A History of the Ptolemaic Empire covers three centuries from the invasion of Egypt by Alexander the Great to the death of Cleopatra VII (320-30 BC). From their base in Egypt, the Ptolemies created the most powerful empire in the eastern Mediterranean, extending from the Great Syrte in Libya to Palestine, Syria, Cyprus and Asia Minor. From 200 BC the Ptolemies gradually lost their wider empire as a result of conflict within the growing power of Rome. This book is a comprehensive survey of the political history of the period. It shows how the Ptolemies developed the kingship ideals of the Egyptian Pharaohs to create a new ideal of Hellenistic monarchy. Hoelbl draws on both Greek and demotic texts and inscriptions, as well as archaeological data and the artistic record. There has been no general survey of Ptolemaic Egypt since J. P. Mahaffy's a century ago, and this book will be a basic resource for students of a period that is attracting increasing attention not least because of the wealth of evidence from papyrus finds in both Greek and demotic.