Egypt the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a country spanning the northeast corner of Africa and southwest corner of Asia by a land bridge formed by the Sinai Peninsula. Egypt is a Mediterranean country bordered by the Gaza Strip and Israel to the northeast, the Gulf of Aqaba and the Red Sea to the east, Sudan to the south, Libya to the west. Across the Gulf of Aqaba lies Jordan, across the Red Sea lies Saudi Arabia, across the Mediterranean lie Greece and Cyprus, although none share a land border with Egypt. Egypt has one of the longest histories of any country, tracing its heritage back to the 6th–4th millennia BCE. Considered a cradle of civilisation, Ancient Egypt saw some of the earliest developments of writing, urbanisation, organised religion and central government. Iconic monuments such as the Giza Necropolis and its Great Sphinx, as well the ruins of Memphis, Thebes and the Valley of the Kings, reflect this legacy and remain a significant focus of scientific and popular interest. Egypt's long and rich cultural heritage is an integral part of its national identity, which has endured, assimilated, various foreign influences, including Greek, Roman, Ottoman Turkish, Nubian.
Egypt was an early and important centre of Christianity, but was Islamised in the seventh century and remains a predominantly Muslim country, albeit with a significant Christian minority. From the 16th to the beginning of the 20th century, Egypt was ruled by foreign imperial powers: The Ottoman Empire and the British Empire. Modern Egypt dates back to 1922, when it gained nominal independence from the British Empire as a monarchy. However, British military occupation of Egypt continued, many Egyptians believed that the monarchy was an instrument of British colonialism. Following the 1952 revolution, Egypt expelled British soldiers and bureaucrats and ended British occupation, nationalized the British-held Suez Canal, exiled King Farouk and his family, declared itself a republic. In 1958 it merged with Syria to form the United Arab Republic, which dissolved in 1961. Throughout the second half of the 20th century, Egypt endured social and religious strife and political instability, fighting several armed conflicts with Israel in 1948, 1956, 1967 and 1973, occupying the Gaza Strip intermittently until 1967.
In 1978, Egypt signed the Camp David Accords withdrawing from the Gaza Strip and recognising Israel. The country continues to face challenges, from political unrest, including the recent 2011 revolution and its aftermath, to terrorism and economic underdevelopment. Egypt's current government is a presidential republic headed by President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, described by a number of watchdogs as authoritarian. Islam is the official religion of Egypt and Arabic is its official language. With over 95 million inhabitants, Egypt is the most populous country in North Africa, the Middle East, the Arab world, the third-most populous in Africa, the fifteenth-most populous in the world; the great majority of its people live near the banks of the Nile River, an area of about 40,000 square kilometres, where the only arable land is found. The large regions of the Sahara desert, which constitute most of Egypt's territory, are sparsely inhabited. About half of Egypt's residents live in urban areas, with most spread across the densely populated centres of greater Cairo and other major cities in the Nile Delta.
The sovereign state of Egypt is a transcontinental country considered to be a regional power in North Africa, the Middle East and the Muslim world, a middle power worldwide. Egypt's economy is one of the largest and most diversified in the Middle East, is projected to become one of the largest in the world in the 21st century. In 2016, Egypt became Africa's second largest economy. Egypt is a founding member of the United Nations, Non-Aligned Movement, Arab League, African Union, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation. "Miṣr" is the Classical Quranic Arabic and modern official name of Egypt, while "Maṣr" is the local pronunciation in Egyptian Arabic. The name is of Semitic origin, directly cognate with other Semitic words for Egypt such as the Hebrew "מִצְרַיִם"; the oldest attestation of this name for Egypt is the Akkadian "mi-iṣ-ru" related to miṣru/miṣirru/miṣaru, meaning "border" or "frontier". There is evidence of rock carvings in desert oases. In the 10th millennium BCE, a culture of hunter-gatherers and fishers was replaced by a grain-grinding culture.
