Seleukid history according to the Chronika of Porphyrios of Tyre (AD 232/3-305) preserved in the Chronikon (1.40) of Eusebios of Caesarea (AD 260-340)
Translated by Oliver D. Hoover © 2003

The Kings of Asia and Syria after Alexander the Great

1. When Philip (III) Arrhidaios completed the sixth year of his kingship in the third year of the 115th Olympiad (318 BC) Antigonos I was king of Asia and ruled for 18 years, having lived 86 years in all. He then became the most feared of all the kings and died in Phrygia, being attacked on account of the fear that all the dynasts had for him in the fourth year of the 119th Olympiad (301 BC).

2. His son, Demetrios (I), having fled to Ephesos, was saved.  When he was deprived of the whole of Asia he seemed to be a king most skilled of all in siegecraft, on account of which he was called Poliorketes (“Besieger”).  He was king for 17 years.  Seleukos (I), capturing Demetrios Poliorketes in Kilikia, commanded that he be held in royal condition, bringing the kingdom of Asia under his power until his death.

4.  Ptolemy I the son of Lagos was the king of Egypt after Alexander for 40 years.  Coming to Old Gaza he joined in battle with Demetrios the son of Antigonos and being victorious he gave Seleukos (I) the kingdom of Syria and adjacent regions. But Seleukos went as far as Babylonia and holding power over the barbarians he was king for 32 years.  On account of this he was called Nikanor (“Conqueror”).

15. This Demetrios (I), who had been given as a hostage to Rome by his father, Seleukos (IV), escaping to Phoenician Tripolis arrived in * days.  Coming against them, he killed both Lysias the tutor of the boy Antiochos (V) and this Antiochos, unexpectedly destroying such great power in a few days.  After this Ptolemy (VI) allied himself with Alexander (I) by means of foreign mercenaries and Attalos (II) the king of Pergamon by landing him [i.e. in Syria].  Demetrios died while opposing him [Alexander] in the 12th year of his kingship, and Alexander held power over Syria for 5 years while he was obedient [i.e. to Ptolemy] and when he made war against Ptolemy (VI) on account of Antioch, he [Ptolemy] invited Demetrios (II) to be king of Syria.  But Ptolemy fell and not much later died.

17.  When this Alexander (I) who was put forth as a son of Antiochos (IV) Epiphanes fell in the battle against Ptolemy (VI), the kingdom of Syria was divided between Demetrios (II) the son of Demetrios (I) coming from Seleukeia [in Pieria] and Antiochos (VI) the son of Alexander (I) coming from Syria and Antioch.  But Demetrios (II) the son of Demetrios (I), having defeated him quickly, held the kingdom for three years.  Thus he was called Nikanor (“Conqueror”). While campaigning against Arsakes [Mithridates II] in Babylon he was captured by Arsakes and having been taken up to Parthia and placed in fetters he was guarded.  Thus he was later called Siderites (“Fettered”).

18. **guarded the prisoner royally.

19. He was to Antiochos ** and Antiochos, the younger son of this Seleukos, who was in Kyzikos being tutored by the eunuch Krateros out of fear of Demetrios (II).  Because of this he was called Kyzikenos.

20.  Therefore, Demetrios (II), having been set free by Arsakes [Phraates II], as he had asked, became king upon his return.  But Ptolemy (VII), having been irritated that Demetrios (II) was attacking Pelousion and seeing as he [Ptolemy VII] held the kingdom of Egypt, made Alexander (II) the king of Asia, as a son of Alexander (I), who, because he was thought to be the market slave of Ptolemy (VII), was called Zabinas by the Syrians.  After a battle took place around Damascus, the defeated Demetrios fled to Tyre, but being prevented [i.e. from entering the city] he came upon evil.  After embarking on a ship he was slain, having been king for three years before his captivity and four years after his return.

21.  His son Seleukos succeeded Demetrios, but was immediately killed by the plotting of his mother.  Antiochos (VIII) his younger brother took over the kingdom in the second year of the 164th Olympiad  (123/2 BC) and in the third year (122/1 BC) conquered Zabinas.  Not enduring the defeat, he killed himself with poison.  He was king for 11 years, until the fourth year of the 166th Olympiad (113/12 BC).  For the period of the reign of the brother of this Seleukos is reckoned to this [year]. He was called Grypos (“Hooked Nose”) and Philometor (“Mother Loving”).  When his inheritance fell to Antiochos, his brother by the same mother and cousin, who was called Kyzikenos, concerning whom we spoke a little before, he left the kingdom, going away to Aspendos, on account of which he was also called Aspendios as well as being called Grypos and Philometor.

