 47:9 (KJV)
- See Chapter 15 of this book.
- "The Prophesy of Neferti, in Ancient Near Eastern Texts, J. Pritchard, ed., p 445.
- From the genealogy of Benjamin in 1 Chronicles 7:6-12 it appears that Senusret A (Jediael) was the most junior of the three sons of Gudea (Benjamin).
- "The Prophesy of Neferti," in Ancient Near Eastern Texts, J. Pritchard, ed., p 444.
- "The Execration of Asiatic Princes," in ANET, J. Pritchard, ed., p 329, parentheticals mine.
- "The Instruction of King Amen-em-het," in ANET, J. Pritchard, ed., p 418-419.
- Peter Clayton, Chronicles of the Pharaohs, p 78.
- Elah means "strong." In other genealogies, Amenemhet II (Elead/Shuthelah) is called Eladah, Gilead and Imnah ("right hand, prosperity"). See Chart 7.
- In other genealogies, pharaoh Sekhemkare (Issachar/Zabad/Ezer) is called Ishvah/Ishvi, Tahath and Hezron. See Chart 7. Ishvah/Ishvi and Tahath are synonymous and signify "flatness." This appears to be a pun on the Egyptian name Sekhem (Shechem), which in Hebrew denotes just the opposite, "hilly." Hezron has the meaning of "enclosed courtyard," i.e., an "expansion" or enlargement of a house. The House of Senusret I was enlarged through this double dynasty.
- Miroslav Verner, The Pyramids, p 385.
- Miroslav Verner, The Pyramids, 426.
- Compare the 6th Dynasty statues of Meryre-ha-ishetef, Overseer of Entertainers.
- In the genealogy of Manasseh (Amenemhet I), the eldest son of Gilead (Amenemhet II) is named as Ishod. Strong's Concordance defines Ishod (379) as "man of grandeur (i.e. an imposing form and appearance." (from 376 and 1935) Ishod is a fitting epithet for the gigantic Senusret III.
- G. Verbrugghe and J. Wickersham, Berossos and Manetho, p 138.
- David Rohl, Pharaohs and Kings, p339.
- The second "son" of Gilead is named as Abiezer ("father of help"). 1 Chron. 7:18.
- For a more complete list of 13th Dynasty pharaohs see Aidan Dodson, Monarchs of the Nile, p 207.
- Possibly referring to the Arsinoite Nome.
- Noah means "rest." Amenemhet, the second Patriarch named Noah, is also called Telah, which has the meaning of "breach." This nickname may allude to the uncontrollable waters of the Nile, and the required evacuation of Amenemhet and his court.
- Miroslav Verner, The Pyramids, p 419.
- Peter Clayton, Chronicle of the Pharaohs, p 90.
- Cf Sanballat of the book of Nehemiah. Sin (or Suen) was the name of the Babylonian moon god.
- The Hebrew root nuw (5106) means "to refuse, forbid, dissuade, or neutralize:- break, disallow, discourage, make of none effect."
An "amplified" profile of Sargon would be as a man who was large, handsome, active, and domineering, with a distinctive facial feature (such as throat/voice, beard or nose) and a bitter, rebellious attitude (something stuck in his craw).
mara (4754) maw-raw' to rebel, hence (through the idea of maltreating) to whip, i.e., lash (self with wings, as the ostrich in running):-- be filthy, lift up self.
marad (4775) maw-rad'; to rebel:-- rebel(ious)
mare (4756) maw-ray'; domineering; a master:-- lord, Lord.
Or mora (see 4172) "terror"
mora (4172) from 3372; fear; by impl. a fearful thing or deed:-- dread, (that ought to be) fear (-ed), terribleness, terror.
mareh (4758) mar-eh'; handsome, a vision
murah (4760) moor-aw'; something conspicuous, i.e. the craw of a bird (from its prominence).
marah (4784) maw-raw'; to be bitter; (fig.) to rebel (or resist; causat. to provoke):-- bitter, change, be disobedient, disobey, grievously, provocation, provoke(ing), (be) rebel (against, -lious).
meriy (4805) mer-ee'; bitterness, i.e. (fig.) rebellion; concr. bitter, or rebellious.
meriy' (4806) mer-ee'; from 4754 in the sense of grossness, through the idea of domineering (comp. 4756); stall-fed; often (as noun) a beeve:-- fat (fed) beast (cattle, -ling).
The Hebrew word mutta means "sceptre, rule." Therefore, Ya-muta could be interpreted as "God Rules" or "He Rules as God." This latter definition is the same as the name or title of Israel, which was later bestowed upon the Patriarch Jacob.
matta (4302) mat-taw'; something planted, i.e. the place (a garden or vineyard), or the thing (a plant, fig. of men); by impl. the act, planting. (Cf Sargon, son of the Gardiner.)
The Biblical name of Seth derives from the god known in the Egyptian Delta as Set or Seth. In Upper Egypt, Seth was called Montu. In Canaan and Syria this same god was called Ba'al or Aram. Aram means "elevated place, highlands," i.e., the mountainous regions where Baal worship was most prevalent. Baal/Seth was a god with a thundering (bellowing) voice. His home was among dark clouds of the high mountains. He represented the strong and handsome champion. Baal was bold and beautiful, the god of the "over-dog." The Bible documents the bitter dispute that arose in later times regarding whether Yahweh (Amen) or Baal was to be venerated as the supreme god. However, in the dynasty of Sargon, the cult of Amen was newly formed and not in conflict with that of Montu.
Montu-hotep means "(the god) Montu is Appeased." Montu was a god of aggression and war, and the dynasty of Sargon indulged Montu with almost continual warfare. Three other prominent sons and grandsons also assumed the Egyptian name of Montuhotep. Manishtushu/Ur-Bau became pharaoh Montuhotep I. His son and co-regent was also a Montuhotep (II). Ur-Gar, a son of Gudea became Montuhotep III.