HYKSHOS, the name of an Egyptian dynasty, generally known as the Shepherd Kings. derived from hyk, a ruler, and *hos, a shepherd; or, according to another version, from hyk„ a captive, and dos, a shepherd. According to Josephus and Africanus. they consisted of six or eight kings, named (1), Salatis, Silitis, or Saites, who reigned 19 or 15 years; (2), Beon, Banon, or Enon, who reigned 43 or 44; (3), Apachnas, Apachnan, or Pachnas, who reigned 36 or 61 years: (4), Apophis. Aphosis, who reigned 81; (5), Arias, or Amin, who reigned 50; (6), Archles, who reigned 49; (7), Assis, or Asseth, who reigned 49 years and 2 months; and (8), Apobis, who reigned 61 years. The greatest discrepancy exists in the names and their arrangement, and as to the total number of ( years of the dynasty. Manetho, according to Sosephus, states that they reigned 511 years, but the total of the reigns he cites amounts to only 259 years 10 months; while Africanus makes their duration 284 years, and Ensebius 103. Africanus makes the shepherds consist of the 15th, 16th, and 17th dynasties, and to have ruled 958 years, but only gives the names and reigns of one, which he calls the 15th; while Eusebius makes them more correctly the 17th dynasty. They are stated in the Egyptian annals to have been a race of conquerors sprung from the east, who, under Salatis, their first king, took Memphis, rendered the whole of Egypt, and fortified the city of Avaris, on the e. of 'the Bubastite arm of the Nile, where he maintained a garrison of 240,000 soldiers. _Their oppression, however, drove the Egyptians to revolt, and under Taakan, the predecessor of Aahmes or Amasis I. of the 18th dynasty, a religious quarrel about the temples of Ha or the sun, and of Set, the god of the Hykshos, seems to have commenced, when a long war broke out, which ended under Aahmes, with the siege of Avaris and a king who is called Misphragmuthosis, supposed to be a Thothmes. finally drove them out. The monument of an officer, named Aahmes-Penneben, at El Kab, recounts this siege and his exploits. Finally, according to Manetho, they departed under treaty. The great interest attaching to the Hykshos is that they were confounded
with the Hebrews, or supposed to be the monarchs under whom Joseph entered Egypt, by the old ecclesiastical writers. In the monuments and the papyrus of Turin in which portions of their names occur in the list of the.ltsi.ngs, they bear the full titles of monarchs, although the papyri state that there were no kifts in Egypt at the time, and that 'l'aakan was only himself a hek, or prince of the south. The Hykshos, on a contemporary inscription remaining at El Kab, are called mesa, or shepherds. The Hykshos were by no means the devastating conquerors described by the historian. They entered Egypt, it appears from the monuments, about the 14th Egyptian dynasty, and were content with Inscribing their names and titles on the monuments of their predecessors, the name of Appapus having been found on a colossus of Sebakhetp III. of the 13th dynasty, and on that of a king of dynasty at San. Traces of that of Saites or Salatis have been also found at Tel-Mokdam or Cynopolis. The greatest divergence of opinion has prevailed amongst authors as to their race and origin. Josephus calls them Hebrews or Arabs; the Syncellus, Phenician shepherds. They have also been supposed to be Idumeans, Ishmaelites, or Scythians. Their physiognomy seems to indicate a Semitic origin, while their worship of Set connects them with the Khita, a people to the n. of Palestine, on the confines of Mesopotamia. The names of the kings exhibit no foreign peculiarities; some are purely Egyptian. As regards the date of the Hykshos dominion, the most conflicting opinions have prevailed amongst scholars. Bunsen makes their rule end 1639 B.C.; Lepsius, 1842 B.O. Placing, however, the discovered date of Thothmas III., 1445 n.c., in his 16th year, the close of Hykshos dominion must have ended about 1500 B.C.
Bunsen, Egypt's Place, vol. ii. pp. 405, 578; Lepsius, Konigsbuch; Bo'fah, Manetho, p. 231; De Verria, Rev. Arch. (1861), vol. iv. p. 249; Mariette, Rev. Arch. (1861), vol. iii pp. 97, 247, 337.