This is coolbert:
As with the Chinese, the ancient
seem to have been a civilization thatWAS NOT
expansionist in nature. DID NOT
rule through military force, or did have a conquering military that
was in a constant or almost perpetual state of war.
The ancient Egyptian dominated surrounding societies, to the
extent that they existed, by strength of culture
rather than military force. Egypt was wealthy,
technological, and advanced
in a way their neighbors were
not. Egypt seems to have preferred having what would be called in
modern parlance a "sphere of influence"
. But wasNOT
carry out trade with neighbors
and seems to have been relatively benevolent.
And the ancient Egyptian maintained this culture continuity for aVERY LONG
period. About three thousand years,
until the time of Caesar and Cleopatra, the Egyptian maintained a
relative cultural status quo. This is most remarkable. Such a continuity
allows the observer to make reasonable and accurate inferences.
It should be pointed out that a number of authorities have
suggested that ancient Egypt was geographically
in such a manner that precluded military
expeditions by the Egyptian. This same isolation would have also
precluded foreign invasion. This is both true and not
That is not to say
that there was NOT
a military presence in ancient Egypt. Quite the contrary.
The famous pallete of Narmer shows the first Pharaoh [king]
subduing his enemy and uniting lower [the Nile delta region] and
upper [areas upstream from the delta] Egypt. Combining upper and
lower Egypt to form a single kingdom. And doing so using military
[In the pallete of Narmer, the triumphant King is shown standing
over his kneeling foe, ready to strike down the vanquished with a
raised war club!!].
See a picture of the pallete by clicking here
.Through war Egypt became united!!
And at other periods in ancient Egyptian history, there was
Ancient Egyptian around 1650 B.C. WAS
and occupied by a people known as the Hyksos.
An invader moving from east to west that crossed from
what we call southwest Asia into Egypt through the Sinai.
It seems not a whole lot is known about this people.
They are described by the Egyptians themselves
as, "Asiatics, a people that ruled without Ra [the Egyptian
god]!!" It is possible that the Hyksos possessed a definite
technological advantage over the Egyptian, having chariots and
Evidently this foreign rule of the Egyptian wasNOT
long lived, and the Hyksos were absorbed into
the Egyptian populace, this particular invader being just a blip
on the radar screen of Egyptian history. Read further about the
Hyksos by clicking here
[China similarly has done the same with other foreign invaders and
occupiers, these including Hunnish tribes, Mongols, etc.]
There was also a period in Egyptian history when a series of
Did carry out wars and punitive military expeditions. In response
to threats against what was deemed that Egyptian "sphere of
influence". This sphere would have run from the Nile delta east
along the Mediterranean coast up into what is now Lebanon.
become contested territory around the
time of Thutmose III [the Napoleon of Egypt [??]] [circa 1500
B.C.] and probably prior to that. This threat was from the Hittite
Empire, emanating out of central Asia Minor [present day Turkey].
The Hittite WAS
an expansionist power and a
definite threat to Egyptian dominion. Conflicts with the
aggressive Hittite can best be described for the Egyptian as a
able to dislodge or defeat the Hittite,
but merely contain at best.
"Tuthmosis III became a great pharaoh in his own right, and has
been referred to as the Napoleon of ancient Egypt (by the
Egyptologists, James Henry Breasted). But perhaps is reputation
is due to the fact that his battles were recorded in great detail
by the archivist, royal scribe and army commander, Thanuny."
The son of Tuthmoses III, Amenhotep II, was no slouch as a
military man either:
"As a king, Amenhotep II's athletic abilities may have served him
very well, for within a short period after gaining the throne, his
metal would be tested. Various sources disagree on how many
military expeditions he made into Syria, and in what year of his
reign these occurred. These military actions are recorded on stele
erected at Amada, Memphis and Karnak."
