Harkhuf's Travels Author(s): Hans Goedicke Source: Journal of Near Eastern Studies, Vol. 40, No. 1 (Jan., 1981), pp.

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achievements in their tombs, Harkhuf occupies a distinguished role. The letter written to him by young Pepi II reflects the king's appreciation of this follower as does the inclusion of this letter in the tomb's decorations. Aside from this letter, Harkhuf does not provide any details about the journey which earned him such unusual honors, and no later activities are mentioned either. Could this mean that Pepi II carried out his promise saying "my majesty will do great things for you, more than was done for the god's seal-bearer Bawerded in the time of King Izezi," so that Harkhuf retired from the dangerous life of an explorer? It is widely assumed that Harkhuf undertook four expeditions.2 His inscriptions, however, detail only three journeys; they are all attributed to the reign of Merenre' I. The fourth has to be assumed on the basis of Pepi II's letter dated to the king's "year of the second count," i.e., the third or fourth regnal year. For the geographical and political situation in the region explored by Harkhuf, a study of the three journeys under Merenre' I is essential. They must have occurred in fairly close succession, as Merenre' I's sole reign could not have lasted more than six years;3 or Harkhuf slightly "beautified" the account by reflecting Merenre' I's early years as coregent as years of full rule.4 This possibility has considerable appeal because otherwise the expeditions would have to have occurred at two-year intervals. As the first one was apparently under the direction of Harkhuf's father 'Iri, it would seem somewhat surprising that he should have ventured out alone only two years later. A somewhat longer interval would seem more likely, although it brings the second and third journey into close succession, in order that the third one could be completed prior to the end of Merenre' I's reign. About his first journey Harkhuf reports (Urk. I 124, 9-15):5 "The majesty of Merenre', (my) lord, sent me together with (my) father, the 'sole companion' and lector-priest 'Iri, to(wards) Yam in order to explore the way to this country. I accomplished it
Urk. I 131, 1-3. See, E. Edel, "Inschriften des Alten Reiches: V Die Reiseberichte des Hrw-hwjf," ed. O. Firchow Agyptologische Studien (Festschrift Grapow) (Berlin, 1955) (hereafter Edel, FS Grapow), p. 67; M. LichtLiterature: A Book of heim, Ancient Egyptian Readings, vol. 1 (Berkeley, 1973), p. 23; T. SiveSoderbergh, Agypten und Nubien: ein Beitrag zur Geschichte altdgyptischer Aussenpolitik (Lund, 1941), p. 26 ff.; A. H. Gardiner, Egypt of the Pharaohs: An

[JNES 40 no. 1 (1981)] ( 1981 by The University of Chicago. All rights reserved. $01.00. 0022-2968/81/4001-0001

Introduction (Oxford, 1961), pp. 99 ff.; G. Kadish, "Old Kingdom Egyptian Activity in Nubia," JEA 52 (1966): 23 ff. 3 H. W. Helck, Untersuchungen zu Manetho und den dgyptischer Konigslisten (Berlin, 1956), p. 57; see also my article "The Abydene Marriage of Pepi I," JAOS 75 (1955): 180 ff. 4 In co-regencies any dates concern the senior ruler. Only after his death do references to years of the junior _(o-regent occur and should probably be seen as a courtesy of the ruling king; see W. K. Simpson, "The Single-dated Monuments of Sesostris I," JNES 15 (1956): 214 ff. 6 Edel, FS Grapow, p. 71; for k'h, see my The Protocol of Neferyt (The Prophecy of Neferiti) (Baltimore, 1977), p. 89.


" 6 See Edel. and I brought (back) of the product from this country very much. H. Das alte Agypten: eine kleine Landeskunde (Berlin. 11):12 When his majesty sent me the second time. the text indicates only that King Merenre' had sent 'Irt and Harkhuf to Yam "to explore the way there. FS Grapow. Weigell." JEA 44 (1958): 40 ff.. nos.11 could have been at another place when Harkhuf received his charge. pl. 4. 10 D. This account can be divided into three sections with an introductory and concluding statement. n. n.7 However. A man with this name is actually attested at Tomas during the (early) reign of Pepi I. The second describes its material success. E. I 124."8 This charge implies that Yam had not been visited by Egyptians before-at least not in an official capacity. Kadish. Agypten: der Weg des Pharaonenreiches (Stuttgart. 1907). p. J. for the latter." p." pp. 179. from (my) excursion to the desert region of Tr-rs and 'Irtt. 17-125. 71 ff. it is also impossible to envisage with what speed Harkhuf traveled or how long or briefly he stayed once he reached his goal. There is no indication how this task was accomplished. only the time needed for it is specified. Such a situation would not exclude all contacts or knowledge about Yam on the part of the Egyptians. 1960). I 306. SaveSoderbergh. 11 Urk. 5.. considers wbl to mean here "to inspect. Kees. pp. pp. namely seven months. 3. In other words. I was praised much about it. FS Grapow. P.2 JOURNAL OF NEAR EASTERN STUDIES within seven months. M. but states (Urk. 245. 12 See also Edel. "The Land of Yam. . namely that this venture was conducted by him alone. When I descended into the vicinity of the house of the ruler of Z3w and 'Irrtt I had explored those foreign lands. Agypten und Nubien. 2. Edel uses this indication of travel time as the pivot of his discussions about the location of Yam. A. And I went down (i. E. p. who had gone forth to Yam." Although the text emphasizes Harkhuf's role. 7 For example.6 It is frequently claimed that Harkhuf conducted a commercial expedition. A Report on the Antiquities of Lower Nubia (the First Cataract to the Sudan Frontier and Their Condition in 1906-7) (Oxford. the like of which had never been brought to this land (i. Egypt) before. as does Urk.. FS Grapow. 23. 7 and 12. in a period of eight months. p. 1953).e.9 There is nothing in the text. it is more likely that the venture was actually conducted by his father 'Irl. 3 point to periodic perambulations of the royal court. 1955). These two statements concern the role of Harkhuf. see my Konigliche Dokumente aus dem Alten Reich (Wiesbaden. I 241. 58. p. Never did I find that any "friend"-overseer of mercenaries. Dixon. north). The departure from the Nile Valley is given as hr wit 'bw "on the Ivory Road. Otto. 243. "Old Kingdom Activity in Nubia. I was alone: I went forth on the "Ivory Road" and I descended at 'Irrtt. which at least to some degree perambulated in the country. as Dixon has pointed out. The court. the predominant feature of Harkhuf's first journey was the exploration of the way to Yam. 90. B. A. the third specifies the point of re-entry into the Nile Valley and the exploration accomplished.e. 63 f. 13. and that his was an exploration of a previously unvisited region. had acted as (my) predecessor. 7. "Old Kingdom Activity in Nubia.'? to support his thesis that the travel time was counted from a departure from Memphis. different from the previous one at which time he accompanied his father. and I brought all kinds of products therefrom. 8 Kadish. beautiful and exotic. Harkhuf's second expedition report makes no direct mention of Yam. 24 if." 9 Edel. The first section concerning the expedition details its beginning and concluding points as well as its duration. 222.

he nevertheless voices some misgivings. 15 Save-Soderbergh. even if the conditions might have been somewhat better than in modern times. As he sees the starting point of the expedition in Memphis. pp. Sudan Notes and Records 12. from Khargah to Asyut. They evolve primarily from the fact that until recently the main shipping route for ivory was the Darb elArba'yin and that this desert track ends at Asyut. this track would have been unpassable. First. J. at Abydos and led to the oasis Khargah.. "Pour une localisation du pays de IAM. Dixon originally accepted the traditional rendering. p. Even if he had made his original departure from Memphis. 20 F. 63. "Pays de JAM. This particular route for Harkhuf's travel was envisaged by Yoyotte as the "route d'Elephantine" leading from Elephantine to Dunkul. Beris. Yoyotte. Yoyotte. Dunkul. pp.. 1s Edel. 27. as had been assumed since Griffith. 17 Ibid. Second." although 'bw lacks a determinative indicating it as a place-name. rendered it "Elephantine road. with Special Reference to Its History. Although he considers this explanation as possible in principle." p. i.. with its southern end at El-Fasher in Darfur." denoting the road on which ivory was shipped from the south to Egypt. appears to have been. 174. "the oasis-route" commenced." p. "Pays de IAM. which gave the place its name.16but in a postscript to his discussion related Faulkner's suggestion that w't-'bw should be rendered "Ivory Road.18Edel strenuously objected to this identification and saw in the "Elephantineweg" the route to "Yam" via Elephantine along the Nile.'3 like Yoyotte'4 and Save-Soderbergh'5 before him. Kurkur to Aswan. He further assumes that Harkhuf would have described a use of the route via Kurkur: "Ich zog aus (abzweigend) von Elephantine auf dem Oasenweg. its northern terminal was at Elephantine. He found support for his thesis in the absence of naming a departure point. FS Grapow. The northernmost stretch of the Darb el-Arba'yin. went in a northeasterly direction via Bir Abu Tingil. Physical 13 14 Geography and Water Supply (London. This would entail a routing of the "Ivory Road" in such a way as to reach Egypt after a minimum of desert travel. "Land of Yam. 6 Dixon. there is nothing in the text indicating Memphis as the starting point of Harkhuf's expeditions. Griffith. 54. "A Detail of Geography in the Inscription of Herkhuf. An Egyptian Oasis: An Account of the Oasis of Kharga in the Libyan Desert. it would also have avoided some of its most difficult portions. the main trade route by which ivory reached Egypt from the southwest. 63 if." Proceedings of the Society of Biblical Archaeology 16 (1893-94): 50 ff. p." BIFAO 52 (1953): 174. and Khargah. see also H. there is still no reason to assume that any details about the journey would concern the travel prior to the departure from Egyptian territory. In geographical terms it would have meant that from Selima the route did not turn north to El-Sheb.20As the main feature of the "oasisIbid. pp.. rather.17 For any desert travel without camels. The kind of transportation available in Old Kingdom days would have made it desirable to shorten desert travel as much as possible. 18 Yoyotte.. 174." p. as Edel 19established. Agyyten und Nubien. As the final destination of any imported ivory would naturally be the commercial and political center of the country. J. he assumes that all specifications in the text must be related to Memphis. and from there to Asyut but.e. 62 f. This argument incorporates some features not applicable to the situation in Harkhuf's days. the problems of desert travel also have to be taken into consideration. L. is the worst portion of the track even for camels. While the Darb el-Arba'yin." His thesis is open to serious criticism in three respects. This route would not only have been considerably shorter than the modern link to Asyut.HARKHUF'STRAVELS 3 Edel. L. . as it also has been until recent times. a place where the route left the Nile Valley. Beadnell. 1909). 33 f.