Climate changes or overgrazing around 8000 BCE began to desiccate the pastoral lands of Egypt, forming the Sahara. Early tribal peoples migrated to the Nile River where they developed a settled agricultural economy and more centralised society. By about 6000 BCE, a Neolithic culture rooted in the Nile Valley. During the Neolithic era, several predynastic cultures developed independently in Upper and Lower Egypt; the Badarian culture and the successor Naqada series are regarded as precursors to dynastic Egypt. The earliest known Lower Egyptian site, predates the Badarian by about seven hundred years. Contemporaneous Lower Egyptian communities coexisted with their southern counterparts for more than two thousand years, remaining culturally distinct, but maintaining frequent contact through trade; the earliest known evidence of Egyptian hieroglyphic inscriptions appeared during the predynastic period on Naqada III pottery vessels, dated to about 3200 BCE. A unified kingdom was founded c. 3150 BCE
Nineteenth Dynasty of Egypt
The Nineteenth Dynasty of Egypt is classified as the second Dynasty of the Ancient Egyptian New Kingdom period, lasting from 1292 BC to 1189 BC. The 19th Dynasty and the 20th Dynasty furthermore together constitute an era known as the Ramesside period; this Dynasty was founded by Vizier Ramesses I, whom Pharaoh Horemheb chose as his successor to the throne. The warrior kings of the early 18th Dynasty had encountered only little resistance from neighbouring kingdoms, allowing them to expand their realm of influence but the international situation had changed radically towards the end of the dynasty; the Hittites had extended their influence into Syria and Canaan to become a major power in international politics, a power that both Seti I and his son Ramesses II would confront in the future. New Kingdom Egypt reached the zenith of its power under Seti I and Ramesses II, who campaigned vigorously against the Libyans and the Hittites; the city of Kadesh was first captured by Seti I, who decided to concede it to Muwatalli of Hatti in an informal peace treaty between Egypt and Hatti.
Ramesses II attempted unsuccessfully to alter this situation in his fifth regnal year by launching an attack on Kadesh in his Second Syrian campaign in 1274 BC. Ramesses II profited from the Hittites' internal difficulties, during his eighth and ninth regnal years, when he campaigned against their Syrian possessions, capturing Kadesh and portions of Southern Syria, advancing as far north as Tunip, where no Egyptian soldier had been seen for 120 years, he accepted that a campaign against the Hittites was an unsupportable drain on Egypt's treasury and military. In his 21st regnal year, Ramesses signed the earliest recorded peace treaty with Urhi-Teshub's successor, Hattusili III, with that act Egypt-Hittite relations improved significantly. Ramesses II married two Hittite princesses, the first after his second Sed Festival; this dynasty declined. Amenmesse usurped the throne from Merneptah's son and successor, Seti II, but he ruled Egypt for only four years. After his death, Seti destroyed most of Amenmesse's monuments.
Seti was served at court by Chancellor Bay, just a'royal scribe' but became one of the most powerful men in Egypt, gaining the unprecedented privilege of constructing his own tomb in the Valley of the Kings. Both Bay and Seti's chief wife, had a sinister reputation in Ancient Egyptian folklore. After Siptah's death, Twosret ruled Egypt for two more years, but she proved unable to maintain her hold on power amid the conspiracies and powerplays being hatched at the royal court, she was ousted in a revolt led by Setnakhte, founder of the 20th Dynasty. The pharaohs of the 19th Dynasty ruled for 110 years: from c. 1292 to 1187 BC. Many of the pharaohs were buried in the Valley of the Kings in Thebes. More information can be found on the Theban Mapping Project website. Nineteenth dynasty of Egypt Family Tree
Syncretism is the combining of different beliefs, while blending practices of various schools of thought. Syncretism involves the merging or assimilation of several discrete traditions in the theology and mythology of religion, thus asserting an underlying unity and allowing for an inclusive approach to other faiths. Syncretism occurs in expressions of arts and culture as well as politics; the English word is first attested in the early 17th century, from Modern Latin syncretismus, drawing on Greek συγκρητισμός meaning "Cretan federation", but this is a spurious etymology from the naive idea in Plutarch's 1st-century AD essay on "Fraternal Love" in his collection Moralia. He cites the example of the Cretans, who compromised and reconciled their differences and came together in alliance when faced with external dangers. "And, their so-called Syncretism ". More as an etymology is sun- plus kerannumi and its related noun, "krasis," "mixture." Erasmus coined the modern usage of the Latin word in his Adagia, published in the winter of 1517–1518, to designate the coherence of dissenters in spite of their differences in theological opinions.
