Hans van Wees (University College London) will address the topic ‘Greek soldiers in Saite Egypt: myths and realities’.
Herodotus’ story of how Psammetichus I and the Saite dynasty came to power with the help of Greek hoplite mercenaries has generally been taken quite seriously by historians of ancient Greece and even by some historians of Late Period Egypt. Assyrian and Egyptian evidence shows, however, that this tale was little more than a myth, typical of how ancient Greeks tended to represent themselves as vastly superior in warfare to non-Greeks. This paper puts together textual and material evidence from Egypt, Assyria, and the Greek world to assess in more realistic terms what role Greek soldiers played in Saite history and what role overseas military service played in the economies and societies of archaic Greek city-states.
The lecture will be held on Zoom. Admission is free, please register here for the event: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/…/greek-soldiers-in-saite…