It has an extension from Dunkul to the northwest. 174.bw is clearly recognizable as a land-route.23 If one accepts that Harkhuf traveled south on a land route. which would have required repeated crossings over the river. of course. 1. Why should anybody travel through Lower Nubia on land instead of using the Nile. 24 The translation of w3t 3bw as "ivory/elephant route" or as "Elephantine route" does not affect this identification because no other overland route commences at Elephantine. That 'Irrtt was located in the Nile Valley seems certain and has never been questioned. The desert trail from Elephantine to the Darb el-Arba'yin is linked with the Nile Valley only at two places: there is a track from Dunkul in the southeasterly direction reaching the Nile Valley at Tomas near Ed-Derr. pp. 75*. and it is at the latter place that he left the "Ivory Road. Save-Soderbergh. 28 f. no other explanation is possible than his use of the desert track from Elephantine via Kurkur to Dunkul. "oasis (singular!) road." led to all oases. "to descend." There is general agreement that 'Irrtt denotes the place of Harkhuf's arrival in the 21 It is only in the last twenty-five years or so that a continuous highway exists through Upper Egypt to Aswan. p. and the only means of travel was by boat. 6). midway between the Second and Third Cataract. i." (Wb. The oases Kurkur and Dunkul constitute the mainstays for this desert route. I 519. Yoyotte. between the First and Second Cataract. is generally agreed upon..t 'bw by Harkhuf is determined by the geographical features of the desert southwest of Elephantine. "Pays de IAM. where there was.e. leading via 'Ain NakheilaBeris to Khargah. but. . Ancient Egyptian Onomastica.25 It results from this that Harkhuf's second expedition followed the "Ivory Road" from Elephantine until the first opportunity to return to the Nile Valley. 69. Any overland route following the Nile would have to have been on top of the gebel.24 The route called w. whose location in Lower Nubia. the natural highway through this region? Even within Upper Egypt the main mode of travel for ancient Egyptians was by boat and not by road. "oasis. according to his account. he returned to the Nile Valley to a region called 'Irrtt." (Wb. vol.4 JOURNALOF NEAR EASTERNSTUDIES route" is to lead to the great oasis of Khargah." p. p. II 472. except that nobody had previously proposed this identification. n. 23 Edel." p. 20) and h3i.t-.21 In large stretches of Lower Nubia the valley is so narrow that there would not have been space continuously on one side. Agypten und Nubien. 22 Yoyotte. This location is much too far sourth for 'Irrtt. there is no reason to believe that the w't-wh:t. 65. no water." in reference to it is not surprising. 1947). Yoyotte had already reached this conclusion22 which Edel rejected out of hand without any argument. "Pays de IAM. FS Grapow. unless one assumes the occurrence of major geographical changes in the area. The only overland route south outside the Nile Valley is the tract leading from Elephantine via Kurkur to Dunkul and from there to Selima. This journey would have led him to Kurkur and Dunkul. Harkhuf did not travel the entire length of the Darb el-Arba'yin. 177. This thesis about the departure and return to the Nile is based on the idiomatic use of pri. By its size and economic importance Khargah exceeds all other oases so much that the use of whit. 25 Edel. Lower Nubia never had a road. An "Elephantineweg" "langs des Niltals" is a geographical absurdity. w. p.. 1 (London. The track between Elephantine and the Darb el-Arba'yin at Selima has nothing to do with the "oasis-road" leading from Abydos to Khargah. "to go forth. where it links up with the Darb el-Arba'yin. Third. Gardiner. FS Grapow. The second cross-connection is from Selima to Sakiet el-'Abd.

FS Grapow. In addition to the passage quoted above. vol.i m occurs twice in the account of Harkhuf's second expedition.. which should have affected their schedule. the travel was exclusively in the Nile Valley as Edel assumes. "Pays de IAM. h:i has to be taken here as a reference to overland travel.und Volkernamen in hieroglyphischen und hieratischen Texten (Wiesbaden." 30 In view of its altitude any move towards Memphis from any point south of it would be a descent. 28 Urk. however. Gardiner. Dixon..i) m h. as already pointed out before. 75*." Orientalia 36 (1967): 133 ff. 43 f. suggesting that m should be rendered as "en passant par.i) m qL m hnt 'bd 8. und 'Irtt. which in Egypt is synonymous with travel in the desert. vol. His exploratory missions have a distinctly political overtone. 28 Edel. what would be the purpose of describing only details of the early part of the journey."32 This rendering entails contradictions and is also grammatically questionable. According to Edel's thesis it would be necessary to assume that Harkhuf explored the Nile Valley of Lower Nubia as far as "the house of the chief. 30 Edel. see also bergh. despite Edel's strenuous argumentation.n(. 88 f. "Pays de IAM. aus J}m) fiber Mhr. why would Harkhuf have walked when sailing was the only customary and practical form of travel. Trrz und 'Irtt (. but in its basic meaning "in. ." which has been convincingly located in the Tomas-ed-Derr region.) innerhalb von 8 Monaten. I 125. 176. If. 2. I explored those foreign lands. travel on foot would be virtually impossible. Nachtrage zu den Reiseberichten des Hrw-hwjf. FS Grapow. This passage was 7 S ' {?( f A rendered by Edel28 "und (ich) stieg herab (scil." ("Ich stieg herab in der Gegend" or "Ich stieg herab von der Gegend"). "Land of Yam. "I came down through the region of the house of the chief of Setju and Irtjet. 26 ff." . when it was really intended to Yam. p. he would have passed through 'Irrtt twice with the "house of the chief of Zitw and 'Irrtt"as the turning point. 31 In areas of Lower Nubia. . p. no indication in the text that the royal residence at Memphis is the point to which all time and place specifications relate. There is no reason to doubt the use of h'i in reference to a "descending movement. . FS Grapow. nachdem ich diese Fremdlander Gegend des Hauses des Herrschers von ZDtw erkundet hatte. 32 Lichtheim. the preposition m has no directional connotation. Otherwise. Afrikanische Orts.. H. which Edel translated "Ich stieg (aber) herab in die . Ancient Egyptian Literature. 1. possibly denoting placenames within 'Irrtt." ZAS 85-86 (196u-61): 22.26 This geographical indication does not seem to stand alone. pp." thus expanding a suggestion first made by Yoyotte. . 25. 69 f 29 Yoyotte. 1972). . there is.n(. Edel. pp." p. The "exploration" (wb.n(. die in) Jrtt (gelegen sind. just as it is an unfounded thesis that Harkhuf's activity should be seen as that of a traveling salesman. 69. 27 'Irrtt is located in the Nile Valley by Save-Soderund Nubien." pp. there is also hli. which are thus assumed to have been subdivisions of 'Irrtt. Onomastica." or "I descended from . p." which. can thus only be rendered "I descended in the vicinity of the house of the ruler. If we follow Edel's thesis that Harkhuf. Agypten Yoyotte.. However.HARKHUF'STRAVELS 5 Nile Valley. K. Edel. 1. 70.31 Thus. As for the latter. as the text27 has h'i.w pr . H'i." p.29 In later comments Edel specified his interpretation that h:i is used in this passage for the descending from the "hoher gelegenen J'm zur memphitischen Residenz. 176. see Edel. had taken the "Elephantineweg" leading sourth along the Nile via Elephantine. at" designates a fixed place introduced by m. includes the return home from abroad." with three toponyms depending on it. "Inschriften des Alten Reiches: XI. "Die Landernamen Unternubiens und die Ausbreitung der C-Grbppe nach den Reiseberichten des Hrw-hwjf. p. Zibelius. after starting at Memphis.i) m h'w pr hk Z'tw-'Irrtt. of course.) of "those foreign countries" can only refer to the territories named earlier. pp.

