Egypt and the Exodus

CosimoRoselli-CrossingRedSeaSistine chapel south wall Cosimo Roselli: The Destruction of Pharaohs Army in the Red Sea

Israel’s sojourn in Egypt and subsequent escape lie on the edges of history, if history is defined as those events that have some sort of external historical corroboration. Although neither are mentioned in Egyptian records (which may simply be because the events did not put the Pharaoh in a positive light), there is archaeological evidence of destruction in Palestine, which may correspond to events of Joshua and Judges. This evidence puts this takeover beginning around 1200 BC. This date is also supported by the Merneptah Stele, an Egyptian war monument whose main value is a reference to Israelis in Israel about the same time (according to it, they were all killed). Some problems exist with this dating scheme, but this is the generally accepted date for the Exodus among contemporary scholars.

 

[AH]

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