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This webpage reproduces a section of
The Fragments


(Loeb Classical Library edition, 1940)

The text is in the public domain.

This page has been carefully proofread
and I believe it to be free of errors.
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 p235  Appendix IV
The Book of Sôthis1 or The Sôthic Cycle

(from Syncellus)

The years of the kings of Egypt, called Mestraea of old.

1. Mestraïm, also called Mênês, 35 years.

2. Kourôdês, 63 years.

3. Aristarchus, 34 years.

4. Spanius, 36 years.

5 and 6. Two kings, unrecorded, 72 years.

7. Ôsiropis, 23 years.

8. Sesonchôsis, 49 years.

9. Amenemês, 29 years.

10. Amasis, 2 years.

11. Acesephthrês, 13 years.

12. Anchoreus, 9 years.

13. Armiÿses, 4 years.

 p237  14. Chamoïs,2 12 years.

15. Miamûs, 14 years.

16. Amesêsis, 65 years.

17. Usês, 50 years.

18. Ramesês, 29 years.

19. Rames(s)omenês, 15 years.

20. Usimarê(s),3 31 years.

21. Ramessêseôs,4 23 years.

22. Ramessamenô, 19 years.

He is the first Pharaoh mentioned in the Holy Scriptures. In his reign the patriarch Abraham went down into Egypt.5

23. Ramessê Iubassê, 39 years.

24. Ramessê, son of Uaphrês,6 29 years.

25. Concharis, 5 years.

In this 5th year of Concharis, the 25th king of Egypt, during the Sixteenth  p239 Dynasty of the Sôthic Cycle as it is called in Manetho, the total of years from the first king and founder of Egypt, Mestraïm, is 700 belonging to 25 kings, i.e. from the general cosmic year 2776, in which the Dispersion took place in the 34th year of the rule of Arphaxad7 and the 5th year of Phalec.8 Next in the succession were 4 kings of Tanis, who ruled Egypt in the Seventeenth Dynasty for 254 [259] years, according to the following computation.

26. Silitês (the first of the 6 kings of the Seventeenth Dynasty in Manetho), 19 years.

27. Baiôn, 44 years.

28. Apachnas, 36 years.

29. Aphôphis, 61 years.

Some say that this king was at first called Pharaoh, and that in the 4th year of his kingship Joseph came as a slave into Egypt.9 He appointed Joseph lord of Egypt and all his kingdom in the 17th year of his rule, having learned from him the interpretation of the dreams and having thus proved his divine wisdom.  p241 The Holy Scriptures, however, give the name of Pharaoh also to the king of Egypt in the time of Abraham.

30. Sethôs, 50 years.

31. Cêrtôs, according to Josephus, 29 years; according to Manetho, 44 years.

32. Asêth, 20 years.

This king added the 5 intercalary days to the year:10 in his reign, they say, the Egyptian year became a year of 365 days, being previously reckoned as 360 days only. In his time the bull-calf was deified and called Apis.

33. Amôsis, also called Tethmôsis, 26 years.

34. Chebrôn, 13 years.

35. Amemphis, 15 years.

36. Amensês, 11 years.

37. Misphragmuthôsis, 16 years.

38. Misphrês, 23 years.

39. Tuthmôsis, 39 years.

40. Amenôphthis, 34 years.

This is the king who was reputed to be Memnôn and a speaking statue. Many  p243 years later Cambysês, the Persian king, cut this statue in two, deeming that there was sorcery in it, as Polyaenus of Athens11 relates.

The Ethiopians, removing from the River Indus, settled near Egypt.

41. Ôrus, 48 years.

42. Achencherês, 25 years.

43. Athôris, 29 years.

44. Chencherês, 26 years.

45. Achêrrês, 8 or 30 years.

46. Armaeus, also called Danaus, 9 years.

This king, fleeing from his brother Ramessês, also called Aegyptus, was driven from his kingdom of Egypt and came to Greece. Ramessês, his brother, whose other name was Aegyptus, ruled Egypt for 68 years, changing the name of his country to Egypt after his own name. Its previous name was Mestraea, and among the Greeks Aeria. Now Danaus or Armaeus took possession of Argos and, driving out Sthenelus the son of Crotôpus, ruled over the Argives. His descendants thereafter were called Danaïdae down to Eurystheus son of Sthenelus, the son of Perseus. Next to these, after Pelops the Pelopidae succeeded to the kingdom: the first of these was Atreus.

 p245  47. Ramessês, also called Aegyptus, 68 years.

48. Amenôphis, 8 years.

49. Thuôris, 17 years.

50. Nechepsôs,12 19 years.

51. Psammuthis, 13 years.

52. –––––, 4 years.

53. Cêrtôs,13 20 years.

54. Rampsis, 45 years.

55. Amensês, also called Ammenemês, 26 years.

56. Ochyras, 14 years.

57. Amendês, 27 years.

58. Thuôris, 50 years.

This is the Polybus of Homer, who appears in the Odyssey as husband of Alcandra: the poet tells how Menelaus and Helen dwelt with him in their wanderings after the capture of Troy.

59. Athôthis, also called Phusanus,14 28 years.

In his reign earthquakes occurred in Egypt, although previously unknown there.

60. Cencenês, 39 years.

61. Uennephis, 42 years.

 p247  62. Susakeim,15 34 years.

