|24||ILLAHUN IN THE TWENTY-SECOND DYNASTY|
the XXIInd. (6) The same is shown by the bronze knife, XXVI, 43.
Thus on the one hand we are brought later than 1200 B.C.; at least for interments 4 to 7. While on the other hand we cannot come down to the XXIInd dynasty, 975 B.C. And various things indicate a closer connection with the earlier than with the later limit. As we should probably allow fifty years or a century for the gradual accumulation of these many burials, it seems most reasonable to date them between 1150 and 1050 B.C.; that is during the XXth dynasty. In any case it is a curious feature that the scarabs must have been nearly all old ones when buried. The latest is of Tahutmes III, or 1450 B.C., and probably contemporary with him, by the style of it: whereas the character of the beads, of the pottery, and of the coffin all shew that two or three centuries had elapsed since the scarabs were made. Either then they were heirlooms, though if so it is strange that none of the common ones of Ramessu II should be mixed with them; or else they had been dug up in plundering tombs, and reused. The latter is more likely ; and this would agree again to the date of the XXth dynasty, as scarabs were seldom made then, and so no contemporary ones would be likely to be mixed with these.
If then we take 1100 B.C. as a middle date for the Phoenician pottery, and the Aegean vase, it will be reasonable. This consorts well with the dating for other Aegean pottery. The earliest geometrical false-necked vases are about 1400 B.C. ; that early style appears to die out about 1300 B.C. (though no doubt coarser imitations may have been made later in the home of such products); and therefore the earliest figure pattern, such as this ivy, may well belong to a century later. This vase is of the same manufacture as two others that were found in Egypt with cuttle-fish ornamentation: they are larger than this but of the same outline (less the handle), and have similar bands and loopy pattern at the top line ; one is in the Abbott collection at New York, the other from Erment is in the British Museum.
The value of the objects from the tomb depends entirely on the complete record of its contents, and the evidence which can be obtained as to their relative positions and ages. Unhappily, such records do not exist for more than a very few of the innumerable tombs that have been ransacked in Egypt. A flood of light on the history of the Deir el Bahri deposit would have been obtained, if we knew what were the positions of all the coffins and the minor objects. At what time that hiding place was first arranged; whether the priest-kings had already used it, before bringing in the earlier monarchs ; who was originally buried here, and who was imported from elsewhere; all these questions might have been solved if a record of the arrangement of the tomb had been made.
ILLAHUN IN THE TWENTY-SECOND DYNASTY.45. After the fall of the town at Gurob, and the desolation of that site in the XIXth dynasty, a town appears to have risen into importance somewhere in the cultivated land. Kahun had been the town of the great dyke in the XIIth dynasty; after that fell Gurob rose, and was the principal place by the dyke, but at the south of it, instead of the north end; after that fell another town succeeded to the position of the town of the Fayum dyke. Probably this was at the present village of Illahun, or El Lahun, often called simply Lahun by the people. If it had been further off the burial place would have been on the gezireh or sandy rise of Abusir, and not on the western desert. The rise of desert from the north end of the dyke along to the pyramid of Illahun was then riddled with tombs, and the older tomb shafts, sunk deep in the rock around the pyramid, were cleared out and reused for burials of this degenerate time. Not many distinct points fix the age of this cemetery. It certainly comes after the XXth dynasty. It as certainly comes before the XXVIth. But few details help to fix it more precisely. The names which indicate a date are Neter-kheper-ra ("Kahun" XXV, 7) recalling Se-amen of the XXIst: Pima (K. XXV, 13) recalling Pirnai of the XXIInd : Nekht-bast-ru (K. XXV, 14) probably of the XXIInd ; and Amenardus (K. XXVI) which is probably of the XXVth dynasty. The frequent figures of Bast point to the XXII-IIIrd dynasty, when her worship was prevalent; and the only scarab with a royal name is Ra-kheper, (XXIX, 33) which is of Sheshenk IV, XXIInd dynasty. The reinstatement of Crocodilopolis by Usarkon I, points to an attention to this district at that time; and it seems probable that he regulated the water works, and founded the town of Illahun on the dyke to attend to the locks. In any case we may well take the Illahun tombs as being of the XXIInd to XXVth dynasty; not a single object of the XXVIth dynasty has been found in the district. In connection with this period
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