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Archaeology of Empire in Achaemenid Egypt$
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Henry Colburn

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781474452366

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474452366.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM EDINBURGH SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.edinburgh.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Edinburgh University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ESO for personal use.date: 27 July 2021

The Study of Achaemenid Egypt

The Study of Achaemenid Egypt

(p.1) 1. The Study of Achaemenid Egypt
Archaeology of Empire in Achaemenid Egypt

Henry P. Colburn

Edinburgh University Press

The introductory chapter provides some historical context for the study of Achaemenid Egypt. This period in Egyptian history is an orphan of sorts, falling between the earlier periods, of great interest to Egyptologists, and the Ptolemaic and Roman periods, of great interest to classicists. Along with this lack of interest, there is also a more insidious tendency to emphasize the scarcity of evidence for this period, something Margaret Root has called the ‘politics of meagerness.’ This tendency is tied to nineteenth century orientalist views of the Persians as savage despots, a view also held by the ancient Greeks. To avoid these issues, this book focuses on the experience of Achaemenid rule. This involves two main approaches: 1.) the examination of continuities and changes in the structures of Egyptian society, and 2.) a study of identity through decisions made about material by individuals and communities.

Keywords:   Orientalism, Late Period, Historiography, Herodotus, Cambyses, Identity

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