OGIS: 54


Greek text:   OGIS_54
Date:   c. 246 B.C.
Tags:     elephants
Translated by:   E.R.Bevan

This inscription was seen and copied in the 6th century A.D. by the traveller Cosmas Indicopleustes, who quoted it in book 2 of his "Christian Topography" ( a translation of this book is available online at ). The inscription probably exaggerates the extent of Ptolemaios' conquests in the Third Syrian War; but it is difficult to know by how much, because of the lack of other reliable sources.

The Great King Ptolemaios, son of king Ptolemaios and queen Arsinoē, Gods Adelphoi, children of king Ptolemaios and queen Berenike, Saviour Gods, the descendant on the father's side of Herakles, son of Zeus, on the mother's side of Dionysos, son of Zeus, having inherited from his father the kingdom of Egypt and Libya and Syria and Phoenicia and Cyprus and Lycia and Caria and the Cyclades, set out on a campaign into Asia with infantry and cavalry forces and a naval armament and elephants both Troglodyte and Ethiopian, which his father and he himself first captured from these places and, bringing them to Egypt, trained them to military use. But having become master of all the country this side of the Euphrates and of Cilicia and Pamphylia and Ionia and the Hellespont and Thrace, and of all the military forces in these countries and of Indian elephants,and having made the local dynasts in all these regions his vassals, he crossed the river Euphrates, and having brought under him Mesopotamia and Babylonia and Susiana and Persis and Media, and all the rest as far as Bactria, and having sought out whatever sacred things had been carried off by the Persians from Egypt, and having brought them back with the other treasure from these countries, he sent his forces to Egypt through the canals that had been dug . . . { Cosmas says that the end of the inscription was damaged, but that only a small amount of text was missing }

inscription 55

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