Living in Truth:
Archaeology and the Patriarchs

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by Charles N. Pope
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Chapter 5
"Biblical Dark Ages"
(From Nimrod to Sargon)

Grafted onto the Root of Adam

In previous chapters, two fundamental types of twisting in the Torah were unraveled. The first involved the identity of Biblical Jehovah as a composite of the ancient pantheon, primarily the gods Ea and Enlil, but also the primeval goddess Gaia. Another type of twisting in the Torah derives from the intermarriage of “the sons of god” with “the daughters of men.” These so-called human offspring were described in the Book of Genesis as “the mighty men of old.” They were also the great heroes of Mythology.  One such prodigy was Noah (Adapa), who alone was found “righteous” in the last generation before the Deluge.  After the Flood, Noah’s great-grandson the “mighty hunter” Nimrod (Narmer/Bilak) carried on the tradition of tyranny in the Middle East.  His strength was based on a combined inheritance from Shem, Ham and Japheth.

Nimrod is handled with extreme discretion in the Genesis account. His wide-ranging exploits are presented in only five verses. Nothing at all is said about his sons or successors.  The master weaver of the Torah considered the kings immediately after Nimrod to be nothing more than dull and idolatrous oppressors. They followed the example of Nimrod in lording over men, but not in their devotion to the Lord Ea-Ptah. Those successors of Nimrod/Narmer were the Old Kingdom pharaohs and quickly replaced Ptah with Ra as supreme god of Egypt. Therefore, these kings were themselves judged and suppressed by the author of Genesis.  No redeeming qualities were found to compensate for their unpardonable “error.” However, a branch of the royal family descending from Nimrod/Narmer righted the ship of Japheth, so to speak, at least in the eyes of the Biblical authors. The Middle Kingdom pharaohs, who are represented by the second genealogy of Adam through Seth, were spliced over the “loose end” of the Old Kingdom and essentially redeemed their “false start.”

The “generations” of the first Adam listed in Genesis 4:1-24 are:


Genesis 4 Mesopotamia Egypt
Adam - Atum
Cain Anu On/An
Enoch Enki Ptah
Irad Marduk Re
Mehujael Dumuzi Osiris
Mehushael Adad Horus the Elder
Lemekh Tutu Thoth
Noah Utna-pishtim / Adapa Nut-jeren / Ny-netjer
Shem Etana Semerkhet
Ham Lugalbanda Horus the Younger
Cush Meshkiaggasher Aha
Nimrod Enmerkar Narmer


Nimrod (Narmer/Enmerkar) was in the direct line of descent from the first Adam, the god Atum. He is the (honorary) grandson of Ham (see Tutorial 5). However, beginning with Genesis 4:25 another line of descent from Adam is introduced.  This new succession includes a son of Adam called Seth, which means “substituted,” and a grandson named Enosh. We are told that the second line of Adam was “granted” by God to replace that of the martyred Abel. The reader takes for granted that the two lines of Adam through Cain and Seth are contemporary and collateral. They are not!


Original Ordering Re-Ordering for Comparison
Gen. 4:1-24 Gen. 4:25-5 Gen 4:1-24 Gen 4:25-5
Adam Adam II Adam Adam II
Cain Seth   Seth
Enoch Enosh   Enosh
Irad Kenan Cain Kenan
Mehujael Mahalalel Mehujael Mahalalel
  Jered Irad Jered
  Enoch II Enoch Enoch II
Mehushael Methuseleh Mehushael Methuseleh
Lemekh Lemekh II Lemekh Lemekh II
Noah Noah II Noah Noah II


Both lists begin with an Adam and end with a Lamech and a Noah.  With the exception of Seth, the names are also very closely matched – they have only slightly different spelling and ordering.  Kenan is a variant of Cain.  Jered is a variant of Irad.  Mahalalel is a variant of Mehujael.  Methuselah is a variant of Mehushael.  It has previously been suspected that the two “genealogies” of Genesis 4 & 5 are not unique but two different versions of the same Patriarchal line.  However, the dual bloodlines “cry out from the ground” of archaeology for justice.  It can now be proven that they were unique lists, and that the Patriarchs of each list are named in their correct order.  The two dynasties were not contemporary, but widely separated in time.  They represented two different portions of the same Patriarchal ancestry.  The later set of Patriarchs, which corresponds to the second genealogy of Adam, was considered to be a more righteous “repetition” of the first line of Adam.  The comparison between the two sets of kings was made more compelling by juxtaposing the two in the text of Genesis.

The Genesis narrative composites (“telescopes”) the Great Flood with a number of smaller floods that occurred in the millennia that followed.  There were many floods, but only one Flood Account.  Multiple lines of Adam enter the “knot” of Genesis 10.  Only the line of the second Adam emerges.  The sons of Shem listed in Genesis 10:21-31 do not pertain to an elder brother Shem but are those of a younger brother named Shem.  Japheth (as the true father of Cush and grandfather of Nimrod) is now the man.  Shem is resigned to being only an honorary founder of the Post-Flood world.  Shem is given five sons, which correspond to five hand-picked Great Kings that ruled in between the final two flood events, i.e., the flood that preceded the founding of the Old Kingdom and the one that ended the Egyptian Middle Kingdom.

Shem’s son “Elam” is one and the same as Noah’s son “Ham” (a.k.a. Lugalbanda, conqueror of Elam); Asshur is one and the same as Nimrod (a.k.a., Narmer, whose dynasty extended through Old Kingdom pharaohs Khafre and Sahure); and Arphaxad/Arpakkad is Sargon (who founded Akkad/Agade).  The years of Arphaxad’s “son” Shelah/Cainan (Kenan/Senusret I) and “grandson” Eber (Auibre Hor/Hammurabi) take us to the end of the Middle Kingdom, at which time the world was again “divided” due to a catastrophic flood.  Excessively high waters associated with the inundation of the Nile did not last 40 days, but ravaged Egypt annually over a period of 40 years.  The reoccurrence of devastating floods provided a tidy “architectural feature” with which to connect the histories of the two lines of Adam.  (See table below.)


Patriarchs Kings / Pharaohs "Sons of Shem"
Noah Melam-Kish / Ny-netjer  
Japheth Enmenunna / Peribsen  
Ham Barsalnunna / Sekhemwy Elam
Nimrod Enmerkar / Narmer Asshur
Sidon Lugal-anda / Khafre  
Adam II Sargon / Inyotef Arphaxad/Arpakkad
Seth Rimush / Montuhotep Aram
Enosh Ur-Nammu / Amenemhet  
Kenan Shulgi / Senusret Shelah
Mahalalel Amnanu / Amenemhet II  
Jered Belu / Senusret II  
Enoch II Shamshi-Adad / Auibre Hor Eber ("Moses")
Methuselah Sumu-abum / Senusret III  
---- Flood ---- ---- Great Nile Flood -------- -- "Earth Divided" ---
Ham II Sumulael / Amenemhet III Helem
Shem II Sabium / Amenemhet IV Shomer
Japheth II Sumu-ditana / Dedumisiu Japhlet / Peleg
Nimrod II Abi-eshuuh / Neferhotep II Reu ("Joshua")


The three great floods were all associated with dynastic change.  In each case, a favored but infertile Shem figure is displaced by a new and more vigorous (“mixed”) line of kings.  Nimrod was considered to be the legal son and heir of both Ham (Lugalbanda) and Shem (Etana).  However, it can be deduced that he was from the natural line of Japheth (Peleus, “muddy”) through Cush/Javan.  (See Tutorial 5.)  For this reason, the “Table of Nations” (Genesis 10) doesn’t start with Shem.  Instead, the descendants of Noah’s lower-ranking son Japheth (the neo-Joseph/Ea-Enki/Ptah) are given precedence.  Moreover, when the sons of Shem do finally get named in Genesis 10:21-31, they include Noah’s “son” Ham and select members of Japheth’s line.

