Ptolemy VIII Euergetes II was a king of the Ptolemaic dynasty in Egypt. His complicated political career started in 170 BC. He played a divisive role in trying to win the kingship, making himself subservient to Rome and encouraging Roman interference in Egypt.
He became co-ruler of Egypt at age 12 in 170 BCE, but six years later tried to claim sole rule for himself by expelling his older brother & sister.
Around 117 an expedition sponsored by Ptolemy completed the first sea voyage to India via the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean, beginning Egypt’s interest in the spice trade. The reign of Ptolemy VIII has been referred to as a disaster in every way, and Ptolemy VIII has often been called a tyrant and repulsive.
Depicted here is silver Tetradrachm issued during his reign from Kition mint. The obverse of a coin depicted the ‘Diademed head of Ptolemy I right, wearing aegis. On the other hand, the reverse of a coin has Eagle standing left on thunderbolt.
Image Source: Heritage Auction
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