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Hellenistic EgyptMonarchy, Society, Economy, Culture$
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Roger Bagnall and Jean Bingen

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780748615780

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748615780.001.0001

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The Thracians in Ptolemaic Egypt

The Thracians in Ptolemaic Egypt

(p.83) Chapter 6 The Thracians in Ptolemaic Egypt
Hellenistic Egypt

Jean Bingen

Edinburgh University Press

The Ptolemies attracted numerous immigrants from the larger Greek world to Egypt, to serve as soldiers, bureaucrats, tax-collectors, entrepreneurs, scholars, artists, and entertainers. Some of these were from the fringes of Greece; among them is the large group of Thracians, a term referring to people from the southeastern Balkans, who had been under Macedonian rule in the time of Philip II and Alexander the Great. Many came as soldiers, particularly cavalrymen, and they appear taking part in Greek athletic competitions. The papyri give us some sense of the survival of Thracian cultural traditions, including religious cults, in Egypt.

Keywords:   Thrace, Balkans, mercenaries, cavalry, immigrants

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