The Inscriptiosn of Kamose Essay

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Kamose Stele

The two inscriptions offered by Thebe Pharaoh Kamose offer some insight and perspective as to what led to him pushing for war. In many ways, he was keeping with the general direction started by his father and others before him. However, his two major inscriptions, as will be covered in this brief report, offer some imagery and other insight that is worth reviewing, quoting and analyzing. The entirety of Egyptian history and lore is enthralling and enrapturing for those that have any interest in history, especially history and a time as compelling as ancient Egypt. There are very few time periods and eras that get the same amount of attention as Egypt, with Rome and the British Empire being just two of them. While Kamose very much tried to paint his ethics and motivations in a particular light, it is pretty clear what was really lighting a fire in his belly.

Analysis

As explained by the University of Arizona website, King Kamose was very much continuing the campaign and motivations of his father after Kamose himself came to power. As explained on the Arizona website, the wars he led were related to this "struggle to reunify Egypt at the end of the Second Intermediate Period" (Arizona, 2002). Indeed, Kamose's father was Seqenenre Tao and he had been the king of the area around what was known as Thebes. That area had become a bit of a headquarters for the modestly successful effort to regain control over the Nile valley from the Hyksos Monarchy. The person that represented that monarchy was a man referred to as Apophis or Apopy. When Tao fell away, Kamose decided to continue the conquest that his father had ostensibly started. He was successful in many ways as he was able to push the Hyksos all the way back to their capital city of Avaris, which was located in the Nile Delta. Apophis tried to react strongly to this setback by expanded the war to a second front. He called on the ruler of Kush, which was on Egypt's southern border, to attack Kamose's dominion from the rear. However, it came to pass that this gambit by Apophis did not succeed. Even so, Kamose's rule did not last all that long and he was soon succeeded by Ahmose. He was the one that finally managed to force the Hyksos out of Egypt and unify Egypt under a single monarch. In short, Kamose continued the dreams and war plans of his father but it was his eventual successor that got the job done (Arizona, 2002).

Given the above recounting of the historical account of what happened within Egypt at the time, a reading and interpreting of the inscriptions of Kamose can now be undertaken. One thing that immediately jumps out is one of the stanzas in the first inscription. Kamose is obviously and keenly aware of the different parties and groups that may or may not be his adversaries given what is going on. Indeed, he states "one chief is in Avaris, another in Kush, and I sit here associated with an Asiatic and a Nubian" (Arizona, 2002). Kamose further gets to the point when he speaks of "rescuing" Egypt. The exact phrase in question is "I shall grapple with him that I might crush his belly, (for) my desire is to rescue Egypt which the Asiatics have destroyed" (Arizona, 2002). This desire for victory is fairly obvious a bit later in the first inscription when he says "he who partitions the land with me will never respect me." He also holds himself in high regard as Pharaoh. He refers to himself in a rather glowing and god-like light when he says "the mighty ruler in Thebes, Kamose the Strong, protector of Egypt" (Arizona, 2002). In a nutshell, he is holding himself up to be the savior and "protector" of the entire land of Egypt. Indeed, he was Pharaoh at the time and it is not surprising that he would use such verbiage. He is trying to portend and explain that he is strong, almighty and powerful. Even so, he did have success but he did not truly realize the vision he set out to gain so his banter about being "mighty" was perhaps premature. He was indeed a good leader… [END OF PREVIEW]

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