The 22nd Dynasty belonged to the ‘Chiefs of Libu’, pharaohs of Libyan descent, beginning with Sheshonq I, ‘the Great Chief of Ma’. He reunited Egypt, putting his son in control of Thebes. The Libyan rulers adopted Egyptian royal traditions, but created feudalistic structures ruled by local military commanders, with the king losing some authority. Although ‘unified, there were simmering tensions under the surface. Around c. 845, Osorkon I lost control of Upper Egypt and Takelot II seized power. The two dynasties ruled in parallel, until the eighth year of Shoshenq III’s reign (c. 818 BCE) when, under Pedubastis, the delta region Meshwite princes rebelled at Leontopolis, forming the 23rd Dynasty (c. 818–715 BCE). Pedubastis declared himself ruler of Upper Egypt, in conflict with the Theban ruler, Takelot II. For three decades, there was a power struggle in this region until c. 787, under Osorkon II, when Takelot’s descendants retook power.
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