Some notes on Shebitqu
Thu Jun 26, 2003 14:20 (XFF:

After looking at the [limited] genealogical data available for the Kushite kings, it still seems to me that the traditional order Shabaqo-Shebitqu is preferable. I can understand the reluctance to accept a 16 or 17-year reign for Shebitqu (707/6-690) on this model when only his Year 3 is attested and while Shabaqo's seal was found in a palace of Sin-ahhe-eriba (705-681) in Nineveh. But Shebitqu belong in the 3rd generation of [known] Kushite monarchs, while Shabaqo belongs in the 2nd. The Kushite succession departed from traditional primogeniture and seems to have favored the eldest qualified male in the royal family. So it would be difficult to see a representative of the 3rd generation taking the throne before a representative of the 2nd.

Here is what we know of Taharqo's predecessor:

1. (Manetho): Sebikhos son of Sabakon. Since the names are similar, we cannot make a definite distinction between Shabaqo and Shebitqo here.

2. (Kawa Stela): Taharqo was the brother or cousin ("one among the royal brethren") of his unnamed predecessor. Since the king is unnamed, once again, we cannot identify him with either Shabaqo or Shebitqo on internal grounds.

Here is what we know of Shebitqo:

3. Shebitqo was the husband of the King's Wife and King's Daughter Arty, who is attested as a daughter of Piankhy. Note that she never bears the title King's Sister. This would possibly place Shebitqo in the 3rd Kushite royal generation, where Arty belonged (although she may have been younger than her husband).

4. Shebitqo was possibly the brother of the King's Wife King's Daughter and King's Sister Istemkheb, who is attested as a daughter of Shabaqo. If Shebitqo is not her royal brother, we must assume her titles date to the later reign of Tanwetamani (664-656), when Istemkheb's burial place at Abydos was overrun by the Assyrians and their Assyrian vassals. Morkot thinks this option is less likely, and I am inclined to agree with him. This would place Shebitqo after Shabaqo, who would have been his father and father-in-law.

What do we know of Shabaqo?

5. Shabaqo was the brother of Amenirdis I, who in turn was the daughter of Piankhy's predecessor and father-in-law Kashta. Consequently, Shabaqo is almost certainly the son of Kashta and belongs in the 2nd Kushite royal generation.

6. Shabaqo was the husband of the King's Mother, King's Sister, and King's Wife Qalhata, the mother of Tanwetamani, identified as a sister of Taharqo by Assyrian sources, and therefore a daughter of Piankhy. Her attestations belong to the reign of her son. This could place Shabaqo in the 3rd Kushite royal generation, but since husbands were often older than wives, he can remain in the 2nd, especially considering Kashta's relationship to Piankhy.

What do we know of Piankhy?

7. Piankhy was the husband of the King's Mother and King's Sister Abar the sister's daughter of an earlier king named Alara. Abar was the mother of Taharqo (690-664), to whose reign her attestations date, and probably Piankhy's own sister (otherwise that of Kashta).

8. Piankhy was also the husband of the Great King's Wife Tabiry, who was the daughter of King Alara by Kasaqa. Note that Tabiry is not given the title King's Sister and so Piankhy is not a son of Alara.

9. Piankhy was also the husband of Peksater, daughter of King Kashta and Pebatjma, placing him after Kashta.

10. Piankhy was also the husband of a Great King's Wife, King's Daughter, and King's Sister Khensa. The conjunction of titles implies that this is a sister-wife of Piankhy, which would probably make him the son of Kashta and brother of Shabaqo. Khensa could not have been a daughter of Alara, because the fully entitled daughter of Alara and wife of Piankhy Tabiry is not styled King's Sister.

To summarize, this analysis results in the following generational arrangement:

I. Alara and then Kashta, with unclear relationship
II. Piankhy and then Shabaqo, probably both sons of Kashta
III. Shebitqo, then Taharqo, and then Tanwetamani, the 2nd certainly son of Piankhy, the 3rd certainly son of Shabaqo

While it is not impossible for a nephew to be succeeded by an uncle, this does not seem to fit what we know of the Kushite succession. In spite of its inherent chronological flexibility, I think the genealogy works best with the traditional arrangement. As far as the "problematic" long reign of Shebitqo is concerned, it is worth noting that in spite of the sole attestation of Year 3, the works, monuments and undated attestations of this king are not substantially fewer in Egypt than those of Shabaqo. The latter's seal found in Nineveh can hardly be considered a chronological argument. In Kahn's chronology, Shabaqo would die a mere two years before Sin-ahha-eriba abandoned Dur-Sharrukin in favor of Nineveh. Can we expect him to have left recent correspondence and other valuables behind?