In a letter to Melanchthon of April 22, 1519, Erasmus adduced the Cretans of Plutarch as an example of his adage "Concord is a mighty rampart". Overt syncretism in folk belief may show cultural acceptance of an alien or previous tradition, but the "other" cult may survive or infiltrate without authorized syncresis nevertheless. For example, some Conversos developed a sort of cult for martyr-victims of the Spanish Inquisition, thus incorporating elements of Catholicism while resisting it. Syncretism was common during the Hellenistic period, with rulers identifying local deities in various parts of their domains with the relevant god or goddess of the Greek Pantheon, as a means of increasing the cohesion of the Kingdom; this practice was accepted in most locations, but vehemently rejected by the Jews who considered the identification of Yahwe with the Greek Zeus as the worst of blasphemy. The Roman Empire continued this practice - first by the identification of traditional Roman deities with Greek ones, producing a single Graeco-Roman Pantheon and identifying members of that pantheon with the local deities of various Roman provinces.
An undeclared form of Syncretism was the transfer of many attributes of the goddess Isis - whose worship was widespread in the Later Roman Empire - to the Christian Virgin Mary. Some religious movements have embraced overt syncretism, such as the case of melding Shintō beliefs into Buddhism or the amalgamation of Germanic and Celtic pagan views into Christianity during its spread into Gaul, the British Isles and Scandinavia. In times, Christian missionaries in North America identified Manitou - the spiritual and fundamental life force in the traditional beliefs of the Algonquian groups - with the God of Christianity. Similar identifications were made by missionaries at other locations in the Americas and Africa, whenever encountering a local belief in a Supreme God or Supreme Spirit of some kind. Indian influences are seen in the practice of Shi'i Islam in Trinidad. Others have rejected it as devaluing and compromising precious and genuine distinctions. Syncretism tends to facilitate coexistence and unity between otherwise different cultures and world-views, a factor that has recommended it to rulers of multi-ethnic realms.
Conversely, the rejection of syncretism in the name of "piety" and "orthodoxy", may help to generate, bolster or authenticate a sense of un-compromised cultural unity in a well-defined minority or majority. Religious syncretism exhibits blending of two or more religious belief systems into a new system, or the incorporation into a religious tradition of beliefs from unrelated traditions; this can occur for many reasons, the latter scenario happens quite in areas where multiple religious traditions exist in proximity and function in a culture, or when a culture is conquered, the conquerors bring their religious beliefs with them, but do not succeed in eradicating the old beliefs or practices. Religions may have syncretic elements to their beliefs or history, but adherents of so-labeled systems frown on applying the label adherents who belong to "revealed" religious systems, such as the Abrahamic religions, or any system that exhibits an exclusivist approach; such adherents sometimes see syncretism as a betrayal of their pure truth.
By this reasoning, adding an incompatible belief corrupts the original religion, rendering it no longer true. Indeed, critics of a specific syncretistic trend may sometimes use the word "syncretism" as a disparaging epithet, as a charge implying that those who seek to incorporate a new view, belief, or practice into a religious system distort the original faith. Non-exclusivist systems of belief, on the other hand, may feel quite free to incorporate other traditions into their own. Keith Ferdinando notes that the term "syncretism" is an elusive one, can apply to refer to substitution or modification of the central elements of a religion by beliefs or practices introduced from elsewhere; the consequence under such a definition, according to Ferdinando, can lead to a fatal "compromise" of the original religion's "integrity". In modern secular society, religious innovators sometimes construct new religions syncretically as a mechanism to reduce inter-religious tension and enmity with the effect of offend
Interpretatio graeca is a discourse in which ancient Greek religious concepts and practices and myths are used to interpret or attempt to understand the mythology and religion of other cultures. It is thus a comparative methodology that looks for shared characteristics; the phrase may describe Greek efforts to explain others' beliefs and myths, as when Herodotus describes Egyptian religion in terms of perceived Greek analogues, or when Dionysius of Halicarnassus and Plutarch document Roman cults and practices under the names of equivalent Greek deities. Interpretatio graeca may describe non-Greeks' interpretation of their own belief systems by comparison or assimilation with Greek models, as when Romans adapt Greek myths and iconography under the names of their own gods. Interpretatio romana is comparative discourse in reference to ancient Roman religion and myth, as in the formation of a distinctive Gallo-Roman religion. Both the Romans and the Gauls reinterpreted Gallic religious traditions in relation to Roman models Imperial cult.
