translated by Shlomo Felberbaum

photographs by Shane Solow

Text and photographs Copyright © 1999—2003 Lost Trails
all rights reserved

Installment 11

The crocodile’s nature is like this: the four wintriest months it eats nothing and it, being four-footed, is an inhabitant of dry land and of marsh; for it brings forth and hatches eggs on land and spends the greater part of the day on what’s moistureless and the whole night in the river, since indeed the water is hotter than the clear air and the dew. Of the mortal beings of which we know, it grows the largest after being the smallest, in that, although it brings forth eggs not much larger than those of geese and its young develop in proportion to the egg, yet it grows and comes to be even up to seventeen cubits and larger still. It has swine’s eyes and large teeth and tusks. Alone of beasts, it produces no tongue, nor moves its lower jaw, but it, also alone of beasts, brings its upper jaw to its lower. It has both strong claws and scaly, invulnerable skin on its back. It’s blind in water and most keen-sighted in the clear air. So indeed, seeing that it dwells in water, it carries a mouth entirely full of leeches on the inside; all the other birds and beasts, then, flee it, but the running-bird is at peace with it, seeing that it is benefited by him, in that, whenever the crocodile goes out of the water to the land and thereafter yawns—it is wont generally to do that to the west—then the running-bird slips into its mouth and swallows the leeches; then the other takes pleasure at being benefited and harms the running-bird not at all.

To some of the Egyptians, then, the crocodiles are sacred and to others not, but they treat them as if they are enemies. They, then, who are settled round Thebes and the lake of Moiris are of the opinion they are very sacred and each of the two groups bring up one crocodile from all, taught to be tame, by putting rings of melted stone and gold into their ears and bracelets round their forefeet, by giving them specially set aside food and sacred victims and by treating them as beautifully as possible while they are alive; when they are dead, they mummify and bury them in sacred burial-places. But they who are settled round the city of Elephantina even eat them, since they believe them not to be sacred. They are properly called not “crocodiles”, but “champsai”; yet the Ionians named them “crocodiles”, because they likened their looks to those crocodiles that come to be among them in fencing-walls.

Many ways of hunting them of all kinds are established; anyhow, of that which to me at least seems to be most worthy of relating I write. Whenever one puts a swine’s back as bait round a hook, he lets it go into the middle of the river and for his part, as he has a live pig on the lip of the river, he beats it. Then the crocodile overhears its cry and rushes after the cry; he comes upon the back and swallows it, while the men drag him along. Whenever he is dragged out onto land, first of all the hunter with mud then plasters over its eyes. Because he does that, he executes the remaining parts of the capture very easily, but if he does not do that, he does them with toil.

The hippopotamuses are sacred to the Papremisian district, but not sacred to all the other Egyptians. They have a nature of appearance like this: it is four-footed, cloven-hoofed; its hooves are a bull’s; it’s snub-nosed with a horse’s mane, with a display of tusks, of horse’s tail and voice; in size it’s as big as the largest bull. Its skin is something just so thick as for, when it becomes dry, spear-shafts to be made of it.

Otters too originate in the rivers, which they are of the opinion are sacred, and they consider also among the fish the so-called scaly to be sacred as well as the eel. Those of the Nile, they assert, are sacred and among the birds the foxgeese.

There is also another sacred bird, whose name is the Phoenix. I for my part did not see him except only in picture; for indeed he in fact resorts to them quite rarely, at intervals of five hundred years, as the inhabitants of the City of the Sun say. He resorts then, they assert, when his father dies. He is, if closely resembling his picture, of this size and of this kind: some of his feathers are of golden plumage and some red. In the highest degree he’s most similar in shape and his size to an eagle. He then, they say, contrives the following, although they make statements not credible to me: starting out from Arabia, he conveys his father, after plastering him in myrrh, to the shrine of the Sun and buries him in the Sun’s shrine and he conveys him thus: first he moulds as large an egg of myrrh as he is able to carry and afterward makes trial of carrying it; next, when he is done with making trial, just then after hollowing the egg, he puts his father into it and with other myrrh he plasters in that space at whichever point in the egg he made the hollow and puts in his father; finally, his father placed within, the object becomes the same weight and, after finishing the plastering in, he conveys him toward Egypt to the Sun’s shrine. That, they say, that bird does.

