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Volume 12 issue 2 October 2011






This month’s NETFISHING continues its look at the history of Egypt by seeing what the World Wide Web has to say about the Late Period (Dynasties 28-30) when native Egyptian kings fought for independence from the Persian Empire.


The First Persian Period covers the reigns of the Persian kings Cambyses II (525-522 BC) to the reign of Artaxerxes II (405-359 BC). During this time Egypt was seen to be a part of the Persian Empire; however, the Egyptians wanted their independence and revolt was centred around the city of Sais in the Delta during the last two reigns of this period. Although the Persian king Darius II (423-405 BC) had assumed the throne, there were internal squabbles at home and these prevented both him and his successor Artaxerxes II from attending fully to matters in Egypt. In this situation one Amyrtaios, a prince of Sais, declared himself King and, taking advantage of Persian weakness, formed the Twenty-eighth Dynasty. Refer:


The Late Period of Egyptian History: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Late_Period_of_ancient_Egypt

Dynasty 28 http://www.touregypt.net/hdyn28.htm

Amyrtaios http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amyrtaeus




The Twenty-eighth Dynasty was not to last for long, as the princes of Mendes (another Delta city) defeated Amyrtaios in battle and had him executed. Thus the Twenty-ninth Dynasty was founded, its first king being one Nepherites I. In his battle against Persia, he sought allies from the Greek city of Sparta and promised them goods to build a hundred ships. Refer:


Dynasty 29 http://www.touregypt.net/hdyn29.htm

Nepherites I http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nepherites_I




On the death of Nepherites a civil war appears to have broken out between a Psammuthis (believed to be the natural son of Nepherites) and a Hakor, who proved to be the victor. Hakor again turned to Greece for support and made alliances with both Sparta and Athens. This support was useful in defeating Persian attacks in 385-383 BC and so Hakor managed to maintain Egyptian independence. Refer:


Achoris http://www.livius.org/aa-ac/achoris/achoris.html

Nepherites II http://www.livius.org/ne-nn/nepherites/nepherites_ii.html


The latter years of the rule of Hakor were marked with revolts against his rule and a general called Nakhtnebef was sent to quell them. He instead defeated the young Nepherites II, who had briefly succeeded Hakor, and declared himself king, known by the name of Nectanebo I. Thus was founded the Thirtieth Dynasty of Egypt. Nectanebo defeated the Persian army’s attempts to re-conquer Egypt in 373 BC and thereafter became a great builder throughout the country. His most notable monument today is the avenue of human-headed sphinxes outside Luxor temple. Refer:


Dynasty 30 http://www.globalegyptianmuseum.org/glossary.aspx?id=27


Nectanebo I http://www.touregypt.net/featurestories/nectanebo1.htm






Nectanebo I was succeeded by his son Teos (or Djedhor) who supported Greek revolts against the Persian Empire. Such support required funds and Djedhor raised taxes in Egypt which proved unpopular. His brother used the situation to proclaim himself king, as Nectanebo II Refer:


Teos http://www.ancientsites.com/aw/Post/410797

Nectanebo II http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nectanebo_II




Nectanebo II, the last native king of Egypt, continued the building programmes of his predecessors, but when the Persian king Artaxerxes III launched a renewed attack on Egypt in 343 BC, Nectanebo II was pushed further and further south into Nubia, where he died in exile. Egypt was once again under the control of the Persian kings and the Second Persian Period had begun.


Victor Blunden


Victor Blunden

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