Last update 4-Jul-2004
A Contribution to the History of the Last Seleukids
|Originally published in Listy Filologické / Folia Philologica, Volume 51, 1924, pp. 214 - 227. Praha, Czech Republic (Czechoslovakia).|
|This copy is published with the kind permission of the journal Listy filologické / Folia Philologica, http://lf.clavmon.cz.|
Copy of the Original Article (in Czech)
|Download here (5.9 MB)|
Brief English Summary
This very brief summary was created by myself and in no case can it replace a translation of the complete text. I am fully responsible for all errors, inaccuracies and omissions.
|i.||To the half of the 19th century, there were only the following information sources concerning the last years of the Syrian independency after the defeat of Tigranes in 69 BC: Justin’s excerpts from Pompey Trogus, XL. 2; Appian, Syriake, 49 and 70; Mithr. 106; Emf. V. 10, 39 f. and the confused report of Porphyrios of Tyre (FHG III. 716 C. Müller) preserved in the Chronikon of Eusebios, I. 262 Schoehne (= Armenian translation p. 123 Karst.). For that reason, it was only known that Antiochos XIII was recognized as a king in 69 BC by Lucullus and he was accepted by the Syrians. Thereafter Antiochos XIII was deposed by Pompey under a pretence that he is too weak to protect the country from the Arabs and the Jews, because for 17 (14) years he was hidden in Kilikia during Tigranes’ reign. The events between years 69 BC and 64 BC were unknown.|
|ii.||C. Müller published the first excerpts from Diodoros in 1848.a This new source revealed a new Syrian king, Filippos (II), but it also brought some new confusions and chronological problems.|
|iii.||There exists a source which has been little used so far: The Chronicle of Joannes Malalas. Joannes Malalas was a native of Antioch on the Orontes. His chronicle was written in the first half of the 6th century AD,b but old municipal annals were the main source for the history of his hometown. These reliable annals begin in the year of the foundation of the city.c|
|iv.||Malalas writes towards the end of his book IX that during his second visit of Antioch in 15 BC, Agrippa ordered to remove the rubble of an old circus that had been damaged by an earthquake, and he attended games in this circus personally.d Malalas continues that a Roman Quintus Marcius Rex negotiated with the king Filippos Barypus in Antioch.e The text contains some errors of subsequent copyists,f nevertheless it seems to be indisputable that Quintus Marcius Rex is the correct name of this Roman.|
|v.||Three Roman high officials by the name of Q. Marcius Rex are known: 1. the praetor for the year 144 BC (the builder of the Roman aquaduct Aqua Marcia), 2. the consul for the year 118 BC (the founder of the colony Narbo Martius), 3. the consul for the year 68 BC. The first two men can be excluded because there is no information about their contacts with Syria and because there was no king Filippos in Antioch at their times. So, it remains to be the third Q. Marcius Rex, the consul for the year 68 BC.|
|Q. Marcius Rex was a consul for the year 68 BCg, he was appointed a proconsul of Kilikia in 67 BCh and he yielded vicegerency of Kilikia to Pompey in 66 BCi. It is more probable that he met Filippos as a vicegerent of Kilikia than as a special envoy sent to Syria from Rome. Thus we can conclude that the king Filippos Barypus reigned in Antioch in 67/6 BC.|
|vi.||The first member of the Seleukid family named Filippos was a son of Antiochos VIII Grypos and Cleopatra Tryphaina. He is first mentioned as a Syrian king in the first yearj or in the third yeark of the Olympiad 171, i.e. in 96/5 BC or 94/3 BC, and he began to reign in Antioch in c. 88 BC. However, no dated coins of his are known after 84/3 BCl and he is not mentioned in literary sources after this date with the exception of Porphyrios.m|
|Porphyrios (Eusebios) incorrectly identifies this Filippos, the son of Grypos, with the candidate for the throne of Egypt in 56 BC. This possibility can be excluded because of the following reasons:|
|It is sure that Diodoros’ Filippos and Malalas’ Filippos Barypus are the same person. The nickname Barypus (“heavy-footed”) seems to be authentic because other Seleukids and Lagids received uncomplimentary nicknames, too, for example: Auletes (Ptolemy XIII), Physcon (Ptolemy Euergetes II), Grypos (Antiochos VIII), Kybiosaktes (Seleukos the last), Hierax (Antiochos, the son of Antiochos II and Laodike) etc. However, it is noteworthy that the Slavonic version of Malalas’ Chronicle translates the Greek word βαρυπουν as “thick-footed”. This translation corresponds rather to the Greek παχυπουν. The word παχυπουν is better for a nickname than βαρυπουνt and, from the paleographic point of view, the exchange of βαρυπουν and παχυπουν means no serious problem. On the other hand, it cannot be excluded that only the Slavonic translator used the word “thick-footed” instead of the Greek “heavy-footed”.|
