Peter James and his associates call for a complete revision of the current chronology of the Ancient Near East.. based upon evidence that the Sothic cycle upon which Egyptian Chronology is based, is in great error. The 'El'Amarna period' should be reduced from the mid fourteenth century to the eleventh century. I would suggest that his current figures in relation to Rameses II and Merenptah need to be put back about 40 years.
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When Did Rameses and Merneptah Reign?
(A synopsis of Chapter 18 of 'The King's Calendar: The Secret of Qumran') (Exodus UNABRIDGED.)
The King's Calendar is a computer generated mathematical reconstruction of the chronological synchronisms found in the Books of the Bible, which successfully synchronises Bible chronology for the Divided Kingdom Period of Israel's history.
That reconstruction determines certain historical dates pertinent to the reigns of King Saul (1039 BCE) and King David (1010 BCE). Until the reign of King Saul, Israel was not a 'kingdom' with a professional army, but according to an Egyptian Stele, King Merenptah (Merneptah) who according to traditional chronology, lived well before the time of King's Saul and David, crushed Israel during his 5th year of reign. (Tour Egypt: Merenptah's Stele)
Today, there are some who challenge the traditional chronology for Ancient Egypt. This article merely suggests, that if Egyptian Chronology is to be revised, then given the exact dating of the King's Calendar for King's Saul and David, it may be possible to provide a synchronism between Egyptian and Israelite chronology.
Merenptah's Stele & Revising Dynastic Egyptian History.
Peter James and his associates call for a complete revision of the current chronology of the Ancient Near Eastern Nations, pertinent to dates provided relating to the Hittites, Kassites, Mitanni and Egyptians. They base this upon evidence to demonstrate that the Sothic cycle upon which Egyptian Chronology is based, is in great error. Refer to:
James P. Thorpe.I.J., Kokkinos.N., Morkot.R., Frankish.J. (1991) Centuries of Darkness. Rutgers Uni Press. New Jersey,p.304)
They believe that the 'El'Amarna period' should be reduced from the mid fourteenth century to the eleventh century. This results in a substantial shift in current chronology, some of which is partly absorbed by determining that the twenty-first and twenty-second dynasties of Egypt were concurrent. This 'New Chronology' shifts the commencement of the eighteenth dynasty to around 1300 BCE (James Et. Al. p195 Table 8:3).
The following links demonstrate where the 19th Dynasty is placed in relation to Merenptah.
The proposed "New Chronology" would place the 18th Dynasty in this position, pushing Merenptah closer the reign of King Saul.
While the proposed "New chronology" would negate the 'King's Calendar' apologetics for the placement of the Exodus within a 15th Century BCE - 18th Dynasty scenario, the significance for the 'King's Calendar' of the New Chronology is that in relation to Merneptah's Stele, it may now be possible to provide an exact date for this Pharaoh Merenptah's fifth year.
If James is on the right track with his reduction in the period of the Dark Ages; that Shishak is 'a Rameses'; and that Shoshenq I is more accurately placed around 800 BCE, then the 'King's Calendar' would indicate that his current figures in relation to Rameses II and Merenptah need to be put back about 40 years.
If Merenptah's reference to 'Israel' is to refer to the 'nation' under the Monarchy, (which is implied in James adjusted Chronology), it must place Merneptah's reign somewhere between 1039 and 973 BCE.
The chronology offered by the King's Calendar would be:
Rameses II 1083 - 1016
Merneptah 1016 - 1006
Period of turmoil 1006 - 990
Rameses III 980 - 958
Merenptah's commemorative stela could well be a triumphant boast, that this people who were not a nation, but which had managed to unite under Saul's leadership for some 30 years, were once again without a king.
That 'his seed is not' (Saul's or Israel's), could refer to the death of Saul's and his three sons in the same battle. In Saul's defeat (1 Samuel Ch. 31), not only was Israel defeated (laid waste?) but was left (apparently) without King or Royal heir.
When one combines 2 Samuel 5:5 in which it is recorded that David ruled only over Judah for the first seven and a half years of his reign; with 2 Samuel 5:17 in which it is recorded that the Philistines only mounted fresh attacks after discovering that there was a new 'King' in Israel, one might well imagine that Israel's neighbours were quite confident of Israel's utter defeat; a thought which seems to be suggested in verse six of the same chapter, when it is said that David could be warded off by the 'blind and the lame.'
Remembering however, that Saul's defeat was at the hand of the Philistines and not the Egyptians, is it still possible for this defeat to have been legitimately ascribed to Merneptah?
I believe so! It must be appreciated that the 'philistines' of the era of the Judges down to King David's time were actually Egyptian mercenaries and that Israel's conflict with the Philistines, was in fact, with the lords of the philistines, the Egyptians.
James Et. Al. currently and tentatively aligns Merenptah's reign with that of King David, but it seems more appropriate to align Merenptah's 5th year with the death of King Saul.
Whilst Merenptah's stele only seems to make sense in reference to a Monarchy in Israel, James Et. Al. in proposing a New Egyptian Chronology, do shift the 18th Dynasty away from the 15th Century BCE, where the Bible seems to place it.
Nevertheless, there is nothing currently within the framework of James' Et.Al. 'The Centuries of Darkness,' or the personal perspectives of Peter James himself, that negates, contradicts, or affects the 'King's Calendar' chronological placement of the Mosaic Exodus.
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Since 2004 he has been writing academic articles, social commentaries and photographic 'Stories from China' both here at KingsCalendar, and formerly as a contributing columnist at Magic City Morning Star News (Maine USA) where from 2009 to 2015 he was Stand-in Editor. He currently has a column at iPatriot.com and teaches English to Business English and Flight Attendant College Students in Suzhou City Jiangsu Province People's Republic of China.)
BenDedek originally created the site to publicize his research results into the Chronology of Ancient Israel. Those results were published under the title: 'The King's Calendar: The Secret of Qumran.' Whilst there have been many attempts to solve the chronological riddle of the Bible's synchronisms of reigns of the kings of Israel and Judah and their synchronism with other Ancient Near Eastern Nations, no other research is based on a simple mathematical formula which could, if it is incorrect, be disproved easily. To date, no one has been able to dismiss the mathematical results of this research.
Free to air Academic articles set forth Apologetics for and results of his discovery of an "artificial chronological scheme" running through the Bible, Josephus, the Damascus Documents of the Dead Sea Scrolls, and Seder Olam Rabbah. Check the Chapter Precis Page to see details of each chapter and to gain access to the Four Free to Air Chapters
(The Download book does not contain a section on Seder Olam)
Definition: King's Calendar Chronological Research
The Premise: Between the 5th and 3rd centuries BCE (but continuing down to at least 104 BCE), Sectarian redactors transcribed the legitimate 'solar year' chronological records of Israel and Judah, into an artificial form, with listed years as each comprised of 12 months of 4 weeks of 7 days, or 336 days per year, thus creating a 13th artificial year where 12 solar years existed.
When the Synchronous Chronological Data provided in the Books of Kings and Chronicles for the Divided Kingdom Period are measured in years of 336 days, the synchronisms actually align. [Refer to Appendix 5. to see how it synchronises the Divided Kingdom Period]