Egyptian Pharaohs

When Christian or Jewish people hear the word "Pharaoh" they often think of Moses' confrontation with Egypt's leader, who subsequently lost his army and many chariots after the parted Red Sea closed back up over them. By the time of the Exodus, the Israelites had spent just over four centuries in Egypt, but the Egyptian Kingdom had been in existence long before that.

Egyptian history can be traced back beyond 3,000 B.C. over dozens of dynasties (kingdoms). The term "pharaoh" was originally used to mean the royal house or palace. Eventually it came to be used as a title for the king of Egypt himself.

The actual name of the Pharaoh of the Exodus is not recorded in the Bible, although historians believe that it was possibly either Amenhotep II, Merneptah, Thothmes III or Rameses II. If it was any of those four kings, you can actually see what they looked like - all four of their extremely well-preserved Mummies have been found and photographed. It may actually be possible to see the very man that Moses spoke to during the time of the Exodus.

Egypt was the dominant nation in the region until taken by the Greek warlord Alexander the Great in 332 B.C. After Alexander's death at a young age, it was ruled by Ptolemy, one of Alexander's generals. The Egyptian Queen Cleopatra, (the account of her involvement with the Roman general Marc Antony is a classic of ancient history) was of the Ptolomies. Egypt eventually fell to the Romans, bringing an end to the Pharaohs.

Fact Finder: How many years were the Israelites in Egypt before the Pharaoh allowed them to leave in the Exodus?
(a) 400 (b) 430 (c) 470 (d) 499
Exodus 12:41

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