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Ancient Egypt
1. Introduction
2. People
3. Life styles
4. Culture
5. Education and Science
6. Society
7. Economy
8. Government
9. Cities and Villages
10. Language
11. Religion
12. Kings / periods
13. History
14. Map

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Open map of Ancient EgyptAncient Egypt / Third Intermediate Period / 25th Dynasty /
Ancient Sudan / Nubia / Cush /
Other spellings: Piankhi; Piye

Piy (erased)

Provincial rulers standing and prostrating in front of Piy, who has been erased. From Gebel Barkal.

King of Cush and controlling Ancient Egypt 747-716 BCE, 31 years. He is listed as the 1st ruler of the 25th Dynasty of Egypt; although his brother, Shabaqo, is often made out to be its real founder.
Piy inherited a united Lower and Upper Nubia from his father, Kashta. He ruled from Napata next to the sacred Gebel Barkal. Kashta had undertaken expeditions into Egypt, establishing his daughter as heiress to the office God's wife of Amon at Thebes, which soon emerged as the leading religious (and political) institution, replacing the High Priest office. Either from imperialist and material reasons, or from a religous motivation, Piy would around 730 send an expedition into Egypt, reaching Memphis. Egypt was weak at this time in history, and local rulers chose to aid Piy, since Libyans (seen upon as infidels) was the only other option. The 23rd Dynasty rulers of Upper Egypt paid homage to Piy, and it appears that the 24th Dynasty rulers of Lower Egypt also did.
Piy's expedition led to a shift of power from the 23rd Dynasty to Piy's new 25th, but how and when is not possible to reconstruct. Piy's expedition created a Cushite influence over much of Egypt that would last 60 years, of which half of the period involved control over all of the country.
Piy's influence over his native Cush is little known. But it appears that he both brought home rich wealth and skilled workers. While it is uncertain that the direct effects on the general population was strong, Piy was at least central in bringing forth a Cushite civilization with strong Egyptian elements, a civilization that would last more than 1000 years.
It is generally assumed that Piy became the first Cushite king to build a pyramid in Nubia, located to al-Kurru. His pyramid was between 15 and 20 metres high, with steep slopes. Still, it must be noted that his father is also attributed with a pyramid (see Nubian pyramids).

First half 8th century BCE: Born as son of Kashta.
747: Kashta dies, Piy becomes king or lord of Upper and Lower Nubia.
Around 740?: Piy establishes his presence in Upper Egypt.
Around 730: Facing an Egyptian alliance of Lower Egypt, led by the Libyan Tefnakhte (first king of Egypt's 24th Dynasty), Piy marches north into Middle Egypt. He defeats the alliance at Memphis.
Hermopolis falls to Piy after a 5 month siege.
— Piy would return to his capital Napata, bringing with him great treasures.
717: It is assumed that Piy holds his 30th year jubilee (Heb-Sed); this is recorded in the Temple of Amon at Gebel Barkal.
716: Piy dies in Napata, and is succeeded by his brother, Shabaqo. He is buried at al-Kurru.

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By Tore Kjeilen