Altagyptische Grammatik (Rome. 62.. 38 See Wb. Princes et pays d'Asie et de Nubie (Brussels.indicated by Sethe in Urk. Catalogue de monuments. p. 176.6 JOURNAL OF NEAR EASTERN STUDIES which Edel located in the region of Kerma? These contradictions result from the way the text was handled. .n(." MDAIK 29 (1973): 105. A Report on the Antiquities of Lower Nubia: the First Cataract to the Sudan Frontier and Their Condition in 1906-7 (Oxford. Posener. h'i m lacks a directional connotation.. "Una tomba egiziano inedita della VI dinastia. as already pointed out. 8. occurs in this form only here. .und Volkernamen..38 but it is exceedingly rare in the Old Kingdom.? 90. as first proposed by Yoyotte. i. 37 Save-Soderbergh.i) ht . which would not make it any more convincing. \ is the common syllabic orthography of m with a preceding 3n vowel. dei Lincei 289 (1892): 31 ff. Zibelius. If the Egyptians had intended the statement which Edel's translation reflects. did not identify the place. 66 (p. Afrikanische Ortsund Volkernamen. the places would have to be envisaged as standing in a line of descending significance. Agypten und Nubien. there is the translation "ich stieg herab fiber . p.. the latter being the Egyptian equivalent of a foreign (Nubian?) word. The spelling . pp. "Pays de IAM. vol.40 does not provide any space for an extension of the arm-sign.34 The envisaged subdivisions of 'Irrtt are read Mhr. there is general agreement in reading Mhr. 141. 88.39 The erasure --. 27. p. no.e. 18. ?38. I 125. Third. which is surprising if it denotes a subdivision of 'Irrtt." p. also Edel. 58. 34 He points out the improbability of having to assume three individually named regions on the 30 km. That Tr-rz and 'Irtt cannot be envisaged as subdivisions of 'Irrtt is evident also from Edel's later discussions33when he found himself forced to accommodate these presumed subdivisions on a rather limited stretch of the Nile Valley. 2 was not given by Schiaparellior by de and is epigraphically improbablebecause of the prevailing arrangement." for h'i m. It would be tempting to identify Tr-rz with later Trs. 39 One possible occurrence among the names of execration texts from Giza appears in J. 6 ff. 146.36 a suggestion which Save-Soderbergh correctly rejected. 42 Yoyotte. II 45. Weigall. de Morgan. "Die Landernamen Unternubiens. 35 G. Even when it is placed at Aniba.42 assumed. no. because the occurrences of em in Old Egyptian are written without exception as A. "Die Landernamen Unternubiens. 43 See Zibelius. if the placenames were appositional to 'Irrtt. it would have required a relative construction. whether a connection exists with i3trs (see Osing. 1955-70). 105) would seem to represent the prototype of the syllabic group writing." p. such as * h'i. and so on. 8. Edel." pp. First. as Edel._ in no. 70. Save-Soderbergh. R. 112) remains uncertain but is feasible. This detail is important. 1907). Agypten und Nubien.which Morgan.. Tr-rz Irtt ntt m'Irrtt. 107. Posener considered the possibility that the first contains a formative element *mh. 1940). the last one being the smallest subdivision. O f. p. "Achtungstexte. 36 A. "Achtungstexte aus dem Alten Reich. Egyptian Grammar3. E." Mem. whose location is. 128. also idem. 177. each one located in the one mentioned previously." pp.37 With the exception of the latter. Nobody is likely to argue that 'Irtt was located in Tr-rz and that the-latter was a subdivision of 'Irrtt. 40 Schiaparelli. 1. p. To begin with. stretch between Tomas and Mediq and tries to overcome the problem by alluding to the possibility of a somewhat more southern limit of ?Irrtt.41 and before him Yoyotte. accepted by Edel and emphasized by Dixon by referring to Gardiner. Osing. FS Grapow. this would only mean that the area extended 50 rather than 30 km. Tr-rz and 'Irtt.. 1. Second. It would imply that *tr corresponds to iLt. however. the region between Tomas and Mediq. 167. Accad. there is no attested use of the preposition m which could be used to support such a rendering. pp..3. 140 f. P. especially for foreign words. Afrikanische Orts. 41 See in particular. p.43 'Irtt is also unattested elsewhere and the remarks made above concerning Tr-rz apply 33 Edel. undetermined._.35while Weigall proposed an equation with Ramesside Mh. who transcribed M'hr.

'h. 6) to have brought "from this foreign region" (h'st tn). 15 f. "the falcon. see H. Yoyotte. which is. Agypten und Nubien. we ought to distinguish the following elements in the narrative: first.. The two place-names. ? 121. I equate with ch. The latter completes the specification of the route taken. Such a route would touch on the oases of Kurkur and Dunkul. E1 is either a writing for h'st as in the next line (Urk. 14). returned to the Nile Valley) in 'Irrtt.e. stating the royal charge and its execution without superior. ~ is not a place-name but should rather be read m h(. 1952). The latter is given as "I descended (i. Der stilistische Bau der Geschichte des Sinuhe (Berlin. Harkhuf had not mentioned the goal of his travels. although its mention has to be presumed in this part of the text because of the subsequent (Urk. These observations necessitate an entirely new approach to the text after the mention of 'Irrtt. 5. he took off with his followers. 47. The most famous early occurrence is in Sinuhe R 21 bik ch. each part consisting of an identical number of elements. I.n(. 10. 6) use of h'st tn. 188. the intention to convey travel information requires that the point of return (h3i m) be specific. Furthermore. I 224. 11). Save-Soderbergh. "when I took off to the desert. According to later indications Harkhuf was sent to Yam. (for the interchange between h and h." p.45 The identification of Harkhuf's second journey is now consistent in all details. When we sum up the discussion up to this point. However.f) hn Amsw. "Pays de IAM. 224 d. . namely. This cannot be 'Irrtt. Dixon.und Volkernamen.f (var. "Land of Yam.n(.3 and my K6nigliche Dokumente aus dem Alten Reich. 45 See Edel. Grapow. The word is identical to ch.. the heading. i." The construction m sdm. p." p." This section is balanced by juxtaposing pri. ? 485). Beyond this observation any further moves would have to be conjectural in the absence of any basis for discussion. up to this point.44 Harkhuf seems to have tried a very stylish formulation with limited familiarity with the orthography. Tr-rz 44 See also CT II 223 b.HARKHUF'S TRAVELS 7 to it as well. as pointed out above. as is generally held to be the region denoted in the Old Kingdom as 'Irrtt. commencing or terminating at Elephantine. Wb. From the latter. p. Altdgyptische Grammatik. "his majesty sent me a second time alone. 225. and its presumed three subdivisions. from the Nile Valley. see Gardinar." pp. Zibelius. ? 90. which it reaches at Tomas. This excludes the possibility of a string of appositions after the point of return was stated. written here without determinative.f with a verb of motion following a sdm. "to fly off.e.). Tr-rz and 'Irtt are the names of two specific areas in the "desert" (h'st) or in Yam. pp.t-'bw) led to the conclusion that it was an earlier routing of the Darb el-Arba'yin." where it expresses the abruptness of the departure in time and space rather than the speed of the ensuing travel. I 125. see Edel. Altdgyptische Grammatik. 'h. IV 310 b.i) m 'Irrtt. I 125. "Die Landernamen Unternubians. 140 f. ? 4. and the point of return to it. e.i) r h'st." Wb. which Harkhuf visited (for the grammatical construction. Second is the specification of the route of departure. because the latter is the point of return to the Nile Valley and not the origin of the "goods" (inw) Harkhuf claims (Urk. whose demonstrative requires an antecedent.i) hr w't-'bw with hli. 6) or it could also be taken as substitute for 'Ilm as reflected in its later mention (Urk. I 125. a track leads south to the Nile Valley..f is well paralleled (see Edel. I 125. Earlier discussions of the "Ivory Road" (w.n. Afrikanische Orts. 176. Egyptian Grammar3.f." This part does not include any reference to the destination of the mission.

