- kingdom - 1400BC onwards
There is mention of the Ahhiyawa kingdom and people in the Hittite
records, and for a time the two people had a close relationship.
It is not known where the Ahhiyawa kingdom was originally located
- it has been suggested that the Ahhiyawa people could be identified
with the Archaeans (Mycenaean Greeks) and therefore the land
of Ahhiyawa could be the kingdom of Mycenae., equally it has
also been argued that Ahhiyawa could have been one of the islands
of Crete, Rhodes or Cyprus.
- One of the Sea Peoples, mid 1200BC
A group of peoples who were part of the Sea-Peoples collation
who along with Libya attacked Egypt in Year 5 of Merneptah's
reign. Although as there is no mention of the Akawasha in the
wall-reliefs of the battle, they are mentioned in the inscriptions
describing how they along with some of the other Sea-Peoples
had their hands amputated.
- Invaders of Egypt - 680BC
Egypt came into conflict with Assyria over the control of states
in Syria and Palestine - eventually Egypt was invaded by the
Assyrian army and the Nubian pharaoh Taharka was forced to flee
back to the south. Worse to come for Egypt, in 664BC the Assyrian
king Ashurbanipal returned to again invade Egypt (following the
Nubian ruler Taharka again entering Egypt), this time Thebes
was sacked - Ashurbanipal returned to Niveh with treasure captured
from the once-great capital of Egypt.
In 616BC Egypt and Assyria forged an alliance due to a new threat
from the Babylionians and Medes.
- inhabitants of Byblos
Ancient Egypt has a long record of trading with the Byblos -
it was a major port on the Syrian Coast, it was from here that
the supplies of cedarwood were relayed to Egypt. Byblos was independent
from Egypt but was heavily influenced by Egyptian styles and
- allies of Egypt ~660BC
The Carians were a people that lived in Asia Minor, they were
hired as mercenaries by Psammetichus I (along with Greeks and
Phoenicians) to fight such people as the Assyrians and Nubians.
The Carians were used throughout the 26th Dynasty a policy not
always liked by the Egyptian population.
From its small origins - first as a state, the Hittites were
to build their country into an Empire. They came from the north
of Asia Minor (Anatolia), but their Empire grew to such an extant
that they came into conflict with many of the other powers in
the area - especially Egypt and Assyria. The two pharaohs Seti
I and Ramesses II (The Battle of Kadesh) most notably had battles
with the Hittites. Egypt and the Hittites were eventually to
sign a treaty (each claiming that the other had been forced to
sign first), but after this the two countries were to exchange
letters, gifts and so on. The Hittite empire was to eventually
end when the Assyrians conquered their lands and make them part
of their Assyrian empire.
- Kings of Egypt - Dynasties 15 & 16 - 1650-1532BC
The foreign Hyksos kings ruled Egypt during the 2nd Intermediate
Period, - the kings of the 16th Dynasty and the Theban Princes
of the 17th ruled simultaneously but with a worsening relantionship
until civil war broke out.
According to ancient Egyptian history, the Hyksos came from an
obscure country and invaded Egypt 'without a blow'. Also according
to legend once the Hyksos wererulers of Egypt they burnt temples,
burnt the cities, they lived at Avaris (a site in the delta -
Lower Egypt). Eventually they would be defeated and forced out
of Egypt by the founder of the 18th Dynasty - Ahmose I.
The ancient historian took the word 'Hyksos' to mean Shepherd
King, but modern thinking instead takes 'Hyksos' to mean 'Foreign
Kings' taking from the Egyptian word meaning "Rulers of
foreign Countries'. It is thought that the Hyksos people were
a group of Palestine Leaders forced into Egypt.
The Jewish people have a great link with Egypt. The Bible relates
how Joseph was sold into slavery and entered Egypt - he eventually
gained status and wealth (by first interpreting the dreams of
Pharaoh), the then brought his people (the Tribe of Israel) to
settle with him in Egypt. Over the centuries the descendants
of these people become part of the slave force forced to work
for the Pharaoh before being brought out of Egypt by Moses in
Although no direct evidence of any of these events have yet been
found in Egypt, objects have been found at Elephantine belonging
to a large Jewish community dating from the Persian Period. On
the island there was a temple built to Yahweh close to a temple
of the Egyptian god Khnum (the Jewish temple was burnt down,
but after successfully petitioning the Persian governor, the
temple was re-built).
