This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (September 2017) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
Ptolemy Apion or simply known as Apion (Ancient Greek: Πτολεμαῖος Ἀπίων, between 150 BC and 145 BC – 96 BC) was the last Greek King of Cyrene and was a member of the Ptolemaic dynasty. Ptolemy was Greek and native Egyptian in descent. His second name Apion is a name of ancient Egyptian origin and could be a name from his maternal ancestry.
Ptolemy was the son of Egyptian Greek prince, Cyrenaean King and future Pharaoh of Egypt Ptolemy VIII Physcon and his third wife, Eirene (Irene). Ptolemy’s paternal uncle was the Egyptian Greek Pharaoh Ptolemy VI Philometor and his paternal aunt was the Egyptian Greek princess and queen Cleopatra II of Egypt. His paternal grandparents were Egyptian Greek Pharaoh Ptolemy V Epiphanes and Egyptian Greek Queen Cleopatra I of Egypt, who was a Greek princess of the Seleucid Empire.
Ptolemy's mother, Eirene (Irene), a native Egyptian, may actually have been named Ithaca, according to the Roman Jewish historian Josephus. Little is known of Eirene's origins, apart from the fact she came from Cyrenaica. She was a mistress of Physcon's and was among his concubines. Eirene served as Physcon's mistress from 150 BC til 127 BC. Eirene accompanied Physcon in 145 BC to Egypt when he became pharaoh and succeeded his brother Ptolemy VI.
Ptolemy was most probably born in Cyrene, the capital of Cyrenaica, but was raised and educated in his father's court in Egypt. Until 116 BC, he most probably lived in Egypt. Ptolemy never held a royal Egyptian title. In 116 BC, Ptolemy's father had died. From Physcon's will, Ptolemy inherited Cyrenaica and, in that year, ascended the throne without any political opposition.
Little is recorded of Ptolemy's reign of Cyrenaica. Ptolemy died in 96 BC and he implemented the terms of his father's will for Cyrenaica. He never married and had no heirs. In Ptolemy's will, he left Cyrenaica and his ancestral royal estates to the rule of the Roman Republic. Physcon had planned this for Cyrenaica after Ptolemy’s death.
Ptolemy's ancestral estates were occupied by locals in the 1st century. The occupiers of the estates needed assistance from the Roman Emperor, Nero, to legalise the land title through their occupations, thereby vesting ownership in them.