Pharaoh in Canaan: The Untold Story

From March 4th 2016 to October 25th 2016 there was an exciting new exhibition in the Bella and Harry Wexner Gallery at the Israel Museum depicting the previously highly meaningful and untold story of the bounteous cross cultural ties that existed during the second millennium BCE between Egypt and Canaan.




Canaanite amulet of a schematic nude goddess in Egyptian style
Tell el-Ajjul, 15th century BCE, gold
Collection of Israel Antiquities Authority
Photo © The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, by Elie Posner



Mostly known from the biblical narratives of Joseph and Moses in Egypt, this chapter in history took place during a time of considerable political change in both of these regions because of two central developments: settlement of the Canaanites in the eastern part of the Egyptian Delta during the Middle Bronze Age (circa 1800–1550 BCE); and the consequent period of Egyptian rule over Canaan that saw the establishment of an Egyptian military and administrative presence in Canaan during the Late Bronze Age (circa 1500–1150 BCE).



Lid of anthropoid sarcophagusLid of anthropoid sarcophagus
Tel Shadud, 13th century BCE, pottery
Collection of Israel Antiquities Authority
              Photo © The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, by Elie Posner



The presentation included anthropoid coffins, large-scale royal victory steles as well as scarabs and amulets that the exhibition draws from the Israel Museum’s existing and extensive holdings and from archaeological finds by the Israel Antiquities Authority, excavated in Israel, together with important loans from The Metropolitan Museum, NY, the Louvre Museum, Paris; the Egyptian Museum, Turin; the Kunstistorisches Museum, Vienna and other significant collections around the world.     

More than 680 objects that establish the cross-fertilization of ritual practices and aesthetic vocabularies between these two specific ancient cultures were presented in this exhibition.  


         Victory stela Victory stela of Seti I erected at Beth Shean
13th century BCE, Basalt
Collection of Israel Antiquities Authority
Photo © The Israel Museum, Jerusalem


Our group itineraries can be adapted to include a visit to the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.




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