Jan Assmann considers the polytheistic approach to internationalizing gods as a form of "intercultural translation": The great achievement of polytheism is the articulation of a common semantic universe.... The meaning of a deity is his or her specific character as it unfolded in myths, rites, so on; this character makes a deity comparable to other deities with similar traits. The similarity of gods makes their names mutually translatable. … The practice of translating the names of the gods created a concept of similarity and produced the idea or conviction that the gods are international. Pliny the Elder expressed the "translatability" of deities as "different names to different peoples"; this capacity made possible the religious syncretism of the Hellenistic era and the pre-Christian Roman Empire. Herodotus was one of the earliest authors to engage in this form of interpretation. In his observations regarding the Egyptians, he establishes Greco-Egyptian equivalents that endured into the Hellenistic era, including Amon/Zeus, Osiris/Dionysus, Ptah/Hephaestus.
In his observations regarding the Scythians, he equates their queen of the gods, Tabiti, to Hestia and Api to Zeus and Gaia and Argimpasa to Aphrodite Urania, whilst claiming that the Scythians worshipped equivalents to Herakles and Ares, but which he doesn't name. Some pairs of Greek and Roman gods, such as Zeus and Jupiter, are thought to derive from a common Indo-European archetype, thus exhibit shared functions by nature. Others required more expansive theological and poetic efforts: though both Ares and Mars are war gods, Ares was a minor figure in Greek religious practice and deprecated by the poets, while Mars was a father of the Roman people and a central figure of archaic Roman religion; some deities dating to Rome's oldest religious stratum, such as Janus and Terminus, had no Greek equivalent. Other Greek divine figures, most notably Apollo, were adopted directly into Roman culture, but underwent a distinctly Roman development, as when Augustus made Apollo one of his patron deities.
In the early period, Etruscan culture played an intermediary role in transmitting Greek myth and religion to the Romans, as evidenced in the linguistic transformation of Greek Heracles to Etruscan Hercle to Roman Hercules. The phrase interpretatio romana was first used by the Imperial-era historian Tacitus in the Germania. Tacitus reports that in a sacred grove of the Nahanarvali, "a priest adorned as a woman presides, but they commemorate gods who in Roman terms are Castor and Pollux." Elsewhere, he identifies the principal god of the Germans as Mercury referring to Wotan. Some information about the deities of the ancient Gauls, who left no written literature other than inscriptions, is preserved by Greco-Roman sources under the names of Greek and Latin equivalents. A large number of Gaulish theonyms or cult titles are preserved, for instance, in association with Mars; as with some Greek and Roman divine counterparts, the perceived similarities between a Gallic and a Roman or Greek deity may reflect a common Indo-European origin.
Lugus was identified with Nodens with Mars as healer and protector, Sulis with Minerva. In some cases, however, a Gallic deity is given an interpretatio romana by means of more than one god, varying among literary texts or inscriptions. Since the religions of the Greco-Roman world were not dogmatic, polytheism lent itself to multiplicity, the concept of "deity" was expansive, permitting multiple and contradictory functions within a single divinity, overlapping powers and functions among the diverse figures of each pantheon; these tendencies extended to cross-cultural identifications. In the Eastern empire, the Anatolian storm god with his double-headed axe became Jupiter Dolichenus, a favorite cult figure among soldiers. Roman scholars such as Varro interpreted the monotheistic god of the Jews into Roman terms as Caelus or Jupiter Optimus Maximus; some Greco-Roman authors seem to have understood the Jewish invocation of Yahweh Sabaoth as Sabazius. Interpretatio germanica is the practice by the Germanic peoples of identifying Roman gods with the names of Germanic deities.
According to Rudolf Simek, this occurred around the 1st century AD, when both cultures came into closer contact. Some evidence for interpretatio germanica exists in the Germanic translations of the Roman names for the days of the week: Sunday, the day of Sunnǭ, the sun, was earlier the day of Sol Invictus, th
Eighteenth Dynasty of Egypt
The Eighteenth Dynasty of Egypt is classified as the first dynasty of the New Kingdom of Egypt, the era in which ancient Egypt achieved the peak of its power. The Eighteenth Dynasty spanned the period from 1549/1550 to 1292 BC; this dynasty is known as the Thutmosid Dynasty for the four pharaohs named Thutmose. Several of Egypt's most famous pharaohs were from the Eighteenth Dynasty, including Tutankhamun, whose tomb was found by Howard Carter in 1922. Other famous pharaohs of the dynasty include Hatshepsut, the longest-reigning woman pharaoh of an indigenous dynasty, Akhenaten, the "heretic pharaoh", with his Great Royal Wife, Nefertiti; the Eighteenth Dynasty is unique among Egyptian dynasties in that it had two women who ruled as sole pharaoh: Hatshepsut, regarded as one of the most innovative rulers of ancient Egypt, Neferneferuaten identified as the iconic Nefertiti. Dynasty XVIII was founded by Ahmose I, the brother or son of Kamose, the last ruler of the 17th Dynasty. Ahmose finished the campaign to expel the Hyksos rulers.
