Decline of Egypt

The Egyptian civilization has been one of the longest lasting civilizations in human history. In ancient times, it had been a powerhouse and dominated the entire Middle Eastern region for thousands of years.

“For almost 30 centuries—from its unification around 3100 B.C. to its conquest by Alexander the Great in 332 B.C.—ancient Egypt was the preeminent civilization in the Mediterranean world.” … ient-egypt

But, what caused it’s eventual decline? There’s no consensus on this.

The civilisation of ancient Egypt can be traced back in recognisable form to around 3000 BC. It was to endure for over three millennia and it is perhaps the most instantly recognisable of all ancient cultures today. The question of how it came to an end is a perennially popular one, but actually quite difficult to answer, as it is by no means agreed as to what constitutes ‘the end’ of Egypt as an ancient civilisation. … d_01.shtml

Interestingly, the height of the Egyptian civilization was around the time of the early date of the Exodus.

“Around 1550 BCE, the New Kingdom period of Egyptian history began with the expulsion of the Hyksos from Egypt and the restoration of centralized political control. This period was Egypt’s most prosperous time and marked the peak of its power.” … pt-article

Though there were a few last hurrahs after that (like the reign of Ramses II), it was a general state of decline after the reign of Amenhotep II.

Thutmose III expanded Egypt’s army and wielded it with great success to consolidate the empire created by his predecessors. This resulted in a peak in Egypt’s power and wealth during the reign of Amenhotep III. The term pharaoh, originally the name of the king’s palace, became a form of address for the person who was king during his reign (c. 1479–1425 BC).
(Though Wikipedia says Amenhotep III, this is incorrect. Amenhotep II was the one who succeeded Thutmose III.)

Amenhotep II, also called Amenophis II, king of ancient Egypt (reigned c. 1426–00 bce), son of Thutmose III. Ruling at the height of Egypt’s imperial era, he strove to maintain his father’s conquests by physical and military skills.

The early date of the Exodus accounts for the turning point in Egyptian history with the mass departure of the Israelites, the loss of confidence in the power of the Pharaoh and the litany of Egyptian gods.

Looking at the big picture, Vandersleyen correctly critiques Amenhotep II’s reign as unsuccessful, a time of decline, with a few exploits abroad, a few preserved memorials, and an almost complete absence of sources after the 9th year of his reign.

This connection between these two imperialistic pharaohs and Amun-Re is all the more critical when considering that a major religious crisis took place during the reign of Amenhotep II, which may have affected both the images of Amun throughout Egypt and the high priesthood of Amun. According to an inscription on a pink granite royal stele of Amenhotep II known as the Western Karnak Stele, “His majesty has commanded for his nobles-the officials of the royal court [the courtiers] who enter into [the palace] the servants [of] the good god—to destroy all of the images of the gods, their bodies […] Amu[n]-Re.” Garry Shaw bemoans that the destroying of the images of the gods has not been explained satisfactorily. Helck notes that the reading of the verb fh (“destroy, dismantle, crumble”) seems certain, but that the precise meaning of the command is unclear, since the word normally means “dissolve, destroy.” What both Egyptologists fail to explain candidly is that it would seem impossible for a pharaoh to issue a decree for his courtiers to destroy the statues of Egyptian gods that were in the temples, since the establishment of statues in the temples was a common practice during the dynastic period. … th_Dynasty

With the loss of millions of workers, it would’ve also impacted the ability to do massive large scale construction as they had in the past. And coincidentally starting around this period, Pharaohs were all buried at the same location at Valley of the Kings, which is basically just tombs dug into a valley.


Valley of the Kings, Arabic Wādī Al-Mulūk, also called Valley of the Tombs of the Kings or Arabic Wādī Bībān al-Mulūk, long narrow defile just west of the Nile River in Upper Egypt. It was part of the ancient city of Thebes and was the burial site of almost all the kings (pharaohs) of the 18th, 19th, and 20th dynasties (1539–1075 bce), from Thutmose I to Ramses X.

The Valley of the Kings (Arabic: وادي الملوك Wādī al-Mulūk; Coptic: ϫⲏⲙⲉ, romanized: džēme[1] Late Coptic: [ˈʃɪ.mæ]), also known as the Valley of the Gates of the Kings (Arabic: وادي أبواب الملوك Wādī Abwāb al-Mulūk),[2] is a valley in Egypt where, for a period of nearly 500 years from the 16th to 11th century BC, rock-cut tombs were excavated for the pharaohs and powerful nobles of the New Kingdom (the Eighteenth to the Twentieth Dynasties of Ancient Egypt).[3][4]

In the list of Egyptian pyramids in Wikipedia, the last entry is for Ahmose I.

“This building program culminated in the construction of the last pyramid built by native Egyptian rulers.”

So, the Biblical account of the Exodus, particularly the early dating, accounts for the start of the decline of the power of the Pharaoh, power of religion, end of pyramid construction, decline of military power, contraction of Egyptian controlled territory, and the decline of power of the Egyptian civilization.