With the profuse red of the “mighty hunter” Nimrod, the rhetoric of the first Adam suddenly dries up in the Genesis narrative.  After Nimrod, the veneration of Ea-Ptah began to be neglected in Egypt.  It did not become prominent again until the advent of the second Adam, founder of the Egyptian Middle Kingdom.  The Egyptian name, Inyotef, and Mesopotamian name, Tudiya-Adamu, of this founding father both contain forms of Ea.  Inyotef means “Born of Yo.”  Tudiya-Adamu means “Born or Beloved of Ya, Adam.”  Tudiya was transliterated into Egyptian as Inyotef.  Yo and Ya are both common Biblical (Hebrew) short forms of Jehovah.  This cherished champion Tudiya stands at the head of both the Babylonian and Assyrian king-lists.  He also represents the historical origin of the second and later line of Adam given in Genesis.

In the dynasty of the second Adam, Ea-Ptah was incorporated into a new super cult, that of Amen.  This was of great importance to the Genesis author - for it was not from Ea-Ptah directly, but from the cult of Amen that Biblical Jehovah was ultimately to emerge.  Genesis 4:26 declares that men first “began to call upon the name of the Lord” in the time of Enosh son of Seth, who was the second successor of Adam II.  The eventual successor of Inyotef in Egypt was pharaoh Amenemhet, who is the historical identity of Patriarch Enosh.  The name Amen-em-het means “Amen (is) in the Forefront.”   He was not only the first king of the legendary Egyptian 12th Dynasty, but also the first king to include the god Amen in his royal name.  His foremost god was not that of the Old Kingdom pharaohs, Re, but emphatically the Biblical “Lord” - yes and Amen!  For the Genesis author, this marked a crucial turning point in both history and theology.

With the introduction of the second line of Adam, another type of twisting becomes apparent in the text of the Torah.  It derives from the phenomenon that “history repeats itself.”  The first two turnings convolve gods and race.  The third involves royal persons who were of a different time but lived in the same place.  This third type of twisting consumes most of the actual narrative of the Torah and is analyzed in detail in Chapters 8 through 16.  The new thematic element represents the “scarlet thread” of kingship.  There was only one Patriarchal line from the first god-man Adam to the last king Zedekiah.  This thread was often frayed but never broken.  However, one portion of the royal line is not discussed in the Genesis narrative.  The omitted rulers belong to the period between Narmer (Nimrod), founder of the Egyptian Old Kingdom, and Inyotef, founder of the Egyptian Middle Kingdom.  Twisting the later line of Adam together with the earlier one allowed the Genesis author to largely gloss over the Old Kingdom pharaohs.

Suffering Serpent

The fall from grace of Noah’s began with pharaoh Djoser of the Egyptian 3rd Dynasty.  The root Dj in Egyptian signifies “serpent” or “backbone of Osiris.”  The root oser/eser (of Dj-oser) also relates to Osiris, which was written as Asar/Ser in Egyptian and Ezer in Hebrew.  The name Dj-oser would then connote “serpent lord,” “serpent of help” or “twisted spine of Osiris.”  Through melding Egyptian, Sumerian and Biblical records, we can raise our consciousness of this serpent king.  In the Sumerian king-list,a Pharaoh Djoser corresponds to Agga.  In the genealogy of Japheth, Djoser is named as Magog, “Good Serpent.” Magog is generally associated with the north, but perhaps also northern Egypt (the Delta) and by association, also the Serpent Apep/Apophis.  The name Djoser is also sometimes written as Zoser.b

In Egypt, the “serpent-king” Djoser was not happy and blessed, but in a state of misery like maimed Apophis or the mutilated Osiris.  During his reign the Nile did not overflow its banks for seven straight years.  This extreme and extended drought brought bitter suffering to Egypt and its people.  In desperation, Djoser turned to a man of princely birth, Imhotep, in whom it was said resided the spirit of Thoth.  Like his role model Thoth, Imhotep was also called “son of Ptah,” god of the waters.  In the form of Khnum, Ptah was thought to control the annual floodwaters of the Nile.  Imhotep directed Djoser to seek the help of Khnum, which is not surprising.  However, he also advised him to reinstate the “throne of Re.”c In In addition to the honorary title, “son of Ptah,” the base of a statue names Imhotep as the “High Priest of Heliopolis” (Biblical On), the holy city of Re the sun god.

For a prince patterned after Thoth, the distinctions of “High Priest of Re” and “son of Ptah” are perfectly consistent.  Re had been appointed by Ptah to rule over Egypt in a time of sustained drought.  When Re was subsequently banished for murder, Thoth became his most faithful and active supporter.  Thoth eventually was able to bring the “fugitive” Re back from exile and even restore his kingship.  Because of their close relationship, Thoth was called the “heart and tongue of Re.”  In the 3rd Dynasty, it was not Thoth, but Imhotep who expressed the will of Re.  According to both archaeology and legend, Imhotep aped Thoth in every possible way.  Imhotep officiated not only as high priest, but also as a lector (oratory) priest within the cult of Re.  In addition to “son of Ptah” and “High Priest of Re,” Imhotep was also renowned as an architect, stargazer, wise man, healer and teacher in the tradition of Thoth.  Djoser counted on Imhotep for everything.  Imhotep even kept track of the king’s wealth.  In fact, “Treasurer of the King” was listed as the first of his official titles.  If that were not enough, Imhotep subsequently played the role of “Joseph” to Khufu’s “Jacob” by preparing for an epic famine.

The Book of Ecclesiastes reveals the ancient mindset that compelled Imhotep to emulate Thoth: "What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun. Is there anything of which one can say, 'Look! This is something new'? It was here already, long ago; it was here before our time. There is no remembrance of men of old, and even those who are yet to come will not be remembered by those who follow."d

Before the Deluge, Thoth architected the return of his “father” Re from “exile.”  It now fell to Imhotep to reinstate Re once again after the “exodus” associated with the major flood event that preceded the founding of the Egyptian Old Kingdom.  The first tangible evidence of this renewal is the sudden interest in pyramids.  Imhotep is credited with building the Step Pyramid of Djoser.  However, as with the cult of Re, this monument was only restored under the supervision of Imhotep.  It is extremely doubtful that any major stone pyramids were constructed from scratch during the Egyptian Old Kingdom.  The Egyptian Delta was only one corner of the world that these kings ruled.  Egypt was a place of seasonal “sojourn” for the royal court.  A prestigious burial in Egypt was always a high priority, but unrealistic immediately after a major environmental disaster.  The population (labor pool) of Egypt would have also been relatively small, and even smaller after the purges of Narmer.

The correct date for the reign of Djoser is not earlier than 1450 BC.  However, recent carbon dating of the Giza Pyramids place their latest possible construction between 2700 and 2500 BC.  This means that the Old Kingdom pharaohs did not in any way build the Giza Pyramids, and they did not claim to have done so.  Most if not all of the larger pyramids, including the Step Pyramid of Djoser, would also have been built hundreds if not thousands of years before the Old Kingdom, and in various states of disrepair!  When the cult of Re was revived, the many pre-existing pyramids were reclaimed by the pharaohs and very modestly refurbished as centerpieces for administrative and mortuary complexes.  Only after all of the available pyramids were repurposed did the pharaohs attempt to build new ones (of lesser quality).  Consistent with this scenario, carbon dating indicates that the poorly constructed Middle Kingdom mud-brick pyramids are far younger than currently thought.1

Who Built the Pyramids, P'Re Tell?

In the third dynasty, Djoser and Imhotep restored the Step Pyramid.  The first pharaoh of the fourth dynasty, Snofru, restored as many as four additional pyramids.  These included the Bent Pyramid and the Red Pyramid at Dahshur, which are both larger than the third Giza Pyramid.  Collectively, this effort is thought to have been an even greater enterprise than the building of the largest Giza Pyramid, greater than that of the Great Pyramid itself.  However, it again only points to a program of very limited renovation, and not original construction.  Snofru was performing a symbolic service for Re, in whose name these pyramids would have been originally built.  He even gave one of his sons the name of Ra-hotep (“Re is appeased/ expatiated”).  The matching statues of Rahotep and his wife Nofret are among the masterpieces of the Old Kingdom, but they too appear to be heirlooms from a much earlier period.

