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Nabataean Royal Propaganda: A Response To Herod And Augustus?

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Chapter Summary

Major developments and building activities took place within the Nabataean kingdom, mainly in the city of Petra during the reign of Herod and the period that immediately followed. Some of these elements, such as the layout of funerary complexes, details of interior decoration and specific elements of luxury architecture, find close parallels within Herodian buildings. When analysing these elements, it becomes evident that some interpretations of what can be considered Nabataean royal propaganda do depend on the exact status of the Nabataean kingdom in relation to Rome, i.e. the question whether at that time it was a client state or not. Several relief blocks with figural decoration suggest that events related to Octavians victory at Actium and the conquest of Egypt in 31/30 BC were prominently illustrated in the city centre of Petra.

Keywords: Actium; Augustus; Herod; Nabataean kingdom



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