Posted By: Charles Pope
Date: Friday, 3 November 2006, at 10:21 p.m.
Let's return to the passage in Pausanius that started this discussion on Classical Greece and Egypt:
Previously, it was possible to make a few identifications.
The son and successor of Agamemnon (Takelot III/Tiglath-pilerser/Shabaka) was Orestes (Osorkon IV/Esarhaddon/Haremakhet). Esarhaddon succumbed to a chronic illness like Orestes who was "hounded to death" by the Erinnyes. Orestes had two sons, Penthilos and the more famous Tisamenes, his successor by the Hermione daughter of Helen and Menelaus. Tisamenes was previously identified as Assurbanipal/Smendes, the successor of Esarhaddon in the Assyrian throne.
This is probably correct, however other information indicates that Assurbanipal was the true son of Sennacherib, and he is identified as such in Chart 26. Another son of Esarhaddon was Shamash-shuma-ukin, who was made king of Babylon, but later chose to be immolated rather than surrender to Assurbanipal. He is perhaps Penthilos son of Orestes, and also called Aethiolas, "destroyed by fire" (definition by Graves).
Tisamenes (Assurbanipal) son of Orestes (Esarhaddon) was in turn defeated by the "Heraclids" Temenos (Taharqa) and Kresphontes (Shebitku/Cyrus I), at least on occasion in Egypt. These Heraclids also had some success over the descendants of Neleus (Nestor the Elder), the Neleids. The Neleus of this time period was Khaemwast, Crown Prince under Ramses the Great. His highest ranking son was Hori/Iuput II/Kashta (Aegisthos). Second to him was Ramses/Tefnakhte/Setnakhte (Nestor the Younger). These two were the forefathers of all later kings except for the line of Esarhaddon, which was from Perseus (Thutmose IV). Taharqa and Shebitku, although called Heraclids (descendants of Seti I and Ramses II), were in fact also Neleids.
Pausanius provides several genealogical snippets within the House of Neleus/Nestor.
First in importance is:
Alkmaion, son of Sillos, son of Thrasymedes.
Sennacherib/Khaluit (Biblical Hilkiah), son of Piye, son of Hori (Biblical Haruz).
Sillos is a variant of Agisilaos, an early king of Greece. Piye (Menelaus) was of the Laius/Joseph type. Sillos also relates to Silaus, defined by Graves as "rush into battle", as in the name Proto-silaus, "first to rush into battle". Piye/Sargon was killed when he rushed into a waiting ambush.
A second genealogical thread is:
Peisistratos son of Peisistratos
Psamtik II son of Psamtik
One of the sons of Menelaus (Piye/Sargon) was called Nicostratos. According to Robert Graves, Nicostratos was the son of Menelaus by the "slave-girl" Pieris. Certainly Piye/Sargon treated Taharqa like a bastard in comparison with another son, the designated successor Sennacherib. However, there is no reason to question the pedigree of Taharqa. His name Nekau or Necho was a Greek epithet and short form of one of Taharqa's throne names, Nefer-khau-re. See Chart 27.
Taharqa was also known as Psamtik, head of the 26th (Greek) Dynasty. The name Psamtik (and the fuller form Psammetichos) is known from contemporary Greece. The name derives from the much earlier Greek princess Psamathe ("sandy beach") mother of the ill-fated Phocus ("seal"). Psamtik was famous for the amphibious assault of his navy seals called bronze-men. The successor of Taharqa in this Greek pharaonic throne, as well as the Nubian throne was Tanuatamon, who assumed the name Psamtik II (Psammetichos son of Psammetichos). In Greece, Psammetichos succeeded Periander who had succeeded the tyrant Cleisthenes. This succession matches that of Shebitku-Taharqa-Tanuatamon in Egypt.
The tyrant Kleisthenes married his daughter Agriste to Megacles. They became the parents of Kleisthenes II, the father of democracy.
This combination corresponds to the marriage of Nebuchadrezzar to Amytis daughter of Cyax-ares (Cyrus I/Shebitku). See Chart 26. The name Megacles ("great glory") describes Nebuchadrezzar perfectly. It also associates with Megapenthus ("great grief"), the name of another so-called minor son of Menelaus. Nebuchadrezzar (Assyrian Nabu-sharru-user, assassin of Sennacherib) may have been the true son of Piye/Sargon. He certainly inherited that extra dose of megalomania exhibited by Piye. The son of Megacles, Kleisthenes II, was also the rival of Peisistratos II in Athens.
Third in importance according to Pausanius:
Paion, son of Antilochos
Antilochos was a son of Nestor killed by Memnon the Ethiopian. Two sons of Ramses/Tefnakhe (Nestor the Younger) had in fact been killed by Nubian kings. Bocchoris was killed by Shabaka (Agamemnon). Amenemnisu was killed later by Piye (Menelaus). We can take our pick here. If Memnon is an the same as Agamemnon, then Antilochos corresponds to Bocchoris. If Memnon is Piye, then Antilochos is Amenemnisu father of Nes-naisu (Paion?).
The last sequence of names provided by Pausanius is the longest:
Melanthos, son of Andropompos, son of Boros, son of Penthilos, son of Periklymenos.
Andropompos jumps out as another ideal epithet for Nebuchadrezzar, at least to Latin speakers, connoting "pompous man". The successor of Nebuchadrezzar was Amel-Marduk, apparently corresponding to Melanthos. Boros is perhaps derived from the name of the predecessor of Nebuchadrezzar in Babylon, Nabo-polassar. Penthilos (not to be confused with the son of Esarhaddon by that name) would then be yet another epithet of Piye, and Peri-klymenos eldest son of Neleus (and one of the argonauts) would perhaps belong to Hori/Kashta.
Klymenos or Cleomenes was also the name of the king of Sparta contemporary with Kleisthenes II and Peisistratos II. His predecessor was Anaxandridas II and before him Anaxandridas I. This sequence appears to match the succession from Sennacherib to Assurbanipal. Assurbanipal and Nebuchadrezzar were partners in bringing down Tanuatamon/Psamtik II/Peisistratos II. However, Tanuatamon was Cyrus II (along with Darius). In Greece, we find that Peisistratos is succeeded by Hippias, who turns to Darius for support against the democrats of Athens. Hippias does not seem to be one and the same as Cyrus II however. The name better matches that of Apries (Haa-ib-re) in Egypt.
- Rewinding Pausanius
Charles Pope -- Friday, 3 November 2006, at 10:21 p.m.
© Charles N. Pope, US Library of Congress. All rights reserved.