Late Period and Persian Rule of Ancient Egypt

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Around 653 BC, the Late Period of Ancient Egypt started. Egypt was unified at the time and ruled by Egyptians. This, however, was short-lived. After being conquered by the Persians in 525 BC, Egypt entered its Achaemenid Period.

What dynasties ruled during the Late Period?

In the Late Period, Egypt’s Twenty-Sixth Dynasty ruled for 125 years. Because the capital city was called Sais, this dynasty is occasionally referred to as the Saite Period. The Persian conquest of Egypt marked the start of the Twenty-Seventh Dynasty.

Four short-lived dynasties (the Twenty-Eighth to the Thirty-First) ruled Egypt in the years before to the arrival of the Greeks.

Egypt Reunites

The Third Intermediate Period saw the division of Egypt. Egypt came together to repel foreign invaders as a result of the Assyrian invasion. Egypt came together under Pharaoh Psamtik II, and the Late Period got underway.

Psamtik II and later Twenty-Sixth Dynasty rulers aimed to restore Egypt to its previous splendor. Many of the ancient customs were revived, including the construction of impressive temples and monuments to the gods and pharaohs. They also repelled attacks from the Babylonians, a brand-new foreign foe.

The Persians Invade

King Cambyses II of the Persian Empire invaded Egypt in 525 BC. At the Battle of Pelusium, they decisively defeated the Egyptian army and seized control of Egypt.

Egypt’s Rule by Persia

The Persian Empire was the biggest empire in the world when it overthrew Egypt. After that, Egypt joined the Persian Empire as a “satrapy” (similar to a province). The Twenty-Seventh Dynasty came to be recognized as the satrapy’s rulers. For one hundred years, Persia ruled over Egypt.

Under the leadership of the Persian King Darius I, Egypt flourished. Darius constructed temples and presented himself to Egypt as a pharaoh. Later Persian kings, like Xerxes, treated Egypt severely, sparking uprising and much internal strife.

Invasion by Alexander the Great

Alexander the Great’s invasion in 332 BC put an end to Persian hegemony. With his victory over the Persians, Alexander integrated Egypt into his huge kingdom. Ptolemy I Soter, a Greek ruler, created the Ptolemaic Dynasty in Egypt when Alexander the Great died.

Facts About Persian Rule and the Late Period

The Red Sea and the Nile River would have been connected via a canal built by Pharaoh Neko II.

To aid in driving the Assyrians out of Egypt, Psamtik II joined with the Greeks.

The culture of Egypt was influenced by a variety of peoples and cultures from the Mediterranean region throughout this time. In Egypt, villages were established by immigrants from Palestine, Phoenicia, and Greece.

The Achaemenid Empire is another name for the Persian Empire.

One of Alexander the Great’s senior generals was Ptolemy I Soter.

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