Ramesses III in Tayma, Saudia Arabia!

News reports are out (thanks to Jack Sasson for sending this out) that an inscription mentioning at least two names of Ramesses III, king of the 20th Dynasty in Egypt have been found in Tayma, Saudia Arabia, which is located 264 km southeast of the city of Tabouk, and about 400 km north of Medina!

This is the picture that has been published of the two cartouches with two of Ramesses III names: Ramesses Heqaiuna and Userma’atre’ Meriamun. It was not clear from the report if there are additional portions of this inscription or it is just these names.

This is much farther afield than any other report of activities of Ramesses III in Western Asia. Perhaps, this can be connected to his campaigns in his twentieth year to Timnah and Edom. He might have continued more to the south into Arabia, perhaps to gain control of the spice routes running out of Arabia.

Ramesses III is well-known as the Pharaoh who vanquished the Sea Peoples (and the Philistines among them) famously depicted in the reliefs of his temple at Medinet Habu.

So, I now propose that there should be an international meeting of archaeologists dealing the cultures affected by Ramesses III – and that we meet in Tayma! Would be a nice way to move ahead peaceful relations with some of Israel’s neighboring countries!


2 thoughts on “Ramesses III in Tayma, Saudia Arabia!

  1. Peter van der Veen

    Hi Aren,

    Indeed the cartouches of Ramesses III in the Oasis of Tayma is quite remarkable indeed. You refer to a year 20 campaign. I thought that there wasn’t a campaign after year 12 but I may be grossly mistaken. A year 20 campaign would be fascinating. Could you please comment on this?


    1. arenmaeir

      I don’t have the literature with me, but I seem to recall that Ramesses III mentions a campaign to Seir (Edom) and that objects with his name were found at Timna. I had a recollection, but perhaps I’m wrong, that this is dated to his 20th year.


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