The name of the first pharaoh of the fourth dynasty, Snofru, “The Handsome,” is actually synonymous with Djoser’s Horus name, Netjer-i-khet (“Divine of Body”), and the two are quite possibly (and logically) one and the same.  If so, then Snofru (Biblical Seba) may have been an identity assumed by Djoser (Biblical Mizraim) after he had been defeated by Hor-Aha (Biblical Cush) and Narmer (Biblical Nimrod).  The successor of Snofru was called Khnum-khuefui, “Khnum is Protecting Me”, or just Khufu for short.e He is thought to have been a son of Snofru by the daughter of Huni, which is one of the aliases of Narmer.f If Khufu was the grandson of Narmer, that would explain why he was allowed to follow Snofru as pharaoh and only as the de facto vassal of Narmer and the son of his old age, Khafre.

The choice of the name Khnum-khuefui suggests that the annual flooding of the Nile, or lack thereof, had not quite yet become a dire concern, at least at the time of his birth.  A catastrophic excess of water (and concomitant reverence of Ptah) that precipitated the founding of the Old Kingdom was followed by increasingly arid conditions.  In the Drought Legend, Djoser was promised in a dream that the Nile would never again fail, and that harvests would always be plentiful.  A good annual flood obviously did return after the seven years of poor ones, however the general trend toward desertification in Africa continued.  Khufu must have felt betrayed by his personal god Khnum, because in his reign the temples of all the gods (except Re) were closed.  The temple of Ptah built by Narmer/Huni would have been among these, and was perhaps also associated with the death of Narmer/Huni.  Times they were a changing, and so did religious practice.

In the drought years of the Egyptian New Kingdom, the pharaoh Amenhotep IV would also reject his namesake god, Amen.  He changed his name to Akhen-aten, and shortly after the death of his predecessor Amenhotep III he closed the temples of Amun and all other cults (other than his own).  The suppression of Ptah/Khnum in Khufu’s time would have been equally unpopular.  Unlike Djoser-Snofru, Khufu did not seem to have a genuine concern for the welfare of Egyptians.  Khufu (Greek Cheops) was not remembered as the builder [renovator] of the Great Pyramid, but as a hated oppressor.  Likewise, Akhenaten was not celebrated as a reformer, but libeled as “The Heretic.”

The highly ambitious Djoser-Snefru had not dared to claim the Great Pyramid as his own, but only some lesser pyramids.  The god Re was not at that time supreme, but Ptah instead.  By Khufu’s tenure, identification with the Great Pyramid was no longer taboo.  Yet, a tale written down during the Hyksos Period (part of the Westcar Papyrus) reveals that Khufu not only did not build the Great Pyramid of Giza, he could not even figure out how to get inside!  In this legend, Khufu consults the wise men concerning how to enter “the secret chambers of the sanctuary of Thoth,” but is only frustrated in his quest.g He is told a descendant of his would succeed in this task, but that he could not.  In the ancient mindset, because Khufu tried and failed it must have been his fate.  The tale indicates that a 5th Dynasty pharaoh did break into the Great Pyramid, therefore this was not only divinely ordained but considered to have been a fulfillment of prophesy.

There is an on-going controversy over several cartouches relating to Khufu (Cheops) and/or his second successor Khafre (Chephron) who may have buried him.  These cartouches were purportedly found on the walls of two inner chambers of the Great Pyramid in the 19th Century.  Zecharia Sitchin argued that they were forged by Howard Vyse, the man who discovered them.h Sitchin also argued that the “Inventory Stela” of Khufu is genuine, and that this work confirms that both the Great Pyramid and the Sphinx predated the reign of Khufu.  Conversely, Egyptologists generally consider the Great Pyramid cartouches to be legitimate, but the Stela to be a later pastiche.  Whether the cartouches and Stela were fashioned during the reign of Khufu, by Khafre upon his death, by a 5th Dynasty pharaoh in honor of him, or at any time afterward is now a moot point.  It is proved here that the Old Kingdom pharaohs were not the builders of the Giza  Pyramids based on chronological grounds alone.  Apart from the ruined mortuary temple (“Temple of Isis”) adjoining the Great Pyramid in which the Stela was found archaeology has uncovered almost nothing of Khufu’s reign.  Rather than go to the effort of building new monuments, the Great Pyramid and associated structures were merely usurped by him.  The know-how and manpower for anything more elaborate than a token make-over were all that existed in the Old Kingdom.

At the very beginning of the Old Kingdom, the city of Memphis was founded (or re-founded) by Menes and Narmer.  In appreciation for the favor Ptah had shown in saving mankind (once again) from upheaval, Atum (called Nefer-tem in Memphis) was made the heir of Ptah rather than the other way around.  Yet, no sooner than Memphis was established, the god of waters Ptah/Khnum began to retreat and Atum-Re was promptly restored to its former glory.  Djedefre, a co-regent of Khufu who likely predeceased him, was the first pharaoh to assume the title, “Son of Re.”  Djedefre (a.k.a. Rededef) dutifully helped with the (appropriated) mortuary complex of Khufu.  His own (commandeered) pyramid was located well to the north of Giza at Abu Rawash.  Repair work there was likely unfinished when he died after a reign (or co-reign alongside Khufu) of only eight years.i Djedefre was known for writing a primer for scribes called the “Instruction,” and also delving into “situational theology.”  Beginning with the reigns of Djedefre and Khufu, the cult of Re completely eclipsed Ptah as “Father of the Gods.”  In Egypt, the self-begotten god Ptah who had saved them from certain destruction quickly became a shelved and forgotten dod.j

The radical theology of Khufu and Djedefre was further refined by pharaoh Khafre who succeeded them.  In retrospect, the rise of the cult of Re after a leave of absence (“exodus”) can only be seen as inevitable.  It may have been argued that Ptah even required it.  Was it not Ptah himself who had made his “first born” son Marduk-Re the ruler of Egypt?  Hadn’t his dominion in Egypt been honored by all of the other gods? After the Flood (and as before), a single royal family ruled over both Egypt and Mesopotamia.  Although Re was made “All-Lord” in Egypt, he was only one of many gods in Mesopotamia.  Throughout the Egyptian Old Kingdom, the deities of Anu, Enlil (Shu), Enki (Ptah) and Ninhursag (Tefnut/Hathor) continued to be the most revered in Sumer (along with the sun god Utu), and by the very same family that ruled over Egypt.  Other gods and goddesses were also given priority in specific locales within Mesopotamia, such as Suen in Ur and Haran, and Ninurta/Ningirsu (Za-Baba) in the districts of Lagash and Kish.  The principle that different gods were entitled to sovereignty over different regions of the “world” and would rise and fall at different times is accepted both in Mythology and in the Old Testament.k In the emerging culture of Babylonia the mighty hunter-warrior-god (Ninurta, role model of Nimrod and his natural line) was infused with elements of the sun-god (called Shamash in Akkadian) as well as the “anti-sun” god Suen (called Sin in Akkadian) to create a super-religion on the order of Atum-Rel in Egypt, that being Marduk-Bel of Babylon.  And even Marduk had a deliberately cyclical emphasis.

Pharaoh Khafre (Chephron) claimed the 2nd Giza Pyramid for his mortuary complex, which represented the pyramid of the heir/successor.  His successor, Menkaure followed by taking the third and smallest Giza Pyramid.  His devotion to Re was also far smaller than that of Khufu and Khafre.  Menkaure is most noted for authorizing the reopening of Egyptian temples.  Rather than being praised for his tolerance, Menkaure was later censured.  He was adjudged by posterity to be in defiance of the gods, who had declared that the temples should be permanently closed in Egypt.  Egypt continued to suffer from inadequate annual floods for at least two or three more generations (until the Middle Kingdom).  In hindsight, Menkaure was conveniently made the scapegoat (and role model for later kings named Smenkare/Smenkhkare).

