I just encountered a short and very positive review of my book written by Campbell Price for Ancient Egypt magazine. Thanks Campbell!
I refer, of course, to the Ever Given, the massive container ship which has been stuck in the Suez Canal since Tuesday (i.e. March 23). As I’m sure you all know, Darius I dug a canal from the Pelusiac branch of the Nile through the Wadi Tumilat to the Bitter Lakes, whence it turned south to meet the Gulf of Suez (Herodotus 2.158). In all fairness, nothing so large as the Ever Given could have sailed Darius’ canal. It was probably only deep enough to be navigable during the rainy season. But that didn’t stop Darius from making grandiose claims about the canal, in trilingual cuneiform and hieroglyphic inscriptions on the stelae he erected along it. For example:
King Darius proclaims: I am a Persian; from Persia, I seized Egypt. I ordered this canal to be dug, from a river called Nile, which flows in Egypt, to the sea which goes to Persia. So this canal was dug as I had ordered, and ships went from Egypt through this canal to Persia, as was my desire. (DZc; translation from A. Kuhrt, The Persian Empire, Routledge, 2007, pp. 485-6.)
Herodotus (1.143.1) says the Persians are landlubbers, but Darius seemed to have other ideas!