|vii.||By Malalas, Q. Marcius Rex demanded a monetary contribution from Filippos and he also improved the circus and Filippos’ palace. It is excluded that Marcius demanded a regular tax. If he had demanded a tax from Filippos, it would have meant the definite end of the Seleukid sovereignty. Moreover, taxes were only imposed by Pompey during the transformation of Syria into the Roman province in 64 BC. Thus it could have been an occasional contribution only, which was demanded by the Roman vicegerent from the allied king.|
|The year of the Marcius’ vicegerency of Kilikia was the time period of the maximum expansion of piracy in Mediterranean Sea. The danger was so great that Pompey received unprecedented military authority by the Gabinian law. One of the pirates’ victims was also P. Clodius Pulcher, the commander of Marcius’ fleet and his father-in-law, who was taken captive. In such situation, many states in the east Mediterranean bore expenses of the ransom.u There is an explicit record that Clodius asked Ptolemy Alexander, the king of Cyprus, for the ransom.v Thus it is very probable that Q. Marcius Rex also asked Filippos, the neighbour of his province and the Roman ally, for the contribution in the interest of his naval commander and father-in-law. Filippos probably demonstrated at least his good will because Marcius improved his palace.|
|viii.||The fact that Filippos Barypus reigned in Antioch in 67/6 BC allows us to specify the chronology of reign of Antiochos XIII. Antiochos XIII returned to Syria after the defeat of Tigranes and he was recognised as a king by Lucullus. Thereafter, he was replaced by Filippos in a consequence of an Antiochene uprising. Thus his first reign took about one year from 69/8 BC (the Battle of Tigranocerta took place on 6 October 69 BC) to 67 BC.|
|By Appian, Syr. 70, Antiochos XIII reigned only one year, while Pompey was busy elsewhere. This one-year reign mentioned by Appian cannot relate to the period of his first reign from 69/8 - 67 BC. It probably relates to the period of the Pompey’ stay in the East, i.e. to the period from 67 to 64 BC. The year 65 or 65/4 BC is the most probable period of the Antiochos’ second reign because of the following reasons|
|ix.||Pompey, during his eastern campaign, acted upon a principle that Lucullus’ edicts are not valid.x Therefore he also did not accept Lucullus’ recognition of Antiochos XIII as a king, and he kept a fiction that the last ruler of Syria was Tigranes, not Antiochos.y It might explain Justin’s information (XL, 2, 3) that Tigranes reigned Syria for 17 years. Indeed, the peace with Tigranes was concluded in 66 BC and the Battle of Tigranocerta took place in 69 BC. Thus if we subtract 17 years from the year 66 BC we get the same year as if we subtract 14 years mentioned by Appian (Syr. 48 and 70) from the year 69 BC.z|
|[p. 226, note 1]|
|x.||The reign of Filippos II belongs to the two-year period between the first and second reign of Antiochos XIII. The Malalas’ mention proves that he reigned Antioch in 67/6 BC. The Syrian throne was threatened both by the traditional capriciousness of Antiochene Syrian-Hellens and by the Arabs. Thus it is not sure if he still reigned in the next year. It is possible that when Clodius, after his release, went to Antioch to help in the fight with the Arabs, he already helped free citizens. On the other hand, it is possible that Clodius, as a well-known machinator, caused Filippos’ dethronement. It is only sure that Antiochos XIII was the only applicant for the Selukos’ heritage when Pompey was making a decision about it in 64 BC. There is no mention about Filippos II up to 56 BC, when his expectation of the Egyptian throne was blighted by Gabinius. He was the last male descendant of the glorious Seleukid family line.|
a Fragmenta historicorum graecorum II. Parisiis 1848, pp. XXIV - XXVI (exc. XXXIV) = Diodori bibliotheca historica rec. L. Dindorf V. Lipsiae 1868 XL. Equivalent source: Excerpta historica iussu imp. Constantini Porphyrogeniti confecta III. Excerpta de insidiis ed. Car. de Boor. Berolini 1905, p. 210 f. (Diod. 52 and 53).
b K. Krumbacher, Gesch. d. byzant. Litteratur. München 1897, p. 325 f.; Curt Wachsmuth, Einleitung in das Studium der alten Geschichte. Leipzig 1895, p. 191 f.; Milos Weingart, Byzantské kroniky v literature církevneslovanske I (Spisy filos. fak. univ. Komenského v Bratislave II). Bratislava 1922, p. 18 f. (Milos Weingart, Byzantine Annals in Ecclesiastical Slavonic Literature. Publications of Faculty of Philosophy of Comenius University in Bratislava II. Bratislava 1922, p. 18 f.).
c Rich. Förster, Antiochia am Orontes. Jahrbuch des Kais. deutschen archäol. Instituts XII (1897), p. 105. See also Wilh. Weber, Josephus und Vespasian. Berlin-Stuttgart-Leipzig 1921, p. 277 and note 3.
