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From Napata the Nile continues for a while in the south-west direction which it follows from Abu-Hamed, but soon assumes is ordinary sinuous course to the north, describing two great principle curves -- one to the west down to Wâdi Halfa, just below the second cataract, Soleb being the westernmost point, then another to the east as far as Assiût (Lycopolis), Assuân forming its apex, or easternmost point. Such traditions, until confirmed by the monuments, or at any rate purified of their legendary elements by comparison with them, must of course be kept in abeyance.
Distances by water are somewhat greater owing to the winding course of the river. Müller in the Didot edition of the second volume of "Fragmenta Historicorum Græcorum", and E. Müller in the Didot edition of Heroditus (Fragmenta chronographica, p. The following chronological table up to the Twenty-sixth Dynasty is condensed from the excellent work of Professor J. Manetho, who, as a rule, does not seem to have been much better informed than we are, resorts in such cases to traditions, strongly tinged with legend, which were in the keeping of the priests and belonged, very likely, to the same stock as most of those related by Heroditus on matters that could not fall under his personal observation.
At Assuân begin the two high ranges of the Libyan and Arabian deserts, between which the valley extends.
The range to the left is somewhat farther from the river, so that most of the towns are built on the western bank.
The plateau itself is waterless and practically without vegetation. The name Egypt proper applies only to the rather narrow valley of the Nile from the Mediterranean, 31° 35' N. Those figures are summed up at the end of each book. We cannot enter here upon even a cursory analysis, much less a discussion, of the various systems of Egyptian chronology. We know little or nothing of the peoples they battled with, nor can we detect the political reasons which brought about the rise and fall of the several dynasties.