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  • Edict Against The Blacks

  • This short inscription is dated in the eighth year of the reign of Senusret 3.
    "The southern frontier in the eighth year under the Majesty of the Pharaoh of the South and North, Khakaura ( Senusret 3 ), endowed with life for ever. No Black whatsoever shall be permitted to pass [this stone] going down stream, whether traveling by land or sailing in a boat, with cattle, asses, goats, belonging to the Blacks, with the exception of such as comes to do business in the country of Aqen or on an embassy. Such, however, shall be well entreated in every way. No boats belonging to the Blacks shall in future be permitted to pass down the river by the region of Heh.( The district of Semnah and Kummah, about 40 miles south of Wadi Halfah.)"

    The methods of Senusret 3 and his opinions of the Sudani folk are illustrated by the following inscription which he set up at Semnah, a fort built by him at the foot of the Second Cataract.
    "In the third month of the season Pert His Majesty fixed the boundary of Egypt on the south at Heh (Semnah). I made my boundary and went further up the river than my fathers. I added greatly to it. I give commands [therein]. I am the Pharaoh, and what is said by me is done. What my heart conceived my hand bringeth to pass. I am [like] the crocodile which seized, carried off, and destroyed without mercy. Words (or matters) do not remain dormant in my heart. To the coward soft talk suggested long suffering; this I give not to my enemies. Him who attacked me I attack. I am silent in the matter that is for silence; I answer as the matter demanded. Silence after an attack maketh the heart of the enemy bold. The attack must be sudden like that of a crocodile. The man who hesitated is a coward, and a wretched creature is he who is defeated on his own territory and turned into a slave. The Black understands talk only. Speak to him and he falls prostrate. He flees before a pursuer, and he pursueth only him that fleeth. The Blacks are not bold men; on the contrary, they are timid and weak, and their hearts are cowed. My Majesty has seen them, and [what I say] is no lie.

    "I seized their women, I carried off their workers in the fields, I came to their wells, I slew their bulls, I cut their corn and I burnt it. This I swear by the life of my father. I speak the truth; there is no doubt about the matter, and that which comes forward from my mouth cannot be gained. Furthermore, every son of mine who shall keep intact this boundary which My Majesty has made, is indeed my son; he is the son who protects his father, if he keep intact the boundary of him that begot him. He who shall allow this boundary to be removed, and shall not fight for it, is not my son, and he has not been begotten by me. Moreover, My Majesty has caused to be made a statue of My Majesty on this my boundary, not only with the desire that you should prosper thereby, but that you should do battle for it."