June 27, 47
Dear Dr. Federn;
When two or three months ago I visited your father, and had at that occasion a chat with you, and at my leaving your home you said, and repeated it (I did not believe that I had heard right) that my Ages in Chaos erschütterte die alte Chronologie, I had the little satisfaction, which is very human. In having persuaded you at least so far as to question the old chronology; it took me six years. A motto to my correspondence with you is in Genesis 32:96: I will not let thee go, except thou bless me.
Nothing strange therefore that I miscalculated with Mercer. Yesterday I received a letter from him with his criticism; he kept the manuscript for more than three months, but it seems to me that he did not read beyond the el-Amarna chapter, because there are no remarks to anything what is said in the Chapters VII-XIII, except one.
Occasionally I shall show you his entire criticism together with remarks of a lay-reader whom he entrusted my work for additional criticism. The only point which deserves attention is Mercers opinion that the Assyrian chronology can be built without the help of the Egyptian chronology, and Assur-uballit the first comes there in the period 1326-1317, which is therefore the time of el-Amarna with Burraburias and Amenhotep IV. I shall go into this matter and see how much truth is in the assumption on the basis of the Assyrian lists.
Other remarks of Mercer which require attention deal with philological equations. As you know I built my work on collations and parallels in texts, and a few philological remarks take a very secondary role. I can judge his remarks which concern the Hebrew language, and I do not find him persuasive. But there are three remarks dealing with Egyptian philology:
A. In Duk-hat-amen you make duk-hat = dah. This is the queen of Tirhaka whom I identified with Hurria of el-Amarna; and whose queen-dowager of Egypt was called in cuneiform Dahamun (comp. Letter 41 of EA; Hall in Anatolian Studies Presented to Ramsay, 1923, p. 179).
B. In spite of the fact that the Egyptians themselves never confused their word ’iswr (Assur) with ’isr’i;l (Israel), you make the one equal the other. (In my Ch. of Thutmose).
C. In like manner the Egyptians wrote pwls;t (Philistia) and prs or prswt (Persia) and yet you equate them, a thing which no philologist would admit. I remember to have read of Pareset invading Egypt of Ramses.
The article of Macnaughton D. is: The use of the shadow clock of Seti I, The J. of the British Astronomical Association, 1944, September, Vol. 54, Numb. 7.
I hope It Is all well with you. I was sick for a few weeks and had a chance to think what will happen if I shall not finish my two books.