Peleset


Peleset
One of the Sea-peoples c.1198-1166 BC.
    The Peleset are listed amongst the *Sea-peoples in the Egyptian records of the battles that were fought by *Ramesses III. They have been tentatively identified as those who immigrated, probably in two or three stages, into Palestine and became the Philistines. In the Egyptian scenes they are shown as clean-shaven and they wear a panelled kilt, decorated with tassels, and, as a chest protector, either a ribbed corselet or they are bandaged with horizontal strips of linen; on the head, they have a circle made of either upright reeds or leather strips. Their weapons include spears and sometimes a rapier sword and a circular shield.
    It is evident that their families accompanied them on the journey to Egypt, transported in wooden carts with solid wheels that were drawn by oxen. These animals were clearly humped oxen, of a type bred in Anatolia but not in the Aegean nor in Palestine, and the carts are of an Anatolian style. It is also evident that these people had close connections with Anatolia and were associated in some way with the *Akawasha with whom they fought against *Ramesses III in Year 5 of his reign.
    Biblical references suggest that their homeland was Caphtor which may have been Crete or, less probably, Cilicia. Part of the coast of Palestine was called the 'Cretan' south, and this seems to emphasise a link with Crete, but their pottery displays a marked similarity in its shape to Mycenaean examples.
    The original homeland of the Peleset is therefore obscure, and it is even possible that either Crete or Caphtor were only places en route and that ultimately they came from another country or area.
BIBL. Chicago University, Oriental Institute Medinet Habu. (four vols) 1932—40; Edgerton, W. and Wilson, J.A. Historical records of Harnesses III. Chicago: 1936; Macalister, R.A. S. The Philistines, their history and civilisation. Chicago: 1965; CAH ii, ch xxviii.
Biographical Dictionary of Ancient Egypt by Rosalie and Antony E. David

Ancient Egypt. A Reference Guide. . 2011.

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