An Egyptian Old Kingdom story found in the Westcar Papyrus attributes the founding of the 5th Dynasty of Egypt to the birth of twins named Sahure and Kakai (Nefer-ir-kare), who trumped a slightly older brother in regard to the succession of Khafre and Menkaure of the 4th Dynasty.  The matching Biblical account is Genesis 38, in which the Judah prince withholds his youngest son from the heiress “Tamar.” She in turn “tricks” Judah himself into fathering twin sons by her instead.  Judah, who corresponds to pharaoh Khafre was up-in-years and evidently concerned about the perpetuation of his dynasty.  After the reproductive failure of older sons (“Er and Onan”), Khafre could not wait for a younger son to reach puberty (before finding out if a grandson would be born to him).  His impatience was rewarded with twin sons born to him in his old age that were later able to produce sons of their own.  Userkaf, the nominal founder of the 5th Dynasty, represents either Khafre (User-ib), or that youngest son (“Shelah”) who perhaps acted as a father figure to the twins after Khafre’s death.

Genesis 38 attributes the election of the younger twin Zerah (Sahure), meaning, “light”)2 over the older Perez (Kakai/Keku, meaning “dark”) to a technicality.  As with Jacob and Esau, the younger (eventually) gains the birthright over the elder.  Old Kingdom art exhibits a sensitivity to skin color, however propagation of the royal line generally had more to do with fertility.  Nefer-ir-ka-re (Perez) had two sons, Neferefre and Ny-user-re, that also became pharaohs, however no sons are attributed to them.  Sahure is thought to have ruled first, but his initial lack of fertility must have allowed the sons of Kakai to take precedence.  It was the lack of grandsons and great-grandsons, and not skin color, that ended the dynasty of Kakai and opened the door to Sahure and his belated line).m Perez evidently derived from the contemporary Mesopotamian name Puzur.

Unity Breeds Division

With all of the best pyramids and structures already claimed by the pharaohs of previous dynasties, the 5th Dynasty pharaohs took the much inferior pyramids of Lake Abusir.  The reign of Ny-userre was longer than that of Khufu, yet he was not even able to surpass the achievement of his more immediate predecessors Neferirkare and Sahure, who only ruled for a decade. Of course, this makes no sense at all, and only confirms that the pyramid complex of Abusir predated the Old Kingdom even as the Giza pyramids did. Each successive pharaoh was claiming the best or at least the most appropriate monuments for himself based on seniority and typecasting/role playing.

We have very little anecdotal information about the 5th and 6th Dynasty pharaohs, however the pattern of typecasting is very much the same as it is at the end of every major Egyptian kingdom (12th Dynasty, Hyksos Period, 18th Dynasty, etc.)  There is a wise and proud Noah/Solomon figure (Ny-User-Re/Unas) and a foolish Ham/Rehoboam figure (Pepi) that allows the glorious empire of his predecessor to be divided. The cast of characters is rounded out by a prominent Japheth/Joseph figure (Djedkare/Teti/Ptah-Shepses).  Other parallels will be drawn below.

The pattern is even clearer in contemporary Mesopotamia.  The Solomon figure is Mesilim (a.k.a. Mesalim), which is an anagram of Solomon itself.  Mesilim played peacemaker during his long reign, but in the end his kingdom split apart.  Prince Ush rebelled and founded the independent dynasty of Umma. (The major source of strife was control over irrigation canals, which parallels the drought in Egypt.)  The designated successor Ur-Nanshe could (or would) do nothing about it.  Tellingly, the name of Ur-Nanshe incorporates the goddess Nanshe, champion of “social justice.” Similarly, Rehoboam (“enlargement of the people”) is an overtly populist name and incorporates the goddess Rehab.  Ironically, neither did the people any real favors!

The pharaohs of the late 18th Dynasty emulated the 6th Dynasty closely, because it also had ended in crushing drought.  Pharaoh Unas was played by Amenhotep III, and Teti was a role model for powerful Prime Minister Yuya.  The failed Horus-figure Tut-ankh-amun was patterned after Teti-ankh-khem of the 6th Dynasty. Likewise, Ankhesen-amun was named after Ankhnes-pepi, and Nefertiti for Meritites.  Akhenaten was modeled after Pepi himself.  The name of Pepi was a form of Apophis, the enemy of Re, and reflected a magical attempt to counter the drought of the 6th Dynasty.  It also suggests that the Aten was also based in part on Apophis!  The early death of Tutankhamun signaled the end of the “House of Joseph” even as the death of Teti-ankh-khem had in the 6th Dynasty.

The reigns of Djedkare (Isesi), Unas and Teti are considered sequential, however a deified Joseph figure always governed in parallel with a Noah figure, not before or after, such as Yuya during the reign of Amenhotep III and Inyotef IV in the reign of Amenemhet III. There are also separate pyramids associated with Djedkare and Teti, however the earlier pharaoh Snofru appropriated at least four pyramids for his own use. Similarly, there are separate pyramids for Unas and Ny-Userre (Ini).  There is even more reason to conclude that these latter two names were the same person (and correspond to the renewal of kingship by a Noah figure after a defining catastrophic event, usually a Flood event, but in this case the extreme opposite of no rain).  5th Dynasty queens Kha-mery-nebty, Nebet and Re-pty-nub are also likely one and the same.

Sargon, the Water Boy who would be Lord of the Seas

Based on the association between Pepi/Ur-Nanshe and the later Akhenaten (a neo-Moses/Sargon), it now seems probable that Pepi and Ur-Nanshe were also regional names of Sargon.  If so, then Sargon’s turbulent reign was followed immediately by the founding of the Egyptian Middle Kingdom, and Egyptian Dynasties 7-10 are simply other regional identities of Sargon and his successors.  For example, Pepi can be paired with 9th Dynasty Akhtoy, even as Apophis and Tao are paired in the early New Kingdom.  As a young prince, Sargon was taken from apparent obscurity (as an adopted son of a “gardener” and appointed as royal “drawer of water,” that is the Royal Cupbearer (of the Benjamin typecasting) to Ur-Zababa, king of Kish. With the mention of his royal title in the Sumerian king-list, the “rags to riches” story of Sargon ceases to hold water.  Commoners were rarely if ever appointed to official posts.  They certainly did not rise to positions with intimate access to the king of Kish, who was the nominal “king of the world.”  The mother and adoptive father of Sargon were part of the immediate family of this lofty king.  Sargon was a bona fide prince from birth.

After Ur-Zababa and Sargon each had disturbing dreams, Ur-Zababa sent the young Sargon (in the role of Cupbearer/Benjamin) to the court of Lugalzagesi where he was to be put to death.  This is an earlier example of the scenario found in Genesis Chapters 40 through 42.  The Pharaoh was displeased with Joseph, as well as his Cupbearer (“Benjamin”) and Baker (“Asher, whose bread is fat”).  The Cupbearer is imprisoned but pardoned.  The Baker is condemned and impaled, and Joseph is belatedly also pardoned and even promoted.  In the late Egyptian Old Kingdom, the “Pharaoh” was Nyuserre/Unas, the “Joseph” was Teti/Djed-kare, the “Baker” was Sahure/Ur-Zababa and the Cupbearer was of course Sargon!