This overland route might have been the 46 The intervening two appositional geographical terms separated the time specification from the rest of the sentence. For such a construction a more extensive formulation than *n 'bd 8 (as in Urk. J. Dendera. . 5). The formulation with m hnt is unusual. vol." 49 It would seem likely that Harkhuf on his return journey merely followed the Nile from Tomas north instead of using the shorter desert track between Tomas and Mediq. Bibliotheca Aegyptiaca. who had gone forth to Yam previously. .n(. 1968). p. as in the preceding section (Urk. while t' pn in contrast denotes here Egypt. 72. 14. Both are introduced by hli." would be necessary which remains unsatisfactory for stylistic reasons. translates as follows: "Ich stieg (aber) herab in die Gegend des Hauses des Herrschers von Z1tw und 'Irtt.48 This rendering would seem to make better sense than a reference to the "house of the ruler. see also H. The point of arrival in the Nile Valley is specified as "in the neighborhood of the house of the ruler of Z'tw and 'Irrtt. 48 For example. just as Harkhuf's descent into the Nile Valley has already been discussed in the text.. which he is shown on his third journey. I 124. p. The last section concerns additional exploits of Harkhuf after his return to the Nile Valley in the Tomas region: "When I descended in the vicinity of the house of the ruler of Z. Clere and J." especially as there is hardly any reason for emphasizing it. p. 1. where the desert trail from Dunkul reaches the Nile. which can introduce the starting and the terminating point of the descent. Fischer. 48. hli.i) here also has to be circumstantial. A location between Ed-Derr and Aniba appears to be the most likely range for it. Pr-Hty in J. serving as circumstantial. . " which should be envisaged in the vicinity of Tomas.8 JOURNAL OF NEAR EASTERN STUDIES and 'Irtt.tw and 'Irrtt. . 49 Fischer. The first concerns Harkhuf's success in bringing goods from his journey into the western desert: "When I descended I brought goods from this desert region very much. Edel FS Grapow. 149. "in the region of. vol. nachdem ich diese Fremdlander erkundet hatte." here has the connotation of "within" a defined area and as such is the special equivalent to its temporal application "during the time of. 47 This way of rendering reflects the modern hypotactical thinking structure. Vandier. 1948). down to the Theban Domination (Locust Valley. p. It was accomplished "within a period of eight months. 13) might have been in order. and the reason for choosing it is not apparent. I explored those foreign regions: never did I find that any associateoverseer of mercenaries." This statement would seem tautological because the exploration of Tr-rz and 'Irlt has been stated earlier. Dendera in the Third Millennium B." Hist tn refers back to the previously mentioned E1 (hist or 'Ilm) with its subdivisions Tr-rz and 'Irtt. presumably in this order.46 The remainder of the description of Harkhuf's second journey consists of two sections. I explored those foreign regions. and the meaning appears to be that Harkhuf explored the desert stretch between Dunkul and Tomas until his final descent into the Nile Valley.n(. require an identification with Kurkur and Dunkul. literally. while the Egyptian is paratactical. and I explored . The first makes better sense here." In view of the apparent parallelism. the like of which has never been brought to this land before. An alternative interpretation of the passage which deserves serious consideration might be "when I desended in the region of the domain of the ruler of Z.47 The difficulty for the understanding lies in the preposition m. New York.tw and 'Irrtt." Pr used in the extended sense of "domain" covering an entire region is found repeatedly. I 125. 10 (Brussels. if their listing reflects the progress of the journey. . M h'w.i). had done (them). Textes de la premiere periode intermediare de la Xleme Dynastie." which covers only the time of the departure from Elephantine on the "Ivory Road" to the return to the valley at Tomas.C. Pr-Hww in Mocalla I 2-3. To reflect the latter the rendering "I descended . G.

Edel. Harkhuf describes his third journey in more detail than the two earlier ones (Urk. the third one was to Yam. I discovered that the chief of Yam had gone by himself to the land of Tmh in order to beat the Tmh to the western corner of heaven. is a branch of the Darb el-Arba'yin. and that I had appeased that ruler of Yam. as the vigilance which I carried out was more excellent than that of any associate-overseer mercenariessent to Yam before. 13-127. This journey. pp." pp. who had been sent with me. (a) leopard-skin. Harkhuf's claim to have been without predecessor is carefully formulated. commenced in the Thinite district. It applies only to any "associate-overseer of mercenaries who had gone out to Yam. but this fact is in no way reflected in his account.. bread. There is general agreement that Harkhuf's route led him to the oasis Khargah." This would allow explorers or travelers of the Nubian Nile Valley to have been in the area before Harkhuf. And when the chief of 'lrrtt-Z3tw-W3w3t had descended with me for the Residence. "Land of Yam. While the second journey started from Elephantine on the "Ivory Road. Dixon. so that he was praising all gods for the sovereign. 10 ff. Like his two previous journeys. know that I had gone out to the land of Tmh in support of the ruler of Yam. utilizing a desert trail called "Oasis Road. Yoyotte.HARKHUF'STRAVELS 9 common route to Tomas. p. vol. pp. 1942-52). ebony. First proposed by Griffith. FS Grapow. I appeased him.. and the soldiers. 17): And when his majesty sent me the third time to Yam. "Pays de IAM. 10. hknw sit. like the track via Dunkul and Kurkur to Elephantine." 50 The latter still exists and.tw and 'Irrtt. They concern the point of departure and the route taken. as Edel has conclusively demonstrated. 62 f. i. 51.. it was followed by A. I descended successfully at a place which is south of JIrrtt and north of Zgtw.51 The text does not mention that Harkhuf ever reached it. lni3-sticks (and) all beautiful saw that the troops of the Yamians. It results from his claim that Harkhuf had been in Yam prior to his explorations in the realm of the ruler of Z. of And when the humble servant sailed north by himself towards the Residence. 62 f. although this is implied. has to be envisaged on the southern branch of the Darb elArba'yin leading through Kurkur and Dankul. I met the chief of DIrrtt-Z3tw-W3w3t.e. 73 f." p. one caused the "unique friend"-overseer of the two slaughter-houses. When I had gone out in his support to the land of Tmh. when I descended with 300 donkeys loaded with myrrh. Bahria Oasis (Cairo. from his departure from Egypt on the "Ivory Road" until his descent into the Nile Valley in 'Irrtt. The geographical specifications supplied for it differ from those of the other journeys. 174. and beer. Such a journey to Yam can only be identified with the early section of Harkhuf's account. Fakhry. It is striking that there are no Old Kingdom graffiti between Derr and Sebua'. There is no indication whatsoever that Harkhuf traveled any further west than Dunkul nor any further south than Tomas. I departed from the Thinite district on the Oasis Road." pp. Harkhuf might very well have started from Memphis. . ivory tusks. as the stretch is difficult to travel on land. Dixon has pointed 50 51 out the difficulty of the desert route between Asyut to Khargah even for camels and the impossibility of donkey caravans traveling it. 54. The remainder of the account up to the description of the return journey Edel. Hwni to come to meet (me) with boats loaded with date-wine. who products.. (my) lord. as pointed out in detail. 1. which were joined in unity. FS Grapow. were strong and numerous. then this chief supported me and gave me cattle and goats and showed me the ways of the ridges of 'Irrtt." the third one. sweetmeats. And I sent a [report] through a Yamian of the Following-of-Horus to let the majesty of Merenrec. "Inscription of Herkhuf. I 125.

? 821. which led to an improbable routing. 50 f. The objections he met in this identification came from his equating Yam with Dunkul.56nor is there any reason to conjecture an economically important region west of Dongola just to suit the thesis of a location of Yam. assumed that t'-Tmh denotes the steppe west of Kerma. absent. "may P find out that the daughter of Anubis has approached him. Khargah." Different with Edel.55Kerma was not of any significance in the Old Kingdom.i) pri." with Dakhlah. as Yoyotte has already understood it. It does not support an identification of t'-Tmh. where did the chief of Yam go 53in "the land of the Libyan" "to beat the Libyan"? The intention attributed to the chief of Yam "to beat the Libyan to the western corner of heaven" makes is clear that the chief of Yam had gone in a westerly direction. which is by far the most densely inhabited region of the entire Darb el-Arba'yin and. As w't-'bw. "Land of Yam. namely the oasis of Dakhlah. idem. Gramm. Edel. Gramm. "Die Landernamen Unternubiens. I believe a prospective rendering of gmi makes better sense. pp. 42. because of its inclusion of the word 'bw. The first is the meeting with a/the "chief of Yam... but his rendering. ? 1139. indicates Elephantine as its end.. as Dixon strongly emphasized in "Land of Yam. caught in his preconception that Yam had to be a very distant region requiring extensive travel to get there. Edel (Altdg. defining of the meeting place between Harkhuf and the chief of Yam is essential. so that the western corner of heaven should be envisaged west of Egypt proper and not beyond the limits of Egyptian conceptionalization.10 JOURNAL OF NEAR EASTERN STUDIES (Urk. Upon finding that the chief of Yam had gone to the "Land of the Libyan.52 If. "the land of the Libyan.. Edel was certainly correct in taking gmi with a pseudoverbal clause depending on it. which followed the meeting with the dignitary. This world has Egypt as its center. nor does it disprove it. Harkhuf's journey to T'-Tmh. as is generally accepted." pp. 176. 9 and Edel. 55 Edel.e. 154 iff.. 67 f. For the clarification of the geography." pp.-Tmh which Edel rendered "Ich zog hinter ihm her 52 Edel. 56 Dixon.f.57 The stated intention of the chief of Yam to drive the Tmh to "the western corner of heaven" has no specific geographical connotation but should rather be taken as a general remark. Gramm. it has to be concluded that Harkhuf's prime aim had been to meet "the chief of Yam" and that he found him absent at the end of the w't-wh't.. which touches on a number of oases. pp.. 20 f. It would seem truly disproportionate if the stretch from Abydos to Khargah had been used as a designation for the entire Darb el-Arba'yin. w't-wh'tin parallelism shows that it denotes the "way" to "the oasis." p. Altag. determined the name of the trail leading to it. pp.f. "Inschriften..f r t. indem er ins Land des Libyers gegangen war" makes no sense because Karkhuf did not find. expanded his geographical identification into a historical thesis which for lack of a basis remains hypothetical. 64 Yoyotte. however. Only one region west of Khargah could qualify. The route Harkhuf took brought him first to Khargah.. 63 For the Old Perfective followed by r.e." the second. Pyr.54 Edel. i." it is necessary to equate Yam with Khargah. "Pays de IAM. The person he apparently intended to meet there was. This requires the conclusion that Harkhuf's first and prime goal was the oasis Khargah. I 126." Harkhuf follows him: iw(. Altdgyptische Grammatik (Rome. z3t DInpw hsf. ? 585.ti im. . 57 Edel.. see also idem. see Edel. see Wb. The expression reflects a concept of a world with defined boundaries and a heaven above it." i. "Ich fand den Fursten von JIm. FS Grapow. Altig. the "Oasis Road. 1180c provides a convincing parallel as gmi P . 68 ff." pp. however. ? 585) assumes that gmi here has a direct object. If Yam is to be identified with Khargah.. the chief of Yam. "Die Landernamen Unternubiens. V 168. FS Grapow." p. 154 ff. meet. 12) concerns two noteworthy events and the sending of a report to the king about what had happened." (ZAS 85 [1960]). 1955-70). for gmi.kwi m-s'.