Other events in the bible relate to the attack on Jerusalem by
a Egyptian King Shishak (identified with Shsoshenq).
1567 - 1320BC
Tombs dating to the 18th Dynasty in Egypt show foreign people
bringing tribute to Egypt - amongst these foreign people is a
group referred to as 'Men of Keftiu' from the 'Islands in the
Midst of the Sea'.
There is plenty of speculation as to who these people were, the
location of the island has been suggested to be the Biblical
Caphtor / or Crete / or some part of Asia Minor - however, the
most favoured answer is that the Keftians were envoys sent from
Minoan Crete, and the 'Islands in the Midst of the Sea' were
other Aegean Islands at that point also under Crete's control.
The phrase 'Libu' first appears in the Ramesside period - it
refers to a certain tribe. It was with other Libyan tribes (Tjemhu,
Tjehnyu and Meshwesh) who attempted to invade and settle in the
Delta (the Sea-Peoples also united with them occasionally).
Ramesses II built a line of forts on the western coast to help
repel future attacks. But the Libyan tribes returned for a fresh
attempt in Year 5 of Merneptah's reign, following this second
failure they attempting again in Years 5,8 and 11 in the reign
of Ramesses III.
In the New Kingdom the term 'Medjay' described a Policeman -
the Medjay would patrol and guard the desert frontiers, protect
cemeteries and maintained order throughout Egypt.
The word 'Medjay' originally dates back to the Old Kingdom, when
the word is then used to describe a group of desert tribesmen
in Nubia who are recruited into the Egyptian army as scouts and
Although first mentioned in the time of Amenhotep III, these
people did not really enter into Egyptian affairs until the time
of Ramesses II, Merneptah and Ramesses III - when they joined
forces with the Libyans and attacked Egypt. In Year 11 of Ramesses
III's reign the Meshwesh again attacked Egypt, but this time
their allies also included the Sea-Peoples. Once more the Meshwesh
met with defeat, this time, however, the chief himself was captured.
Descendants of prisoners taken during these battles were allowed
to settle in Egypt - eventually in 945BC a chief of these 'Egyptian'
Meshwesh was to become Pharaoh himself and begin the 22nd Dynasty.
- Kingdom - second millennium BC
During the 18th Dynasty, the Mitanni Kingdom was a major power
for Egypt to deal with. Egypt and the Mitanni first met as enemies
but soon the relationship changed to being allies. Amenhotep
III especially had close ties with the Mitanni kings Shuttarna
and Tushratta. Both Mitanni kings sent their daughters to become
a wife of Amenhotep III (Ghilukhepa from Shuttarna, Tadukhepa
from Tushratta). It is thought that Kiya wife of Akhenaten was
also of Mitanni origin.
The Mitanni kingdom came to an end when Suppiluliumas launched
an Hittite attack upon the kingdom - Tushratta was killed, once
he was dead internal and external conflict split the kingdom.
- one of the Sea-Peoples 1198-1166BC
One of the Sea Peoples that fought Ramesses III. They have been
suggested to have been people who had immigrated into Palestine
and became Philistines - the bible suggest their original homeland
to be Caphtor which itself may have been Crete or Cilicia.
The Egyptian scenes of the battle with the Sea People show the
Peleset to be clean-shaven, wear a panelled kilt, a chest protector
and a circle of upright reeds or leather strips on their head.
From their beginnings as an obscure Iranian tribe, they grew
in just over a generation to having the largest Empire in the
ancient world to that point. The Persian Empire of the Achaemenid
dynasty stretched from central Asia to the Indus, from Egypt
to the Mediterranean. The Empire was to last 200 years from the
late 6th Century BC until Darius III was defeated by Alexander
the Great in 311BC.
Alexander the Great's Hellenistic rule did not reach far beyond
the cities of the Persian Empire - the Persian culture and religion
survived for centuries after, to be continued by descendants
of the Achaemenid kings.
