© Erich Lessing

A Philistine prisoner. Captured by Pharaoh Ramesses III (1198–1166 B.C.E.), a group of Philistine warriors appears in reliefs that decorate the pharaoh’s mortuary temple at Medinet Habu in Thebes, from which this detail is taken. This relief shows the characteristic, feather-type headdress (whether they are actually feathers is unclear) worn by the Philistines.

A people who originated in the Aegean and migrated eastward through the Hittite empire to the coast of Canaan, the Philistines serve as an example of a large migratory movement that brought outsiders into Palestine in the late 13th or early 12th century B.C.E. Professor Gottwald, however, does not think the Israelites emerge from a similar mass migration from outside Palestine.