Agypten: der Weg des Pharaonenreiches (Stuttgart." 60 is used idiomatically with verbs of motion in the sense of following someone or accompanying someone. 5. 61 Dixon. 72. Kees. nor is there reason to assume that Harkhuf had any leverage to influence the ruler of Yam." p.." According to Dixon. Egypt of the Pharaohs: An Introduction (Oxford. Altig." p. The latter was at that time conducting a campaign against the land of the Libyan but had not yet completed it. Hatnub Gr. 99 ff. rightly rejected by Edel. set out after him" for the sole objective "to announce his arrival. see also Urk." The compound m-s'. 69 A good parallel is Urk. Das alte Agypten: eine kleine Landeskunde (Berlin. what Harkhuf's intentions could have been. "then. 7. the Asiatics. 90. assuming that Harkhuf brought his along into the desert." Applying the later usage of m-s' to the occurrence in Harkhuf's inscription. 45 interprets this statement freely into "leaving his asses and most of his goods at the chief's residence. 1961)." is not detailed. 16-141. Edel. IV 651. it could not have been commercial bartering. Otto. since this would result in the interruption of commerce.f to the land of the Libyans. indicates that this sentence should be taken with the connotation of an accomplished circumstance for the verbal clause following it."61 There is neither any indication that the commercial contacts between Egypt and the oases were so intensive that they required constant attention. for example. Sinuhe B 245. Equally improbable is Dixon's view that Harkhuf tried to prevent the hostilities of the chief of Yam as "he would be working against his own interest in stirring up war.59 Consequently. "Land of Yam.e. Geschichte des alten Agypten. who had come behind me. Gramm. E. what was the purpose of Harkhuf's move? Edel took the passage as a self-contained unit. Dixon." is a clear demonstration of m-s' used for military escort. First. it requires the rendering "when I had gone out m-s'. He could not possibly have expected to trade with the chief of Yam during the military operation. what is its position in the syntactical context. 75 f. 62 It is generally assumed that the journeys refleeted in the tomb inscriptions of Aswan had strictly commercial aims. 60 See Edel. 17. literally. i. different from almost all prior commentators. Harkhuf accompanied the chief of Yam as a military escort. hr Styw iww m-s'.i r W'wt-Hr. and why does it use the Old Perfective? Second. 3. "Land of Yam. . either politically or militarily. p. 1953). "the Land of the Libyan. p. 52. Like the Asiatics in Sinuhe's journey home. no commercial exchanges could have taken place during the campaign to the land of the Libyan. m-s: has to have there a more specific meaning than claiming to have pursued the absent chief of Yam." 58 Two questions have to be asked concerning this passage. Gardiner. I 140. W. Harkhuf would have to have had extremely pressing commercial interests if he ran after the chief of Yam for no other purpose. This leads us to the second question. p.i hr sbt. The use of the introductory iw. 21. 179.HARKHUF'STRAVELS 11 ins Libyerland. pp. What Harkhuf actually did in t?-Tmh. 1968). took shtp to have only commercial connotation as "(jemanden) 568 Edel. "in the back of. however. 1957). see "Inschriften. Harkhuf realized the opportunity to gain influence with the chief of Yam and to explore previously unknown territory by accompanying the chief of Yam to the Land of the Libyan. The term has had two explanations. pp. probably with a few companions and a Yamite guide. For the reasons already pointed out. Handbuch der Orientalistik 1/3 (Leiden and Cologne. It would thus seem that Harkhuf's primary concern during his third journey was to meet the chief of Yam. 9. 4. Gardiner. H." p. m-s' has the meaning of being "serviceable to. ? 802. see. In Siut I 278 and 317. As Dixon admits. FS Grapow.. ? 178. 7.. Egyptian Grammar3. Helck.62 Shtp is the term used for Harkhuf's action after he had gone out to the Land of the Libyan to aid the chief of Yam. 6. H. while following me to the Horus-ways. Harkhuf. The main activity followed then in the Land of the Libyan. The Chief of Yam would have been without access to any stores of trade goods.

fig.. sgrh n. "When I had appeased all foreigners for the Residence properly. FS Grapow. which in no way exhausts the meaning of the word. the chief of Yam probably terminated his campaign. That this involved some negotiations about passage is understandable. 146."64 While this usage seems beyond doubt. 21.sn.12 JOURNAL OF NEAR EASTERN STUDIES zufriedenstellen (durch gute Tauschewaren)" or more freely "gut bezahlen. h'swt or h3st(yw). The transactions were then carried out after his return to Yam to the satisfaction of the Nubain ruler. Upon it. FS Grapow. 1946). Old Kingdom Egyptians. idem.n(. (Leiden. .s hz. pp. who appeases the sbit about their duties. Janssen. Habachi." with the result of loyalty by the foreigners concerned towards the Egyptian administration.i). 67 A copy of the text is available in L.s 5 iw '(3w) shtp. Edel drew support from the adjoined statement about the ensuing gratefulness of the chief of Yam to the king of Egypt. 1977). 84 Edel. 68 See J.. "I went forth to Wawat with five troops of soldiers and mercenaries with whom I had made peace on the west and east side of Wawat in order to bring a troop of soldiers back successfully. Sabni went out to bring his dead father home.i) hr imntt i3btt nt W'w't r tnt tzt ntms' m htp. 1. Edel's view had already been voiced by Save-Soderbergh. p. This phrase is common in connection with the proper payment of artisans. 13 the broken context hampers a full understanding. "I was secretary of/for all matters which were brought from the garrison of the foreigners and from the southern foreign lands"(Urk. 66 See also Kadish. "Inschriften.66 This applies also to the inscription of (another) man named S'bni67 who claims: iw pri.i) h'st(yw) nb n Hnw r-mnh rs. 1944). but it rather seems that K'r was concerned with matters dealing with foreigners and their relation to the Egyptian political establishment. 12. 29 iff. pp. No trade is involved in the claim of KDr (Urk. This usage occurs also in the Middle Kingdom. 4-5):65 iw shtp. pp. when learning about the campaign of the chief of Yam." The only other connection with foreign matters Ki'r states otherwise is ink hry-ss't n mdt nb(t) innt m r.n(. vol. 53. According to him. 85 See idem. but it is certain that no commercial activities are involved.t hn' tzt nt m. I watched over it and was praised about it by (my) lord.'C-h]swt m h'swt rs(yw]t. "who makes quiet the bedouin.i hr."63 He assumed that Harkhuf had no commission to conduct an active appeasement or expansion policy.s in nb(. Agypten und Nubien. I 255. In Urk. 40. p. because the success of his journey depended on the good will of the people through whose country he was proceeding. p. It could also be read the latter being preferable because shtp requires a human object."68 63 Edel. 16. it is nevertheless a specific idiomatic application. left "die Esel der Agypter mit ihren Tauschlasten und ihrer Bewachung in der Residenz des Fiirsten" and with a few Egyptian members of his staff under the guidance of natives followed the Nubian ruler to announce his arrival. "Land of Yam.) Commercial activity does not seem to be implied. The writing of shtp with the sign == as determinative is the only parallel to the orthography occurring in Harkhuf's text. but had only trade interests. The Obelisks of Egypt: Skyscrapers of the Past (New York." (ZAS 85 [1960]).kwi hr. 21 f. 2 vols.kwi r W'w." It is quite clear that Sabni was concerned with recruiting mercenaries by making them "peaceful" (shtp). 45 f. in particular in Cairo 20539 I b. with some modifications see also Dixon. De traditioneele egyptische autobiographie v66r het Nieuwe Rijk. 52 ff. ? 50 a. I 136. I 254. p. Harkhuf.f hryw-sc shtp sbit hr irt. It would seem that Shtp here has the meaning "to appease. 10-11. Untersuchungen zur Phraseologie der igyptischen Inschriften des Alten Reiches (Berlin." pp. so that Edel concluded that shtp means here "zufriedenstellen (durch gute Bezahlung).

