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Ancient World Seminar: Rolf Strootman (Utrecht), "The World of Satraps. Court Culture and Connectivity in the Achaemenid Aegean"

Wanneer:ma 18-06-2018 16:15 - 17:30
Waar:Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies (Oude Boteringestraat 38), Court Room
Lecture Ralf Strootman
Lecture Ralf Strootman


The entangled world of satraps and local rulers in Asia Minor under the Persian Empire has been rightly described as a West Achaemenid koinÄ“. Also the kingdom of Macedonia, a former Achaemenid satellite state, participated in this world of interconnected, competing courts. This is shown by the adoption of aristocratic practices and the accompanying art forms that reflected the tastes of royal courts in Karia and Lykia (in particular specific forms of hunting and ritualized feasting). There was in the fourth century moreover far more entanglement between the poleis and these courts than simplistic models of Greek ‘influence’ on the ‘East’ (or vice versa) suggest. How were Karians, Lykians, Persians, Greeks, Macedonians and others in the late Achaemenid Aegean connected and why did they develop elite cultures that were each so distinct from each other and yet so very much the same?

About the speaker

Rolf Strootman is senior lecturer in ancient history at Utrecht University, the Netherlands. He studied history and archaeology at the University of Leiden and received his PhD for a study of dynastic courts in the Hellenistic empires. He is the author of two monographs and various articles on imperialism and court culture in the Near East and Iran, particularly in the Hellenistic period. With M. J. Versluys he edited the recent volume Persianism in Antiquity (2017). The current lecture is based on his latest research project, “Iranians in the Hellenistic World”, carried out at the Getty Research Institute in Los Angeles