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who afterwards took the name of Sesostris, but was nothing like to his father in glory, for he shortly fell blind. The cause of his blindness Herodotus attributes to his assaulting the river Nilus with a javelin; which tale Diodorus having likewise heard, yet reports as a fable, saying, that perhaps he took the disease naturally from his father. How long this man reigned it is no where expressed; yet forasmuch as Orus the second, (otherwise Busiris,) who succeeded him, began fourteen years after that this Sesostris had been king, it must needs be that this reigned fourteen years at least. That Busiris began not until these fourteen years at least were expired, the very account of time, from the first of Busiris to the departure of Israel out of Egypt, plainly shews, being almost generally agreed upon to have been seventy-five years. That none came between Sesostris the second and Busiris, or Orus the second, it stands only upon probabilities; which are these. After Sesostris had reigned somewhile, he fell blind; after certain years he recovered his sight, as is said ; which may have been true, but is more like to have been a fable ; surely the manner of his recovery, as it is set down, is very fabulous; namely, that by looking upon a woman, or washing his
eyes with her water, who had only known her own husband, he got his sight again. As the time of his reign, before his blindness, and when he was well again, (if ever he were,) may have taken up a good part of fourteen years; so his works, which were great, do much more strongly argue, that his reign was not very short. His works are largely set down by Herodotus and Diodorus; a part of which may seem to have been the finishing of that which his father had begun, about the channels and sluices of Nilus; whom I think he rather frighted (as his father had done) with spades and shovels, than with darts and javelins; and by his diligent oversight of that work, was like. enough to lose both his eyesight and his people's love, whom his father had very busily employed in excessive labour about it.
SECT. VII. Of Busiris the first oppressor of the Israelites; and of his successor,
queen Thermutis, that took up Moses out of the water. AND herein (if I may presume to conjecture) Busiris, who was afterwards king, is like to have dealt with him as Jeroboam did with the son of Solomon. For that Busiris himself was much addicted to magnificent works, it well appeared by the drudgery wherewith he wearied the children of Israel in his buildings; if therefore he were employed by the great Sesostris, as Jeroboam was by Solomon, in the oversight of those businesses, he had good opportunity to work his greatness with the king by industry; and afterwards with the people, by incensing them against their new king, as Jeroboam did. For what the multitude will endure at one prince's hands, they will not at another's; unless he have either an equal spirit or a surer foundation. If moreover he sought to derive all the pain and labour of public works from the Egyptians to the Israelites, he surely did that which to his own people was very plausible, who (as appears in Exodus i.) were nothing slack in fulfilling the king's cruelty. Now that Orus the second, or Busiris, was the king that first oppressed Israel, and made the edict of drowning the Hebrew children, which, saith Cedrenus, lasted ten months ; it is a common opinion of many great and most learned writers, who also think that hereupon grew the fable of Busiris sacrificing strangers. It is also a common interpretation of that place, Exodus i. that the king, who knew not Joseph, was a king of a new family. That Busiris was of a new family, Reineccius doth shew; who also thinks him author of the bloody edict. Nevertheless true it is, that Busiris, according to all men's computation, began his reign five years after the birth of Moses ; before whose birth it is most manifest that the law was made, and much more, that the persecution began ; which Bunting thinks to have lasted eighty-seven years, ere the departure out of Egypt. Let us therefore consider, besides the blindness of Sesostris the second, how great the power of the regents or viceroys in Egypt was, and how great confidence
the kings did put in them; seeing Joseph ruled with such full power, that he bought all Egypt, and all the Egyptians for bread, giving at the same time the best of the land to his own father and brethren, for nothing ; seeing also that when the Egyptians cried out upon Pharaoh for bread, Pharaoh said to all the Egyptians, Go to Joseph; what he saith to you, do ye. If to a stranger born, lately fetched out of prison, a king well able to have governed himself would give such trust and sovereign authority, it is not unlikely that a blind prince should do it to a man of especial reputation. For God often prospers, not only the good, (such as Joseph was,) but wicked men also, as his instruments against the day of wrath. Therefore perhaps the king did (as many have done) resign his kingdom to him, though his reign was not accounted to have begun till the death of