ISBN: 978-2-87457-021-6
par Claude Vandersleyen

Coll. Connaissance de l'Égypte Ancienne (CEA), 10
352 pages, carte et photos couleurs
2008. Épuisé

Le delta et la vallée du Nil

DescriptionThe AuthorTarget audienceTable of contentsBy the same author

Book in French. The Nile valley has always been famous for its fertility resulting from periodic flooding. It is personified by the God Osiris who fertilizes Isis, the black earth. Dense vegetation then grows on this earth: “the great green”, called “Wadj-wer” in Egyptian. The great Gods of Egypt are responsible for this prosperity; they own it, especially Horus, son of the flood, being the son of Osiris and Isis. The term Wadj-wer covers all aspects of the soil: they walk and navigate on it, they cultivate it, they fight on it, they get lost on it.

The pharaohs had no authority on part of the delta, which constitutes the main part of Wadj-wer and the largest area of the country. Rebel populations led an autonomous life among the reed and papyrus thickets on a land divided by large or smaller waterways, independant from the kings who have always been on the defensive towards the Haou-nebout and other Rekhyt, and towards the islands in the middle of Wadj-wer throughout Egypt's history.
For a long time, the Egyptians have lived self-contained within the natural boundaries of the country, i.e. the area flooded by the Nile. When Ptolemy III's scribes had to describe the island of Cyprus, they were clueless: they didn't know how to depict, in hieroglyphs, any other island than the ones formed by the alluvia of the Nile.
As Wadj-wer can be found throughout the ages and in all parts of the Nile valley, it is hardly surprising that many aspects had to be taken into consideration when studying the approximately 360 attestations of the term. It is about the soil of Egypt and the flood of the Nile that makes it green up regularly. It is the flood that maintains what the Egyptians described with the term “the great green”, Wadj-wer.

The author

Claude Vandersleyen was born in Brussels in 1927. He has been teaching the art, language and history of Ancient Egypt at the Université Catholique de Louvain. In 1995, he wrote a book published in the collection « Nouvelle Clio » of the Presses Universitaires de France, entitled L’Égypte et la Vallée du Nil II.
For more than 30 years, he has been dedicating his research to the geography of Egypt and the Near East, and more specifically to the term Wadj-wer.

Target audience

This study is for Egyptologists, philologists and anyone interested in historical geography.

Table of contents

Chapitre Premier. Les Grecs et l’Égypte

Chapitre 2. Les dieux de ouadj our
§ 1 Les dieux de ouadj our sous l’Ancien Empire
§ 2 Les dieux de ouadj our sous le Moyen Empire
§ 3 Les dieux de ouadj our jusqu’à la fin de l’Égypte pharaonique
§ 4 Sobek et Horus

Chapitre 3. Osiris
§ 1 Osiris et ouadj our 
§ 2 Les effluves (rdw) d’Osiris
§ 3 Le Nil et les “Nils”
§ 4 Le noun
§ 5 L’Inondation

Chapitre 4. Le Fayoum

Chapitre 5. Le sol de ouadj our
§ 1 Le territoire de ouadj our 
§ 2 La géographie physique
§ 3 L’agriculture
§ 4 La délimitation du pays

Chapitre 6. L’eau de ouadj our
§ 1 Le Nil et le Ym
§ 2 Le vocabulaire des régions aquatiques
§ 3 Les bateaux
§ 4 Tempêtes – naufrages

Chapitre 7. La population de ouadj our
§ 1 Le delta ou la Basse Égypte
§ 2 Le reste de l’Égypte
§ 3 L’administration

Chapitre 8. Les nations hors d’Égypte
§ 1 Les documents historiques
§ 2 Les Fenkhou
§ 3 Les Héryou-sha
§ 4 Pount
§ 5 La Terre du dieu

Chapitre 9. La localisation des termes géographiques
 et des populations dans le delta

Chapitre 10. Les dangers de ouadj our

Chapitre 11. Les documents obscurs ou inutilisables

Chapitre 12. Documents réétudiés 
§ 1 La stèle de Naples
§ 2 La stèle de Pithom
§ 3 Le décret de Canope

Chapitre 13. Commentaire sur les comptes rendus de Ouadj our 1999 et autres opinions sur le sujet
§ 1 La publication de Ouadj our w3d wr Un autre aspect de la vallée du Nil, en 1999
§ 2 The Navy, de Säve-Söderbergh
§ 3 Le compte rendu de Joachim Quack
§ 4 La traduction et l’interprétation de ouadj our avant et après 1968/1972
§ 5 L’évolution des idées
§ 6 L’incidence de l’interprétation de ouadj our sur les problèmes historiques

Chapitre 14. Conclusion

 Chapitre 15. Alessandra Nibbi, The Sea Peoples, 1972

Chapitre 16. The delta and the Nile valley: the meaning of wadj wer

Chronologie des attestations de ouadj our 
Inventaire des documents contenant l’expression ouadj our 
Liste des illustrations