MERNEPTAH’S VICTORY STELE—also called the Israel Stele, since it provides the earliest historical reference to “Israel” (highlighted in red)—boasts: “Canaan is seized by every evil, Ashkelon is carried off , and Gezer is seized, Yenoam is made as (though it) never existed, Israel is wasted without seed.” Until recently, however, little archaeological evidence had been found to support the pharaoh’s claims. Gezer’s name (highlighted in yellow), spelled Q’tch’r in Egyptian, is followed by two hieroglyphic signs that designate it as a foreign city.