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isisinacrisis
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 22, 2004 7:29 pm    Post subject: Not another question?!? Reply with quote

Hehehe I seem to be brimming with 'em...

Ok, this one may be controversial too...but were the Egyptians really as xenophobic (or even racist?) as people say? Because apparently the Egyptians hated their neighbouring countries and depicted their people as ugly and called them names like 'wretched' and associated them with Seth or something. But then you hear of foreigners being treated well and even rising to high ranks, and I've heard of Nubians fighting in the Egyptian army, and mercenaries and merchants from Babylon and other eastern nations coming to Egypt and being treated well. Talk about contrasting views!!!

One thing I cannot stand is when people compare ancient Egypt to modern day Bush-led America because of this supposed 'xenophobia'. I did read that somewhere, believe me...but people should remember that this is a different time period and a different country.
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anneke
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 24, 2004 10:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think most cultures are xenophobic to some degree.
I get the impression that they really only denigrated their enemies though. And villifying those you're fighting against is pretty "normal".

There are depictions of Hittites, Syrians, Nubians etc from tribute scenes. I always thought they depicted foreigners in amazing detail and with particular care regarding dress and hair style. I don't see thosse images as ugly at all.
The Kings did marry the foreign princesses. Must mean they found them beautiful I think? Can't quite see them marrying some ugly "royal chick". Very Happy They did have children with them after all...

And as you mentioned there are quite a few examples of foreigners rising to high positions. (Aperel, Bay, several nobles at the coourt of Ramses III, etc)
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isisinacrisis
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 24, 2004 11:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I suppose you're right. after all, I think the Egyptians only fought those who invaded or threatened to invade Egypt, and maybe over power and perhaps money (weren't the fights with Nubia related to the goldmines there?). Some people say they were racist because they 'fought with black africans' but I don't think race had anything to do with it. But did they ever speak of other countries as being alien and inferior to Egypt?

About the depictions of foreigners, that's an interesting viewpoint. They weren't ugly, but apparently their facial features were exaggerated to make the Egyptians look more 'perfect' and 'superior' but I'm not sure if that's true.

I was just looking over my old PMs and saw something that Seg mentioned on Egypt's view on foreigners-'recipient for everything "constructive". Repulsive on anything "interfering". ' That makes sense. I've heard that if foreigners immigrated to Egypt or were brought there, and if they learned the language and respected the culture, they were treated well, if not as equal to the Egyptians.
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anneke
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 25, 2004 1:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

They regularly fought with the Nubians to the south, but I doubt their reason for fighting was the color of their skin.
Nubians ended up paying tribute to the Egyptians, and I think the wars were fought for economical reasons. There was a lot of wealth to be had.

They also employed Nubians in their army for a long time, and the Nubian warriors were respected from what I read. They even named their ppolice force after the Medjay.

Here's a picture from the tomb of Amenhotep, named Huy, the Viceroy of Kush under Tutankhamen
http://www.osirisnet.net/tombes/nobles/houy/photo/houy_21.jpg

I think they are depicted as nobles. The Nubian princess in the chariot looks a lot like an egyptian noble woman would.

Found this tribute painting
http://www.specialtyinterests.net/palestinian_tribute.JPG

I don't think the foreigners are depicted as ugly. They are depicted with a beard (something egyptians did not grow in this way) and the clothes are different.

I think there are many other examples like this.
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isisinacrisis
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 25, 2004 4:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You're right-I was just thinking about this thing I saw on tv about the 'black pharaohs' of Kush. It seems that Egypt had a love-hate relationship with Kush-at first they were at peace, and they traded with each other, but then Egypt invaded them and Kush invaded Egypt (can't remember which way round it was). But they did show pictures of Nubian nobles, and they weren't ugly at all-there was a Nubian princess who looked almost Egyptian but with different facial features that distinguished her as coming from Kush.

And of course, there were the nubian Medjay...and the ones in that Mummy movie didn't look like real Medjay at all! Laughing
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Aktisanes
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 27, 2004 2:55 pm    Post subject: Nubia Reply with quote

Egypt invaded Nubia for on reason only GOLD.
In Nubia gold was practicaly sweeped from the ground as they say.
there were huge amounts of goldmines in Nubia, actually most of Egypt's gold came from Nubia.
Every time Egypt was weakened by internal problems or wars, Nubia reconcerred their territory or at one point during the third intermediate period even ovverrun the entire country and placed their own kings at the head of state (25th dynasty).
After this period Egypt was never able to reconcer their lost lands from the nubians and even had to excercise strafing expeditions to keep the nubians out of ransacking their temples.
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Philip Arrhidaeus
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PostPosted: Tue Dec 28, 2004 3:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you don't mind reading French, this is a good book:

'Les Neuf Arcs, L'Egyptien et les Etrangers de la Prehistoire à la Conquete d'Alexandre.', Dominique Valbelle.
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