There are round Thebes sacred serpents, in no way harmful to human beings, that are small in size and have two horns grown at the top of their head, which serpents they bury at their death in Zeus’ shrine; for to that god those, they assert, are sacred.

There is a place in Arabia situated somewhere pretty nearly in line with the city of Bouto and to that spot I came in an attempt to learn by inquiry about the feathered serpents. And, on coming, I saw bones of serpents and spines, the former impossible to relate because of their multitude, while of the latter, the spines, were heaps, large, inferior in size and smaller still than that and they were many. That land, in which the spines are strewn, is something like this: it’s a pass from close mountains into a large plain and that plain joins with the Egyptian plain. There is an account that at spring feathered serpents fly from Arabia toward Egypt and the ibises, which are birds, meet them at the pass in that country and refuse to let the serpents by, but kill them. And the ibis on account of that action is honored greatly, say the Arabians, by the Egyptians and the Egyptians too agree that on account of that they honor those birds.

The look of the ibis is this: it’s terribly black all over, has crane’s legs and a face hooked to the highest degree and in size it’s as big as a crake. Of the black ones that fight with the serpents this’s the appearance, but of those clustered more at human being’s feet—for indeed two kinds off ibises exist—it’s this: it’s bald on its head and all of its throat, white in feathers except for head, neck, wing-tips and tip of rump (in respect to all those parts I just spoke of it is terribly black) and in legs and face resembling the other. The serpent’s shape is very like the water-snakes’; it has no feathered wings, but ones very pretty nearly resembling the wings of the bat. Let so much be said about sacred beasts.

Of the very Egyptians themselves, they that are settled round the Egypt that is sown practice remembering most of all human beings and are far the greatest spokesmen of those of whom I came to make trial. And they use a manner of living like this: they take purgatives three days in a row each month, since they hunt after health with vomitings and clysters, because they consider all illnesses of human beings to come about from the foods that provide nourishment. And indeed the Egyptians are actually the healthiest of all human beings after the Libyans because of their seasons, so far as it seems to me, in that their seasons undergo no alteration; for on the occasion of changes human beings’ illnesses come about most, changes in everything else and most especially the seasons. They eat loaves and make loaves of spelt, which they call by the name “cyllestis”. And wine made from barley they use, since no vines exist in their country. Of the fish some they dry in the sun and eat raw and some pickled in brine, while of the birds the quails, the ducks and the small young birds they eat raw after pickling them beforehand, but all the other remaining beings that are among them of the nature either of birds or fish, except however many are dedicated as sacred, they eat baked or boiled.

In the companies of the happy among them, whenever they are done with dinner, a man brings round a corpse made of wood in a coffin, an imitation wrought in the highest degree through both painting and carving, in size about one cubit long or two cubits long every way, and showing it to each of the symposiasts, says, “Looking at that, drink and enjoy yourself; for you will be, when dead, like that.” That they do at symposia and, observing their fathers’ laws, they acquire no other besides

Theirs are other worthy usages and, what’s more, is one song, that of the very Linus who is famous in song in Phoenicia, in Cyprus and elsewhere and yet has a different name in each nation; the same, however, is like him whom the Greeks name Linus and sing of, so as for me to marvel at many other of the things that are in Egypt and moreover also that Linus, whence they took hold of him. Linus is called Maneros in Egyptian and the Egyptians said he had been born the only-begotten son of the first to become king of Egypt and on his untimely death was honored with those threnodies and that was the first and only song to be composed by them.

The Egyptians also resemble in this following other matter the Lacedaemonians alone of the Greeks: the younger of them, when they meet with their elders, yield the way and turn aside and, when they approach, stand up from their seat in deference. Yet in this following other matter they resemble none of the Greeks: instead of greeting each other in the ways they prostrate themselves by letting their arm down to their knee.

They dress in linen tunics tasselled round their legs that they call “calasiris”. On top on them white wool cloaks thrown over they wear. However, to the shrines at any rate no woolens are brought in nor are buried with them; for it’s not holy. And they agree in that with the practices that are called Orphic and Bacchic but are Egyptian and Pythagorean, because in fact for one that has a share in those rites it is not holy to be buried in wool cloaks. A sacred account is given about that.

Also the following other things have been found out by the Egyptians: each month and day, whose of the gods it is, and the day each was born, what he will fall in with and how he will meet with his end and what sort of a person he will be. Of those discoveries those of the Greeks who prove engaged in poetry make use. In short, more portents have been found out by them than by all the other human beings, since, when a portent comes about, they await, after they have written it down, the outcome and, if some time later one pretty near to that comes about, they consider it will come out in the same way.

