The Heights of David?
King David of Israel subdued the Philistines, the Syrians, the Moabites, Ammonites and Edomites (2 Samuel chapter 8-10) but he never confronted the Egyptians. However an article in the January edition of Biblical Archaeology Review (BAR) claims that there is an inscription on the walls of the temple of Karnak in Egypt which includes his name. Noted scholar Kenneth Kitchen says that included in the list of cities and nations in the Shishonq inscription are the words B(Y)DLT DWT which he translates as "heights of David".
Seshonq was the first king of the Twenty-second Dynasty, usually dated to the 10th century BC. On the south wall of the temple of Karnak Sheshonq left a list of the cities which he presented to the god Amun. It is presumed that he conducted a military campaign into Palestine and Syria and conquered the cities mentioned in his inscription. Since the Biblical record states that a king by the name of Shishak conquered Jerusalem in the 10th century BC (1 Kings 14:25) he is usually identified as the Shishonq of the Karnak inscription.
This identification has been challenged by a number of scholars. Dr John Bimson denies that there is any great similarity of between "Shishak" and "Shishonq" in the original languages. Others point out that the list is suspiciously like a similar list left by Thutmoses III of the Eighteenth Dynasty. They suspect that Shishonq was making an empty boast about something that he had never done, especially as his list includes the Mittani, who had ceased to exist four centuries earlier!
There is also a grave question about the timing. If the chronology of Egypt needs to be reduced by three centures at this point, as some scholars claim, then Shishonq lived and reigned a lot later than King David of Israel.
Kitchen's identification depends on a little juggling of letters. In the old Hebrew script "David" is simply spelled with the three consonants DWD. Kitchen claims that there are instances where T is used for D, which would make DWT and DWD identical. Unfortunately there is the additional minor problem that the expression "heights of David" is not found in any other ancient literature.
The author of the BAR article suggests that as David "roamed about in the Wilderness of Ziph" (including the Hill of Hachilah) it would not be surprising that a site in this region could be named 'the heights of David'" Obviously nothing is impossible, but in the absence of any inscriptional reference to such an area, is could also be just a little archaeological wishful thinking.