Sesostris. But whether Busiris did usurp the kingdom, or protection of the land, by violence; or whether the blind king resigned it, keeping the title; or whether Busiris were only regent whilst the king lived, and afterwards (as is acknowledged by all) king himself; it might well be said that Pharaoh's daughter took up Moses, and that Pharaoh vexed Israel; seeing he both at that time was king in effect, and shortly after king in deed and title both. It were not absurd for us to say, that the blind king, Sesostris the second, oppressed Israel; but forasmuch as it may seem that the wicked tyrant shewed his evil nature even when he first arose, I think it more likely, that Busiris did it, using at first the power of a king, and shortly after the style. Thus of the 122 years which passed between the beginning of Sesostris's reign and the departure of Israel out of Egypt, forty-seven being spent ; the seventy-five which remain are to be accounted to Busiris, or Orus the second, and his children. Busiris himself reigned thirty years, according to Eusebius; whom very many judicious authors herein approve. After him his daughter, who took Moses out of the water, is said, by all that I have read, to have reigned twelve years ; her name was Thermutis Phareis, or Muthis, according to Cedrenus; Eusebius calls her Acencris ; and out of Artabanus's history, Meris; Josephus calls her both Acenchere and Thermutis. Epiphanius in Panario saith, that she was honoured afterwards of the Egyptians by the name of Thermutis, the daughter of Amenoph, the son of Pharaoh. Of this last title
question might be made, and much spoken ; for the scriptures call her not Pharaoh's son's daughter, but Pharaoh's daughter. Amenophis indeed is placed next before Busiris, or Orus the second, by Eusebius and others; but whether he were a king, or only a regent, I cannot conjecture. For Herodotus, Diodorus, and the ancient historians, name the son of Sesostris, Pheron. Perhaps his name was Pharaoh Amenophis; and his daughter by the Egyptians called rather the niece or grandchild, than the daughter of Pharaoh, because of the glory of Sesostris, and the disreputation of his son. If so, and if that Busiris, or Orus the second, marrying her, pretended any title by her, then is our conjecture strengthened, and then was she both daughter, grandchild, and wife unto Pharaoh ; and surviving him, queen of the land twelve years. But if she were the daughter of Orus the second, and sister of Athoris, or Rathoris, as many think, to whose conjecture I will not oppose mine, then may it seem, that either her brethren were degenerate, or too young to rule, when her father died.
Of the two brethren of queen Thermutis; and what king it was
under whom Moses was born; and who it was that perished in the Red sea.
SHE had two brethren; the one was Rathoris, or Athoris, who succeeded her; the other Telegonus, who is only named by Eusebius; but his lineage and offspring described by Reineccius. Rathoris, after his sister's death, reigned nine years; after whom Chencres, thought to be his son, reigned ten, and then perished in the Red sea. During the reign of Chencres, Eusebius saith, that Telegonus begat Epaphus upon Io, of which history elsewhere he reporteth otherwise. After the death of Chencres, (whom some call Acencheres; but all or most do style Osópaxos, a fighter against God,) Acherres reigned eight years, and then Cherres fifteen. This descent seems from father to son. In the eleventh year of Cherres it is said by Eusebius, that Epaphus reigning in the lower part of Egypt built Memphis. This is an argument of that which otherwise was not unlikely, viz. that Egypt was greatly brought out of order by the plagues which God had laid upon it, and the destruction of her king and army in the Red sea; else could it not have had two reigning in it at once; the latter of whom, or his posterity, seems to have taken all from Cherres the grandchild of Chencres. For whereas Armais is said to have reigned four years after Cherres, and Armesis one after Armais, these two kings are by Eusebius and others accounted as one, and his reign said to have been five years. His name is called Armeus, otherwise Danaus, and his pedigree thus described by Reineccius in Historia Julia.
Libya, who had
Agenor, Belus, and Busiris. Ægyptus, or Ramesses, who Danaus, or Armeus, expel
gave name to the coun- led by his brother Ætry, having expelled his gyptus, after he had reignbrother Danaus, reigned ed five years, became king and begat Lynceus, mar- of Argos in Greece; was ried to Hypermnestra.
father to Hypermnestra. How it might come to pass that the nephews, sons of Epaphus, should have occupied the kingdom after Cherres, it is hard to say; considering that Epaphus himself is reported by Eusebius to have been born in the time of Chen
But forasmuch as the history of Epaphus's birth is diversely related by Eusebius, it may suffice that Belus, the father of Danaus and Ægyptus, otherwise called Armeus and Ramesses, was equally distant from Busiris, or Orus the second, with Cherres the grandchild of Chencres. And that the posterity of Telegonus did marry very young, it