The art of prophecy is arranged for them this way: the skill is assigned to none of the human beings, but to several of the gods, in that in the very place is a seat of prophecy of Heracles, Apollo, Athena, Artemis, Ares and Zeus, and finally there is that which they hold in esteem most of all seats of prophecy, Leto’s in the city of Bouto. Yet their methods of prophecy are instituted not in the same way, but are different.

The art of medicine has been apportioned by them in this way: each physician is of one illness and no more. And everything is full of physicians; for some are established as physicians of the eyes, some of the head, some of the teeth, some of what concerns the belly and some of doubtful illnesses.

Their threnodies and burials are as follows: whenever a human being of whom there is any estimation departs from the house of any people, all the female kind of that house then plaster over their head with mud or maybe their face and thereafter leave the corpse in the house and by themselves, roaming throughout the city, beat themselves, while they have their clothes girt up and their breasts exposed and with them are all their female relatives. On the other side the men beat themselves, while they too have their clothes girt up. And whenever they do that, thus they convey the body to mummification.

There are some who are seated for that very purpose and have that as an art. They, whenever a corpse is conveyed to them, show the conveyers wooden models of corpses, imitations wrought with paint, and the most excellent of the methods of mummification, they assert, is one whose name I think not holy to name in a case like that present, and then they show the second method, inferior to the above and cheaper and the third, the cheapest. Finally, once they have pointed the methods out, they inquire of them in accordance with which do they want the corpse to be prepared for them. The latter, then, depart out of the way. The former, left behind in their chambers, perform the details of the most excellent mummification this way: first, with a twisted piece of iron through the nostrils they begin to draw out the brain; they draw out some of it thus and some by pouring in drugs; afterward on making a slit along the flank with a sharp Ethiopian stone, they then take out all of the intestines and, when they have cleaned out and rinsed them with palm wine, again they rinse them with crushed kinds of incense. Thereafter they fill the belly with pure crushed myrrh, cassia and all the other kinds of incense, except frankincense, and sew it back together. Having done that, they mummify the body with carbonate of soda and inter it seventy days; in more than those it is not possible to effect mummification. And whenever the seventy go by, they bathe the corpse and wrap up all of its body with cut up bands of flaxen fine cloth, after smearing them underneath with gum, and it’s that which the Egyptians use for the most part instead of glue. Then the relatives take it up and have a wooden figure in human form made, after having it made, shut up the corpse within and, on shutting up the figure, thus store it in a burial chamber by standing it upright against a wall.

Thus they prepare the corpse in the most expensive way, but those that want what’s moderate and flee great expense they prepare this way: whenever they fill themselves syringes with oil produced from a cedar, then they fill up the corpse’s abdomen, without both cutting it open and taking out the belly and, after making an injection at the seat and keeping the clyster from the way back, they perform mummification the ordained days and on the last they let out of the abdomen the cedar-oil that they let in previously. It has so great a power that together with itself it draws out the belly and the innards that have been melted down; then carbonate of soda melts down the flesh and so there is left the corpse’s skin and bones alone. And whenever they do that, then they give back the corpse thus without any longer taking any trouble.

The third method of mummification is this following, which prepares those lacking strength in money: after rinsing the abdomen with a purgative, they perform mummification the seventy days and thereafter they then give back the body for men to take away with themselves.

The wives of eminent men, whenever they meet with their end, not immediately do they give for mummification nor all the women whoever are very much possessors of good looks and of more account, but whenever they come to be three or four days old, thus they give them over to those who mummify. They do that thus for this reason, that their mummifiers not have intercourse with the women. For they say one was caught having intercourse with the fresh corpse of a woman and his fellow-craftsman disclosed it.

Moreover whoever of either the Egyptians themselves or foreigners alike is seized by a crocodile or by the river itself and manifestly is dead, at whichever city he is brought ashore, there is every necessity, after their mummifying and wrapping him up as beautifully as possible, to bury him in sacred burial-places and it is not permitted for any other to touch him of either his relatives or friends, but the priests themselves of the Nile handle and bury him, just as if he were something more than a human being’s corpse.