His reign is seen as the start of the New Kingdom. Ahmose was succeeded by his son, Amenhotep I, whose reign was uneventful. Amenhotep I left no male heir and the next pharaoh, Thutmose I, seems to have been related to the royal family through marriage. During his reign the borders of Egypt's empire reached their greatest expanse, extending in the north to Carchemish on the Euphrates and in the south up to Kurgus beyond the fourth cataract of the Nile. Thutmose I was succeeded by Thutmose II and his queen, the daughter of Thutmose I. After her husband's death and a period of regency for her minor stepson Hatshepsut became pharaoh in her own right and ruled for over twenty years. Thutmose III, who became known as the greatest military pharaoh also had a lengthy reign after becoming pharaoh, he had a second co-regency in his old age with his son Amenhotep II. Amenhotep II was succeeded by Thutmose IV, who in his turn was followed by his son Amenhotep III, whose reign is seen as a high point in this dynasty.
Amenhotep III undertook large scale building programmes, the extent of which can only be compared with those of the much longer reign of Ramesses II during Dynasty XIX. Amenhotep III may have shared the throne for up to twelve years with his son Amenhotep IV. There is much debate about this proposed co-regency, with different experts considering that there was a lengthy co-regency, a short one, or none at all. In the fifth year of his reign, Amenhotep IV changed his name to Akhenaten and moved his capital to Amarna, which he named Akhetaten. During the reign of Akhenaten, the Aten became, the most prominent deity, came to be considered the only god. Whether this amounted to true monotheism continues to be the subject of debate within the academic community; some state that Akhenaten created a monotheism, while others point out that he suppressed a dominant solar cult by the assertion of another, while he never abandoned several other traditional deities. Egyptians considered this "Amarna Period" an unfortunate aberration.
The events following Akhenaten's death are unclear. Individuals named Smenkhkare and Neferneferuaten are known but their relative placement and role in history is still much debated. Tutankhamun took the throne but died young; the last two members of the Eighteenth Dynasty—Ay and Horemheb—became rulers from the ranks of officials in the royal court, although Ay might have been the maternal uncle of Akhenaten as a fellow descendant of Yuya and Tjuyu. Ay may have married the widowed Great Royal Wife and young half-sister of Tutankhamun, Ankhesenamun, in order to obtain power. Ay married Tey, Nefertiti's wet-nurse. Ay's reign was short, his successor was Horemheb, a general during Tutankhamun's reign whom the childless pharaoh may have intended as his successor. Horemheb may have taken the throne away from Ay in a coup. Horemheb died childless, having appointed his successor, Ramesses I, who ascended the throne in 1292 BC and was the first pharaoh of the Nineteenth Dynasty; this example to the right depicts a man named Ay who achieved the exalted religious positions of Second Prophet of Amun and High Priest of Mut at Thebes.
His career flourished during the reign of Tutankhamun. The cartouches of King Ay, Tutankhamun's successor appearing on the statue, were an attempt by an artisan to "update" the sculpture. Radiocarbon dating suggests that Dynasty XVIII may have started a few years earlier than the conventional date of 1550 BC; the radiocarbon date range for its beginning is 1570–1544 BC, the mean point of, 1557 BC. The pharaohs of Dynasty XVIII ruled for two hundred and fifty years; the dates and names in the table are taken from Hilton. Many of the pharaohs were buried in the Valley of the Kings in Thebes. More information can be found on the Theban Mapping Project website. Several diplomatic marriages are known for the New Kingdom; these daughters of foreign kings are only mentioned in cuneiform texts and are not known from other sources. The marriages were to have been a way to confirm good relations between these states. Egyptian chronology Kuhrt, Amélie; the Ancient Near East: c. 3000–330 BC. London: Routledge. ISBN 9780415013536.
