The International Journal of the History of Sport vol:26 issue:2 pages:246-271
In the third century BC, Ptolemaic Egypt was very successful on the Greek sports circuit. This essay analyses the prominent position of Egyptian competitors – that is, residents of Ptolemaic Egypt competing for a traditional Greek city or for Alexandria – both in equestrian and athletic events. Their achievements were no coincidence: sport was actively promoted by the Ptolemies, through the construction of sports infrastructure, ﬁnancial help for promising athletes and the introduction of Greek games in Egypt. The publicity of their success was directed towards the Greek world. The aim of this Ptolemaic focus on sports was to create an ‘image of power’ and to stress the Greek identity of the Ptolemies.