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Re: Ebla's Red Temple Found

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  • E. Adams
    The following paragraph by P. Matthiae and its somewhat garbled translation supplied by the electronic translator raise some long-discussed questions about the
    Message 1 of 7 , Jan 31, 2009
      The following paragraph by P. Matthiae and its somewhat garbled
      translation supplied by the electronic translator raise some
      long-discussed questions about the chronological correlations
      between Early Bronze Age and Old Kingdom Chronology--- I am
      wondering if any progress has been made here in getting any
      widespread agreement :

      Questi sovrani risiedevano in un palazzo dalle scenografie grandiose
      e tenevano rapporti con paesi assai remoti, dall'Afghanistan nel
      lontano Oriente, dove era la leggendaria terra di Aratta, da cui
      arrivavano enormi quantità di lapislazzuli grezzi, fino all'Egitto
      dell'Antico Regno, che certo inviavano grandi quantità di oro nubiano
      alla metropoli di Siria. Chefren, il costruttore della seconda
      piramide di Giza aveva spedito doni preziosi ad Ebla e l'ultimo re
      della città distrutta da Sargon, Ishar-Damu, poco prima della
      catastrofe aveva ricevuto pregiati vasi in pietra da Pepi I, il
      potente faraone che allora regnava a Menfi.

      > These kings were residing in a palace from the scenes
      > and had great relations with countries very remote,
      > Afghanistan in the Far East, where he was the legendary
      > land of Aratta, which came enormous amount of
      > lapislazuli rough up the Old Kingdom Egypt, which
      > certainly send large quantities of [Nubian]gold to the metropolis
      > Syria. Chefren, the manufacturer of the second pyramid
      > Giza had sent precious gifts to and the last king of Ebla
      > City destroyed by Sargon, Ishar-Damu, shortly before the
      > disaster had received precious stone jars from Pepi I, the
      > powerful pharaoh at the time in Memphis.

      Question: Has Matthiae always maintained that Sargon and Pepi I
      were contemporaries? This passage makes it unclear if he thinks
      that the six invasions of the Levant sent out by Pepi antedated
      the alleged destruction of Ebla by Sargon or followed it?
      In other words did the six Egyptian invasions have a causal
      role in causing Sargon to invade the West? or vice versa, did
      Sargon's intrusion into the Egyptian sphere of influence in
      the Levant incite Pepi to send out so many military expeditions
      in response? Pepi's reign was long, but the invasions took
      place faily early in his reign, according to Uni's autobiography.
      Do we have any idea of the order of events here, other than that
      a city or palace destruction postdated the receiving of the stone
      jars? If the Egyptian invasions came first, the jars might have been
      gifts from triumphant Egyptian commanders based on the coast after
      the final naval invasion and battle. If vice versa, the Eblan king's
      commercial or diplomatic contact with the Egyptians may have provoked
      Sargon to a kind of aggressive defensive war -- Ebla is in my
      territory, don't let the Egyptians come this far inland! This
      destruction of a vital commercial link in the Egyptian's lapis
      lazuli supply route might therefore have provoked the Egyptian
      military expeditions.

      Wasn't there a conference in Berlin this last October which was
      to discuss the causes of the end of EBIII in the Levant? A sort
      of long overdue look at the question of the elephant-in-the-living
      room? Was there any resolution to the differences in the various
      chronologies proffered by Astour, Matthiae, et al. as to the
      contemporaneity of Pepi I with Sargon or Naram Sin?

      Sorry to be so vague but I am away from home and my files...
      Is there a website with abstracts from this conference...? I
      remember it being announced on ANE sometime in the spring or
      summer of 2008, then never heard any follow-up...

      E. Adams
      retired non-academic
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