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Wall 4--Sennefer returns from Lebanon

This photograph shows only the central part of the wall, which is the only well-preserved part. Not in the photo, at the left of the wall, is the very top of a frieze of cobras with sun discs on their heads which surmounted the canopy under which the king (Thutmose III) was seated.

Clicking on the photograph will reveal a larger image.

At left of the small photo above is part of a text which relates the return of Sennefer from the Lebanon, with wood, presumably for the Amun temple. The likelihood of this being for flagpoles is suggested by fragments of the text surviving which relate to a speech of the king. Clicking on this link will reveal a larger image of this part of the wall.

The main text was first examined in 1906 in K. Sethe, 'Eine ägyptische Expedition nach dem Libanon in 15. Jahrhundert vor Chr.', in K. Sethe, Leipziger und Berliner Akademieschriften (1902-1934) (Leipzig 1976), 55-62. A fuller version will be found in Urk 4, 531-36 (173), and there is a recent edition by Eichler ('Die Reisen des Sennefri (TT 99)', Studien zur altägyptischen Kultur 26 (1998), 215-228). The following translation contains many gaps and restorations:

1 The iry pat [haty]-a, [seal bearer] of the king of Lower Egypt, [sole companion, Senneferi has come back successfully] … [having sailed on the wadj-wer],
2 [and come to land] …
3–4          (missing)
5 /// [it happened]
6 in the place where I was and [my expedition] was happy …
7 I entered /// this mountain…
8 above the clouds. I entered the forest [The goddess appeared to me] /// [I caused]
9 the presenting to her of offerings of millions of things concerning [the life, prosperity, and health of your majesty] … [Then she permitted me to take these trees]
10 therefrom. Byblos gave them to her Horus for her satisfaction. I caused [that trees be cut down]
11 from the choicest thereof. I brought 60 cubits in [their] length …
12  they being of the highest quality, the upper parts thereof being thick[er than] …
13 I [brought] them [down] from the hills of the god's land, and they approached the edge of the forest … [The barges were loaded, and I travelled on the]
14 sea with a good wind and came (successfully) to [land] …

Its content may be summarised as follows: Sennefer arrived in Lebanon, and went up to the hillsides where the trees were to be found, and was clearly amazed by the low cloud on them. He visited the shrine of the local deity, and made an offering to her, and she permitted him to take the wood away for the benefit of the king of Egypt. The trees were then cut down, and the wood was of the highest quality. It was then taken down to the sea, loaded on boats, and brought to Egypt.

To the right of the text are illustrations of the trip.

At the top are men with axes, followed by horses and chariots. Below are a group of men, presumably dragging the wood. The man in white appears to be of Syro-Palestinian origin, and thus has to be shown to be subservient to the Egyptians behind. Click on him for a close up.

This photo shows part of the procession of men and horses accompanying the text describing Senneferi's acquiring the wood in Lebanon. Clicking on the horses will give you a closeup photo.

The decoration of the right-hand part of the wall is mostly destroyed. A small surviving part shows a procession of men. Click on this link to see a large picture of this area.

A description of how we document the paintings will be found here.

© Nigel Strudwick 1997-2014