This king brought up Libyans, Ethiopians, and Trôglodytes16 before Jerusalem.

63. Psuenus, 25 years.

64. Ammenôphis, 9 years.

65. Nephecherês, 6 years.

66. Saïtês, 15 years.

67. Psinachês, 9 years.

68. Petubastês, 44 years.

69. Osôrthôn, 9 years.

70. Psammus, 10 years.

71. Concharis, 21 years.

72. Osŏrthôn, 15 years.

73. Tacalôphis, 13 years.

74. Bocchôris, 44 years.

This king made laws for the Egyptians: in his time report has it that a lamb spoke.17

75. Sabacôn, an Ethiopian, 12 years.

This king, taking Bocchôris captive, burned him alive.18

76. Sebêchôn, 12 years.

 p249  77. Taracês, 20 years.

78. Amaês,19 38 years.

79. Stephinathês, 27 years.

80. Nechepsus, 13 years.

81. Nechaô, 8 years.

82. Psammêtichus, 14 years.

83. Nechaô II (Pharaoh), 9 years.

84. Psamuthês the Second, also called Psammêtichus, 17 years.

85. Uaphris, 34 years.

86. Amôsis, 50 years.

The Editor's Notes:

1 The Book of Sôthis which Syncellus believed to be the genuine Manetho, but which in its original form was based upon Eusebius and Josephus, is dated by Gutschmid to the third century after Christ. It is not possible to divide the kings of this "Cycle" into dynasties, for their sequence is unchronological: e.g. 18‑24 belong to Dynasties XIX and XX, 26‑29, 32 to the Hyksôs period, 33‑48 to Dynasty XVIII, 49, 58 to Dynasty XIX, 50, 51 to Dynasty XXVI, 59‑61 to Dynasty I, 63‑67 to Dynasty XXI, 68‑70 to Dynasty XXIII, 74 to Dynasty XXIV, 75‑77 to Dynasty XXV, and 79‑86 to Dynasty XXVI.

The Book of Sôthis includes names taken from another source than Manetho.

2 The name Chamoïs is probably the Greek form of the name Khamuas: for Khamuas, the principal son of Ramessês II, see Griffith, Stories of the High Priests, p2 n 2.

3 The name Usimarê(s) is the first part of the praenomen of Ramessês II: see p221 n. 4.

4 It is tempting to see in this name the Egyptian Ramesese‑o, "Ramessês the Great," although this term, so commonly used in modern times, is not found in Egyptian records (B. G.).

5 On Abraham's descent into Egypt, see Peet, Egypt and the Old Testament, 1922, pp47 ff. (Abraham went down into Egypt in the First Intermediate Period, during Dynasties VII‑X, and left Egypt before 2081 B.C.) Sir L. Woolley, on the other hand, is satisfied with the traditional date of the birth of Abraham at Ur, c. 2000 B.C.; but he believes that the patriarch was not a single man, but a composite character (Abram, Abraham) — see Abraham: Recent Discoveries and Hebrew Origins, 1936.

6 This description "son of Uaphrês" is a remarkable anachronism: a king of Dynasty XIX or XX is said to be the son of a king of Dynasty XXVI.

7 Arphaxad, son of Shem: O. T. Genesis x.22. See p26 n. 1.

8 Phalec or Peleg (= division): "for in his days was the earth divided" (Genesis x.25). Cf. the name of the town Phaliga on the Euphrates, — not that the patriarch Peleg is to be connected directly with this town (W. F. Albright, The Archaeology of Palestine and the Bible2, 1932‑3, p210).

9 For the Sojourn in Egypt during the Hyksôs period, see Peet, Egypt and the Old Testament, pp73 ff.; Albright, The Archaeology of Palestine and the Bible2, pp143 f.; Garstang, The Heritage of Solomon, 1934, p147.

10 See p99 n. 3.

11 Polyaenus of Athens (? of Sardis or of Macedonia), a writer of history, lived in the time of Gaius (Caligula).

12 See p211 n. 2. Nechepsôs appears again as Nechepsus, No. 80.

13 53‑58 may be the 6 kings of Dynasty XIX, some of them repeated. 53 Cêrtôs may be Sethôs: 54 Rampsis = 47 Ramessês: 55 Amensês = Amenmesês: while Thuôris appears as 58 and 49.

14 With Phusanus cf. Psusennês of Dynasty XXI.

15 Susakeim, apparently, is Shoshenḳ, or Sesonehôsis, the first king of Dynasty XXII (Fr. 60, 1): Josephus, Antiq., VIII § 210, has Susakos.

16 In O. T. 2 Chron. xii.3 it is said that Shishak brought up, along with the Ethiopians, the Lubims (Libyans) and the Sukkiims: in the LXX the last are the Trôglodytes, i.e. the "Cave-dwellers" along the west shore of the Red Sea (see Strabo, XVI.4.17). G. W. Murray, Sons of Ishmael, 1935, p18, suspects that the Ethiopians were negro troops of perhaps Beja nomads (i.e. Bedouin). "At any rate Shishak, like the great Mohammed Ali after him, realized the importance of Bedouin auxiliaries on a desert campaign."

17 See p164 n. 2.

18 See p166 n. 2.

19 Amaês corresponds to Ammeris or Ameres the Ethiopian, Fr. 69, 1, i.e. Tanutamûn, Dynasty XXVI.

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