But thus " idle " though he may have been as a " student," he already meditated authorship. In the first long vacation - during which he, doubtless with some sarcasm, says that " his taste for books began to revive " - he contemplated a treatise on the age of Sesostris, in which (and it was characteristic) his chief object was to investigate not so much the events as the probable epoch of the reign of that semi-mythical monarch, whom he was inclined to regard as having been contemporary with Solomon.
(Sesostris of the Greeks, 1 3331300 B.C.) there had been made a cadastral survey of the country showing the rows of pillars which separated the nomens as well as the boundaries of landed estates.
In the Turin Museum are preserved two papyri with rough drawings of gold mines established by Sesostris in the Nubian Desert.'
2 Eustathius (since 1160 archbishop of Thessalonica) in his commentary on Dionysius Periegetes, mentions route-maps which Sesostris caused to be prepared, while Strabo (i., 1.5) dwells at length upon the wealth of geographical documents to be found in the library of Alexandria.
The stories that he had heard in Egypt of Sesostris may then have stimulated him to make voyages from Samos to Colchis, Scythia and Thrace.
Herodotus, who states that they, with the Egyptians and the Ethiopians, were the first to practise circumcision, believed them to have sprung from the relics of the army of Sesostris, and thus regarded them as Egyptians.
It dates from Pharaonic times, having been begun by Sesostris, continued by Necho II.
Such are the story of Sinhi, a fugitive to Syria in the reign of Sesostris enwosri] I., and perhaps the narrative of Unamun of his expedition in quest of cedar wood for the bark of the Theban Ammon in the XXIst Dynasty.
The latter seems to be the origin of the Sesostris (q.v.) and Sesoosis of the legends.
In Manetho he is identified with Sesostris (see, above), but Senwosri I., and still more Senwosri III., have a better claim to this distinction.
SESOSTRIS, the name of a legendary king of Egypt.
Raided south Palestine and Ethiopia, and at Semna beyond the second cataract set up a stela of conquest that in its expressions recalls the stelae of Sesostris in Herodotus: Sesostris may, therefore, be the highly magnified portrait of this Pharaoh.
Sesostris is evidently a mythical figure calculated to satisfy the pride of the Egyptians in their ancient achievements, after they had come into contact with the great conquerors of Assyria and Persia.
P. 687; see also article EGYPT; and Kurt Sethe, "Sesostris," 1900, in his Unters.