Ur-Zababa was effectively ordered to sacrifice his own son.  However, Sargon was spared (ala Isaac from the knife of his father Abraham).  The “Baker” was on the other hand condemned, and consistent with this, Lugalzagesi wasted little time in deposing Ur-Zababa in Kish and his alter ego Urukagina in Lagash.  The acquitted Sargon also took his cue to invade Egypt and “expose the nakedness” of lame duck Pharoah Ny-Userre, “The Pharaoh of the Old Kingdom Exodus.” Nyuserre was the symbolic sacrificial substitute, but there were no actual (royal) deaths in this carefully staged Passion (Power) Play.  As the Noah figure, Nyuserre renewed his reign under a new name, UnasThe Joseph figure, Djed-kare/ Urukagina, was however allowed to found the 6th Dynasty under the name Teti, and may have retained a share of the rule of Lagash under his name of Aki-galaguba (Akki) or as Akurgal.  Ur-Zababa at least got to see his young son Sargon confirmed in the role of Horus the Younger/Ham.  This did not guarantee succession to the Great Throne, but Sargon was at this point still in the game.n

As bizarre as the above sequence of events may be, they followed a stock model based on the primal scene of the gods (as set forth in the Enuma Elish). The god Ninurta (namesake of Ur-Zababa and patron god of Kish) had to be willing to sacrifice his own son Shara (Horus/Sargon) in order to challenge the upstart oppressor Anzud/Zu.  This defining battle among the gods resulted in the heroic death of Ninurta (a.k.a. Marduk) as well as the eventual sacrifice of Zu (a.k.a. Kingu).  However, it also resulted in the birth of a new generation of gods.  Re-enacting the fearsome (cosmological/universal) actions of the gods was the accepted practice of the royal family for renewing their own authority and fertility.

It was 20 years before Sargon was able to prove his ability to produce the most qualified royal heir, and for his rivals to fail in this essential task.  This entitled Sargon to confirm his status as a true Horus and also to complete his role as the Marduk/Moses of his time.  Teti was removed (this time by rumored assassination) as pharaoh.  In Mesopotamia, Sargon (in the dual role of Ham and Marduk) got the satisfaction of publicly humiliating Lugalzagesio (or his substitute) even as Ham had previously disrespected his “father” Noah (in the role of Kingu).  Lugalzagesi was taken by Sargon from the fortified city of Uruk, the very site of the famous showdown between Enkidu and Gilgamesh.  Lugal-zagesi (as the god Zu/Enkidu) was defeated and led away by Sargon (as the god Ninurta/Marduk/Gilgamesh defeated and led Kingu/Enkidu) to his premature/sacrificial death.p Neither Lugalzagesi nor Teti would have literally been killed in this scripted war.  In the view of court pundits, that made Sargon “better than his ancestors.”

The assumed name Sar-gon (Sharru-ken) connotes “ruler (by/of) right(eousness)/ knowledge/judgment.”  In Egyptian terms, Sargon was claiming to be the “true Horus,” the rightful heir to kingship.  Horus the Younger, the “legitimate” but persecuted heir of Osiris, had been secreted away in the Egyptian marshland by Isis.  In identification, Sargon recorded that he also had been placed in a reed basket as an infant and hidden by his mother in the river.  In the same account, Sargon states that he “did not know his father.”  Horus the Younger was not expected to know his father, because he was born to Osiris posthumously.  His true father Horus the Elder also died prematurely.  Sargon definitely knew his natural father Ur-Zababa/Sahure, but still pretended to have been adopted by Akki.  He also disrespected all of the other senior males of the royal family.  As the Marduk/Moses figure, he had to be “against all the gods.”  In Lagash, Sargon (a.k.a. Ur-Nanshe) emphasized his “Japhethite” ancestry from Gunida (Ashkenaz) son of Gurmu (Gomer), and skipped over his grandfather Hadanish/Khafre (Den/Dodan) and father Ur-Zababa/Sahure.  However, he was the most “disrespectful” of all to Lugalzagesi, i.e., the Noah-figure.

Egypt was a land of extremes, and lent itself to extremes in religion.  The jealous veneration of Ptah was displaced by an even more zealous “monotheism” of Ra.  Any tolerance of 4th Dynasty pharaoh Menkaure was eschewed by the time of pharaoh Unas (end of the 5th Dynasty).  This pharaoh boasted that he “ate the biggest and best gods for breakfast,” and Ptah was as large and lauded as any of the tabled champions of Egypt.  Unas is the first pharaoh who can be said for sure to inscribe the inner walls of “his” pyramid.  The practice that he initiated became known as the Pyramid Texts.  Drought was depicted in the Pyramid Texts of Unas, but there was no mention of the Great One Ptah.  In fact, there are only a handful of references to either Ptah or Khnum by any further Old Kingdom pharaohs.  The water dried up and so did veneration of the water-god.

The dynasty of Sargon was noted not only for the construction of a new capital, but for changes in administration, agriculture, language (transition from Sumerian to Akkadian), religion and especially warfare.  As the latest incarnation of “Moses son of Joseph,” Sargon began his career as an understudy of Akki, who was the innovative Ea/Enki (Joseph-figure) of his generation.  Sargon was only an assumed epithet.  A king-list from Lagash reveals that he had a number of regional names.  Like the Sumerian king-list, the Lagash king-list is recursive (see table below), which allows the prominent names of each king to be preserved.qSargon is naturally given the most emphasis and even introduced as the “Good Shepherd” Ningirsu-ki-ag, “beloved (of the god) Ningirsu.  Ningirsu (Lord Girsu) was leading deity of Lagash and the local name of Ninurta (a.k.a. Marduk/Moses).  This was also the role that Sargon was called upon to play.

The name of Akki, the adoptive father of Sargon, connotes “water reservoir.”  In Akkadian (and later Hebrew), the name Aki or Akki would have connoted “brotherly” or “brother of.”  It was also the custom of the royal family for each senior male to treat the sons of their potential rivals as their own.  As Akki adopted Sargon, so Sargon was obliged to recognize at least one rival prince as his own son.  Although Ush (Rimush) of Umma was perhaps only the fourth oldest prince of his generation, he was apparently superior in rank (at least initially) to Sargon himself, and was assigned the “Judah” role within the Sargon dynasty.  Manishtushu (Ur-Bau) was the eldest prince, so he became the “Reuben.”  Naram-Sin was next and consequently became the “Simeon.” Mannu-Dannu (“Judge Ehud”) was the “Levi.”


Sargon Dynasty Lagash King List 5th & 6th Dynasties
    En-Mesandu (Mesilim) Ny-user-re/Unas
Akki A-ki-gal-a-gub-a   Djed-kare/Teti
Ur-Zababa Urukagina Lamku-Niggena Sahure
Sargon (Tudiya) Ningirsu-ki-ag Ur-Nanshe
Dadu (Dudu)
Pepi I
(Prince Neserkauhor?)
Rimush Enlile-ki-ag   Userkare
Manishtushu Ur-Bau (Ur-Baba) Ur-Bau (Akurgal?)  
Naram-Sin   Enetum/Lumma*
Pepi II
(Prince Hemakhti?)
Gudea   Gudea Pepi III

* Lumma was Eannatum's Tidnum name.

(See Chart 12 for a complete name list of the Egyptian Middle Kingdom Period)

(See Chart 14 for the chronology of this period.)

Urukagina (not to be confused with Akki), one of the local aliases of Sargon’s true father, was a renowned reformer and champion of the common man.  As a young prince Sargon would have been one of a fairly small set of candidates for the Great Throne.  Although not the leading prospect, he would have been given regional kingships as provisional stepping stones.  The legendary/literary name of Sargon (“rightful ruler”) is generally considered to be propaganda, but it now becomes evident that he did more-or-less honorably wait his turn for the election.  (What he did after receiving that election is a different matter!)  Sargon’s kingly career began as the hapless king of Lagash named Ur-Nanshe (and under the tutelage of his actual father Urukagina and adoptive father Aki-galaguba).  Ush of Umma (who later became Sargon’s “son” Rim-ush) initially rejected Sargon as his over-lord and went unpunished (even as Jeroboam later rebelled against Rehoboam).  Ur-Zababa, his assumed “non-father” (but also actual/real father), had taken the young Sargon under his wing, as well, and made him Royal Cupbearer in Kish.  However, tradition seems to have dictated that a Benjamin prince had to be intentionally framed for disloyalty, as in the Biblical story of Benjamin and the “stolen” silver cup (Genesis 42).