Pharaohs of this period were also beset with another
These were the "Sea Peoples". Invaders, semi-
piratical in nature, coming by boat from the area of the Aegean
Sea. Perhaps Achaean Greeks of the same historical period as the
siege of Troy. Invaded the Egyptian sphere of influence and even
settled in the area of ancient Judea, becoming known as the
Egyptian art of this period DOES
Pharaohs from the time, to include Thutmose III, Horemheb, till at
least Rameses II, as being noble, bold, courageous warriors,
leading their troops to victory over the "invader". There are even
naval battle scenes of the Egyptian fleet defeating the "Sea
Peoples". Contrary to popular belief, the EgyptianWAS
adept at maritime activities, skill in this
area gained from constant sailing up and down the Nile for
thousands of years. Click here
to see a web site about the Egyptian
navy and it's battles against the "Sea Peoples".
[Now, several comments here. One reason for Egyptian influence
extending to what is now Lebanon was to have easy and unlimited
access to the cedars of Lebanon. Cedar trees highly prized as a
boat building material. Such a material was essential to build a
fleet in a desert land!! Obvious!! It was even reported by
Herodotus that Egyptian voyagers were able
sail around the African continent during the time of the most
ancient of the Pharaohs!! The Egyptians, as been said, were
excellent sailors. This voyage may well have occurred.
[Horemheb was a General who succeeded Aye who succeeded
Tutankhamen [Tut]. Horemheb was NOT
of noble rank
but became Pharaoh in this period of military upheaval. Horemheb
appointed his "army buddy", Rameses as his successor.]
"The first king of the 19th Dynasty was the son of a military
commander named Seti. Ramesses I entered the military
service and worked his way up to commander of troops,
superintendent of the cavalry and eventually general. A short time later
he became vizier to King Horemheb. He was also Primate of Egypt,
which was the high priest of Amon, and was in charge of all the temples in Egypt.
Horemheb died with no heir so Ramesses I assumed the throne."
This Rameses established the dynasty to which belonged
Rameses II, perhaps the Pharaoh of the Exodus!!
Rameses II DID
portray himself as a bold, noble,
"Rameses 'victory' over the Hittities at Kadesh was celebrated
in one of the most repeated Egyptian texts ever put on record."
This IS NOT
entirely true. At Kadesh,
in battle with the Hittites, his army was nearly defeated,
Rameses almost becoming a prisoner!!]].
Read further about Kadesh by clicking here
Following the period from Thutmose III to Rameses II, a period of
many hundred years of relative peace returns to Egypt. Perhaps the
last significant interruption to this peaceful interlude occurred
around 605 B.C. The Bible relates that at that time, Pharaoh Necho
marched north along the Mediterranean to confront and fight the
Babylonians. Once again, protecting the Egyptian sphere of
influence. First victory, then meeting defeat, the Egyptian army
fled in disarray, accompanied by Necho, who had to endure
ignominious and total defeat.
"But this position was also soon lost, when in 605 BC, the king
suffered a catastrophic loss. The son of the Babylonian king,
Nabopolassar was sent to deal with Syria. This was Nebuchadrezzar,
and he captured Carchemish from the Egyptians, and then pursued
the fleeing army as far as Hamath, where he apparently overwhelmed
them. Hence, this was followed by a retreat to by the Egyptians to
their eastern frontier at Gaza."
"Four years after this conquest Necho again marched to the
Euphrates; but here he was met and his army routed by the
Chaldeans (B.C. 606) under Nebuchadnezzar, who drove the Egyptians
back, and took from them all the territory they had conquered,
from the Euphrates unto the "river of Egypt" (Jer. 46:2; 2 Kings
24:7, 8). Soon after this Necho died, and was succeeded by his
son, Psammetichus II."
It can be seen that the ancient Egyptians wereNOT
an aggressive, warlike, expansionist power.
Rather the contrary. Had extended very long periods of relative
did fight to protect what they felt
was theirs. That sphere of influence WAS
important to them. If threatened, they did react.Protectionist, YES!! Aggressive, warlike, expansionist,