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Courts and Elites in the Hellenistic EmpiresThe Near East After the Achaemenids, c. 330 to 30 BCE$
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Rolf Strootman

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780748691265

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2015

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748691265.001.0001

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Hierarchy and Conflict

Hierarchy and Conflict

(p.165) 8 Hierarchy and Conflict
Courts and Elites in the Hellenistic Empires

Rolf Strootman

Edinburgh University Press

Chapter 8 focuses on the philoi, the Greek ‘friend of the king’, and the conflicts among them. Philoi served the royal family first of all as military commanders, since there neither was a formal disconnection of the royal court and the armed forces; the standing armies of the empires were attached to the dynasty, not to some impersonal ‘state’. The philoi furthermore functioned as intermediaries between court and cities. Because they retained bonds with their families and cities of origin, and disposed of patronage networks of their own, the king was able to exert influence in cities through his friends; conversely, elite families and cities could exert influence at court through the philoi.

Keywords:   Courtiers, Conflicts, Favourites

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