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Ancient egyptian prophecy - is there any?

 
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Lost Pharaoh
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2015 6:18 am    Post subject: Ancient egyptian prophecy - is there any? Reply with quote

During my work I came to the word which translation include "prophets", and momentaly in my mind poped up a question - Is there any written prophecy in ancient egyptian texts, so something what would happen in near or far future?

Thank you in advance.
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neseret
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 11, 2015 1:14 pm    Post subject: Re: Ancient egyptian prophecy - is there any? Reply with quote

Lost Pharaoh wrote:
During my work I came to the word which translation include "prophets", and momentaly in my mind poped up a question - Is there any written prophecy in ancient egyptian texts, so something what would happen in near or far future?

Thank you in advance.


The most well-known of Egyptian "prophecies" is the Prophecy of Neferti, which is a prolepsis - that is assigning of a person, event, etc., to a period earlier than the actual one; the representation of something in the future as if it already existed or had occurred.

In the prophecy of Neferti, assigned as being created during the 12th Dynasty reign of Amenemhat I, it "foretells" the coming of a king who would be called "Ameny" who would acts as a saviour to all of Egypt. Since it is written during the 12th Dynasty, Egyptologists tend to view such "prophecies" as justifications of kings, who normally would not have been considered in line for succession, to imply their rule was announced prior to their talking the throne, and justified by oracular pronouncements.

Amenemhat was just such a king: formerly the vizier to Montuhotep IV, Amenemhat took over the throne when the latter died without issue, thus forming a new dynasty.

Similar "oracular/prophetic" announcements also served such kings as Thutmose I, Hatshepsut, Thutmose III, Thutmose IV, Tutankhamun, Horemheb, and Ramses I and his descendants.

Apocalyptic prophecies, denoting a disaster to occur in the future, are also examples of prolepses, where such "prophecies" are written during times where the Egyptians were ruled by foreign rulers, and these prophecies were created to basically explain that some fault or sin of the Egyptian people led to them being ruled by foreign powers. These type of "prophecies" are discussed in detail in the following publications:

Blasius, A. and B. U. Schipper, Eds. 2002. Apokalyptik und Ägypten: Eine kritische Analyse der relevanten Texte aus dem griechisch-römischen Ägypten. OLA 107. Leuven: Peeters.

Redford, D. B. 1986. Pharaonic King-lists, Annals and Day-books: A Contribution to the Study of the Egyptian Sense of History. SSEA Publication IV.Mississauga: Benben Publications.

As to "oracular/prophetic" announcements being used to justify reigns of non-hereditary kings, see:

Goedicke, H. 1977. The Protocol of Neferyt (The Prophecy of Neferti). John Hopkins Near Eastern Studies. Baltimore/London: John Hopkins University Press.

Murnane, W. J. 1990. The Road to Kadesh: A Historical Interpretation of the Battle Reliefs of King Sety I at Karnak. Studies in Ancient Oriental Civilizations. SAOC 42.Chicago: Oriental Institute.

Proleptic "pronouncements" of a 'future' king (i.e., the present king) who saves Egypt from falling into ruin becomes so common a feature of ruling kings, it is almost de rigeur by the Late Period.

HTH.
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Lost Pharaoh
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PostPosted: Thu Feb 12, 2015 11:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you nesert for great explanation and sources. So there are no prophecies as end of the world, change of time and etc. Razz Just kidding. I didn't know about that kind of prophecies and there's existence. I will read more about that. It's sounds interesting Smile
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Sun Feb 15, 2015 11:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To match the theme...

"Seeing the Future, Watching the Past : Prophecies in Ancient Egypt"

Dr Jose-Ramon Perez-Accino

Date : Saturday 21st February 2015; 2.30pm
Place : Augustine United Church, George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EL
Costs : £3 members, £5 non-members

Info : <Chairegscotland@yahoo.co.uk>
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Lost Pharaoh
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2015 8:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you Lutz. It is pity that I don't live in Britain to get to that course.
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