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Forum LockedSome questions about faking a primary souce

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p3t3r1 View Drop Down
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    Posted: 27-Mar-2006 at 16:28

Hi guys. I was recently given a creative assignment in history class where it is my job to fake a diary between a pharaoh and a second individual involed. It is my job to make it sound authentic, in role and enjoyable in reading. It should be alot like a primary source document to the reader. It was due today and I did it pretty quickly on the weekend without much polishing. The deadline has been extended however and I now have two more days. I am wonder if any experts here could take a quick read through it and give some feedbacks. I also have included some questions I wanted to ask. They are not too long but they are not quick reads either.

                 Diary Entry from Ancient Egypt- Ramses II



Year 5 of my reign, the third month of the inundation season, on the fifteenth day


When I was just a youth to his embrace, my father spoke to the populace concerning me. He said: “Cause him to appear as King, that I may see his beauty while I yet live!” and he said “Let him administer this land; let him show himself to the people.” Showed myself I did for I am the chosen son of Re and my father Osiris favor me with long lifespan of his son Horus.  I am destined to recapture what Egypt had lost during her weakness. It is my duty therefore, to wrest from the wretched chief of Khatti the very lands that Egypt had lost.


My father had recaptured the city of Kadesh from the wretched Khattis, the very city that criminal Akhetaten and his fellows had lost. That city however, was lost again when my father signed a treaty with the vanquished Khatti chief. So on the fouth year of my reign, I led my first campaign and attacked the nearby state of Amurru. The king of Amurru trembled with fear in my presence and Amurru became a tribute paying vassal state of my land. This cleared the path for Kadesh. I prepared infantry and chariotry again on this fifth year of my reign, determined to recapture Kadesh for the glory of my people. My numerous young sons that my favorite wife Nefertari bore me accompanied me.  No foreign countries dared to opposite me on my way to Kadesh. They trembled before my army and their chiefs brought me gifts and bowed down to me in the fear of my might. I was able to make rapid progress and arrived at Usermare-Meriamon, the city of cedar many days later. This city and regions around it were captured by me during my last campaign. I had reaffirmed Egypt’s possession of this area and ensured the best cedars trees go to Egypt. This I did for my people since cedar trees are in great demand.


I arrived at the city of Kadesh thirty days after I left Egypt. I stood on a hill near the city and shaded my eyes against the blazing sun. Behold! There stands the city of Kadesh encircled by two rivers and formidable walls. My officers brought a pair of wandering scouts picked by my army to my attention. “What are you” I asked. “Deserters from the wretched Khatti chief anxious to join the right side your majesty.” “Where are you chiefs?” I asked again. “In the land of Khyrbw to the north of Twni, he is afraid to come south since he heard that Pharaoh was coming north!” Such wonderful news! I questioned them no further and pushed on to set up camp on the northwest side of the city.


While I was in the camp two more scouts were brought in front of me. “What are you?” I asked.  “We belong to the ruler of Khatti, he sent us to see where your majesty was.” “Where is he, the ruler of Khatti?” They replied “Behold, the ruler of Khatti has already come, together with the many foreign lands that he brought as allies. They are ready to fight behind the Kadesh!” See what state my governors and high officers are in! They say the wretched Khatti is in Khyrbw when this very hour he has come with his allies and armed right behind the city! My generals and officers in charge of my territories could not tell me that they had come! What a fool they are! All could be lost unless my army could be assembled quickly! I sent out my messengers with the message “Hurry forward! Pharaoh your lord stands in battle all alone!” I donned on my mail and readied myself for battle.


Now the wretched fallen one of Kadesh came with thousands of chariots and I being alone myself, my numerous infantry having abandoned me, not one looking at me of my chariotry. My warriors and chariots have left me to fate. I cried to Ammon: “Father Ammon, where are you. Have I done anything wrong? Have I disobeyed or broke a vow? Sure Ammon should stand higher than the wretch who knows no god? Is it not I who erected noble monuments and filled your temples with prisoners of war? Is it not I who sacrificed ten thousand oxen and burned the sweetest woods that smell on your alter? Let the wretch who refuses your commands be put to shame.” Ammon heard my call and he came to my aid. I found Ammon’s grace to be far better to me than a million men and thousands of chariots could be. I saw Menna, my shield bearer, gripped by fear so I said: “Steady yourself, shield-bearer! I shall go forth like a falon, killing and slaughtering them to the ground!” So I charged like a fierce-eyed lion hurling darts with my left hand and swinging the blade with my right. Six times I charged, creating confusion among the enemies. I was in the midst of enemies and not one of them found his hand to fight or shoot. I slaughtered them. None escaped me, I killed them all. I charged and drove the chariots back to the river where they had come from. They abandoned their chariots and swim for dear life back to the safety of their lands!


My army came to praise me, amazed at what I done.  I am ashamed at them. What will people say when they heard them deserting me? I left all alone and not a single officer, captain or soldier came to give me a hand as I fought. I gathered my prisoners of war. These people shall be my slaves and they shall build me temples in honor of my victory and Ammon. It is Ammon who granted me victory this day. He is more powerful than any million fighting men or thousand chariots could be. The nations have seen me; they will repeat my name even in far away regions. I have no doubt that Kadesh will be taken next day. Surprise will be with me and victory will be achieved.

I now have some questions for the experts in Egypt study around here.

My first question is that I wondering if all my names used in the writing are the ones used in that period. I did my best to find the original names from the primary sources like Poem of Pentar but I wasn't sure about some of them. Was a Khatti a common word used to describe the Hatties in Ramses II period? I know that Ammon is a Greek name for Amun and I probably should change that. If you see any other names you have a problem with please point them out.

My second question is that I am suppose to include least four areas of the PERSIAT+G rule of civilization study. This PERSIAT been Politics, Economy, Religion, Social History, Intellectual History, Arts, Technology + Geography.

In my writing, I pointed out the religion aspect. I said that I am the chosen son of Re and my father Osiris favor me with long lifespan of his son Horus.  since Egyptian pharaohs often believed in that. Is this clear to the reader?

For politics, I mentioned Egypt's political hatred toward the Hittities. Is this clear?

For Social history, I meant to tell the readers that prisoners of wars were used as slaves in the Egyptian society. . I said that with I gathered my prisoners of war. These people shall be my slaves and they shall build me temples in honor of my victory and Ammon. Is this idea clear to the reader?

For the economy, I simply mentioned that Rameses II had conquered the Phoenicia region during hs first campaign and provided his people with ceder, which are much needed in Egypt. We all know that Egypt loved the ceder trees. They were the best and only nobles and the royals had them. I hoped I was clear.

Last but not least, I am wondering if it sounds authentic and semi realstic. I am not going over the edge but I wonder to impress the teacher enough that I would get perfect on the creative and authentic part.

Thank you very much for taking the time to read this. I hope I will get many feedbacks. If you find any grammar errors in my diary please point it out. Thanks.




Edited by p3t3r1
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