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Fausset's Bible Dictionary


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An Egyptian store city built by Israelites for their oppressor (Exodus 1:11). Identified by Brugsch with the fort of Djar, Pachtum. It existed early in the 18th dynasty, before Thothmes III (the Pharaoh who perished in the Red Sea), and was probably erected by his grandfather Aahmes I. The fort subsequently was called Heroopolis. The Egyptian name is Ρe Τum , "the house (temple) of Tum," the sun god of Heliopolis. Chabas translated an Egyptian record, mentioning a "reservoir (berekoovota , a slightly modified Hebrew word; confirming the Scripture that ascribes the building to Hebrew) at Pithom on the frontier of the desert." Pithom was on the canal dug or enlarged long before under Osirtasin of the 12th dynasty.

Rameses II subsequently fortified and enlarged it and Raamses. Lepsius says the son of Aahmes I was RΗΜSS . The Rameses, two centuries subsequently, have a final "-u ", Ramessu . Brugsch thinks the Israelites started from Raamses, which he thinks to be Zoan or Tauis, and journeying toward the N.E. reached the W. of lake Sirbonit, separated from the Mediterranean by a narrow neck of land. From Mount Kasios here they turned S. through the Bitter Lakes to the N. of the gulf of Suez; then to the Sinai peninsula. In the inscriptions Heracleopolis Parva near Migdol is named Piton "in the district of Succoth" (a Hebrew word meaning "tents"). The place is also called Ρt-Ramses "the city of Ramses." (Jewish Intelligencer, Jan. 1877.)

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Bibliography Information
Fausset, Andrew R. Entry for 'Pithom'. Fausset's Bible Dictionary. 1949.

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