An Egyptian pharaoh, the book of Kings relates, conquered the Canaanite city of Gezer, burned it to the ground, and slaughtered its inhabitants; the text tells us that it was later rebuilt by King Solomon. Ongoing excavations of the city seem to confirm this version of events, as Amanda Borschel-Dan writes:
Three torched skeletal remains were discovered this summer at the Tel Gezer archaeological site. . . . Previous digging seasons have uncovered Canaanite treasure troves and a King Solomon-era palace.
“The adult [skeleton] was lying on its back with arms above its head. The child, who was wearing earrings, was next to the adult, to the left. This room was filled with ash and collapsed mud brick,” Steve Ortiz, [director of the excavation, explained]. . . . In a second area, other skeletal remains were found under a pile of collapsed stones. [One skeleton] “attests to the violent nature of the destruction, as it is clear he experienced the trauma of the event,” said Ortiz. . . .
Ortiz [also] said Egyptians usually preferred to subdue vassal cities and continue their revenue streams. The widespread conflagration and “heavy destruction suggests the Egyptian pharaoh encountered much resistance from the Gezerites.” . . .
Other items in the torched rooms included a 13th-century-BCE amulet and cylinder seals depicting war, which . . . also provide evidence of Egyptian military campaigns there at the end of the late Bronze Age.