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Psammetichus I


Psammetichus I. Louvre, Paris (France). Photo Marco Prins.Psammetichus I (Louvre) Psammetichus I: pharaoh of the Saite dynasty, ruler of Egypt from 664 to 610.

Egyptian names: Wahibra Psamtik I

Successor of: Necho I / Aššurbanipal

Relatives:

Main deeds:

  • 666: Aššurbanipal makes Necho I viceroy of Memphis and Sais; Psammetichus is heir apparent
  • 664: Death of the Kushite king Taharqo; his son Tanwetamani attacks Lower Egypt but is repelled near Memphis by Necho, who is killed in action; Psammetichus flees to Assyria, receives support and returns; he pursues Tanutamun and sacks Thebes; Upper Egypt is left to a local strong man named Montuemhat
  • c.658?: Coalition with Gyges of Lydia
  • Psammetichus employs Greek and Carian mercenaries and achieves military supremacy over the other rulers in Lower Egypt and the Libyan tribes in the west
  • 656: Psammetichus' daughter Nitocris is adopted as "god's wife of Amun" in Thebes by the current priestesses with that name, a lady named Shepenwepet II and a sister of the Kushite king Taharqa named Amenirdis II; she is received and recognized by Montuemhat and Ibi; as a result, Psammetichus can unify Egypt
  • 651-648: Civil war in Assyria; Egypt slips out of Assyrian control; forts are built at Pelusiac and Damietta branches of the Nile, Elephantine, and Marea; according to Herodotus (Histories, 2.157) Psammetichus devoted twenty nine-years to the siege of Ashdod in Palestine and warded off a Scythian invasion (1.103-105)
  • c.620: Psammetichus founds Naucratis, a Greek port of trade in the western Delta (Herodotus calls it "the camps")
  • 616: Egyptian troops support the Assyrians (Fall of Nineveh Chronicle)
  • 612: The Assyrian capital Nineveh captured by the Babylonians and Medes
  • 610: Death; Psammetichus is succeeded by his son Necho II

Buildings:

  • Temples of the creator deities Atum and Neith in Sais (Herodotus, Histories, 2.169-170, 175)
  • Temple of Banebdjedet at Mendes
  • Temples of Buto, Ptah, the Apis, and the Osiris-Apis at Memphis (the latter is a predecessor of the Serapeum in Saqqara)
  • Forts at Tell el-Kedua, Daphnae, Tell el-Balamun
  • Retaining walls for the sacred lake of Tanis
  • A temple at Hermopolis Parva
  • A chapel for Osiris at Karnak (dedicated by Nitocris)
Succeeded by: Necho II
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This brief article has been written to offer background information to the real articles on Livius.Org. One day, this webpage will be improved. A list of completed articles can be found here.
Jona Lendering for
Livius.Org, 2007
Revision: 11 March 2007
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