Mini Episode: The Lost Son

A Father Begs His Son to Return Home.

Late in the New Kingdom (c.1250 BCE), an Egyptian father wrote a letter to his son. The son had gone to sea, sailing on a ship; he had not sent any word of his wellbeing. Worried, the father writes a letter, begging his son to return home.

The letter is possibly based off real events, for it involves people who were genuine figures in their community. The father, Menna, and the son Pay-Iry were inhabitants of the village of Deir el-Medina (Set-Ma’at, the Place of Truth). They lived around 1250 BCE, approximately, and this may be a record of their real relationship.

the lost son

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Translations by John L. Foster, Ancient Egyptian Literature: An Anthology (Amazon)