Stela of King Nesbanebded (Smendes I)
Commemorating the re-opening of the quarry at Geelein
(Titulary of Nesbanebded)
Now his majesty being in the city of Haiku-ptah, his august residence, victorious and strong as Ra, [in order to perform his devotion to Phtah] the master of Ankhtoui, to Sokhit, the great beloved one of Ptah, [to Tumu-Khopri], to Montu, and to the circle of nine gods who reside in Hait-saru, while his majesty was seated in his audience-chamber [a messenger came to declare before] his majesty: "It is the arm of southern water, situated on the border of the Apit of the South, dug by king Thothmes III, which proceeds [to ruin, for it is being drained away, and] 6 forming a great torrent which deeply channels (the ground) as far as the great opisthodoma of the temple extends to the back [of the building.
" His majesty said] to them: "These words which you utter before me, there has been nothing in my time which has happened like them without my being informed of them [and without my having] remedied the mischief which they describe. If then this arm of water which nourishes the quarter during the (proper) season of the year [has done this mischief, it has happened 9without my knowledge, and all this has taken place apart from the sovereign."
His majesty then caused [workmen to be summoned] (and) with them 3000 men selected from the serfs of his majesty, and his majesty gave commandment before them that they should hasten to the [country of the south, to look for a quarry in the] mountain. Now the workmen of his majesty, from among those who are always at his feet, despatched a number of [persons who knew the country, in order to] examine [the mountain. Now no one had] worked in this quarry since the time of long-past generations, until the present period of Aniti. [So they remained there, and restored ?] the chapel of the goddess Monit, the lady of Zoriti, then they executed that command which his majesty had established [about replacing those whom the work had] worn out in the limbs, each month. When the orders of the king arrived, urging the prosecution of the works which, he had commanded [the people of the country assembled without limitation] of number, even the infants on the breast of their mother ran to cut [the stone for the "buildings of his majesty.
Never] had anything happened like it in the time of (our) ancestors. Then his majesty came in his turn, like Thoth [who benefits by his acts, and gave rewards to the workmen] for their cleverness, by way of recompense for their energy and courage, lifting himself up on the throne of the Horus [of the living, even he king Nsbindidi who gives life like Ra for ever].
Source: G. Maspero, A Stele of King Smendes
A.H. Sayce ed. Records of the Past, Vol. V,
S.Bagster and Sons, London, 18
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