Greek customs they flee from using and, to speak of everything together, even any other human beings’ customs. Now, all the other Egyptians are thus on guard against that, but there is Chemmis, a large city in the Theban district near Neapolis. In that city is Perseus the son of Danae’s square shrine and round it palms are grown. The gateways of the shrine are of stone and very tall and on top of them stand two statues of stone and tall. In that encircling structure is a temple and an image stands in it of Perseus. Those Chemmitians say Perseus often appeared to them throughout their land and often within the shrine, and then his sandal that had been worn used to be found, which was in its size two cubits long, and whenever it appeared, all Egypt thrived. That they say and they do the following Greek deeds for Perseus; they hold a gymnastic contest that goes through every kind of contestation and furnish as prizes cattle, cloaks and skins. And when I asked why Perseus was wont to put in appearances among them alone and why they were separated from all the other Egyptians in holding a gymnastic contest, they asserted Perseus originated from their city, in that Danaus and Lynceus, being Chemmitians, sailed to Greece. And they, in giving a genealogy from them, got up to Perseus. He then, having come to Egypt in accordance with a reason that the Greeks also say, to bring from Libya the Gorgon’s head, they asserted, went to them as well and recognized all his relations, because he had come to Egypt with thorough knowledge of the name of Chemmis, since he had learned it by inquiry from his mother; then they brought to completion a gymnastic contest in his honor at his bidding.

All that the Egyptians who are settled upstream of the marshes practice customarily. But indeed those who have their settlements in the marshes observe the same laws as all the other Egyptians, both in all the other respects and with one wife each of them cohabits, just as the Greeks, but for cheapness of food the following other discoveries have been made by them. Whenever the river becomes full and makes the plains open sea, there grow in the water many lilies, which the Egyptians call “lotus”. Whenever they pluck them, they dry them in the sun and thereafter that which comes from the middle of the lotus, which is resembling the poppy-head, they mill and make themselves of it loaves baked by fire. The root of that lotus too is edible and tastes moderately sweet, which is round, in size like an apple. There are also other lilies resembling roses and those are produced in the river, of which the fruit, most similar in looks to the wasps’ comb, is produced on another calix that grows at the side from the root; in that numerous eatables, approximately an olive pit’s size, grow and they are eaten both fresh and dried. Whenever the byblus that became a year old they uproot from the marshes, they cut off its upper parts and convert it to some other use, but the bottom that is left, approximately a cubit’s extent, they eat and sell. Whoever wants to use the byblus, when it’s very good, stews it in a covered earthen vessel and thus eats it. And some of them live off fish alone, which, whenever they catch them and remove their innards, they dry in the sun and thereafter, when they are dry consume.

The fish that swim in schools are not very much born in the rivers, but are brought up in the lakes and act like this: whenever an impulse goes into them to conceive, in schools they swim out to sea; then the males take the lead by spurting some of their milt, while the females, on following, gulp it down and conceive from it. And whenever they become pregnant in the sea, they swim back up, each to their abodes. However, the same no longer take the lead, but the leadership becomes the females’. And they take the lead in schools and do the very deed the males did; for they spurt out some of their eggs, little by little, their seeds, while the males swallow them, on following. And those seeds are fish and from the seeds that survive and are not swallowed the fish that are brought up come. Whoever of them are caught when they are swimming out to sea, are manifestly crushed on the left side of their heads and whoever when they swim back up, are crushed on the right side. And they suffer that on account of this: keeping close to the land on the left, they swim down to sea and, swimming back up, to the same, reversed, keep close, while they bring themselves near and touch as much as possible, just that they may not err on the way on account of the current. And whenever the Nile begins to be filled, the hollows of the land and the swamps by the river are the first places to begin to be made full of the water as it filters through from the river; indeed at once they become full and forthwith of small fish are made full all. Whence it’s reasonable for them to come, I seem to myself to understand that: the former year, whenever the Nile falls, the fish bring forth eggs in the slime at the time of the last of the water and depart; then, whenever, after time’s going round, the water goes back up, from those eggs right at once the fish are born. Indeed, concerning the fish it is thus.

For oil those of the Egyptians who are settled round the marshes use that from the castor-oil plant’s fruit, which the Egyptians call “kiki”, and make it this way: At the lips of the rivers and the lakes they sow those castor-oil plants that grow wild on their own among the Greeks; they, when they are sown in Egypt, bear many a fruit and a foul-smelling; it, whenever they make their collection, some chop up and bring together what flows out of it. It is fat and no less suitable for the lamp than olive-oil, but has a strong odor.