74 Why should 69 See. Harkhuf could not exert any force against the chief of Yam. Any attempt in this vein could only have led to disastrous consequences. for example. as was recently demonstrated by the spectacular discoveries of the late Ahmed Fakhry. 53 f. 46. or shortly thereafter. .69 As the chief of Yam was on the offensive.." "to appease" with the connotation of establishing peaceful relations. Gardiner. it could never have matched the forces the chief of Yam could muster. 73 Observe the pseudo-verbal construction with hr and its implicit continuity. The term is used for the payment of workers. It is certain that either at this time. but does not emerge instantly from the text." in the sense of integration into the existing social order. Although Harkhuf had some military escort (see Urk. Egyptian Grammar3. in particular that the chief of Yam established ties with the Egyptian king. Harkhuf's actions earned him the gratitude of the chief of Yam and must have been acceptable to him. Ahmed Fakhry most kindly gave me the opportunity to study the important texts which he had discovered. FS Grapow. "sovereign. he would hardly have tolerated any interference with his plans. 1960). The assumed meaning "to pay well" or "to satisfy by good barter" cannot be substantiated. 71 See my Die Stellung des Konigs im Alten Reich (Weisbaden. The Juridical Terminology of International Relations in Egyptian Texts through Dynasty XVIII (Baltimore.Inregard to foreigners. it is no wonder that he was satisfied.." "to establish peaceful relations with someone. all occurrences of shtp have the basic causative meaning "to satisfy" in common. Two aspects concerning the reaction of the chief of Yam to Harkhuf's services require comment. pp.HARKHUF'S TRAVELS 13 Although there is a wide range of application. 49 ff. In Harkhuf's inscription shtp has the basic meaning "to satisfy." It probably reflects an act of recognition on the part of the chief of Yam.70 Harkhuf's journey is likely to have opened the way for this subsequent political development. 70 The late Dr. Altag. Harkhuf went to the Land of the Libyan in support of the chief of Yam.72 The second concerns the reason for this professed gratitude. in the reign of Pepi II. The same considerations apply to the repeatedly stated view that Harkhuf intervened in the fighting. His thanks are directed to the "sovereign" (itw)." p.e. 1974).71 This designation reflects the legal relationship between the chief of Yam and the king of Egypt. is probable. ties to Dakhlah were established. His decision to go further west than he was charged to do was a reaction to the opportunity to accompany and assist the chief of Yam. which is the reason that he reports his move to the king. but not to describe the exchange of commodities. shtp appears to have the specific connotation of "making someone peaceful. I 127. That this move entailed political consequences. Lorton. Gramm. 6). It gives an idea of the caution with which foreign territories were explored and which is quite different from the prevailing thesis that the Egyptians of the late Old Kingdom conducted far-reaching expeditions deep into Africa. As already proposed in discussing the meaning of m-s'. His visit to Dakhlah was not covered by his original commission. "Land of Yam. 74 Edel. as is strongly suggested by the later use of the term. see Edel. Considering his whereabouts and position. i. Dixon. 72 See D. His presence must have improved the power of the chief of Yam and seems to have tilted matters in his favor. ? 932.73 Edel's thesis is that the chief of Yam was overwhelmed by his success in bartering with Harkhuf. 7 f. pp. If this is correct. as the former is not a subject under the nswt-bit and thus acknowledges the ruler of Egypt as itw. pp. ? 319 f.

I 126.n(. wissen zu lassen. The goods which Harkhuf lists are not to be considered the result of trading with the chief of Yam but rather as gifts of the latter in appreciation of the support received from Harkhuf and as expressions of the recognition of the Egyptian king as "sovereign. and the fourth the last link of his journey and the reception he received."76 The ruler there is described by Harkhuf as hFk' I. 76 The fact that some inscriptions from Dakhlah name a hk wwMht "chief of the Oasis" fits into the picture very well. the chief of Yam not only expresses his gratitude by "praising all the gods for the sovereign. Harkhuf nevertheless sent a report to the king about the developments. Giza 2375 (Edel. 15) continues the account and consists of four sections. 77 Edel.i) smi (?) m-]C' ILm(y) n(y) sms-Hr r rdit rh hm n MrnrCnb(." 75 The reference to "all gods" is chosen here to include not only the Egyptian. The left part of Harkhuf's inscription (Urk. Khargah. For the understanding of the partly destroyed text. [dass ich] hinter dem Herrscher von J3m her [ins Libyerland gezogen war].e. the investigation has so far established that Harkhuf left from the Thinite district on one of the branches of the Darb el-Arba'yin on which he traveled to Khargah.. Thus the mention of the hk3 wh3t should be taken in the specific meaning "chief of the Oasis. Die Stele des Mhw-'htj [Reisner G 2375]. the journey to t?-Tmh and the support of the chief of Yam was beyond Harkhuf's instructions. referred to as "the Oasis.14 JOURNAL OF NEAR EASTERN STUDIES Harkhuf be interested in especially pleasing a trading partner instead of pursuing his own interests or those of the king. he renders as follows: "[Ich sandto den TITEL N.78 I propose restoring the partly broken beginning as [iw h. Edel's study is fundamental.b. If we are correct that Harkhuf gave support in. As discussed earlier. 72.kwi r t3-Tmh]m-sl hk-DI'm '[I sent a report (?) with] a Yamian of the Horus-following in order to let the majesty of Merenrec. The first gives Harkhuf's report to the king about his unplanned journey to the land of the Libyan in support of the chief of Yam. he did not touch on Khargah. the conquest of Dakhlah (t3 Tmh) by the chief of Yam whose center of power was in Khargah. the third his journey through Lower Nubia and the somewhat unwilling support he received from the chief of Lower Nubia.77 Only in a number of details will differing interpretations be proposed. because he traveled on the more southern track from Elephantine via Kurkur to Dunkul and from there south to the Lower Nubian Nile." . p. um die Majestat des Merjen-re.N. Although apparently able to decide independently. whom he represented? (Thus these actions should be seen in a political light." i. "Inschriften des Alten Reichs: III. "chief of Yam. 78 Idem. it can be assumed that from then on Dakhlah was controlled by the ruler of Khargah. It cannot be compared with Reisner. Differing slightly from Edel. That Yam is not only Khargah results from the information to be gleaned about Harkhuf's second journey. but also the local gods. meines Herrn. 54 ff. pp." from which it can be deduced that Khargah was an integral part of Yam." Summing up the right section of Harkhuf's inscription. reflecting the subjugation of Dakhlah under Khargah.) For the support received.i) [wnt w(i) pri." MIO 1 [1953]: 331). zusam]men mit einem Mann aus ]Pm zum Gefolge des [Hor]us. 7-127. (my) lord. The second specifies his return to the Nile Valley.m. Although Harkhuf went to Yam." 75 but also gives his feelings a material expression. FS Grapow. know [that I had gone to the Land of the Libyan] in support of the chief of Yam.