The titles given to Sargon in Egypt were also impressive, and reflected his increasing status (as royal sons were being born to him).  Although his princely path was temporarily blocked in Mesopotamia, he was subsequently appointed king (Pepy) and a nomarch (Inyotef) in Egypt.  At the great temple of Karnak in Egypt, this Inyotef was the earliest to be venerated in the “Hall of Ancestors.””r On the other hand, the Akkadian rulers of Mesopotamia recalled a king named Tudiya as their great ancestor.  The name Tudiya means “Beloved or Born of God.”  The name Inyotef is generally not translated by Egyptologists.  However, it means “Born (literally, spit out) of Yo.”  Inyotef is easily recognizable as an Egyptian transliteration of the Akkadian name Tudiya.  The Hebrew roots tef and tud are synonymous, and mean “cherished.”  These roots are also equivalent to the name of Sargon at Lagash, Ningirsu-kiag, “Beloved (of) Ningirsu.”  Tudiya is therefore an epithet of Sargon/Ningirsu-kiag and the source of his Egyptian name Inyotef.  As mentioned above, Sargon does not name is own father, only his legal guardian Akki.  He also does not name his own mother (Ittibel?), but calls her a “changeling.”  In Egypt, the father of Inyotef (adoptive or otherwise) is not known.  Instead, Inyotef is singularly distinguished as the son of the high-ranking princess Ikui.

Sumerian Culture Swept Away in a River of Blood

After “disrespecting” Lugal-zagesi, Sargon and his newly adopted son Rimush recaptured Lagash and the other leading cities of Sumer.  Rimush was perhaps declared a king in Lagash (if he wasn’t already) under the name Enlile-kiag.  Sargon also renewed his kingship in Lagash as En-Girsu-ki-ag, a name that emphasized his expanded typecasting as the next Ninurta/Marduk.  When Rimush was appointed as co-regent of Sargon in Agade, his “older brother” Manishtushu-Irba3 (Ur-Bau) was designated as a king and/or ensi (High Priest) of Lagash in his place.  It was Ur-Bau4who first began restoration of Lagash, however he eventually departed with many ships and men for “Magan and Meluhha.”  In his classic work, The Sumerians, Samuel Noah Kramer notes that in the preceding Sumerian period, these were lands of the Nile, i.e., Egypt and Ethiopia.  They were again considered to be such in the 1st Century BC.  However, during the intervening period of the great Akkadian (“Semitic”) dynasties of Mesopotamia in the 2nd Century BC, scholars presently associate Magan with the lower Persian Gulf and Meluhha with the Indus Valley.  Kramer disagreed and passionately argued that a consistent identification of these regions should apply throughout ancient times.  Consequently, Kramer believed that the conquest of Egypt and Ethiopia was undertaken by Sargon and his dynasty.s Magan and Meluhha can also be associated with Egypt and Ethiopia on linguistic grounds.5 (Actual civil war wouldn’t have allowed such projects.) Charts 14a & 15 show the relationship between the Sargon Dynasty and the Egyptian 11th Dynasty.

Manishtushu sailed beyond the Persian Gulf and defeated 32 kings in battle.t By virtue of his triumph, Manishtushu assumed the pharaonic name Montuhotep (I), and called himself Tepy-aa, “The First One.”  He was not however the first one of Sargon’s dynasty to become a pharaoh.  Ur-Bau appointed a son or younger brother as his co-regent, and also gave him the Egyptian name of Montuhotep (II).  Opinion is divided as to whether it was the first or second Montuhotep that consolidated both Upper and Lower Egypt.  Perhaps it was both, and only the second claimed the throne name, “Uniter of the Two Lands.”  At least part of the conquest of Egypt, if that’s what it was, must have occurred in Sargon’s own lifetime, as he boasted that the ships of Magan and Meluhha moored at his own new capital city of Agade. 

After conquering Egypt, Montuhotep II declared his independence from Mesopotamia and burned his bridges behind him.  The statue of Montuhotep II represents a man of imposing size and strength.  Rimush (Montuhotep A) was in his younger days a mighty champion and military hero.  However, as the empire expanded so did his girth.  In the Judges account, Rimush (Ri-mu)u is called Eglon, meaning “vitulant,” i.e., calf-like or rotund.  Eglon was king of Moab, which in those days referred to the “Father-Land” of Mesopotamia, and not the Trans-Jordan.  On a trip back home, Ehud (“Uniter”) presented his tribute to Eglon.  He then returned to deliver a personal message, as though he had forgotten to tell the king of some urgent matter before leaving.  Having already received the tribute of Ehud, the reassured Eglon sent away his attendants.  Ehud then revealed to Eglon a long dagger, which was thrust into Eglon’s bulging belly!  (Again this may have just been a dramatic means for Rimush to finally concede the contest to Sargon & Sons.)  After killing Eglon (Rimush), Ehud (Montuhotep II) quickly fled to Canaan, where he had the protection of his own army and a secure kingdom.  From there, the Book of Judgesv indicates that Ehud was able to dominate “Moab” for a long time. 

A Mesopotamian record speaks obliquely of Rimush, referring to him as the one “whom his servants killed with their tablets.”w The particular servant who killed him turns out to be the son of Manishtushu.  However, the above phrase indicates that propaganda carved out by the scribal pen was even then mightier than Ehud’s sword in destroying the legacy of Rimush and his reign.  It also suggests that his leading son was simply trumped by one of Sargon’s in royal standing.  Rimush was not succeeded by a true son, or by the “twin/tanist” Manishtushu-Irba.  Rather, the “second prince” Naram-Sin was elevated to the co-regency under Sargon.  Naram-Sin replaced Ur-Bau in Lagash as king (but possibly not as ensi), and the daughter of Ur-Bau was even removed as high priestess in Ur.  Naram-Sin, called by the name of E-ana-tuma (or Eannatum) in Lagash, was eventually able to mount successful campaigns as far west as the Mediterranean Sea and into the Taurus Mountains of modern day Turkey.  On the island of Cyprus he was proclaimed a god.  To the north he subdued Armenia, and to the east he annexed Elam.

Naram-Sin was then able to turn his attention to the “rebel” prince in Egypt.  In his inscriptions, Naram-Sin claimed to have captured the king of Egypt, who is variously called Manium and Mannu-Dannu.6 Man is a variant of Mon or Mon(t)u.x Dan or Dannu means “Judge.”  The lot of Sargon’s “third prince” Mannu-Dannu was to rule Magan and Meluhha as a “servant” to the greater throne.  Ehud is in fact one of the first judges of Israel mentioned in the Book of Judges.  The same enigmatic account (mentioned above) in connection with the death of Rimush speaks of Manishtushu as he “whom his palace killed.”y Now it was Mannu-Dannu’s turn to take a dive in yet another scripted regime change.  He no doubt resumed his princely functions under other aliases.

After deposing (if not disposing of) Manishtushu/Montuhotep I, Naram-Sin became pharaoh in Egypt under the name of Inyotef (I).  Naram means “beloved,” therefore Inyotef (as a transliteration of the Sumerian Ki-ag and Semitic Tud-i-ya, “Beloved of God”) was the expected choice.z Inyotef was also an Egyptian name of Sargon.  The kings named Inyotef collectively become the new/second Adam, whereas the kings named Montuhotep are the first Patriarch named Seth.  (Montu is an epithet of the Egyptian god Set.  Also note that the 6th Dynasty king name of Nemty is an anagram of Montu.)  An inscription of Naram-Sin boasts that he quarried stones in Magan (Egypt) and carried back other spoils from his campaign.  From this moment forward, he referred to himself as “the divine Naram-Sin, the mighty, the god of Akkad, king of the four quarters.”aa It was a status that he would not vaunt forever.  Despite, or in spite, of his self-deification, Naram-Sin was overthrown suddenly by a horde of mountain men from the north.

