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Sunday, March 11, 2012

Dorothy J. Thompson, Memphis Under the Ptolemies (2nd edition)

Memphis Under the Ptolemies
(Second Edition)
Dorothy J. Thompson

Drawing on archaeological findings and an unusual combination of Greek and Egyptian evidence, Dorothy Thompson examines the economic life and multicultural society of the ancient Egyptian city of Memphis in the era between Alexander and Augustus. Now thoroughly revised and updated, this masterful account is essential reading for anyone interested in ancient Egypt or the Hellenistic world.
The relationship of the native population with the Greek-speaking immigrants is illustrated in Thompson's analysis of the position of Memphite priests within the Ptolemaic state. Egyptians continued to control mummification and the cult of the dead; the undertakers of the Memphite necropolis were barely touched by things Greek. The cult of the living Apis bull also remained primarily Egyptian; yet on death the bull, deified as Osorapis, became Sarapis for the Greeks. Within this god's sacred enclosure, the Sarapieion, is found a strange amalgam of Greek and Egyptian cultures.

Dorothy J. Thompson is a fellow of Girton College, University of Cambridge, and a member of the faculty of classics at the University of Cambridge. She is a fellow of the British Academy and an honorary president of the International Association of Papyrologists.

"[A] masterful analysis of the surviving evidence for ancient Memphis."--John F. Oates, American Journal of Philology
"[T]his book greatly enhances understanding of Egyptian history in the Ptolemaic period and the author is to be congratulated on her skill in welding the disparate sources into such an attractive whole."--Amélie Kuhrt,History
"[A] book of utmost importance to all readers interested in ancient civilizations. . . . Thompson's concentration on the Hellenistic period provides a penetrating study of all aspects of this city from the time of Alexander to Augustus."--C. C. Lamberg-Karlovsky, Choice

"This thoroughly revised and updated account presents a clear picture of one of the most important cities of Ptolemaic Egypt, but it also takes the reader deep into the world of Egyptian temples, the priests who served the various cults, and the religious, economic, and social practices of the diverse communities who lived in and around Memphis. Memphis Under the Ptolemies is one of the greatest studies of an ancient city and a true testament to one of the finest scholars of the Hellenistic world."--J. G. Manning, Yale University

Table of Contents:
List of Illustrations and Tables ... viii
 ... ix
Acknowledgments  ... xv
Abbreviations  ... xvi
A Note on Transliteration ...  xix
Chapter 1: The Second City ...  1
Chapter 2: Economic Life in Memphis ...  29
Chapter 3: Ethnic Minorities ...  76
Chapter 4: Ptolemies and Temples ...  99
Chapter 5: The Undertakers ...  144
Chapter 6: Apis and Other Cults ...  177
Chapter 7: Between Two Worlds: The Sarapieion ...  197
Chapter 8: Roman Memphis: An Epilogue ...  247
A. Memphite Professions Additional to Those Recorded in the Zenon Archive 259
B. The Undertakers' Archive
 ...  260
C. A Property Settlement in 197 B.C. ...  262
D. Apis Bulls of the Ptolemaic Period ...  263
Bibliography ...  285
Index  ... 319

Paper: $35.00 ISBN: 9780691140339
Cloth: $75.00 ISBN: 9780691152172