84 An alternative. md]t80 would be too short as a restoration. 1947). pp. which he interpreted as a term denoting "das menschliche Gefolge des Konigs." which does not mention the Sms-Hr. I 126. "I descended successfully at a place which ~J t:D~ _ is south of 'Irrtt and north of Z'tw. 12 corresponds to Urk. 101 ff. "Die Landernamen Unternubiens. see my article "Quotations in Old Kingdom Inscriptions. The use of the compound preposition m-' rules out such a thesis because m-' does not mean "together with" but "in the hand of. see Urk. 81 Edel." it is still used only in reference to physical objects and not to persons. 72. I 136. Ancient Egyptian Literature. "Yamian. p. 31'm(y). I '\. 15. where it is used for a letter. In the account of the third journey. the return is separated from the departure by the lengthy description of the events with the chief of Yam. Wb."79 Thus m-' has to be preceded by the mention of an object which was "sent" in the hand of a Yamian. 86 Save-Soderbergh. The name of the place where Harkhuf returned to the Nile Valley is missing. It must have been a rather short name. 128. ? 773. In the overall composition. n. I 126. A word for "report.85 following Save-Soderbergh86 convincingly demonstrated. "count 'unique friend' who repeats the word of Horus to his following. 8. see Urk. FS Grapow. 85 Ibid. 1 has msitt. any message could only be sent "towards" an institution and would thus require the use of the proposition r. Urk." was first recognized by Edel as denoting a native messenger. pp. I 128. 84 Edel. 5. 2 in the description of the second journey. 14 corresponds to Urk. Sms-Hr is attested once in the Sixth Dynasty (Pepi I) where it denotes beyond question the "royal followers" in a military sense. see also my Konigliche Dokumente aus dem Alten Reich (Wiesbaden. Agypten und Nubien.. 83 For wnt introducing a quote from a letter. Edel's restoration of two personal names is untenable. I 136. 13. 1. 28. which would better suit the context is [ Fr E A ' 7] hnt 'Irrtt m p4wy Z. Ancient Egyptian Onomastica. I 214. which Edel gives with three squares. or znn. 1967). is to be expected." pp. especially also for the employment of local people as messengers. I 125. but was actually a mecenary in the Egyptian military force. He mentions the inscription of a certain Sabni (see n. IV 128. 17. 67 above) who has the epithet h'ty-c smr-w'ty whm mdw-Hr n Ams.83 The second section of the left part of Harkhuf's inscription (Urk. 55 f. In view of the length of the lacuna.f. 140 ff." (For the use of m-htp preceding the geographical specification. 42 ff. FS Grapow. Altag. He also improved the reading to 'I'm(y) . 16."8' His view is untenable for two reasons: first. in as fas as m-' lends itself to the translation "under the supervision of. just as Urk. 6. Urk. (London. any official report would have to be addressed to the palace or to the king but certainly not to "the human following of the king. against Gardiner. 1 provides a supporting parallel. 59 ff. He took the latter as a dative and thus assumed that Harkhuf dispatched his message to the sms-Hr. pp. 16 f. 1. Urk.. which Edel estimated as two squares ending with the determinative pi . I 128. p. pp. vol.. pp. "distinguishing sign. I 60. vol. 82 Urk. the place mentioned here by Harkhuf is to be located in the vicinity of Tomas. Thus Harkhuf on his third journey to Yam descended into the Nile Valley at the 79 See idem." None of the occurrences of Sms-Hr cited by Edel is pertinent because they reflect the religious application of the term. Wb. *270. I 125.) As Edel. a more recent translation is offered by Lichtheim. I 125.82 In the present occurrence it is used to indicate that the Yamian dispatched with Harkhuf's message was not a mere native. The construction here can only be genitival. 2. 61. III 460." with smi. idem. . p. 80 Urk. 2 vols. Gramm. Second." which would not be suitable here. 11-127.tw.." in FS Grapow. 3) describes his return to the Nile Valley after "satisfying" or "making peaceful" the chief of Yam.HARKHUF'S TRAVELS 15 Edel assumed that Harkhuf sent off a member of his expedition together with a local man.

i) w't nt tzwt nt 'Irrtt. ? 18. The goods Harkhuf transported on 300 donkeys cannot be used for a geographical identification.i) k'w 'nhw hr ssmt n(." see Edel.. 2017 a. Untersuchungen zur Phraseologie. Harkhuf apparently refers to the positive reception he received.ti m ht wct because the Old Perfective has to be feminine.16 JOURNAL OF NEAR EASTERN STUDIES same place he had on his second journey. namely an infinitive followed by a preposition.tw. 16. advocated by the chief of Lower Nubia. see Urk. III. 89 Following Edel's explanation of Urk. "to speak to someone. 88 SSve-SUderbergh.87 There is only one direction from which one can descend into the Nile Valley at Tomas and this is from the north. which seems to imply the limited authority of the chief over his own people. These "ways of the mountain-ranges of 'Irrtt" are to be identified with the 87 If Yam had been in Dongola. 15) corroborates the thesis about his point of descent. Urk. the furnishing of animals for slaughter appears to have constituted a special favor.W. "to advocate somebody. this is not necessarily a reflection of impending or barely avoided fighting. 1369 a.i)> hr rdit n(. coming on the desert track from Dakhlah via Beris at Khargah to Dunkul and from there on the same route used during the second journey into the Nile Valley. I 126. "in the vicinity of the house of the ruler of Ztw and 'Irrtt" or "within the realm of the ruler of Z'tw and 'Irrtt. and guided (me) to the roads of the mountains of 'Irrtt. A possibly more suitable meaning is attained by assuming a haplography of hr and emending to * hr zbit <hr(.. though this rendering has problems. . Since Harkhuf after his third journey to Yam descended into the Nile Valley in the vicinity of Tomas. It can equally well be taken as a reason for the local chief's unusual courtesy. As has often been remarked. Beyond this." If taken this way. VII 5. I 126." see Wb.i) hr rdit(. and there would have been no reason to single out one point in the long river journey. It throws a curious light on the prevailing customs that the chief "spoke for" Harkhuf and his party. Agypten und Nubien.i) . 5. where it is described as m hiw pr-hklc Z'tw'Irrtt.wt (Urk. "to support. "to accompany.88 in the few years between Harkhuf's second and third journey the political situation in Lower Nubia had changed by its political consolidation under one rule.89 There is no indication that the ruler was truly hostile towards Harkhuf. His reactions are stated as wn in hk' pn hr zbit(. This concerns in particular the ivory tusks but also the leopard skin and ebony. most likely by boat. gave cattle and goats to (me). CT I 176 o where zbi hr stands parallel to mdw hr. If he mentions in this context the number and strength of his escort. 431. "then that chief accompanied (me)." For zbi. this emendation is also supported by the fact that the two parallel clauses have the same construction. I 139..wt nt tzwt nt 'Irrtt. They are obviously all considered precious and serve as an expression of gratitude and recognition by the chief of Yam to the king of Egypt. p.i) w. In addition to the resulting better meaning. The unidentified word s't might be identical with that occurring in Pyr. which in part consisted of Yamians recruited for the Egyptian military service.91 The last service extended to Harkhuf by the chief of Lower Nubia is described as hr sgmt n(. 90 See also Siut IV 78." That the next point in Harkhuf's account is his meeting "the chief of 'Irrtt-Z." i.e. 16 I read dmd. 9I Meat for meals was a special treat. For zbi hr. due to the impression Harkhuf's caravan made on him. 16.. Yam cannot be located in Dongola as Edel insists. 518 a. Khargah was on the trade route to Darfur and thus the commodities mentioned do not necessarily reflect indigenous products of Yam.90 That Harkhuf was pleased to receive supplies of fresh meat is not surprising because they were unavailable to him during the desert travel. 18-21. Harkhuf would have followed the Nile.

bou it is orthographic&ily impossible. I 128.102 While its location is basically uncertain. 102 See M. 17). p. 25. I 126. 94 That he used this overland desert track instead of traveling on the western bank of the Nile-for the somewhat more passable eastern bank he would have had to cross the Nile with his big caravan-stands of Herkhuf's route against Edel's identification during his second journey. 1954]. There is no indication that he immediately proceeded there with his entire expedition. Gramm. which instigated the dispatch of a reception party. I wonder if the name should not be read *R'-wn-n. 100 Edel (FS Grapow. Agyptologische Forschungen 18 [Gluckstadt. who appears to be unattested elsewhere. Agypten und Nubien. p. 73) read it as mswk. "that you have returned successfully from Yam. Unquestionably a derivative of 'ht "horizon. as did Helck before him (Untersuchungen zu den Beamtentiteln des agyptischen Alten Reiches.99 As a gesture of welcome. is likely to refer to some "sweetmeat.HARKHUF'STRAVELS 17 overland tracks from Tomas (or Derr) to Mediq as Save-Soderbergh first suggested. "machte mir gangbar die Wege. the implicit meaning of ]htyw.ty-c for lack of space and for incongruity. 12 vols. is certainly correct in rejecting Sethe's 92 93 restoration h. 217." this basis limits the term to an easterly or westerly direction but certainly not to the south..'00 in view of its conjunction with bnrit. 12. 97 See Sinuhe B 243-45.92 later accepted by Edel.i) w]wt. vol. but also date wine (bnrit) and some baked goods called mskw. Die dgyptische Personennamen. As far as Yam is concerned. 1929-55]. "Autour d'une conception 6gyptienne m6connue: l'Akhit ou soi-disant horizon. This applied also to another journey a few years later." which he assumes to be distantly to the south or southeast of Egypt. 99 The name is curious because of its lack of any obvious meaning.f) (for the latter see Ranke. for its use. p. vol. p. "horizon-dwellers. Weni's construction of passages through the First Cataract95 and his passing them with seven vessels would indicate that the First Cataract was to some degree navigable for riverine traffic. Once on boats he would no longer need them because within Egypt he could reach his destination by river. "to show someone a road" makes better sense. 96 One of the reasons for such an interpretation of his travel are the 300 donkeys which made up his caravan (Urk. 1 [Glickstadt. Gila. n. See FS Grapow. where there is no horizon. 13-14." The report which led to the king's letter was apparently written after Harkhuf had returned to Egyptian territory. 95Urk. he brought not only bread and beer. Harkhuf saved himself the long bend of the Nile Valley of Sebuac. it is directly connected with the identification of Yam."'01 After an extensive investigation Kuentz concluded that t. [Vienna. 2.htyw denotes "pays des habitants de l'horizon" or "terre des soidisant Horizontaux. one might conclude that he continued the last sixty-five miles to Elephantine on land." but Wb. ? 825.97 It was under the smr-w'ty imy-r skbbwy98 Hwni. It does not mean that the chief of Lower Nubia accompanied Harkhuf but only that he advised him. 166) could be compared. However." mskw. As it is unlikely that he sent them back to the chief of Yam or that he sold them at Mediq. Only Whhw (see H. . Save-Soderbergh. I 127. 10). Harkhuf is more likely to have marched to Elephantine and to have sailed north from there. 101Urk.. Kuentz. 29. presumably to his home-base at Elephantine. p. which is almost impassable on the western bank.94 Edel read hr ssmt n(. 98 Edel.e. IV 286. "date wine. No other title could have preceded smr-wcty and in the small gap should be restored to the participle is. see above.i (similar to Rc-wn-n. Altdg. i." deserves consideraton. Beyond this. p." BIFAO 17 (1920): 128 ff. Junker. C. It is not specified where Harkhuf finally embarked for his journey to the Residence (Urk. 73. 14. 1935]. a graphic transposition seems more likely here.93 By taking these tracks. which is reflected in the letter written by the young Pepi II-Neferkarec about a dwarf Harkhuf was bringing from "the land of the horizon-dwellers. which would seem a rather improbable sequence of radicals. 8.-. see Edel. 12).96 He had obviously sent an advance report to the Residence." All of the three journeys which Harkhuf describes in his autobiographical inscriptions took him to Yam. I 108. One must assume that he got rid of the donkeys somewhere. p. 82). this observation limits its placing to the east or to the west of Egypt.