d His visit is confirmed also by Jos. Flavius, Arch. XVI. 13-15 and 55 f., and Filon, Πρεσβ. προς Γαιον 294-297 (VI. 209 ed. Sig. Reiter. Berolini 1915). See also J. Dobias, Dejiny rímské provincie syrské I., p. 291 f. and 317 (J. Dobias, History of the Roman Province Syria, Vol. I, p. 291 f. and 317).
e Ioannis Malalae Chronographia ex recens. Lud. Dindorfii (Corpus scriptorum Historiae byzantinae). Bonnae 1831, p. 225, rows 7-11 = Patrologia graeca tom. XCVII. 350.
f It was also commented by Edmund Chilmead in Joannis Antiocheni cognomento Malalae Historia Chronica. Oxonii 1691, p. 291. The Ecclesiastical Slavonic unshortened translation is also very important for the reconstruction of the original text: V. M. Istrin, Chronika Joanna Malaly v slavjanskom perevode. Knigi vosmaja i devjataja. Sbornik otdelenija russkago jazyka i slovesnosti Imp. akademii nauk. Tom LXXXIX, No. 7. S.-Peterburg 1912 (V. M. Istrin, The Slavonic Translation of the Chronicle of Joannes Malalas. Book 8 and 9. Anthology of the Department of Russian Language and Literature of the Imperial Academy of Science. Volume LXXXIX, No. 7. S.-Peterburg 1912.).
g Th. Mommsen, CIL I. 1, p. 156 f. Cassius Dio XXXVI. 4, 1 (see also 15, 1) can be added to the sources cited in CIL.
h Sallustius, Hist. V. 14 in Priscian, Inst. XVIII 41 (Gram. lat. III. 1, p. 225 Hertz); Cassius Dio XXXVI. 15, 1; 17, 2.
i Cassius Dio XXXVI. 42, 3-43, 1. See also 48, 2.
j Eusebios, Chron. in Armenian translation (Die griech. christl. Schriftsteller der ersten drei Jahrhunderte. Eusebius Werke V. Die Chronik aus dem Armenischen übersetzt von Jos. Karst Leipzig 1911), p. 123, row 23.
k Porphyrios in Eusebios I. 262 Schoene = FHG III. 715, 26.
l E. T. Newell, The Seleucid Mint of Antioch. American Journal of Numismatic LI (1917) and The pre-imperial coinage of Roman Antioch. Numismatic Chronicle IV. Series XIX (1919), p. 69 f.
m Eusebios I. 262 Schoene = FHG III. 716, 27. Arm. translation 123 f. and 262 Karst.
n A. Bouché-Leclerq, Séleucides I. 395 f., I. 404, II. 631 and II. 632.
o Porfyrios (FHG III. 715, 25) in Eusebios I. 262, row 1 f. Schoene, Arm. translation 123, row 13 f. Karst.
p Jos. Flavius, Arch. XIII. 370.
q Image in A. Bouché-Leclerq II., table IV, No. 56. A. Bouché-Leclerq II. 663, description of E. Babelon’s coin.
r Car. Müller, FHG II., p. XXV.
s Fragmenta historicorum graecorum II. Parisiis 1848, pp. XXIV - XXVI (exc. XXXIV) = Diodori bibliotheca historica rec. L. Dindorf V. Lipsiae 1868 XL. Equivalent source: Excerpta historica iussu imp. Constantini Porphyrogeniti confecta III. Excerpta de insidiis ed. Car. de Boor. Berolini 1905, p. 210 f. (Diod. 52 and 53).
t παχυπουν: Scriptores physiognomici graeci et lat. rec. Rich. Foerster I. 413. βαρυπουν: Anthol. Plan. IV. 104.
u W. Drumann - P. Groebe, Geschichte Roms II. 174.
v Ptolemy was not very willing to help. Strabo XIV. 6, 6; Appian, Emf. II. 23, 85; Cassius Dio XXXVIII. 30, 5. See also Victor Chapot, Les Romains et Cypre. Mélanges Cagnat. Paris 1912, p. 65 f.
w Wilcken, Antiochos XIII in R.-E. I. 2 (1891), cols. 2486 f.; Bevan II. 267, note 2; A. Bouché-Leclerq, Séleucides I. 441 f.; Stähelin, Sampsigeramos 1 in R.-E. Zweite Reihe I. 2 (1920), cols. 2226 f.
x Plutarch, Lucullus 36; Pomp. 31 and 38.
y Livy per. CI; Eutropius VI. 13; Velleius Pat. II. 37, 5; Pomp. Trogus prol. XL; Appian, Mithr. 105 f.; Cassius Dio XXXVI. 53, 2.
z See also H. F. Clinton, Fasti Hellenici III. Oxford 1830, p. 310; Th. Reinach, Mithradates Eupator, König von Pontos (translated by A. Goetz), p. 308, note 5.