Originally a term used by the ancient Greeks for the Canaanites
- although this term was expanded to include all the people who
lived in the coastal area of Syria / Palestine and were of an
The Phoenicians had a great deal of contact with ancient Egypt
via the port of Byblos both politically and through trade (this
contact dates back to the Old Kingdom).
Phoenicians were used as mercenaries by kings of the 26th Dynasty
in Egypt - and also helped to modernise the Egyptian navy at
- people and land of
It is not known exactly where the land of Punt was actually located,
but it was somewhere to the southeast of Egypt - probably on
the east coast of Africa near the south end of the Red Sea. The
Egyptians make references as early as the 5th Dynasty and expeditions
were first made there in the Old Kingdom.
Punt was the supply for tree-gum (myrrh or frankincense) which
were used in Egyptian temple rituals. The Egyptians obviously
regarded the land of Punt as somewhere exotic and mysterious.
The reliefs from the temple of Hatshepsut at Deir el-Bahri have
many reliefs showing an expedition sent to Punt.
- Conquerors and rulers of Egypt - 30BC - AD600
Egypt was governed by the Roman senate, as were most other major
Roman provinces - instead it became the personal property of
Octavian Augustus to govern. Egypt no longer had a king or capital
city, was no longer an independent country - it was a district
of the Roman Empire, its purpose was to supply grain for the
people of Rome. However, Roman emperors still had themselves
portrayed as pharaohs - this gave them the ancient right to do
what they want with the land and its people (temples in the style
of Egyptian pharaohs were also built for the same reason).
When Christianity was declared to be the state religion of Roman
Empire all temples to the old gods in Egypt were closed.
In AD395 the Roman Empire was split into two, Egypt came under
control of Byzantium.
(reigns of Merneptah and Ramesses III)
A name which was used to describe a group of people / tribes
who attacked Egypt in the reigns of Merneptah and Ramesses III
so that they and their families might settle in the delta. The
story of the battles is told on the walls of the temples at Karnak
and Medinet Habu (the story also is told in the Great Harris
The Sea-People originally attacked the Hittites, Cyprus, coastal
cities of Syria - they then travelled down through Palestine
and attacked Egypt along with Libyan tribes. Some of the tribes
(Peleset and Tjekker) did settle in Palestine, while others did
side with the Egyptians, joined the Egyptian army and eventually
became landowners in Egypt.
- one of the Sea-Peoples
One of the many tribes that made up the Sea-People that attacked
Egypt in the reign of Merneptah (Year 5) and Ramesses III (Years
8). Egyptian scenes show that the Sheklesh prisoners had their
hands removed (and were also circumcised) - these hands were
then presented to the King as enemy count (the Sherden, Akawasha
and Tursha tribes also received similar treatment).
- one of the Sea-Peoples
A tribe who fought both with and against the Egyptians. Eventually
after entering into military service for Egypt they were to own
and cultivate land within Egypt.
It is thought that the Sherden people may originally have come
from Cyprus, but ultimately settled in Sardinia (an ancient Phoenician
inscription found there names the island as Shardan).
- one of the Sea-Peoples
The Teresh people (also known as the Tursha) fought against Egypt
during the reign of Merneptah, these people were part of the
Reliefs in Egypt which show the Teresh depict them as being bearded,
wear pointed kilts, strips of leather / linen protect their chest
and carry either spears or a scimitar.
They are thought to have been the Tyrsenoi (ancestors of the
An ancient Egyptian name for a tribe that occupied a part of
Libya. They were closely linked with another Libyan tribe - the
The Tjehnyu joined forces with other Libyan tribes - the Meshwesh
and the Libu in attacking Egypt during the reign of Ramesses
II, the Tjehnyu were also to join the Sea-People in attacking
A tribe from Libya that attacked Egypt so that they could settle
in the Delta. In temple scenes which depict the battle between
the Egyptians, the Sea-Peoples and Libyans - the Tjemhu are shown
wearing a headdress of upright feathers with a large curl of
hair hanging down one side of their face.