A fragment of Sheshonq I's Megiddo Stela

Sheshonq I (945-924 b.c.e.) was an Egyptian king and founder of the 22nd dynasty.  He is typically indentified with the Shishak mentioned in 1 Kings 14:25-26, who invaded Israel and exacted tribute from Judah during the fifth year of Rehoboam’s reign.  This invasion was part of a larger campaign to reassert Egyptian hegemony over the Levant.  In the Karnak temple reliefs, Sheshonq I claims to have destroyed 134 Levantine cities as part of his ca. 925 b.c.e. campaign.  He also left a victory stela at Megiddo after leveling the city.  His son, Osorkon I, made large donations to the several Egyptian temples probably using tribute taken from Judah. 

            Sheshonq I’s invasion provides an anchor point for determining Israelite absolute chronology.  Assuming the relative chronology of Samuel and Kings is accurate, then the fifth year of Rehoboam’s reign fell in 925 b.c.e.  From there, it is relatively simply to work out the chronology of the united monarchy and the early divided monarchy based on the biblical account.                         


Redford, Donald.  "Shishak."  In The Anchor Bible Dictionary V., edited by David Noel Freedman, 1221-1222.  New York: Doubleday, 1992. 

Taylor, John.  "The Third Intermediate Period (1069-664 b.c.e.)."  In The Oxford History of Ancient Egypt, edited by Ian Shaw, 324-363.  Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000. 

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