Best, Ian

  • Re: TIP and KushitesIan, Thu Jun 26 12:38
    Dear Fred, 1. Line of Osorkon 'III'. Do you now propose to make HPA Osorkon a different person from King Osorkon 'III'? If you still think they are the same, he would be about 95 years old when he... more
    • Re: TIP and KushitesFred, Thu Jun 26 14:58
      Dear Ian, Some comments : Ian : 1. Line of Osorkon 'III'. Do you now propose to make HPA Osorkon a different person from King Osorkon 'III'? If you still think they are the same, he would be about 95 ... more
      • Re: TIP and KushitesIan, Thu Jun 26 21:49
        Dear Fred, well, let's see... I suppose that I really have to see the bloody new edition of JEA which appears to contain another important article by Broekman. Is it available for sale in France?... more
        • Papyrus Berlin 3048Leo, Thu Jun 26 23:51
          Dear Fred, Personally, I do second Kitchen's reading of the Year 30 bandage but acknowledge that its poor state of preservation does not help us much. I don't see any strong reason why Piye could not ... more
          • A ClarificationLeo, Fri Jun 27 03:52
            As an aside after thinking things through, I still do hope that you FREDERIC or one of his fellow professional classmates will publish "THE CASE" for dating the Berlin Papyrus in the future in GM or... more
            • Re: A ClarificationFred, Fri Jun 27 08:56
              Dear leo, Some comments : - the article on Takelto III is not a hope, it is reality, I will send it the next months probably. I thought I had spoken of it earlier... - the n 3 can not be Rudamon,... more
              • Re: A ClarificationIan, Fri Jun 27 09:37
                Dear Fred, Can you please tell me where in Paris one could obtain the new volume of JEA? I have people hunting for it. Although your response to Leo contains some of the answers, I would appreciate... more
                • JEA 88Jean-Fred, Fri Jun 27 12:04
                  Dear Ian Just a very quick note! JEA 88 has reached Montreal earlier this week and I'm going to my friend's house tonight in order to have a look at it (my friend is member of the EES who publishes... more
                  • JEA 88, correction, and TefnakhtIan, Fri Jun 27 12:23
                    Dear Jean-Fred, Thanks for the note, and even though I still hope my friends in Paris turn it up somewhere on St-Michel, I will be very happy to get copies from you should they fail. I will be happy... more
                    • Wadi Gasus, Takelot III and JF's offerLeo, Sat Jun 28 02:38
                      Hello JF, Fred and All, JF, an offer of help from you wld be appreciated concerning just the Broekeman paper. You stated that there were Four articles of deep interest to you in the more recent JEA... more
    • Some notes on Shebitqu — Ian, Thu Jun 26 14:20
      • Re: Some notes on ShebitquFred, Thu Jun 26 14:43
        Dear Ian, All your material is good and well-known, and in fact it is the same as mine, but I consider that there is no definite proof. Some comments : Ian :But Shebitqu belong in the 3rd generation... more
        • Re: Some notes on ShebitquIan, Thu Jun 26 15:12
          Dear Fred, thanks for your prompt response. Why do you want to see a usurper in Shabaqo? We know his relative placement generationwise and his place in the genealogy. In spite of many questionmarks,... more
          • Re: Some notes on ShebitquFred, Thu Jun 26 15:59
            Dear Ian, What i want to say on this matter is that the sources leave a little possibility that the order can be reversed. The traditionnal order is only the result of cruising two data with the... more
            • Re: Some notes on ShebitquIan, Thu Jun 26 21:06
              Dear Fred, I think the possibility exists, but it is very very slim. There are still a number of points that trouble me. 1. Can you comment on your particular reasons for abandoning the synchronism... more
              • Re: Some notes on ShebitquFred, Fri Jun 27 08:43
                Dear Ian, Some quick comments 1. Can you comment on your particular reasons for abandoning the synchronism Shabaqo-Bakenranef, which you defended in the past. FP : the traditionnal synchronism comes... more
                • Re: Some notes on ShebitquIan, Fri Jun 27 09:32
                  Dear Fred, 1. On the Bakenranef - Shabaqo synchronism. I am familiar with the arguments against it, but I am still willing to accept the conclusion that we have a Year 6 - Year 2 synchronism. The... more
                  • Re: Some notes on ShebitquFred, Sat Jun 28 05:07
                    Dear ian, some errors...: Ian : We have no idea who nominated Amenirdis I, but we do know that she became the God's Wife of Amun (as opposed to the apprentice) in the reign of her brother Shabaqo. We ... more
                    • Re: Some notes on ShebitquIan, Sat Jun 28 08:38
                      Dear Fred, 1. According to Morkot, Shepenwepet I died probably between Year 12 and Year 15 of Shabaqo. Hence Amenirdis I became God's Wife in that reign. 2. Shepenwepet I is depicted in the inner... more
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