In view of the mosquitoes, which are abundant, the following is contrived by them. Those who are settled in the parts above the marshes towers benefit, into which they ascend and go to bed; for the mosquitoes because of the winds are not able to fly high. But by those who are settled round the marshes the following other things instead of towers have been contrived: every man of them possesses a net, with which in the day he catches fish, while during the night he makes this use of it: round that bed, in which he takes his rest he sets up the net and thereafter slips in under it and sleeps. The mosquitoes, if he sleeps with himself wrapped up in cloth or linen, sting through them, but through the mesh they make no attempt even to begin with.

The boats, indeed, for them who carry loads are made of acacia, whose shape is most similar to Cyrenian lotus, while its sap is gum; from that acacia, then, they chop themselves pieces of wood approximately two cubits long and like bricks put them together and build a ship in a manner like this: round compact and long pegs they fix the two cubits long pieces of wood and, whenever in that manner they build ships, stretch planks on top of them. And of ribs they make no use, but on the inside they then stuff the seams with byblus. Then they make one rudder and it is thrust through the keel and use a mast of acacia wood and sails of byblus. Those boats, although they are not able to sail up the river, if a keen wind prevails not, yet can be dragged by the side from the land, and they are conveyed down stream this way: there is a raft made of tamarisk, lashed on to a boat with a mat of reeds, and a pierced stone pretty nearly two talents in weight; one of them, the raft, tied by a rope before the boat, lets it go to be borne down and the stone, tied by another rope, is behind; the raft, then, as the stream rushes in, moves quickly and drags the barge—for indeed that is those boats’ name—and the stone, dragged behind in back and being at the bottom, keeps the sailing straight. And those boats of theirs are many in multitude and some carry many thousands of talents.

Whenever the Nile goes over the country, the cities alone manifestly project, somewhat pretty nearly the islands in the Aegean sea. For all the other parts of Egypt become open sea, but the cities alone project. Accordingly, men ferry round, whenever the above happens, no longer down the streams, but through the middle of the plain. For one sailing up to Memphis from Naucratis the sailing is then done along the pyramids themselves (yet it is not that usually, but rather along the Delta’s point and along the city of Cercasorus) and to Naucratis as you sail from the sea and Canobus through the plain, you will come by way of the city of Anthylla and that called Archandrus’.

Of those Anthylla, being a city to speak of, for shoes is given as a special honor to the king of Egypt’s wife. And that has been done for as long as Egypt has been under the Persians. The other city seems to me to have its name after Danaus’ son-in-law, Archandrus, the son of Phthius, the son of Achaeus, since indeed it is called Archandrus’ city. But he could be some other Archandrus; the name, however, is not Egyptian.

Until the foregoing my observation, judgement and inquiry has been giving the accounts there, but from here on I am going to say accounts, according as I heard, while something also of my observation will be added to them. Min who was the first to be king of Egypt, the priests said, in the first place banked off Memphis, in that the river in its entirety flowed to the sandy mountain toward Libya and Min, farther upstream, approximately a hundred stades from Memphis, after forming by a dam the bend toward the South, dried up the original channel and conducted the river by canal flow through the middle of the mountains—still even now by the Persians that bend of the Nile, that it may flow enclosed, is kept under great guards, since it is fenced every year, because, if the river will break forth and go over there, a danger exists for all Memphis to be washed over—and, when for that Min who was the first to become king, what was enclosed had become dry, on the one hand in it he founded that city which now is called Memphis—for in fact Memphis is in the narrow part of Egypt—and outside of it dug round a lake from the river toward the north and toward the west, since the Nile itself skirts the part toward the east, and on the other hand set up Hephaestus’ shrine in it, which is large and most worth relating.

After him the priests recounted from a roll three hundred thirty other kings’ names. And in so many generations of human beings eighteen were Ethiopians, one a native woman and all the rest Egyptian men. The woman’s name was the very that was the aforementioned Babylonian woman’s, Nitocris. She, they said, in revenge for her brother, whom the Egyptians had killed when he was their king and whose kingdom, after killing him thus, they had given over to her, in revenge for him destroyed many of the Egyptians with treachery; in that she, having had made a very tall underground building, handselled it in her speech, but in mind contrived other things; after calling those of the Egyptians who she knew were most jointly cause of the murder, she feasted these many and on them, as they banquetted, sent the river through along hidden conduit. About her they said only so much, except that she herself, after that had been worked out, threw them into a building full of ash, that she might go unavenged.

