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Pharaoh’s Daughter

PHARAOH’s DAUGHTER. Three women are so entitled in Scripture. 1. Foster mother of the infant Moses (Exod 2:5ff.; Acts 7:21; Heb 11:24). If the Exodus (q.v.) occurred not later than Ramses II and when Moses was already elderly (cf. Exod 7:7), this princess would belong to the second half of the eighteenth dynasty (from Amenophis III to Harmhab); no closer identification is possible. The pharaohs had harems in several parts of Egypt; this princess prob. inhabited just such a harem in the E Delta where the Hebrews also were.

2. The princess who married Solomon (1 Kings 3:1; 11:1), bringing as dowry the town of Gezer vanquished by her father (1 Kings 9:16). In Jerusalem, Solomon built a special palace for her (1 Kings 7:8; 9:24; 2 Chron 8:11). A signal honor, the marriage prob. occurred early in Solomon’s reign, within c. 970/960 b.c. (cf. Malamat, JNES, XXII [1963], 9-14, 17). The pharaoh concerned was prob. Siamun of the twenty-first dynasty (c. 978-959 b.c.; cf. Egypt), but details of his family are unknown.

3. Named Bithiah in genealogies of Judah (1 Chron 4:18), married to Mered. Date, identity, and history are unknown.

Article 2

The princess who rescued Moses (Ex 2:5-10; Heb 11:24). This is probably a title as well as an appellation, indicating not only one of the daughters of a Pharaoh, but also some very distinguished rank, thought to be most probably that of the heir to the throne by birth; though she was debarred from reigning by reason of sex, she still possessed the right to entail the scepter and crown to her oldest son. Positive identification of the "Pharaoh’s daughter" mentioned in the Bible is not possible yet. All attempts toward identification are, of course, guided by the particular theory of the oppressor accepted. If the Pharaoh of the Oppression was Rameses II, as is most likely, then Pharaoh’s daughter was probably the daughter of Seti I, an older sister of Rameses II. If, as many think, the Pharaoh of the Oppression was Thothmes III, then Pharaoh’s daughter was some unknown princess. Some have thought she was Hatshepsut, the "Queen Elizabeth of Egypt."