Late Period of Ancient Egypt – Nubian Dynasty (747 – 656 B.C)

TWENTY-FIFTH DYNASTY

Piye (Piankhi) (747. – 716.)

The rebellion was rising against Tefnakht. Around 730. his fleet on the Nile defeated Tefnakht and he conquered Hermopolis, Memphis, and Atribis. After he left Delta and returned to Napata in Nubia, Tefnakht again took the power over the Delta.

Shabaka (716. – 702.)

Shabaka’s stone- an inscription on Memphis cosmogony is full of complex theological ideas.

Shabaka is the author of the text, and he claimed that it was all copied from the old papyrus in order to save the text. In 720. the Assyrian army commander Sargon attacked Israel and Egyptian sent military aid to Israel. In 716. Assyrians and Egyptians with twelve horses near Tanis bribed Sargon and in that way a conflict was avoided. Sargon’s death temporarily relieved Assyria’s pressure on Egypt. Shabaka wanted to take over the whole of Egypt and he settled in Thebes. He killed Bokkhoris in order to remove any possible threat from the north; in 715. he destroyed 22. 23. and 24. dynasty.

Shebitku (Shabatka) (702-690. BC)

He was Piye’s son and heir. He sent an army against Assyrians.

Taharqa (690. – 664.)

Taharqa statue in Sudan National Museum. Photo from: www.traveladventures.org/continents/africa/sudan-national-museum04.html
Taharqa statue in Sudan National Museum. Photo from: www.traveladventures.org/continents/africa/sudan-national-museum04.html

Even before he became Pharaoh, he commanded the Shebitku army in the attack against the Assyrians. Sennacherib was an Assyrian military leader, who conquered the Palestinian cities and he managed to fight off Taharqa’s troops. In another burst of Taharqa’s army, he refused to fight because he assessed that the battle could be too risky. In 690. after Shebitku’s death, Taharqa was crowned at Memphis, but he moved the capital to Tanis in the Delta in order to be as close as possible to the attackers from Assyria. In the meantime, in Assyria Esarhaddon became the king who wanted to attack Egypt. He did that in 674. but Taharqa managed to refuse the attack. In 671. Assyrians managed in 15 days to penetrate in Egypt and to rob Memphis. They ruled over entire Lower Egypt while Thebes recognized their authority and it send them gifts. As soon as the Esarhaddon left Egypt, Taharqa started counteraction. Many princes from Delta stood beside him in the rebellion and in that way they managed to set Memphis free. After that action, Esarhaddon went in action again, but he died on the way to Egypt. He was succeeded by Ashurbanipal, which continued the war. He got all the way to Thebes, but there were no damage. It is interesting that at the time the Queen ruled Thebes, so-called. “Wife of God” Shapenupet.

Tantamani (Tanwetamani) (664. – 656.)

He was priest from Thebes and Taharqa’s nephew who (666 BC.) continued to give resistance against the Assyrians. Tantamani’s army was destroyed in 664. Assyrians, under the leadership of Ashurbanipal penetrated all the way to Thebes. Thebes, at that time the richest town of the world, was robbed for the first time in its history. After that, they continued its march all the way to I. Cataract. Tantamani retreats to Napata in Nubia.

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