But since of all the other kings they spoke of no showing forth of actions, like any that is of brilliance, except that of the last of them, Moiris, and he showed forth as memorials Hephaestus’ foregates that are turned to the north wind’s direction, dug a lake, whose circumference is of as many stades as I will make clear later, and built pyramids on it, about whose size, together with the lake itself’s, I will make mention—he showed forth so much, but none of all the rest anything—passing by them, then, that man who became king after them, whose name was Sesostris, I will mention.

He, the priests said, first, setting off with long boats from the Arabian gulf, subjected those who had their settlements by the Red sea, until he, in sailing farther, came to a sea no longer navigable because of shallows. And when he had come back thence to Egypt, according to the priests’ report, he took hold of a large host and drove through the mainland and subjected every nation in his way. Now, with whomever of them he met that were valorous and strove terribly for freedom, for those he set up pillars in their countries that said in letters his own name, his fatherland’s and that by his own power he had subjected them, but whosever cities he took over without a fight and easily, for those he wrote on the pillars after the same fashion as for those of the nations who had proven manly and, what’s more, besides drew on a woman’s pudenda, because he wanted to make clear that they were invalorous.

Doing that, then, he went through the mainland, until, having crossed from Asia to Europe, he subjected the Scythians and the Thracians. And to them the Egyptian army seems to me to have come at its farthest. For in their country pillars manifestly are set up, but farther that they no longer. Thence, then, he turned round and went back and, when he had come to be by the Phasis river, I am not able to say exactly thereafter whether the king himself, Sesostris, divided off a part of his host of such and such a size and left them behind there as settlers of the country or some of the soldiers, vexed by his wandering, stayed behind round the Phasis river.

For the Colchians manifestly are Egyptians and I speak having myself perceived it before I heard it from others. And, when it had come to my attention, I asked both groups and the Colchians remembered the Egyptians more than the Egyptians the Colchians. But the Egyptians asserted they considered the Colchians to be descended from Sesostris’ host. I myself guessed it not only because of this, that they are black-skinned and woolly-haired (that alone in fact amounts to nothing, because there are also others like that), but even more because of this fact, that the Colchians, the Egyptians and the Ethiopians are the only ones of all human beings to have circumcised themselves their pudenda from the beginning. The Phoenicians and the Syrians in Palaestina themselves agree they have learned that from the Egyptians, while the Syrians round the Thermodon river and the Parthenius and the Macronians who are their neighbors assert they have learned it recently from the Colchians; the above are the only ones of human beings to circumcise themselves and they manifestly do after the same fashion as the Egyptians. But among the Egyptians themselves and the Ethiopians I am not able to say which learned the practice thoroughly from the other, since indeed it manifestly is something ancient. Yet that men learned it thoroughly through their intercourse with Egypt, the following in fact comes to be a great proof for me: however many of the Phoenicians have had intercourse with Greece, no longer imitate the Egyptians, but rather do not circumcise the pudenda of those born later.

Come now and let me make another statement about the Colchians, concerning how they are like the Egyptians; they and the Egyptians are the only ones to produce linen cloth in the same fashion and their whole way of life and tongue are resembling one another’s. Yet the Colchian linen is called Sardonian by the Greeks, whereas that which comes from Egypt is called Egyptian.

As to the pillars that the king of Egypt, Sesostris set up throughout the countries, the greater number no longer manifestly survive, but in Syrian Palaestina I myself saw they existed and the stated letters were on them as well as a woman’s pudenda. And there are also round Ionia two figures engraved in rocks of that man just spoken of, where men come from Ephesia to Phocaea and where they do from Sardis to Smyrna. In each of the two places, then, a man is carved four cubits and a span in size, with a spear in his right hand and a bow and arrow in his left, and with all his other equipment likewise; for in fact he has that of Egypt and Ethiopia. Moreover, from his one shoulder to his other shoulder across his chest Egyptian hieratic letters extend that say this, “I acquired this land with my shoulders”, while who and whence he is, there is not clear, but elsewhere has been made clear. It’s that which several of those who beheld it guess is Memnon’s likeness and they have fallen far short of the truth.

(to be continued)

Sesostis' monument

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