Sipa Press/Art Resource, NY

The mighty Ramesses II, pharaoh from 1304 to 1238 B.C.E. (on the high chronology used by Halpern), who lived to about 90, is thought by many scholars to have been either the pharaoh of the Exodus or of the oppression (if the latter, the dubious honor of pharaoh of the Exodus would fall to his son Merneptah, whose famous stele mentions Israel). Ramesses II undertook massive building projects requiring vast amounts of labor, including the relocation of the royal capital to, and the reconstruction of, the old Hyksos capital at Avaris; the site was renamed Ramses.