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Berenike and the Ancient Maritime Spice Route$
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Steven Sidebotham

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780520244306

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520244306.001.0001

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Ptolemaic and Early Roman Berenike and Environs

Ptolemaic and Early Roman Berenike and Environs

(p.55) 5 Ptolemaic and Early Roman Berenike and Environs
Berenike and the Ancient Maritime Spice Route

Steven E. Sidebotham

University of California Press

Excavations at Berenike revealed something about the size, layout, and building methods and materials used to create the port's infrastructure and how these changed over the life of the city. The architecture and materials used to construct Berenike must have been partially a reflection of the ethnic building conventions of the residents. The only other early Roman structures discovered at Berenike, aside from walls associated with the courtyard of the Serapis temple, and the Ptolemaic and perhaps early Roman harbor works south of the Ptolemaic industrial area, are two seawalls at the eastern edge of the site. It is not clear why the major unfortified settlements and cemeteries in the environs of Berenike are late Roman in date whereas the ten forts/praesidia ringing the city from the hilltop fort at Shenshef southwest of the emporium to that in Wadi Lahma/Lahami northwest of the port are overwhelmingly of early Roman foundation.

Keywords:   Berenike, architecture, materials, Serapis temple, seawalls, harbor works, praesidia

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