Hatshepsut: from Queen to Pharaoh, an exhibition catalog from The
Biblical Hebrew called classical Hebrew, is an archaic form of Hebrew, a Canaanite Semitic language spoken by the Israelites in the area known as Israel west of the Jordan River and east of the Mediterranean Sea. The term "Hebrew" was not used for the language in the Bible, referred to as שפת כנען or יהודית, but the name was used in Greek and Mishnaic Hebrew texts, it is less mutually intelligible with modern Hebrew. Hebrew is attested epigraphically from about the 10th century BCE, spoken Hebrew persisted through and beyond the Second Temple period, which ended in the siege of Jerusalem, it developed into Mishnaic Hebrew, spoken up until the fifth century CE. Biblical Hebrew as recorded in the Hebrew Bible reflects various stages of the Hebrew language in its consonantal skeleton, as well as a vocalic system, added in the Middle Ages by the Masoretes. There is some evidence of regional dialectal variation, including differences between Biblical Hebrew as spoken in the northern Kingdom of Israel and in the southern Kingdom of Judah.
The consonantal text was transmitted in manuscript form, underwent redaction in the Second Temple period, but its earliest portions can be dated to the late 8th to early 7th centuries BCE. Biblical Hebrew has been written with a number of different writing systems; the Hebrews adopted the Phoenician alphabet around the 12th century BCE, which developed into the Paleo-Hebrew alphabet. This was retained by the Samaritans. However, the Aramaic alphabet displaced the Paleo-Hebrew alphabet for the Jews, it became the source for the modern Hebrew alphabet. All of these scripts were lacking letters to represent all of the sounds of Biblical Hebrew, though these sounds are reflected in Greek and Latin transcriptions/translations of the time; these scripts only indicated consonants, but certain letters, known by the Latin term matres lectionis, became used to mark vowels. In the Middle Ages, various systems of diacritics were developed to mark the vowels in Hebrew manuscripts. Biblical Hebrew possessed a series of "emphatic" consonants whose precise articulation is disputed ejective or pharyngealized.
Earlier Biblical Hebrew possessed three consonants which did not have their own letters in the writing system, but over time they merged with other consonants. The stop consonants developed fricative allophones under the influence of Aramaic, these sounds became marginally phonemic; the pharyngeal and glottal consonants underwent weakening in some regional dialects, as reflected in the modern Samaritan Hebrew reading tradition. The vowel system of Biblical Hebrew changed over time and is reflected differently in the ancient Greek and Latin transcriptions, medieval vocalization systems, modern reading traditions. Biblical Hebrew had a typical Semitic morphology with nonconcatenative morphology, arranging Semitic roots into patterns to form words. Biblical Hebrew distinguished three numbers. Verbs were marked for voice and mood, had two conjugations which may have indicated aspect and/or tense; the tense or aspect of verbs was influenced by the conjugation ו, in the so-called waw-consecutive construction.
Default word order was verb–subject–object, verbs inflected for the number and person of their subject. Pronominal suffixes could be appended to verbs or nouns, nouns had special construct states for use in possessive constructions; the earliest written sources refer to Biblical Hebrew by the name of the land in which it was spoken: שפת כנען'the language of Canaan'. The Hebrew Bible shows that the language was called יהודית'Judaean, Judahite'. In the Hellenistic period Greek writings use the names Hebraios, Hebraïsti, in Mishnaic Hebrew we find עברית'Hebrew' and לשון עברית'Hebrew language'; the origin of this term is obscure. Jews began referring to Hebrew as לשון הקדש "the Holy Tongue" in Mishnaic Hebrew; the term Classical Hebrew may include all pre-medieval dialects of Hebrew, including Mishnaic Hebrew, or it may be limited to Hebrew contemporaneous with the Hebrew Bible. The term Biblical Hebrew refers to pre-Mishnaic dialects; the term'Biblical Hebrew' may or may not include extra-biblical texts, such as inscriptions, also includes vocalization traditions for the Hebrew Bible's consonantal text, most the early medieval Tiberian vocalization.
