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Joseph's servitude thus fits the pattern for the Middle Kingdom period of Egyptian history.Our purpose here, assuming a 12th Dynasty date for Joseph to be most in accord with the Scriptural chronology, is to examine what new evidence there may be that would both support and further illustrate a career for Joseph in the Middle Kingdom.Collating this information with an analysis of statuary, and with the well-known literary work entitled The Complaint of Khahkeperre-Seneb, Bell concludes that the mid-12th Dynasty suffered erratic Nile levels which caused crop failure and the resultant social disruption mirrored in the Complaint.One might ask why an unusually high Nile would hurt crops; Bell's answer is that under such conditions it would take longer for the water to drain off the fields, and would thus impede the year's planting.
The second idea, that Joseph should best be thought of as serving when fellow Syro-Palestinians ruled part of Egypt seems to be unsound.
When a horse was found by the excavators of the fortress of Buhen, from a period well before the Egyptians began to use chariots for war, the conclusion of the archeologists was that “It is likely that, at least in the early periods, horses were owned by the most top-ranking members of society and that they were only used for drawing chariots on state occasions” (Emery, Smith and Millard 1979: 194; cf. It contains information on Asiatic slaves in Egypt during the late Middle Kingdom, only a few generations after Joseph, assuming a 12th Dynasty date for him.
The most striking thing about these Asiatic slaves is that one of the most common jobs they were assigned was household servant, just like Joseph (Hayes 193).
And when the king wanted to reward Joseph, he gave him the daughter of a priest of On, or Heliopolis, to be his wife.
The argument there is that a Hyksos king would more probably give Joseph the daughter of the priest of another god, such as Seth, who was a more important deity to the Hyksos than were the solar deities venerated by the native Egyptians.