Law and Order in Ancient Egypt. The Development of Criminal Justice from the Pharaonic New Kingdom until the Roman Dominate

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Law and Order in Ancient Egypt. The Development of Criminal Justice from the Pharaonic New Kingdom until the Roman Dominate

Type: Master thesis
Title: Law and Order in Ancient Egypt. The Development of Criminal Justice from the Pharaonic New Kingdom until the Roman Dominate
Author: Loon, A.J. van
Issue Date: 2014-12-24
Keywords: Law
Justice
Crime
Punishment
Law Enforcement
Criminal Justice
Pharaonic Egypt
New Kingdom
Ptolemaic Egypt
Roman Egypt
Abstract: In one way or another, the civilizations who ruled over Egypt in antiquity could all boast a close connection to the concepts of 'law' and 'justice'. Balance, justice, and order - all personified by the goddess Ma'at - were the cornerstones of Ancient Egyptian religion and society. The Greek Ptolemies, who ruled over Egypt between 323 and 30 BC, would become famous for their advanced and intricate bureacracy, which also featured a highly effective law enforcement system. The Romans, more than any, prided themselves on their laws, which remain influential in modern societies to this day. This thesis sets out to discover the manner in which criminal justice in Egypt developed from the times of the New Kingdom, through the Ptolemaic era, and under Roman rule. Not only for the abovementioned anecdotal reasons, but also because the capability to deal with crime and to maintain order can serve as an indicator for a successful administration in general. Because criminal law forms an integral part of a legal system as a whole, which, in turn, is inseparable from the general administrative system of a country, all of these will be taken into account. The following questions will be answered in this thesis: how were the various legal and administrative systems organized?; which actions were considered to be crimes by the Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans?; who possessed the legal authority to deal with these matters?; and in what manner were criminal transgressions dealt with in practice? In the end, the aim is to not only find out how criminal justice developed in the course of nearly two millennia, but also to offer an explanation as to why these developments took their specific course.
Supervisor: Naerebout, F.G.
Faculty: Faculty of Humanities
Department: History (Master)
Specialisation: Ancient History (Master)
ECTS Credits: 30
Handle: http://hdl.handle.net/1887/30196
 

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