And thou shall dwell in the land of Goshen
Called by Artapanus F20 Kaisan or Kessan; the Septuagint version Gesan of Arabia, as it was that part of Egypt which bordered on Arabia: it seems to be the same with the land of Rameses, see ( Genesis 47:11 ) ; and the Heliopolitan home, which, Strabo F21 says, was reckoned to be in Arabia, and in which were both the city of Heliopolis and the city Heroopolis, according to Ptolemy F23; for in the Septuagint version of ( Genesis 46:28 ) , instead of Goshen is Heroopolis, or the city of the Heroes in the land of Rameses, with which agrees Josephus F24: wherefore Dr. Shaw F25 observes, the land of Rameses or Goshen could be no other than the Heliopolitan home, taking in that part of Arabia which lay bounded near Heliopolis by the Nile, and near Heroopolis by the correspondent part of the Red Sea. Now either before this time Joseph had got a grant of this country, of Pharaoh, to dispose of at pleasure, or he had so much power and authority of himself as to put his father into it: or it may be, it was the domains of his father in law the priest of On, since On or Onii, according to Ptolemy F26, was the metropolis of the Heliopolitan home, and by some thought to be Heliopolis itself, and perhaps might be Joseph's own country, which he had with the daughter of the priest of On: indeed if what the Jewish writers say F1, that Pharaoh, king of Egypt in Abraham's time, gave to Sarah the land of Goshen for an inheritance, and therefore the Israelites dwelt in it, because it was Sarah their "mother's"; it would account for Joseph's proposing to put them into the possession of it without the leave of Pharaoh; but Goshen seems to have been in the grant of Pharaoh, who agreed and confirmed what Joseph proposed, ( Genesis 47:6 ) ;
and thou shalt be near unto me;
as he would be in Goshen, if Memphis was the royal seat at this time, as some think F2, and not Tanis or Zoan; or Heliopolis, or both, in their turn; and Artapanus F3 is express for it, that Memphis was the seat of that king of Egypt, in whose court Moses was brought up; and especially Heliopolis, nay be thought to be so, if Joseph dwelt at On or Heliopolis, where his father in law was priest or prince, which was near if not in Goshen itself: and according to Bunting F4, On or Oni was the metropolis of Goshen; and Leo Africanus says F5, that the sahidic province, in which was Fium, where the Israelites dwelt, see ( Genesis 47:11 ) , was the seat of the nobility of the ancient Egyptians:
thou and thy children, and thy children's children:
for Jacob's sons had all of them children, even Benjamin the youngest, as appears from the following chapter:
and thy flocks, and thy herds, and all that thou hast;
and Goshen, being a place of pasturage, was fit and suitable for them; and so Josephus says F6, of Heliopolis, which he takes to be the place where Jacob was placed, that there the king's shepherds had their pastures.
F20 Apud Euseb. Praepar. Evangel. l. 9. c. 23. p. 27.
F21 Geograph. l. 17. p. 555.
F23 Geograph. l. 4. c. 5.
F24 Antiqu. l. 2. c. 7. sect. 5.
F25 Travels, 305, 306. Ed. 2.
F26 Ut supra. (F23)
F1 Pirke Eliezer, c. 26.
F2 Dr. Shaw. ut supra, (F25) p. 304 Jablonski de Terra Goshen, Dissert. 4. sect. 3, 4, 5. & Sicardus in ib. Dissert. 5. sect. 1.
F3 Apud Euseb. Praepar. Evangel. l. 9. c. 23, 27.
F4 Travels p. 76.
F5 Descriptio Africae, l. 8. p. 669.
F6 Ut supra, (F24) sect. 6.