The Guti, as these people were called, did not descend upon Naram-Sin from the Zagros Mountains on their own accord.  They were marshaled there by Gudea, a younger brother or half-brother of Naram-Sin.  Gudea was not a noble savage.  He was no more Gutian than Gulliver was a Lilliputian.  It would not even be proper to call him a noble.  He was a pure blooded royal.  He was a younger son (or grandson) of Sargon and the son-in-law of the murdered Ur-Bau.  The Guti tribe had earlier been subdued by Sargon (who was himself repeating the exploit of Lugal-anne-mundu/Nimrod).  From that time forward, the kings of the Sargon Dynasty ruled over the Guti, and assumed Gutian names.  In the case of Gudea, his name was so similar to the tribe name of Guti that it probably was not necessary for him to adopt a Gutian name, per se.

Like the man himself, the name Gudea is both short and extremely rich.  His name would have had a natural appeal to Gutians.  It was equally winsome to both Sumerian and Akkadian speakers.  One Sumerian scholar defines Gu-dea as “the one who is called to power.”ab Within the multi-lingual royal court, gu-dea (deo) would also signify “(the one who is ) proclaimed (as) God,” or in a Biblical sense, declared to be Israel.  The name probably reflected the newly won status of Sargon at the birth of this son, however Gudea made both the name and the title his own (see Chapter 7).  Taken as Gu-de-a, the name suggests “Verbosity.” ac If archaeology is any indication, Gudea was a prolific communicator.  Two cylinder scrolls containing almost 1400 lines of text commemorate the painstaking process and intense passion with which Gudea built and dedicated the main temple of Lagash in Girsu.  It is the lengthiest of all surviving Sumerian Another Sumerologist interprets the name Gudea as something akin to "prophet."ae The "Guda" was an important type of Sumerian priest.


Mesopotamia Egypt (6th & 9th Dynasties) Egypt (11th Dynasty)
Akki Teti (Djed-kare)  
Ush / Rimush Userkare / Nemty-em-saf I Montuhotep A
Pepy I / Akhtoy I / Khety
Prince Hor-em-saf
Prince Qed-Nes
Inyotef A
Nimrod Teti-ankh-khem  
Ur-Bau / Manishtu
Prince Neser-kau-hor? Montuhotep I
Naram-Sin Pepy II / Akhtoy II
Prince Hem-akhti
Vizier Mere-ruka (Henun?)
Inyotef I
Prince Ka-em-tjenet
Prince Ka-hotep
Vizier Ka-gemini
Montuhotep II
Shar-kali-shari Nempty-em-saf II? Montuhotep III
Pepy III? Inyotef II
Ur-Ningirsu Neferkare II? Inyotef III


Broken down as Gud-e-a, this name connotes "Rampaging Bull."af This interpretation reflects the rage with which Gudea led the Gutian horde against Naram-Sin.  Gudea is also very similar in form to the Akkadian names Tudiya and Dudu, both meaning “beloved of God.”  An even more liberal translation would be as a hybrid Sumerian-Akkadian name, that is, Gud-ea, “Bull of Ea.”  Ea/Enki was called the “Bull of Eridu.”  In Egypt, the sacred bull of Ptah (Ea/Enki) was the renowned Apis Bull.  At this time, a transition from Sumerian to Semitic language was taking place.  The Susa monument of Manishtu(shu)-Irba, father-in-law of Gudea, was inscribed “in a language which is a mixture of Sumerian and Semitic.”  It was also in the shape of a pyramid and made from Egyptian diorite (see Endnote 3).

The death of Montuhotep I (Ur-Bau) and/or Montuhotep II was avenged by his son-in-law Gudea.  At least this would have been one justification for the coup.  Once in power in Mesopotamia, Gudea also usurped the Egyptian name of his vanquished predecessor, He is known today as Inyotef II.  Just as Naram-Sin had done, he brought back stone from Magan (Egypt) for use in his own monuments.  Gudea rebuilt at least 16 temples in his beloved district of Girsu (part of Lagash).  In addition to stone from Egypt, he gathered exotic and precious materials from many other locations.  Sadly almost nothing remains other than the seals and a number of the statues of Gudea that were carved from that Egyptian diorite.  Experts are divided in their opinion of the artistic excellence of the statues.  To some they are considered bland, others call them exquisite.7 Those who depreciate the quality of the statuary likely do so because Gudea is presently not considered to have been a Sumerian prince, but a barbarian of inferior pedigree.

  2. Djoser (variants Zoser and Zeser) is the popular Egyptian name of the Biblical Mizraim, the brother of Cush (Horus-Aha/Scorpion). See Chapter 4 for discussion and notes. The Egyptian 1st Dynasty only contains two unique names, that of Aha (Cush) and Semerkhet (Shem). The other 1st Dynasty kings are listed under alternate names in the 3rd and 4th Dynasty king-lists. See Chart 14 for the chronology of the early dynastic period in Egypt.
  3. "The Tradition of Seven Lean Years in Egypt," from the Drought Stela (Ptolemaic Period), Ancient Near Eastern Texts, James B. Pritchard, ed., p 31.
  4. Ecclesiastes 1:9-11 (NIV). The philosophy of Ecclesiastes is connected to the Egyptian notion of neheh, cyclical time. Until the Egyptian 19th Dynasty, it was believed that all things were destined to repeat. For an expanded definition of neheh, see Jan Assmann,The Mind of Egypt, pp 18, 242-246. See also Meeks and Favard-Meeks, Daily Life of the Egyptian Gods, p 19.
  5. Nicolas Grimal, A History of Ancient Egypt, p 69.
  6. Huni ("Smiter") is the name of Narmer in the 3rd Dynasty king-list. The reign of Huni/Narmer was contemporary with that of a half-brother Snofru, who possibly also became his son-in-law and the father of his successor.
  7. Nicolas Grimal, A History of Ancient Egypt, p 70.
  8. The Stairway to Heaven, pp 256-282; The Wars of Gods and Men, pp 136-7.
  9. Miroslav Verner, The Pyramids, pp 217-223.
  10. The Hebrew epithet dod means "loved one."
  11. Daniel 10:13,20. The idea also carries over strongly into the New Testament theology of Paul, see Romans 8:28; Ephesians 3:10, 6:12; Colossians 1:16, 2:15.
  12. The Egyptian god Atum incorporated both Re (Utu/Shamash) and the twin/dwarf sun Pepy/Apep/Apophis (Suen/Sin).  Adding Geb (Ninurta) was something new.  By the start of the Egyptian 12th Dynasty, the exclusive trinities of Atum-Re and Marduk gave way to the all-inclusive formulation of the god Amen.  See next Chapter.
  13. There was a repetition of the “Judah Twins” motif in the Middle and New Kingdoms.
  14. Tao of the Egyptian 17th Dynasty would later also share the Ninurta/Marduk/Moses typecasting with his own son Djehutymes, see Chapter 10.  When Sargon did become King of Kish, he made complete identification with the god of his father Zababa/Ninurta, and also assumed the Marduk-like epithet, Il-aba, “The Ancestor/Father (of the Gods). The 17th Dynasty pharaohs seemed to also emulate the 3rd Dynasty, as well. Sanakht and Sekhemkhet of the 3rd Dynasty are close in form to the 17th Dynasty throne names Senakht-enre Tao (a.k.a. Apophis I) and Seqen-enre Tao II (a.k.a. Apophis II). If so, this further strengthens the dual association of Djoser/Djeser with the Serpent god (“Apophis/Lahmu”) and with Osiris (“Kingu”).”
  15. S.N. Kramer, The Sumerians, p 59.
  16. For an in-depth discussion of these cosmological parallels, see, A Twisted History: Genesis and the Cosmos.
  17. "Rulers of Lagash."; Sargon, "son of a gardener":
  18. Nicolas Grimal, A History of Ancient Egypt, p 143.
  19. S.N. Kramer, The Sumerians, pp 276-288.
  20. S. N. Kramer, The Sumerians, p 61.
  21. Compare the Sumerian root mu, meaning "fattened."
  22. Judges 3:30
  23. Lost Civilizations, Sumer: Cities of Eden, p 124, by the editors of Time-Life Books, Alexandria, Virginia.
  24. The Semitic Rim/Aram/Man are closely related to the Egyptian Montu.
  25. Lost Civilizations, Sumer: Cities of Eden, p 124.
  26. Naram might also connote N'aram, "serpent-king of the mountains." Also, compare Nar and na'ar, "overthrow."
  27. Lost Civilizations, Sumer: Cities of Eden, pp 124-5.
  28. Lost Civilizations, Sumer: Cities of Eden, p 139. Cf Guedinna, part of Lagash.
  29. "Flowing speech" from gu, "throat, eat, swallow, speak" and de-a, "to pour"
  30. S. N. Kramer, The Sumerians, p 67.
  31. Jean Bottero, Mesopotamia, p 295.
  32. "Breaking out (of the) Bull" from gud, "bull" and e-a, "emerge, take out" (See on-line Sumerian Lexicon by John A. Halloran,
  33. The name Gudea is an obvious variant of the Akkadian name Tudiya/Dudu, which is in turn equivalent to the Egyptian Inyotef.

