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With extensive use of quotations from original source material, this book examines the political events in the Hellenistic world from Alexander's death until his incorporation in the Roman Empire. It also describes the different social systems of the peoples under Greek rule, important developments in literature, science and technology and the founding of new religious movements. The author has assimilated all pertinent recent scholarship in the field, and fashioned an obsorbing account of a vast and complex society whose ideas and achievements for the bedrock of present-day Western civilization.