FAQ

Glossary

  • Arsinoe
      • One of the names used by the women of the Ptolemaic Dynasty
      • Pronounced like the words: arson-away
  • BCE
      • Before the Common Era
      • In the past, dates were given in BC or AD format. Most historians now use the more universal BCE (BC) and CE (AD) dating system
      • Although the names are different, the date ranges remain the same. Example: Cleopatra was born in 69 BC. Cleopatra was born in 69 BCE
  • Berenice
      • One of the names used by the women of the Ptolemaic Dynasty
      • Unlike the modern pronunciation, the Ptolemaic name is pronounced like the words: barren-icy
  • Bruchion
      • The royal district of Alexandria which included Cape Lochias, the Museion, and the Library of Alexandria
  • Caesarion
      • Literally meaning “little caesar,” it was the nickname given to Cleopatra and Julius Caesar’s son, Ptolemy XV Caesar
  • CE
      • In the Common Era
      • In the past, dates were given in BC or AD format. Most historians now use the more universal BCE (BC) and CE (AD) dating system
      • Although the names are different, the date ranges remain the same. Example: Ptolemy of Mauretania died in AD 40. Ptolemy of Mauretania died in 40 CE
  • Cleopatra
      • One of the names used by the women of the Ptolemaic Dynasty
      • Literally means “Glory to her ancestors” or “Glory to her father”
  • Co-Regent
      • Also referred to as a joint-monarch or co-ruler, a co-regent is an individual (usually of royal birth) that officially shares the role of ruling a kingdom
  • Deification
      • It was not unusual to occasionally honor great leaders through worship complete with temples, cults, and ceremonies
      • Deification typically occurred after death and the deceased became a new god in the cultural mythology
  • Hellenistic
      • Greek culture between the time of Alexander the Great and Cleopatra VII
      • The Hellenistic World refers to the area of the Mediterranean where Greek culture was prevalent
  • Julia
      • An ancient and respected patrician family in  Rome to which Julius Caesar was born
  • Lochias
      • The peninsula in Alexandria on which many of the Ptolemaic palaces were built
      • Most of Cape Lochias sank into the Mediterranean Sea during an earthquake centuries after Ptolemaic rule
  • Museion
      • A large academic institution founded by either Ptolemy I or Ptolemy II which housed more than 1,000 scholars at a given time
      • Scholars did not pay rent or taxes when living in the Museion; they were supported by the royal family to further their studies through extensive research and experimentation
      • In return for their housing and access to the library, the royal family could call on the scholars as advisors and as references to any information which was required
  • Pharos
      • The name of the first lighthouse ever built; often referred to as the Lighthouse of Alexandria
      • The Pharos took its name from the island on which it was built, Pharos Island
  • Ptolemaic Dynasty
      • The name given to Cleopatra’s family, stemming from its founder, Ptolemy I
      • Both the men and women of the family are collectively referred to as the Ptolemies
      • They are sometimes called the Lagid Dynasty or the Lagids from the name of Ptolemy I’s father, Lagus
      • The “P” in Ptolemaic, Ptolemies, and Ptolemy is silent.
  • Ptolemy
      • The first name of all the kings in the Ptolemaic Dynasty
      • In ancient times, the royal first names were followed by a second name to distinguish between individuals e.g. Ptolemy Soter, Ptolemy Philadelphus, etc
      • Because these second names were often duplicates, modern historians have attributed Roman numerals to the Ptolemaic kings and queens instead e.g. Ptolemy XII, Cleopatra VII, etc
      • The “P” in Ptolemy is silent
  • Serapis
      • The deity invented by the Ptolemies and eventually worshiped throughout the Mediterranean

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