Egyptian wisdom

Michael V. Fox, Suzanna R. Millar

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Moving into the wider world of the ancient Near East, Michael Fox and Suzanna R. Millar examine Egyptian wisdom literature. They begin with an overview of extant examples from the Old Kingdom to the Late Period, and then turn to some major themes and issues. They consider Ma’at (the regulating force of truth/justice), character development (particularly as expressed through polar character types), pedagogy (including the debate about who is capable of learning), and transmission (through the generations in oral and written forms). The second half of the chapter assesses some commonly proposed examples of Egyptian influence on biblical wisdom literature, namely the influence of Amenemope on Prov 22:17–23:11 and elsewhere in Proverbs, Egyptian parallels to Proverbs 8, Egyptian parallels to Prov 23:12–24:22, an alleged precursor to Job 38–39 in Egyptian onomastica, and connections between Ben Sira and the Demotic Instruction Phibis.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Cambridge Companion to Biblical Wisdom Literature
EditorsKatharine J. Dell, Suzanna R. Millar, Arthur Jan Keefer
PublisherCambridge University Press
Number of pages21
ISBN (Electronic)9781108673082
ISBN (Print)9781108483162, 9781108716475
Publication statusPublished - 9 Jun 2022

Publication series

NameCambridge Companions to Religion

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Egypt
  • Ma'at
  • truth
  • justice
  • character
  • transmission
  • Amenemope
  • Proverbs
  • Job
  • Ben Sira
  • demotic


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