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Please note that Mommsen uses the AUC chronology (Ab Urbe Condita), i.e. from the founding of the City of Rome. You can use this reference table to have the B.C. dates


III. From the Union of Italy to the Subjugation of Carthage and the Greek States

From: The History of Rome, by Theodor Mommsen
Translated with the sanction of the author by William Purdie Dickson

The History of Old Rome

Chapter VIII - The Eastern States and the Second Macedonian War


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In marked contrast to Asia, Egypt formed a consolidated and united state, in which the intelligent statecraft of the first Lagidae, skilfully availing itself of ancient national and religious precedent, had established a completely absolute cabinet government, and in which even the worst misrule failed to provoke any attempt either at emancipation or disruption.

Very different from the Macedonians, whose national attachment to royalty was based upon their personal dignity and was its political expression, the rural population in Egypt was wholly passive; the capital on the other hand was everything, and that capital was a dependency of the court. The remissness and indolence of its rulers, accordingly, paralyzed the state in Egypt still more than in Macedonia and in Asia; while on the other hand when wielded by men, like the first Ptolemy and Ptolemy Euergetes, such a state machine proved itself extremely useful.

It was one of the peculiar advantages of Egypt as compared with its two great rivals, that its policy did not grasp at shadows, but pursued clear and attainable objects. Macedonia, the home of Alexander, and Asia, the land where he had established his throne, never ceased to regard themselves as direct continuations of the Alexandrine monarchy and more or less loudly asserted their claim to represent it at least, if not to restore it.

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