As strange it may seem, archaeologists have discovered a number of inscriptions praising Pharaoh Philip III Arrhidaeus and the crocodile god of the
Since Alexander the Great had not made any arrangements for his succession, the Macedonian army elected his half brother to be their new king. As we know, the succession of Alexander led to many years of lengthy bickering and fights among his generals, the Diadochi, turning into hopeless wars that lasted for nearly forty years.
Philip III Arrhidaeus was only king in name since he was retarded and hence unfit to rule Alexander’s huge empire. Not much literature or artwork is known and traces of his “rule” are scant.
Strangely enough, a relief showing the face of Pharaoh Philip III Arrhidaeus has been discovered at the unusual double
to both the god Sobek, god of fertility, and the falcon god Haroeris. The
archaeologists also found his name inscribed in hieroglyphs on a slab measuring
83 x temple
of Kom Ombo 55 cm.
Although the temple is resting on a much older structure, the remains we know today with its twin entrances and symmetrical layout was probably started by Ptolemy VI. The Ptolemy’s remained present over the centuries as we also find a fine relief of Ptolemy XII, the father of the famous Cleopatra VII.
Another trace of Philip III Arrhidaeus is to be found in the
of Amun at Karnak,
which beside a peristyle court of Thutmosis III contains a barque sanctuary filled by his granite naos. This may well
be the picture Olaf Kaper showed during his lecture in 2010 (see: Alexander the Great in Egypt. Lecture of
24 November 2010).
finally, proudly displays a joint dedication of Philip III Arrhidaeus and Alexander
IV. It was part of a marble Doric
building that carried the inscription “King
Philip [and] Alexander to the Great Gods”, a confirmation that both the son
of Alexander the Great and his half brother “officially” ruled on equal terms
(see: A Dedication of Philip III Arrhidaeus and Alexander IV). island
[Bottom picture: Sanctuary of Philip III from Egypt Museum]