April 24, 2012

Macedonian Kings 332-305 BC and Ancient Egyptian Pharaohs

Macedonian Kings
332-305 BC

  • Alexander the Great (Alexander III) - Meryamun Setepenre : 332-323 BC
  • Philip Arrhidaeus (Meryamun Setepenre) : 323-317 BC
  • Alexander IV (Haaibre Setepenamun) : 317-305 BC
Philip II, king of Macedon
When Philip II was assassinated in Macedonia in 336 BC, his 20-year-old son Alexander took up his father's intended attack on the crumbling Persian empire. Marching and fighting southwards over the next few years, and onwards through Asia Minor and the Levant, Alexander decisively defeated Darius III at Issus in 333 and entered Egypt in 332. Making his way to the oracle of Ammon in the Oasis of Siwa, he was hailed as the god's son, pharaoh incarnate. The Egyptians looked upon him as a divine being and saviour. At the mouth of the Nile he founded Alexandria, the first, and greatest, of the many cities that were to bear his name. Although his sojourn in Egypt was short, his influence was immense and lasting. On his orders restorations and repairs were carried out at the temples devastated in the Persian attack of 343. At Luxor temple the holy of holies was rebuilt and the best reliefs of Alexander in Egypt, carved on its outer walls, show him offering to Amun-Min. Egypt was now truly part of a much wider Mediterranean world of culture and religion, and could no longer hide within the sheltering cliffs of the Nile Valley.

From Egypt Alexander moved into Asia where, in an extraordinary series of campaigns, he overcame first Babylon and then Susa and Persepolis. Within just a few years he had extended his empire all the way to the Indus River. Alexander died of fever in Babylon in 323 BC and was succeeded by his half-witted half-brother Philip Arrhidaeus. Philip left a relief on the outside wall of the granite central shrine at Karnak, of the priests of Amun carrying the sacred barque of the god on their shoulders. He was murdered in 317. Alexander's posthumous son by his Persian wife Roxane, who became Alexander IV, was similarly despatched, together with his mother, in 311 BC by Cassander, now General of Europe. Although he was dead, Alexander IV is listed as nominally ruling from 317 to 305 BC, but it was Ptolemy son of Lagus who was the de facto king.

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