Of the period during which Greek civilization dominated the Eurasian continent and North Africa. This period is distinguished from the Classical Greek era a century earlier by the decline of influence and the emergence of smaller empires within the Hellenic sphere of influence. At the death of Alexander the Great in 323 BCE, Ptolemy I Soter rose to power in Egypt and under his dynasty, which ruled for most of the next three centuries from what is now Sudan all the way to Syria, Πτολεμαϊκὴ βασιλεία – Ptolemaic Egypt – flourished as the center of learning and wealth, departing from the Classical centers of Athens and Thebes.

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