The archeological record for the prehistory of Biblical Hebrew is far more complete than the record of Biblical Hebrew itself. Early Northwest Semitic materials are attested from the end of the Bronze Age; the Northwest Semitic languages, including Hebrew, differentiated noticeably during the Iron Age, although in its earliest stages Biblical Hebrew was not differentiated from Ugaritic and the Canaanite of the Amarna letters. Hebrew developed during the latter half of the second millennium BCE between the Jordan and the
Aten is the disk of the sun in ancient Egyptian mythology, an aspect of the god Ra. The deified Aten is the focus of the monotheistic religion of Atenism established by Amenhotep IV, who took the name Akhenaten in worship and recognition of Aten. In his poem "Great Hymn to the Aten", Akhenaten praises Aten as the creator, giver of life, nurturing spirit of the world. Aten is mentioned in the Book of the Dead; the worship of Aten was eradicated by Horemheb. The first known reference to Aten the sun-disk as a deity is in The Story of Sinuhe from the 12th dynasty, in which the deceased king is described as rising as a god to the heavens and uniting with the sun-disk, the divine body merging with its maker. By analogy, the term "silver aten" was sometimes used to refer to the moon; the solar Aten was extensively worshipped as a god in the reign of Amenhotep III when it was depicted as a falcon-headed man much like Ra. In the reign of Amenhotep III's successor, Amenhotep IV, the Aten became the central god of the Egyptian state religion, Amenhotep IV changed his name to Akhenaten to reflect his close link with the new supreme deity.
The full title of Akhenaten's god was "Ra-Horakhty who rejoices in the horizon, in his Name as the Light, in the sun disc." This lengthy name was shortened to Ra-Horus-Aten or just Aten in many texts, but the god of Akhenaten raised to supremacy is considered a synthesis of ancient gods viewed in a new and different way. The god is considered to be both masculine and feminine simultaneously. All creation was thought to exist within the god. In particular, the god was not depicted in anthropomorphic form, but as rays of light extending from the sun's disk. Furthermore, the god's name came to be written within a cartouche, along with the titles given to a Pharaoh, another break with ancient tradition. Ra-Horus, more referred to as Ra-Horakhty, is a synthesis of two other gods, both of which are attested from early on. During the Amarna period, this synthesis was seen as the invisible source of energy of the sun god, of which the visible manifestation was the Aten, the solar disk, thus Ra-Horus-Aten was a development of old ideas.
The real change, as some see it, was the apparent abandonment of all other gods Amun-Ra, prohibition of idolatry, the debatable introduction of quasi-monotheism by Akhenaten. The syncretism is apparent in the Great Hymn to the Aten in which Re-Herakhty and Aten are merged into the creator god. Others see Akhenaten as a practitioner of an Aten monolatry, as he did not deny the existence of other gods. Other scholars call the religion henotheistic. In the Old Kingdom Egypt, the word "Aten" is a noun meaning "disc" which referred to anything flat and circular. Only in Middle Kingdom Egypt, did it come to be the name of a god during Akhenaten's rule. Aten's name is displayed in two cartouches, carrying royal implications in the framework around the name; some have interpreted this to mean that Akhenaten was the embodiment of Aten, the worship of Aten is directly worship of Akhenaten. Principles of Aten's religion were recorded on the rock tomb walls of Akhetaten. In the religion of Aten, night is a time to fear.
Work is done best when Aten, is present. Aten cares for every creature, created a Nile river in the sky for the Syrians. Aten created all people; the rays of the sun disk only holds out life to the royal family. There is only one known instance of the Aten talking, "said by the'Living Aten': my rays illuminate..."When a good person dies, they continue to live in the City of Light for the dead in Akhetaten. The conditions are the same after death; the explanation as to why Aten could not be represented was that Aten was beyond creation. Thus the scenes of gods carved in stone depicted animals and human forms, now showed Aten as an orb above with life-giving rays stretching toward the royal figure; the king was depicted singularly in relation to divine power. This power transcended animal form. Akhenaten represented himself not as a god, but as a son of Aten, shifting the previous methods of pharaohs claiming to be the embodiment of Horus; this contributes to the belief that Atenism should be considered a monotheistic religion where "the living Aten beside whom there is no other.
The cult centre of Aten was at the new city Akhetaten. The principles of Aten's cult were recorded on the rock walls of tombs of Tall al-Amarnah. Different from other ancient Egyptian temples, temples of Aten were colorful and open-roofed to allow the rays of the sun. Doorways had raised thresholds. No statues of Aten were allowed. However, these were replaced by functionally equivalent representations of Akhenaten and his family venerating the Aten and receiving the ankh from him. Priests had less to do since offerings were limited, oracles were not needed. Temples of Aten did not collect tax. Elite women were