New Kingdom

Nubia became part of the Egyptian empire

Spurred by threats from the south, Egypt’s New Kingdom pharaohs mounted military campaigns against Nubia, and by the Reign of Thutmose III (1479–1425 BC) Egyptians controlled Nubia to the 4th cataract. An Egyptian govenor administered the country called Kush and ensured the flow of Nubian gold to Egypt. Nubia also contributed exotic products such as animal skins, ivory, and ebony as well as dates, cattle, and horses prized for their quality. Despite being required to send many rich resources to Egypt, Nubia prospered during this period. Many Egyptians settled in Nubia, and Nubians moved north to Egypt.

Egyptians build large temples and monuments in Nubia

Egyptian pharoahs constructed temples throughout Nubia to honor Egyptian dieties, gods unique to Nubia, and themselves as divinities. The most important religious site in Nubia was dedicated to the Egyptian state god Amun. It was located at the foot of a sacred mountain (modern Gebel Barkal) at the frontier settlement of Napata near the 3rd cataract. Started by Thutmose III, this temple complex was elarged by later pharaohs.

New Kingdom Egyptian pharaohs conducted many campaigns to bring Nubia under Egyptian control. By the time of Ramesses II (1279–1213 BC) Nubia had been a colony for two hundred years, but its conquest was recalled in a painting from the temple Ramesses II built at Beit el-Wali in Northern Nubia. It was the subject of epigraphic work by the Oriental Insitute during the Nubian salvage campaign of the 1960s. The epigraphic drawing of the painting is shown below.

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