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Axumis  

Robert G. Morkot

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
Axumis (mod. Aksum), from the 1st to the 7th cent. ce the eponymous capital of a kingdom of northern *Ethiopia which covered the modern provinces of Tigre and Eritrea. Through their port ... More

Babylon  

Amélie Kuhrt

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
The ruins of the city extend over several mounds in the vicinity of modern Hillah (c.80 km. (50 mi.) south of Baghdad); the most important are Babil, Kasr, Merkes, Homera. Babylon is attested as a ... More

Babylonia  

Amélie Kuhrt

Online publication date:
Mar 2016
Subject:
Near East
Babylonia, country in south Iraq, stretching from modern Baghdad to the Arab-Persian Gulf, drained by the *Euphrates and *Tigris rivers. Settlement (dependent on irrigation) is first attested in the ... More

Bactria  

Pierre Briant and Amélie Kuhrt

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Enormous region lying (roughly) between the *Oxus (Amu-Darya) to the north and the Hindu Kush to the south; the term occasionally also includes Sogdiana to the north (Tadjikistan/Uzbekistan). The ... More

Baetocaece  

Amélie Kuhrt

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
Baetocaece, sanctuary of *Zeus, inland from *Arados, perhaps a centre of healing (deduced from the *Semitic toponym Betocici = ‘house of ricin’). The cult is attested from the *Seleucid ... More

Barygaza  

Eric Herbert Warmington and Romila Thapar

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
Barygaza (Bhrigukaccha/Bharukaccha in Indian sources, earlier Broach, now Bharuch) near the mouth of the Narmada on the gulf of Cambay. The navigational use of the *monsoon winds, ... More

Belus  

Amélie Kuhrt

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
Belus (Βῆλος), Hellenized form of the Levantine god Baʼal and Babylonian Bel (both meaning ‘lord’). Baʼal is attested from the third millennium bce on at *Ebla and *Ugarit. In *Babylonia, Bel ... More

Berenice, lemma for several Ptolemaic cities  

Joyce Reynolds and Dorothy J. Thompson

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
The name of several Ptolemaic dynastic foundations. Among the best known are:(a) Berenice (mod. Benghazi), the westernmost Cyrenaican city, founded in the mid-3rd cent. bce (exact date and ... More

Berenice (1) I, wife of Ptolemy (1) I Soter  

Dorothy J. Thompson

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
Berenice (1) I, first mistress and then wife of *Ptolemy (1) I Soter, came to Egypt with her aunt Eurydice whom she supplanted as queen. By her first marriage (to Philippus, a Macedonian), she was ... More

Berenice (2), 'the Syrian', daughter of Ptolemy (1), wife of Antiochus (2), d. 246 BCE  

Friedrich M. Heichelheim and Susan Mary Sherwin-White

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
Berenice (2), ‘the Syrian’, daughter of *Ptolemy (1) II and *Arsinoë I (b. c.280 bce), was Ptolemy III's sister. *Antiochus (2) II married her after the ‘Second Syrian War’ (252). At Antiochus' death ... More

Berenice (3) II, wife of Ptolemy (1) III Euergetes  

Dorothy J. Thompson

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
Berenice (3) II, daughter of Magas of Cyrene and Apama II, was born c.273 bce. Following the murder that she initiated of her mother's candidate Demetrius, her marriage in 246 to *Ptolemy (1) III ... More

Beros(s)us, fl. 290 BCE  

Amélie Kuhrt

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East

Berytus  

Arnold Hugh Martin Jones, Henri Seyrig, Jean-François Salles, and J. F. Healey

Online publication date:
Mar 2016
Subject:
Near East
Berytus (mod. Beirut), a *Phoenician city mentioned in the letters of el-Amarna letters (14th cent. bce) and also attested in the Persian period. From *Antiochus (4) IV on it issued a ... More

Bisitun  

Heleen Sancisi-Weerdenburg and Amélie Kuhrt

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
Bisitun (mod. Behistun; Βαγίστανον ὄρος), (Ctesias in Diod. Sic. 2. 13. 1)), a cliff 30 km. (18 ½ mi.) east of Kermanshah, with a relief and a long trilingual inscription (*Elamite, ... More

Borsippa  

Amélie Kuhrt

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
Borsippa (mod. Birs Nimrud), c.20 km. (12 ½ mi.) SW of *Babylon, cult-centre of Nabu, god of wisdom. The 47-m.- (154-ft.-) high ruins of its temple-tower (ziggurat) have attracted ... More

Bostra  

J. F. Healey

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
Bostra (Semitic Buṣrā)was a commercial and administrative city of the *Nabataean kingdom at the northern end of the Wādī al-Sirḥān trade route. It was refounded by *Trajan as the capital of the ... More

Bubastis  

Dorothy J. Thompson

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
Bubastis, the local cat-goddess of Bubastis (mod. Tell Basta), also worshipped elsewhere in Egypt (see Hdt. 2. 60, 66–7). Analysis of Ptolemaic cat-mummies has shown that cats bred for dedication ... More

Busiris  

Dorothy J. Thompson

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Subject:
Near East
Busiris, a legendary Egyptian king, the eponym of Busiris in the Delta, who, according to Ionian tradition, habitually slaughtered foreigners entering Egypt at the altar of *Zeus. He was ... More

Byblos  

John Boardman, Jean-François Salles, and J. F. Healey

Online publication date:
Mar 2016
Subject:
Near East
Byblos (mod. Jubayl, Lebanon), a major port of Phoenicia, deriving much of its prosperity from the export of timber (see the Egyptian story of Wen-Amon, 11th cent. bce, though doubt is cast on this ... More

Byzantium  

Alexander John Graham and Stephen Mitchell

Online publication date:
Dec 2015
Byzantium, a famous city on the European side of the south end of the *Bosporus (1), between the Golden Horn and the *Propontis. The Greek city occupied only the eastern tip of the promontory, in the ... More

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