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Scenes and texts from the Second Section of the Book of What is in the Other World.
From the sarcophagus of King Nekht-Heru-hebt, B.c. 378. [Southern Egyptian Gallery, Bay 25, No. 923.)
dead, and, as a result, a considerable number of statues, stelae, etc., which may be attributed to his reign have come down to us.
Among his monuments worthy of special note are : I. A pair of obelisks, inscribed with his names and titles, and dedicated to “ Thoth, the Twice Great," before whose temple they were set up. They were taken from a town in the Delta during the eighteenth century, and stood for many years before one of the mosques of Cairo (see Plate XLVI). (Bays 31, 32, Nos. 919, 920.) 2. Portion of a statue of Amen-Rā (?), dedicated to the god by this king. (Bay 30, No. 921.) 3. Sarcophagus of Nectanebus I. (See Plate XLVII.) This most valuable and interesting object is one of the most remarkable monuments of this king. The inside is decorated with figures of the gods, and on the outside are cut the texts and illustrations of a series of sections of the great funerary work entitled the Book of what is in the Ţuat (i.e., the Other World). The Țuat was a long narrow valley which ran parallel with Egypt, and was neither above nor below this earth; a river flowed through its whole length. It was entered on the left bank of the Nile near Thebes, ran due north as far as Saïs, then curved to the east, and finally terminated where the sun rose. This valley was divided into ten sections, and at each end was a sort of ante-chamber or vestibule. Each section was filled with its own peculiar beings, many of whom were hostile to the dead who wished to pass through it in the Boat of the Sun-god, which traversed it nightly. The god himself could only do this by uttering words of power. The Book of what is in the Tuat was supposed to contain these words of power; and copies of it were written on papyri, or cut on sarcophagi, so that their possessors or occupants might be able to recite them in case of need. The representations of the gods which accompanied the texts enabled the dead to recognize the several beings of the Other World when they met them, and to recite the appropriate words of power. On the rounded head of the sarcophagus the First Section of the Tuat is sculptured, and on the foot the Ninth Section ; on the right hand side are the Second and Sixth Sections, and on the left are the Third and Eighth Sections (Bay 25, No. 923). These Sections refer to the kingdoms of the dead of Thebes, Abydos, and Saïs ; the other six Sections were probably sculptured on the cover, which was destroyed in the eighteenth century; those relating to Memphis and Heliopolis are omitted.
Nectanebus I was succeeded by his son Tchehra (Teôs, or Tachos), in whose reign the Persians led by Artaxerxes II made an attack upon Egypt, but failed to conquer it. Teôs was succeeded by his son Nekht-neb-f, or NectaneB.C. 358.
e bus II, in whose reign the Persians, under
bo. Artaxerxes III, once again obtained possession of the country. The reign of Nectanebus II, who was the last native king of Egypt, was on the whole peaceful and prosperous; he repaired many temples, and his name is found on buildings in all the great sanctuaries from Philae to Sebennytus in the Delta. The statues and stelae of the period are well-cut, and the work is tasteful and delicate. Among them may be mentioned: A granite statue of Nectanebus II (Bay 29, No. 924); the two intercolumnar slabs on which are representations of the king kneeling and making an offering (Bay 27, No. 926; Bay 28, No. 927); and a small gilded door from the model of a shrine, on which the king is represented kneeling and making an offering (Tablecase C, Fourth Egyptian Room).
The Persians, having succeeded in obtaining the supreme power once again, held it for a period of about eight years; but their rule was hateful to the Egyptians, and when Alexander the Great (born B.C. 356, died 324), who had defeated Darius III at the Battle of Issus, B.C. 332, arrived at Memphis, he was welcomed as the saviour of the country. He marched to the Oasis of Sîwah (Jupiter Ammon) and entered the temple of Amen-Rā, and worshipped the god, who acknowledged him to be his son and therefore the rightful king of Egypt. Soon after, in B.C. 331, Alexander founded the city of Alexandria.
in the scramble for the provinces of Alexander's great Empire which took place at his death, Egypt fell to the share of one of his generals, Ptolemy Lagus, who administered the country in the name of Alexander's sons, Philip Arrhidaeus and Alexander II of Egypt, the former of whom never set foot in the country ; the latter was brought thither as a child of six years, and was murdered when he was thirteen years old (6.C. 311); but in spite of these facts Ptolemy Lagus caused buildings to be erected in their names, and ruled the country as their loyal servant. To the period B.C. 332-306 belong the portion of a clepsydra inscribed with the name of Alexander the Great (Bay 29, No. 948); the portion of a clepsydra inscribed with the name of Philip Arrhidaeus (Bay 29, No. 949); and the papyrus of Nes-Amsu, containing the Book of Overthrowing Apep,
which is dated in the twelfth year of “ Pharaoh Alexander, the son of Alexander," i.e., Alexander II (No. 10,188). In the seventh year of his reign Alexander II restored to the temples of the city of Pe-Tep (Buto) the property which had been wrested from it by Xerxes the Great: a cast of the stele which commemorates this fact will be found in Bay 28, No. 950.
THE PTOLEMAIC PERIOD.
Under the capable rule of the earlier Ptolemies, Egypt became prosperous and powerful, and in the reign of Philadelphus she was the wealthiest country in the world. Though they and their court were Greeks and spoke Greek, the language of the priesthood and people was Egyptian, and the native religion of the country remained practically unchanged. As time went on, however, Greek became more and more the official language, and Egyptian was only used officially for religious purposes. The Ptolemies worshipped the Egyptian gods, offered up sacrifices to them, and rebuilt and endowed many of their temples, e.g., at Denderah, Edfû, Esna, Philae, Dakkah, etc. They adopted Egyptian names and titles, married their sisters and nieces, and in every way they adopted the habits of Egyptian Pharaohs; many were crowned with all the ancient rites and ceremonies at Memphis. They did not, however, permit the priests to interfere in the government of the country, which was administered on Greek lines, and though at times their power was skilfully disguised, it was nevertheless ubiquitous and effective. The revenues which they drew from Egypt were very large, and no other monarchs in the world at that time possessed such vast wealth as the Ptolemies. This was due to the encouragement which they gave to commercial enterprises of every kind, and to the freedom to trade which was enjoyed by the Jews, who had settled in large numbers not only in Alexandria, but also in the rich provinces of the Fayyûm, and in the Thebaïd, and in Syene.
Ptolemy I, Soter I, B.C. 304, founded the Alexandrian Library and Museum, settled a number of Jews in Alexandria, and introduced the worship of the god Hades, who was henceforth known in Egypt as Serapis, i.e., AsårHāpi, or Osiris-Apis. (See Wall-cases 176-181, Fourth Egyptian Room.) For a relief and an inscription from his buildings at Terenouthis, see Bay 25, Nos. 951, 952.
Ptolemy II, Philadelphus, B.C. 287 or 286, founded the cities of Berenice Troglodytica, on the Red Sea, and Arsinoë
and er was skilfin, Greek linet of the
emy II, Philchis, see Bay 25. an inscription's