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Interpreting Herodotus$
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Thomas Harrison and Elizabeth Irwin

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780198803614

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198803614.001.0001

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Dogs That Do Not (Always) Bark

Dogs That Do Not (Always) Bark

Herodotus on Persian Egypt

Chapter:
(p.99) 5 Dogs That Do Not (Always) Bark
Source:
Interpreting Herodotus
Author(s):

Christopher Tuplin

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198803614.003.0005

The chapter collects and discusses the historical information provided by Herodotus about Egypt between the Persian conquest and his own time. Egypt attracts more post-conquest attention than Lydia or Babylonia, but it is still very modest: it mostly comes through histoire événementielle and lacunae; lack of system abounds, allusions can be tantalizing, misrepresentation is not absent, and some of the omissions (notably the revolt of 522 or fate of the Saite kings’ Greco-Carian mercenaries) seem decidedly peculiar. The mixture of surprises and silences does not suggest that Herodotus is consciously expressing a coherent judgement about Persian rule of the country, but there is a thematic interest in custom, continuity, and discontinuity.

Keywords:   Persian Egypt, Cambyses, Darius, Aryandes, revolt, mercenaries, customary behaviour, historiographical selectivity

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