who insisted that Yam had to be not too distant from Egypt because people from Yam were employed as workmen and as mercenaries in Egypt. as Posener has demonstrated. p. Dixon makes it clear that Yam could have lain south of the twenty-second north parallel. On the second journey he reached two specific localities before descending into the Nile Valley at Tomas. 14.104 Although he refrains from a positive identification of Yam. These details. as discussed above. Harkhuf descended to the Nile Valley at a point north of Z. 107 For the identification of Z. The intention to drive them "to the western corner of heaven" suggests that the people of Dakhlah were ethnically connected with people further west or northwest. After completing his sojourn at Dakhlah in support of the chief of Yam. The same point is also mentioned in connection with Harkhuf's third journey to Yam. ff." 109 Dakhlah was apparently an addition to Yam. favors a location between the First and Second Cataracts. which entered the perimeter of Egypt's political concerns at this time. Both led onto the gebel. the other from Elephantine. 104 Dixon. . 105 G. A History of the Sudan: from Earliest Times to 1821. which. one leaving from the Thinite district. Harkhuf proceeded to the Oasis of Khargah.107 A number of conclusions can be drawn about Yam: first. 1961). "the land of the Libyan."'08 Yam apparently is the equivalent of Mdl' and is used as a term for the western desert and the oases located there.109 When it is taken in this way. Ancient Egyptian Onomastica. i. in . third. in the Wadi Hawa. from Dunkul there is a desert track south to the Nile Valley. 55) of the origin of the Tmhw-Libyans in the deep south.'03 as Dixon has demonstated. the "tribal territory of the Madjoi. which makes it clear that his direction was basically westward." pp. Posener. applies to the desert region east of the Nile. ZAS 83 (1958): 38 if. Neither Yoyotte's placing of Yam at Dunkul nor Edel's extremely southern location of it in the Kerma region is convincing. J. at the same time contradicting the proposed identifications. 40 ff. 1. it was west of Abydos and Elephantine. the contradictions in Harkhuf's part due to Harkhuf's activities. Its people appear to have had a different ethnic affiliation from those of Yam. There is nothing to support W. which is virtually identical with his point of descent during the second journey. "t11 S etSAi )* et 8319583 8. it was not in the Nile Valley. Arkell. In its application 'IPm is thus similar to Md'. 1937]. 105 Gardiner. pp. (London. who obviously was the ruler of Khargah. which is denoted politically as wh't. but rather an extensive region which comprised the southern oases." From there he continued to the t'-Tmh.e. 103 A. and also Kurkur and Dunkul.'06 allow only an identification with Kurkur and Dunkul reached by Harkhuf on the southern-most side-branch of the Darb el-Arba'yin. Holscher's thesis (Libyer und Agypter: Beitrdge zur Ethologie und Geschichte libyscher Volkerschaften nach den altdgyptischen quellen Wilhelm Holscher [Gluckstadt." which was obviously located at a feasible distance from Khargah and which has to be identified with the oasis Dakhlah. "Die Landernamen Unternubiens. After leaving on a northern branch of the Darb el-Arba'yin starting in the Thinite district. reaching it at Tomas. 2d ed. It seems at this point tenable to assume that Dakhlah was the southeasternmost area populated by Libyans and that it was connected with the mass of this people via Farafra and Siwah. "the Oasis.. vol. p." pp. a view close to that of Gardiner. rev. 134 ff.18 JOURNAL OF NEAR EASTERN STUDIES No details about the location of Yam can be established in connection with the first and fourth journey of Harkhuf. This evidence strongly suggests that Yam did not denote a specific locality. it was comprised of Khargah. second.tw and south of 'Irrtt. 74*-76*. The specifications given concerning the second and third journey are in some way coherent. "Land of Yam. ' . 106See above.l05 Harkhuf went to Yam on two different routes. see again Edel. opted for identifying Yam with Darfur..tw and ?Irrtt.

K. Major changes affected Lower Nubia at the end of the Old Kingdom. the cause of the pressure still remains to be considered.'11 While these events begin to form a coherent picture. Butzer. 5. there is one possible cause which might explain the unrest of the Yamians. Bell. primarily in the form of increasing dessication. There is no indication that the chief of Lower Nubia was in any way hostile to Harkhuf during any of his journeys. Harkhuf's journey might be connected with apparent ethnic movements or at least provide a ray of light in a largely dark region. Two major changes occurred during the short time covered by his travels.. pp. Disregarding the possibility of a chief's personal drive for grandeur by conquest. pp. Dictionnaire ggographique. the other the southern cases region. 112 See B. 1963).ll0 which denoted the southern oases in the Western Desert. that the oases had been Times. That neither Harkhuf's attempts to direct the expansionist pressures of the southern oases region towards the west nor the political consolidation of Lower Nubia were in the long run successful in protecting the Nile Valley from the Yamians is reflected in the infiltration and takeover of the lower Nile Valley by the C-group people who had their origins in the Western Desert. have affected the desert dwellers more than those in the Nile Valley where some water supply would always be available. "The Oases in Egyptian History to Classical JSSEA 7 (1976): 7 ff. 154 ff." pp. 111 See in particular. Redford. 49 f. B. which would fall outside the range of rational historical investigation. 1977). The incorporation of Dakhlah in their relative vicinity must have seemed a logical move. The consolidation of Lower Nubia into one political unit might have been directly connected with this threat emanating from the Western Desert. see also Edel. Y. as a defense against pressures affecting this region... leading to the appearance of the C-group there.113 Only after this failed and when Egypt because of her internal weakness was unable to check the pressure. "The Dark Ages in Ancient Egypt I. Another result from the renewed investigation of Harkhuf's journeys and recognition that they affected a limited region to the southwest of Egypt is a different evaluation of the aims pursued. What could Egypt's interest have been in supporting this move? A tenable hypothesis would be that Egypt was interested in directing any expansionist pressures by the Yamians westward in order to protect the Nile Valley from them. On this living basis the hypothesis can be promulgated that Yamians in the face of adverse climatic conditions tried to improve their situation by political expansion. W. 110Gauthier. Bietak. Early Hydraulic Civilization in Egypt: A Study in Cultural Ecology (Chicago. One concerns the Lower Nubian Nile Valley. Nubia: A Corridor to Africa (Princeton. Studien zur Chronologic der nubischenC-Gruppe (Vienna. vol. pp. As a general term 'I'm corresponds to later sh`t-imw..112 This would. There are indications of climatic changes beginning with the late Sixth Dynasty and continuing into the Ninth Dynasty. They cannot be seen as commercial enterprises to bring materials to Egypt but rather represent true explorations with a distinctly political aim. 144 if. 27. of course. . M. 1976)." AJA 75 (1971): 26 if. p. The consolidation in Lower Nubia should thus not be seen as a menace to Egypt but. The political situation seems to have entered a state of flux in both cases. 142 if. 113 There is nothing to support the claim by D. he awarded him assistance and support. For doing so he received direct support from the Egyptians through Harkhuf. Adams.HARKHUF'S TRAVELS 19 accounts vanish. That it was only curiosity that triggered them is questionable. "Die Landernamen Unternubiens. The chief of the area of the southern oases had embarked on an expansionist policy and brought Dakhlah under his control. On the contrary. if it had any political motivations at all.

." see my comments in MIDK 36 (1980). For the assumed "overseer of Farafra. under direct Egyptian control since the beginning of the Fourth Dynasty. a dim picture emerges showing major ethnic movements in the region of Lower Nubia and the adjoining deserts caused by climatic changes. Putting the few bits of available information together.20 JOURNAL OF NEAR EASTERN STUDIES did the Yamians succeed in penetrating Nubia and establishing themselves there.

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