This tale tells of the Egyptian conquest of Joppa by Djehuti under
Men-Kheper-Re, i.e. Thutmose III. The beginning of the story has been lost, but
W.M.Flinders Petrie as the editor added the paragraphs on the left to render it
more intelligible. The papyrus is thought to have been written during the 19th
There was once in the time of King Men-kheper-Re a revolt of the servants of
his majesty who were in Joppa; and his majesty said:
"Let Djehuti go with his footmen and destroy this wicked
Foe in Joppa."
And he called one of his followers, and said moreover:
"Hide thou my great cane, which works wonders, in the
baggage of Djehuti that my power may go with him."
Now when Djehuti came near to Joppa, with all the footmen of
Pharaoh, he sent unto the Foe in Joppa, and said:
"Behold now his majesty, King Men-kheper-Re, has sent
all this great army against thee; but what is that if my heart is as thy heart?
Do thou come, and let us talk in the field, and see each other face to
So Djehuti came with certain of his men; and the Foe in Joppa
came likewise, but his charioteer that was with him was true of heart unto the
king of Egypt. And they spoke with one another in his great tent, which Djehuti
had placed far off from the soldiers.
But Djehuti had made ready two hundred sacks, with cords
and fetters, and had made a great sack of skins with bronze fetters, and many
baskets: and they were in his tent, the sacks and the baskets, and he had
placed them as the forage for the horses is put in baskets.
For whilst the Foe in Joppa drank with Djehuti, the people
who were with him drank with the footmen of Pharaoh, and made merry with them.
And when their bout of drinking was past, Djehuti said to the Foe in Joppa:
"If it please thee, while I remain with the women and
children of thy own city, let one bring of my people with their horses, that
they may give them provender, or let one of the Apuro run to fetch them."
So they came, and hobbled their horses, and gave them provender, and one
found the great cane of Men-kheper-Re and came to tell of it to Djehuty. And
thereupon the Foe in Joppa said to Djehuty:
" My heart is set on examining the great cane of Men-kheper-Re,
which is named ......tautnefer. By the ka of the King Men-kheper-Re it will be
in thy hands to-day ; now do thou well and bring thou it to me."
Gold Medal of Valour, Gift from
Tuthmosis III to
And Djehuti did thus, and he brought the cane of King Men-kheper-Re. And
he laid hold on the Foe in Joppa by his garment, and he arose and stood up, and
"Look on me, o Foe in Joppa ; here is the great cane of
King Men-kheper-Re, the terrible lion, the son of Sekhet, to whom Amen his
father gives power and strength."
And he raised his hand and struck the forehead of the Foe in
Joppa, and he fell helpless before him.
He put him in the sack of skins and he bound with gives the
hands of the Foe in Joppa, and put on his feet the fetters with four rings.
And he made them bring the two hundred sacks which he had cleaned, and
made to enter into them two hundred soldiers, and filled the hollows with cords
and fetters of wood, he sealed them with a seal, and added to them their
rope-nets and the poles to bear them. And he put every strong footman to bear
them, in all six hundred men, and said to them:
"When you come into the town you shall open your
burdens, you shall seize on all the inhabitants of the town, and you shall
quickly put fetters upon them."
Then one went out and said unto the charioteer of the Foe in Joppa:
"Thy master is fallen; go, say to thy mistress, 'A
pleasant message! For Sutekh has given Djehuti to us, with his wife and his
children; behold the beginning of their tribute', that she may comprehend the
two hundred sacks, which are full of men and cords and fetters."
So he went before them to please the heart of his mistress, saying:
"We have laid hands on Djehuti."
Then the gates ot the city were opened before the footmen:
they entered the city, they opened their burdens, they laid hands on them of the
city, both small and great, they put on them the cords and fetters quickly; the
power of Pharaoh seized upon that city. After he had rested, Djehuti sent a
message to Egypt to the King Men-kheper-Re his lord, saying:
"Be pleased, for Amen thy good father has given to thee
the Foe in Joppa, together with all his people, likewise also his city. Send,
therefore, people to take them as captives that thou mayest fill the house of
thy father Amen Re, king of the gods, with men-servants and maidservants, and
that they may be overthrown beneath thy feet for ever and ever."
The Egyptians prepared to take the city by ruse rather than by battle. In
fiction such ploys are generally more successful than in reality. Smuggling men
into a walled city is quite difficult. On the other hand, proposing to make
common cause with an opponent, who had judged his position to be sufficiently
strong on his own, and then assassinating him when the opportunity arose, had
The name of the staff is partially illegible.
Names of things were important in the magical
thinking of the times, and knowing them gave the knowledgeable person great
Victory often meant the enslavement
of the whole population. If that was impractical or impossible, the countryside
was destroyed, depriving the survivors of their livelihood. This practice
was common among all ancient peoples.
The charioteer was seemingly either Egyptian himself or a sympathizer.
A real Djehuti, scribe, treasurer, general and viceroy,
received a golden bowl from Thutmose III with the following inscription:
Given in praise by the king of Upper and Lower
Egypt,Men-kheper-Re, to the hereditary chief, the divine father, the beloved by
God, filling the heart of the king in all foreign lands and in the isles in the
midst of the great sea, filling stores with lazuli, electrum, and gold, keeper
of all foreign lands, keeper of the troops, praised by the good gold lord of
both lands and his ka - the royal scribe Djehuti deceased.