Wednesday, June 24, 2009

The Six Hyksos Kings (a Possible Retraction)

As I mentioned in my previous post, there seems to be a problem with the list of kings I proposed as being the six "Great Kings" of the Fifteenth Dynasty.

Sheshi has almost universally been assumed to be one of these kings. But scholars have recently realized that seals of Sheshi found at Uronarti and Mirgissa (in Nubia) are in contexts that would make Sheshi contemporary with the early Thirteenth Dynasty.

Additionally, a seal of Yakubher has been found at Shikmona which seems to be contemporary with the mid-Thirteenth Dynasty (Ryholt, K. "The Political Situation in Egypt During the Second Intermediate Period", Copenhagen: University of Copenhagen, p. 42). K. Ryholt would place both of these kings in the Fourteenth Dynasty (Ryholt, p. 46), which ruled at the same time as the Thirteenth Dynasty.

It should be noted however, that Dr. Ryholt has reconstructed the sequence of Second Intermediate Period kings differently from other scholars and that the evidence for that sequence is based on the stylistic developement of scarabs. I have commented in an earlier post that using scarabs as evidence for much of anything is dangerous, as the number of scarabs preserved from the Second Intermediate Period is small. Additionally, there is no consensus whatsoever on how scarabs could be used (or even if they should be used) to sequence kings.

Time will tell if Dr. Ryholt is correct in removing Sheshi and Yakubher from the Fifteenth Dynasty.

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