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Chronology for the Egyptian pharaohs of the Amarna period and the Israeli leaders Moses and Joshua by correlation with eight solar eclipses
Uppsala University, Teknisk-naturvetenskapliga vetenskapsområdet, Physics, Department of Astronomy and Space Physics.
2007 (English)In: BAR, British Archaeological Reports International Series: Archaeoastronomy in Archaeology and Ethnography, Papers from the annual meeting of SEAC held in Kecskemét in Hungary in 2004, ISSN 978 1 4073 0081 8, Vol. 1647, 133-148 p.Article in journal (Other (popular scientific, debate etc.)) Published
Abstract [en]

The periods of rule for Pharaohs during the Amarna period in Egypt is dated by correlation with six solar eclipses at the horizon. Amenhotep IV changed his name to Akhenaten in his sixth year after a powerful solar eclipse during sunrise on 21/6, 1378 BCE, and the decision in his ninth year to build a completely new residential city Akhetaten – The Horizon of the Sun Disk, was taken after the dramatic solar eclipse at the horizon during sunrise on 20/4 1375 BCE. The sudden decision of Tutankhaten to change his name to Tutankhamun in the fourth year and to evacuate Akhetaten, during the winter months of this year, may have been taken after the solar eclipse during sunrise on 14/10, 1356 BCE. An alternative explanation may be a correlation with the extremely bright supernova that appeared in the sky on 9/11, 1355 BCE. This extremely bright supernova may have been interpreted as a second sun in the sky and a contradiction to the new monotheistic adoration of the Sun Disk.

I identify the solar eclipse in 1258 BCE, which was total in southern Egypt, with the so-called Egyptian darkness mentioned in Exodus as number 9 of the 10 plagues before the people of Israel were given permission to leave Egypt. This eclipse took place in the 46th year of the rule of Ramesses II, 1304-1238 BCE, according to the High Egyptian chronology. The rod that Moses stretched out over the land of Egypt is identified with the long bright tail of comet Encke that dominated the southern sky in January 1258 BCE. The pillar of cloud during the day and pillar of fire during the night, which guided the people of Israel during the exodus from Egypt out in the desert, fits very well with the next bright appearance of comet Encke in May-June 1252 BCE.

There was another remarkable solar eclipse in 1207 BCE that can be identified as the situation “when the sun was standing still in the valley of Ajalon”, after Joshua’s conquest of the city of Gibeon in Palestine. This date is in good agreement with the results from the modern archaeological excavations in Gibeon. Richard Stephenson has earlier identified this eclipse as taking place in 1131 BCE, but this is too late according to the archaeologists.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2007. Vol. 1647, 133-148 p.
Keyword [en]
"ancient solar eclipses, "chronology", "Amenhotep IV", "Tutankhamon", "Exodus", "Moses", "Joshua"
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-14532OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-14532DiVA: diva2:42303
Available from: 2008-01-30 Created: 2008-01-30 Last updated: 2011-01-11

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