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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Persian Period


In the last two centuries before the arrival of Alexander the Great, Persia invaded Egypt twice and administered it as a satrapy of the Achaemenid Empire. Although the Ptolemies later demonized the Persians, and most traces of their rule were systematically removed, the history of this fascinating period can be reconstructed thanks to written sources from different languages (hieroglyphic, Demotic, Aramaic, Old Persian, Greek) and the multicultural archaeological record. These periods of foreign domination helped solidify Egypt's national identity during the intervening Late Period (Dynasties 28-30) and set the stage for subsequent centuries of Greek and Roman rule.

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