230 Egypt and Israel The constant activity of Egypt in stirring up the various rulers in Palestine against Assyria determined Esarhaddon to invade Egypt, and by conquering the land, to establish Assyrian suze- rainty over the west without further interference. The first attempt, in 673 B.C., failed; but in 670 B.C. Egypt was invaded, Memphis was captured, and the whole of the Delta region occupied by Assyrian troops. For a brief space the fortune of war once again favoured the Egyptians; the Pharaoh Tirhakah, who had fled to Thebes, gathered an army and reconquered Memphis, the Assyrian king having in the meantime returned to his own country. No sooner, however, did he hear of what had happened than he set out for Egypt again; but on the way thither he died. The respite for Egypt did not last long. In 668 B.C. Ashurbanipal, Esarhaddon's successor, invaded the land, re-took Memphis, and Thebes was also occupied. After a few years Tirhakah's successor, Tanutamon, tried once more, in 663 B.C., and with some initial success, to gain possession of Lower Egypt; in 661 B.C., however, Ashurbanipal was again in Egypt; Tanutamon fled to Thebes, but was pursued; he himself escaped. Thebes was captured and sacked. Egypt was now entirely under Assyrian control. The fall of the great city of Thebes (No-Amon) had a resounding effect upon the peoples, and half a century later it was recalled by the prophet Nahum in describing the nemesis which had overtaken the Assyrians; in reference to Nineveh, the capital, he says: Art thou better than No-Amon that lay by the streams, Her rampart the sea, waters her wall ? Kiish was her strength, and limitless Egypt; Put and Lubim, they were her help. Yet was she taken, went into captivity; Her children were killed at the top of the streets; As for her nobles, the lot was cast, All her great ones were bound in chains.1 2 Nah. iii. 8-1 o; the Hebrew is in verse, with four beats to the line.