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Ancient Egypt
1. Introduction
2. People
3. Life styles
4. Culture
5. Education and Science
6. Society
7. Economy
8. Government
9. Cities and Villages
10. Language
11. Religion
12. Kings / periods
13. History
14. Map

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Open map of Ancient EgyptAncient Egypt / Late Period /
27th Dynasty

Years BCE
Cambyses 525-522
Darius 1 522-486
Xerxes 1 486-465
Artaxerxes 1 465-424
Darius 2 424-404
Aryandes 525-518 or 512
? ?
Pharandates 490's
Achaemenes ca. 486-ca. 460
? ?
Arsames 420's

Dynasty of Ancient Egypt 525-404 BCE, 121 years, consisting of 5 kings, belonging to the Late Period.
In reality, Egypt was in this period a province under the Persian Achaemenid Dynasty, and the king list is identical to Persia's for this period.
Egypt was governed by a satrap, who resided in Memphis. Satraps and officials were appointed from the Persian and Babylonian elites.
Aryandes appear to have been the first satrap, no clear information tells for how long. The next known satrap was Achaemenes, but according to some reconstructions there was a period of 25-30 years of obscurity between their offices.
This period begins with the defeat of the Egyptians in the Nile Delta in 525, in which the Egyptian king, Psametik 3, was captured and brought to the Persian capital, Susa. Egypt became the 6th satrapy, a region to which Cyprus and Phoenicia also belonged.
Sources differ much about how Egypt was subdued. Contemporary sources tell that the takeover of Egypt was done in a respectful manner, but possibly because the Persian king, Cambyses, had the financial situation of the temples worsened, he would later be presented as a brutal ruler.
When Darius 1 became king in 522, he made efforts to keep good relations with the Egyptian elite, especially the religious elite. Darius saw to a new law system being established for Egypt; the creation for which the Egyptian elite participated in. Darius completed the navigable waterway from the Nile to the Red Sea, that Neko 2 had begun building around 600.
Persian successes and failures outside Egypt came to have great impact on Egypt. When the Persians were defeated by the Athenians at Marathon in 490 BCE, this would be part of the inspiration of the great revolt four yeares later, together with the death of Darius 1. The revolt would, however, soon be suppressed by the Persians, and the the Persian revenge was severe: Xerxes 1 reduced Egypt's status within the Persian empire, an intended insulted to Egyptian national pride, making his name deeply hated.
A second revolt came about ca. 460, partly ignited by the death of Xerxes 1 some years before. Inaros, a Libyan chief led the revolt, and received aid from Athens. This too was crushed, and Inaros was crucified by the Persians in 454.
The period that followed the last revolt was a difficult one for Egypt, it appears that the Persians did little to develop the country for about 50 years. This is well attested by virtually no monument having survived from these years.
Eventually, towards the end of the 5th century, Egyptian discontent had grown strong, and Persian control had weakened. With Darius 2's death in 404, a revolt was led by Amyrtaeus brought Egypt back its independence. Amyrtaeus would become the only king of Egypt's shortest dynasty, the 28th.

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By Tore Kjeilen