- Because of an inscription from the reign of Merenptah, who succeeded Ramesses II on the throne, it has been suggested that the event of the Exodus should not be dated much later than the middle of the 13th Century BC. In the last lines of this inscription, carved on a stela set up to commemorate Merenptah's victory over the Libyans in his fifth year on the throne (about 1209 or 1208 BC), the king boasts of his victories over various peoples and places in Syria-Palestine. Here, he claims, with the common exaggeration of royal inscriptions, that "Israel is desolate, and has no seed".
Clearly, Merenptah's army had victoriously fought some part of Israel, and the message to us today is clear. By this point in history, the Israelites were in the land of Canaan though the account does not really help us to date their actual arrival. Hence, the majority view among scholars is that the Exodus must have taken place by at least the 13th Century BC.
Moses, of course, plays an obviously important role in the Exodus. The Bible tells us that he was born in Egypt to slave parents and saved from a genocidal policy of the pharaoh when his mother places him adrift on the Nile in a basket. The basket was then found by a daughter of the king, and he was thus brought up at the royal court. However, he would grow up to become the Israelite's leader, deliverer in to freedom and lawgiver.