Frank J. Yurco

Were Shasu Israelites? In scene 7, Shasu prisoners march off to Egypt; as enemies of Egypt, they are conventionally represented diminutively, dwarfed by the colossal legs of their captors’ horses, center and right.

Some scholars have identified the Shasu with the Israelites, but the Merenptah reliefs at Karnak contradict that conclusion. The Israelites in scene 4 dress like the Canaanites, wearing ankle-length clothes, whereas the Shasu wear short kilts and turban-like headdresses, visible in the figures in scene 7.