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Encyclopedia > Naucratis

Naucratis (nŏk´retĬs), was an ancient city of Egypt, on the Canopic branch of the Nile, 45 mi (72 km) SE of Alexandria. It was probably given to Greek colonists from Miletus by Psamtik in the 7th century BC and was the first Greek settlement in Egypt.


The rise of Alexandria and the shifting of the Nile led to its decline. The site has been excavated, revealing pottery of a Greek type and ruins of Greek temples.


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Naucratis (360 words)
The city of Naucratis, although an insignificant village on the Canopic mouth of the Nile in the western Delta, was designated as the only port at which Greeks could land goods, or carry on business.
Using Naucratis as an example of what could and should be done, he chose a larger site which became Alexandria.
Naucratis of course slid into the waste-basket of history.
Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2001.09.40 (8802 words)
places the foundation of Naucratis in the context of the growth of trade and colonization by the East Greeks in the late seventh century and compares it with the foundation of Gravisca in Etruria But where the Etruscans were receptive to Greek influences, the Egyptians were firmly attached to their own traditions.
Naucratis thus functioned as a "port of trade" as defined by K. Polanyi, a point of contact between two different types of economies (55-7).
The problem with this view was that macro-economic issues were conceived in microeconomic terms: the ancient Greeks were incapable of achieving a global perspective, of developing a clear conception of the hierarchical relations between the action of the states and its effects on individuals.
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