Note 1:

Lab-asher, "happy mouth, labor, fairness?" or "black and white?" i.e. mixed? leb, heart, flame

Lab, "white" or Leb, "heart, flame."

leb (3820) the heart, wisdom

laban (3835) to be (or become) white; also (as denom. from 3843) to make bricks.

lebenah (3843) a brick (from the whiteness of the clay)

labash (3847) wrap around, i.e. (by impl.) to put on a garment or clothe (oneself, or another), lit or fig.

libhyethen (Spelling from American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language) or livyathan (3882) from 3867 a wreathed animal, i.e. a serpent (espec. the crocodile or some other large sea-monster); fig. the constellation of the dragon; also as a symbol of Bab.:-- leviathan, mourning.

lavah (3867) prop. to twine, i.e. (by impl.) to unite, to remain; also to borrow (as a form of obligation) or (caus.) to lend

Lubbiy (3864) to thirst, i.e. a dry region

asher (833) aw-share'; or ashar , aw-shar'; to be straight (used in the widest sense, espec. to be level, right, happy); fig. to go forward, be honest, prosper

osher, o'sher; from 833; happiness, happy.

ashur (838) from 833 in the sense of going; a step

Cf The Step Pyramid of Djoser

Cf Ser/Asar, Osiris

Other connotations of the roots Esh/Ish/Ash would be "out pour" (793), "to flow out" (7640), to "grow out" (7641, 7644), to "branch out from" (7640), "foundation" (787, 803), "sacrifice" (801) "step forth/out" (838), "split into a forked tongue as a flame" (7632), "seventh" (7637), "black" (Ashur), and (784) "burning, fiery, flaming, hot."

Lab-Ashur would connote black and white, i.e., mixed or inter-racial.

Djoser is sometimes written as Zoser. Compare Zoser and zohar (6713) to dazzle; sheen, i.e. whiteness:-- white

Note 2:

The Middle Kingdom pharaohs built mud brick pyramids, a few of which have also been carbon dated. Quoting from an article written by members of the David H. Koch Pyramids Radiocarbon Project:

"Two samples from mud bricks and mud layers on the ruined core of the pyramidof Amenemhet I produced dates more than 800 years younger than the end of his reign in 1962 B.C. As Dieter Arnold of the Metropolitan Museum later informed us, there was settlement from Dynasty 13 through the New Kingdom Ramesside Period (Dynasties 19 and 20) at this pyramid. Here the radiocarbon dating gives a loud and clear signal of a mistaken sampling - apparently these two samples were material from the later settlement."

See, "Dating the Pyramids," Archaeology, Sept/Oct '99, p 31.

The "apparently mistaken" samples of the Koch study were actually quite consistent with the chronology proposed here. It was necessary for Koch to conclude that a later settlement at or near the site was responsible for material that was on the pyramid itself. The article goes on to say that they had "better luck" with straw samples taken from the pyramid of Senusret II. Samples were also taken from the pyramid of Amenemhet III, however the article does not mention any dates that may have been determined for this material. The only thing that comes across "loud and clear" is that the established chronology is so far off from reality that scientific dating cannot be reasonably conducted. Researchers are forced to throw out the good samples and collect a "statistically significant" group of "false" readings. This is a challenge in itself. However, to do otherwise would guarantee academic ridicule and possible discrediting.

Note 3:

Inscription linking the names Manishtu-shu and Ur-Bau

Memoires de la Mission, vol i., p l. ix.

Délégation en Perse, Memories publiès sous la direction de M. J. de Morgan, délégué-général (quarto, Leroux, editeur, Paris, 1905)

Note 4:

"Bau was a goddess worshipped almost exclusively at Lagash." (J. Black and A. Green, Gods, Demons and Symbols of Ancient Mesopotamia, p 39) More precisely, Bau would have been the name of Ninti/Ninhursag used almost exclusively at Lagash.

Ba-u, meaning "fertile, provider," was the local name of Ninhursag at the city of Lagash where she was considered the consort of her son Zababa (Ninurta), patron god of Lagash.

See ANET, pp 165, 533

Bau in Egyptian is the plural of Ba, the deceased soul. Manium could be interpreted as the plural of Mane, the deceased soul.

"Land of Thoth," "state of the spirits/deceased," Egypt was burial place of gods and god-kings.

Compare the Biblical Kirjaith Arba, "city of Arba" and Irba (Manishtushu)

Note 5:


magen (4043) maw-gane'; from 1598; a shield (i.e. the small one or buckler); fig. A protector; also the scaly hide of the crocodile:-- x armed, buckler, defence, ruler, + scale, shield.

magan (4042) maw-gan'; a denom. From 4043; prop. to shield; encompass with; fig. to rescue, to hand safely over (i.e. surrender):-- deliver

meginnah (4044) a covering (in a bad sense), i.e. blindness or obduracy:-- sorrow.

migereth (4045) reproof (i.e. curse):-- rebuke.

maggephah (4046) a pestilence; by anal. defeat:-- (x be) plague(-d), slaughter, stroke.


milluah (4396) mil-loo-aw'; fem. of 4394; a filling , i.e. setting (of gems):-- inclosing, setting.

millu (4394) mil-loo'; from 4390; a fulfilling (only in plur.), i.e. (lit.) a setting (of gems), or (techn.) consecration (also concr. a dedicatory sacrifice):-- consecration, be set.

mala (4390) maw-law'; to fill . be at an end, be expired, be fenced, . replenish, satisfy, set .

Ethiopia was considered the furthest extent of the "world" in which they had been commanded to "replenish," i.e., refill with their own descendants.

Mizraim (4714) dual of 4693; Mitsrajim, i.e., fortresses, defenses, figuratively Egypt.

Matsuwr (4693) maw-tsore'; the same as 4692 in the sense of a limit; Egypt (as the border of Pal.):-- besieged places, defense, fortified.

Note 6:

Mannu-dannu, king of Egypt." Dan means "judge," and this is possibly why Ehud is named as one of the first judges of Israel. Variously called Manium. The name Manium is rich in meaning.

Mannu-Dannu (Montu the Judge)

men (4482) mane; to apportion; a part

manah (4490) maw-naw'; division/lot/portion

Cf meniy (4507) apportioner

Dan (1835) dawn; from (1777); judge

duwn (1777) doon; to rule; by impl. to judge (as umpire); also to strive (as at law):-- contend, execute (judgment), judge, minister judgment, plead (the cause), at strife, strive.

Note 7:

Information and Images of Gudea on the Web: (Gudea of Lagash) (Classical Agade) (Seated statue of Gudea, prince of Lagash) (Mesopotamian votive 'nail' with the name of Gudea) (Rulers of Lagash) (The Building of Ningirsu's Temple) (Head of Gudea) (Guide to Sumerian Texts) (Slides of Mesopotamia)

Gudea in Classical Mesopotamian Studies:

Samuel Noah Kramer, The Sumerians: Their History, Culture, and Character
Hans J. Nissen, The Early History of the Ancient Near East
Georges Roux, Ancient Iraq

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