PHILISTINE ORIGINS. The Medinet Habu inscriptions record a movement of Sea Peoples from the Aegean islands who arrived in Egypt. They did not succeed in conquering Egypt, but some did settle in the Levantine cities of Ashkelon, Ashdod, and Gaza, which would later become the heartland of Philistia. Both Egyptian and classical sources recount Aegean origins for the Philistines, a tradition now corroborated by DNA recovered from burials at Ashkelon.