|Statues of Ramesses II built around 1255BC|
|Map of the Bronze Age c.1400BC (not showing Elam or Mycenae)|
|Illustration from a Kassite kudurru|
|Letter from Tushratta, King of Mitanni, to Egypt|
|Middle Assyrian Stele|
|Hittite Depiction of Chariots|
|Bust of Nefertiti|
Egypt was the strongest of the great powers because none of the other powers could strike it directly (they had to cross the sea, deserts or pass through the Egyptian controlled areas of Syro-Palestine). The regularity of the Nile and advanced Egyptian agriculture enabled the Pharaohs to control (and feed) large populations who could be mobilised for war if necessary. Also Egyptian mines produced seemingly inexhaustible amounts of gold allowing Egypt to exercise far greater spending power than its rivals. While these factors meant that Egypt was the most stable and pre-eminent power, it was no guarantee that its armies would be victorious once they left the safety of Egypt (as Ramesses II found out at Kadesh).
|Main Entrance to Mycenae|
|Mycenaean Fresco of a Lady|
|Depiction of Ramesses II at the Battle of Kadesh|
|Vase showing Mycenaean Soldiers|
|Bronze Age around 1340BC|
Say to the Great King, king of Egypt, my brother: Thus Assur-Uballit, king of Assyria, Great King, your brother,
For you, your household and your country, may all go well.
|Lamassu from Assyrian Palace|
I send you as your greeting gift a beautiful royal chariot outfitted for me and two white horses also outfitted for me, one chariot not outfitted and one seal of genuine lapis lazuli.
Is such a present that of a Great King? Gold in your country is as dirt. One simply gathers it up. Why are you so sparing of it? I am engaged in building a new palace. Send me as much gold as is needed for its adornment.
When Assur-nadin-ahhe, my ancestor, wrote to Egypt twenty talents of gold were sent to him.
When the king of Khanigalbat (Mitanni) wrote to your father in Egypt he sent twenty talents of gold to him.
Now I am the equal of the king of Khanigalbat (Mitanni) but you have sent (x) amount of gold and it is not even enough for the pay of my messengers on the journey to and back….