Page images
PDF
EPUB

cleared out by Captain H. G. Lyons, R.E., who also excavated the ruins of two temples which stood to the north of it in 1890, and sound some interesting remains of buildings on the west bank. A few years later it was again cleared by Colonel Hayes Sadler and Mr. Somers Clarke, and in 1905 Sir Reginald Wingate caused it to be again cleared and ordered a wall to be built round it, and a portion of it to be covered over with a light roof. The carrying out of this work was superintended by Messrs. J. W. Crowfoot and Scott Moncrieff. A few miles south of Wâdi Halfa begins the Second Cataract, a splendid view of which can be obtained from the now famous rock of Abûşir on the west bank of the river. Nearly every traveller who has visited Abû Simbel has been to this rock and inscribed his name upon it; the result is an interesting collection of names and dates, the like of which probably exists nowhere else,

732

THE EGYPTIAN SÛDÂN.

Ancient History of the Sûdân.—'The Sûdân Country of the Blacks, in the earliest dynastic times b. at Elephantine or Aswân, and all expeditions into country to the south of the First Cataract started from place. It is probable that there never was a time w . caravans from Egypt did not travel into the Sûdân trading purposes, but there is no definite mention of invasion of the country until we come to the reign Seneferu, a king of the IVth dynasty, about B.C. 38 From the Stele of Palermo, first published by Pelleg we learn that this king invaded the Sûdân and brou back 7000 men, and 200,000 head of cattle. From thi is clear that even in those remote days the kings of Eg! needed black slaves to carry out their works, and that tt i regarded the Sûdân as the natural source whence they w to be obtained. About 500 years later, i.e., under VIth dynasty, several Egyptian officials were sent on trad missions to the Sadân, and they were eminently success in their undertakings. One of these, the official Ut made his way far to the south where large trees grew, a there seems to be good reason for believing that he visit Dâr Fûr, Kordôfân, and also the country between the WH ! and Blue Niles. Another official, Her-khuf, whose to is at Aswân, conducted several trading missions into ! Sûdân, and was sent by the king on a special mission to Land of the Spirits, which seems to have been ne , Punt, which the Egyptians regarded as their original hom to bring back a pygmy to dance before him at Memph A former king, Asså, had sent an official called Ba-ur-T! on a similar mission, and was so pleased with the pygt

[ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors]

that he conferred very high honours upon Ba-ur-?et. The word used for “pygmy” is tenk = 0 , and it is an interesting fact that it survives to the present time in Amharic, or Abyssinian, under the form of denk fiin: As there were pygmies in Egypt in the Archaic Period, about B.C. 4200, it is clear that there must have been intercourse between Egypt and the Sûdân before Seneferu made his great raid into that country.

Under the XIth dynasty one of the Menthu-hetep kings occupied Behen, or Wâdî Halfa, and from about B.C. 2600 to B.C. 1000 this place was to all intents and purposes the boundary of Egypt on the south. The kings of the XIIth dynasty first tightened their hold upon the country, and built forts at Kalâbshah, Dakkah, Korosko, Ibrîm, and Behen, and they made strong outposts at Semnah and Kummah, about 40 miles south of Behen. The king whose name stands preeminent in connexion with the conquest of the Sûdân is Usertsen III. Under the XIIth dynasty the Sûdân supplied Egypt with slaves and gold. The kings of the XVIIIth dynasty "enlarged the borders of Egypt” in the Sûdân until their territory reached to the Blue Nile. Amen-ḥetep III built a large temple at Șulb, wherein he himself was worshipped as a god, and he built another at Saddênga in honour of his wife Thi. Under this dynasty the Sûdân was divided into provinces, the governors of which were under the jurisdiction of an overlord, who was appointed by the king of Egypt and called the “prince of Kash” (Cush). The capital of Egypt's Nubian Kingdom was at the foot of the Fourth Cataract, and was called Napata. The country was ruled by Egyptians who brought with them into the Sûdân the language, civilization, arts, manners and customs, etc., of Egypt. The peoples and tribes south of Wâdî Halfa caused the great kings of the XVIIIth and XIXth dynasties much trouble, and it is

« PreviousContinue »