22.  Therefore, after Antiochos (VIII) had been driven away to Aspendos, Antiochos (IX) Kyzikenos ruled in the first year of the 167th Olympiad (112/11 BC).  In the second year of this Olympiad (111/10 BC), Antiochos (VIII) came back from Aspendos again and took power in Syria, while Kyzikenos ruled in Koile [Syria].  When the kingdom was divided, Grypos continued until the fourth year of the same Olympiad (109/8 BC), having ruled for 15 years after his return and having ruled for 26 years in all, 11 by himself and15 years when the kingdom was divided.

23. Kyzikenos having held power from the first year of the 167th  (112/11 BC) died in the first year of the 171st Olympiad (96/5 BC), after reigning for 15 years and living for 50 years in all. He died in this way: At the aforementioned time when Antiochos Grypos died, his son, Seleukos (VI), coming with a large force attacked the city [i.e. Antioch].  Antiochos Kyzikenos, leading forth an army from Antioch, and drawing up in battle-order, was defeated.  Being carried by his horse towards the enemy and not wishing to be arrested, he killed himself.  Seleukos (VI), being master of the kingdom, captured Antioch.

24.  Antiochos (X), being the son of Kyzikenos, made war against him.  After a battle took place around a city called Mopsouestia, Antiochos was victorious.  Seleukos, upon fleeing to the city and learning that the inhabitants were resolved to burn him alive, killed himself first.

25. His brothers, Antiochos (XI) and Philip (I), who were called Twins, appearing with an army and taking the city by force, sought to avenge the destruction of their brother by falling upon the city.  But the son of Kyzikenos [Antiochos X], coming against them defeated them in battle.  And of these, Antiochos (XI) the brother of Seleukos, riding his horse away from the battle and fleeing to the Orontes, was killed by the river.

26.  When Philip (I) the brother of Seleukos (VI), son of Antiochos (VIII) Grypos, and Antiochos (X) the son of Kyzikenos were the remaining opponents concerning the kingdom, ruling from the third year of the 171st Olympiad (94/3 BC) and having noteworthy armies and holding power over parts of Syria, made war against one another concerning Syria.  And Antiochos, upon being defeated, fled to the Parthians, and later entrusted himself to Pompey so that he might be restored to Syria by him.  But he, taking money from the Antiochenes, did not pay attention to him and made the city [Antioch] autonomous.  After Ptolemy (XIII) Dionysos had abandoned Alexandreia and the Alexandreians had sent Menelaos and Lampon and Kallimandros to him [Antiochos X?] in order that he might come and be king of Egypt with the daughters of Ptolemy, having fallen ill, he died.

27. Philip (I) the aforementioned son of Grypos and Tryphaina, the daughter of Ptolemy VIII was deposed.  And when he wished to go down to Egypt (for the Alexandreians had then summoned him to the kingdom), Gabinius, the Roman prefect of Syria, being a lieutenant of Pompey, prevented him.  And thus the successor kingdom of Syria was first utterly destroyed.

28.  The following were kings of Asia and Syria in succession:

1. Antigonos (I) was king of Asia for 18 years.
2. Demetrios (I) Poliorketes (“the Besieger”) of the same place and Syria for 17 years.
3. Seleukos (I) Nikator 32 years.
4. Antiochos (I) Soter (“Saviour”) 19 years.
5. Antiochos (II) Theos (“the God”) 15 years.
6. Seleukos (II) Kallinikos (“Beautiful Victory”) 21 years.
7. Seleukos (III) Keraunos (“Thunderbolt”) 3 years.
8. Antiochos (III) Megas (“the Great”) 36 years.
9. Seleukos (IV) Philopator (“Father Loving”) 12 years.
10. Antiochos (IV) Epiphanes (“Distinguished”) 11 years.
11. Antiochos (V) Eupator (“from a Noble Father”) 1 year, 6 months.
12. Antiochos (VI?) Soter (“Saviour”) 12 years.
13. Alexander (I) 15 years.
14. Demetrios (II) the son of Demetrios 3 years.
15. Antiochos (VII) Sidetes 9 years
16. Antiochos (VIII) Grypos 26 years
17. Antiochos (IX) Kyzikenos 18 years.
18. Philip (I) the son of Grypos 2 years, in which the kingdom of Syria was destroyed.

The time of the Macedonian kingdoms then comes to 274 years from Antigonos, but 239 years from Seleukos (I) Nikator.

Comments and criticism are welcome and should be directed to Oliver D. Hoover.

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