Sunday, September 13, 2020

Colburn, Archaeology of empire in Achaemenid Egypt

BRYN MAYR CLASSICAL REVIEW: Archaeology of empire in Achaemenid Egypt.
Henry P. Colburn, Archaeology of empire in Achaemenid Egypt. Edinburgh studies in ancient Persia. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2019. xix, 318 p.. ISBN9781474452366 £85.00.

Review by
Jan P. Stronk.

[The Table of Contents is listed below.]

This is said to be the first study of the material culture of Egypt during the period of Achaemenid Persian rule, and its goal is to challenge the common idea that Achaemenid rule of Egypt was either ephemeral and weak or oppressive and harsh. To achieve his goal, Colburn focuses on three main tasks, (1) to describe the intellectual foundations of our knowledge of the archaeology of the 27th dynasty; (2) to assemble a corpus of visual and material records from Egypt that can be dated with confidence to the 27th dynasty; (3) to use this corpus to characterize Achaemenid rule in Egypt.

Not mentioned in the review, but the Judean community on Elephantine Island flourished during the 27th dynasty. They left us an important corpus of Aramaic papyri.

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