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Ptolemy, one of the seven somatophylakes (bodyguard companions), a general and possible half-brother of Alexander the Great was appointed satrap of Egypt after Alexander's death in 323 BC. In 305 BC, he declared himself Pharaoh Ptolemy I, later known as S?ter "Saviour". The Egyptians soon accepted the Ptolemies as the successors to the pharaohs of independent Egypt. Ptolemy's family ruled Egypt until the Roman conquest of 30 BC.
Dates in brackets represent the regnal dates of the Ptolemaic pharaohs. They frequently ruled jointly with their wives, who were often also their sisters, aunts or cousins. Several queens exercised regal authority. Of these, one of the last and most famous was Cleopatra ("Cleopatra VII Philopator", 51-30 BC), with her two brothers and her son serving as successive nominal co-rulers. Several systems exist for numbering the later rulers; the one used here is the one most widely employed by modern scholars.
Ptolemy II of Telmessos, grandson of Ptolemy Epigonos, flourished second half of 3rd century BC and first half of 2nd century BC
Ptolemy of Cyprus, king of Cyprus c. 80-58 BC, younger brother of Ptolemy XII Auletes
Continuing the tradition established by previous Egyptian dynasties, the Ptolemies engaged in inbreeding including sibling marriage, with many of the pharaohs being married to their siblings and often co-ruling with them. Ptolemy I and other early rulers of the dynasty were not married to their relatives, the childless marriage of siblings Ptolemy II and Arsinoe II being an exception. The first child-producing incestuous marriage in the Ptolemaic dynasty was that of Ptolemy IV and Arsinoe III, who were succeeded as co-pharaohs by their son Ptolemy V, born 210 BC. The most well-known Ptolemaic pharaoh, Cleopatra VII, was at different times married to and ruled with two of her brothers (Ptolemy XIII until 47 BC and then Ptolemy XIV until 44 BC), and their parents were likely siblings or possibly cousins as well.
Contemporaries describe a number of the Ptolemaic dynasty members as extremely obese, whilst sculptures and coins reveal prominent eyes and swollen necks. Familial Graves' disease could explain the swollen necks and eye prominence (exophthalmos), although this is unlikely to occur in the presence of morbid obesity. This is all likely due to inbreeding depression. In view of the familial nature of these findings, members of the Ptolemaic dynasty likely suffered from a multi-organ fibrotic condition such as Erdheim-Chester disease or a familial multifocal fibrosclerosis where thyroiditis, obesity and ocular proptosis may have all occurred concurrently.
^Jones, Prudence J. (2006). Cleopatra: A Sourcebook. University of Oklahoma Press. p. 14. ISBN9780806137414. They were members of the Ptolemaic dynasty of Macedonians, who ruled Egypt after the death of its conqueror, Alexander the Great.
^Pomeroy, Sarah B. (1990). Women in Hellenistic Egypt. Wayne State University Press. p. 16. while Ptolemaic Egypt was a monarchy with a Greek ruling class.
^Redford, Donald B., ed. (2000). The Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Egypt. Oxford University Press. Cleopatra VII was born to Ptolemy XII Auletes (80-57 BC, ruled 55-51 BC) and Cleopatra, both parents being Macedonian Greeks.
^Epiphanius of Salamis, however, puts the total number of years of the Ptolemaic dynasty at 306, presumably calculated from 306/5 BC to 1 AD. See: Epiphanius' Treatise on Weights and Measures - The Syriac Version (ed. James Elmer Dean), University of Chicago Press 1935, p. 28 (note 104). Compare On Weights and Measures.