Eumenes II

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Eumenes II "Savior"
Eumene II detto giovane comandante, da villa dei papiri, peristilio quadrato.JPG
Bust of Eumenes II
King of Pergamon
Reign 197–159 BC
Predecessor Attalus I
Successor Attalus II
Born Before 220 BC
Kingdom of Pergamon
Died 159 BC
Pergamom
Consort Stratonice
Issue
Greek Εὐμένης
House Attalid dynasty
Father Attalus I
Mother Apollonis
Religion Greek Polytheism

Eumenes II (/jˈmɛnz/; Greek: Εὐμένης Βʹ; ruled 197–159 BC) surnamed Soter meaning "Savior" was a ruler of Pergamon, and a son of Attalus I Soter and queen Apollonis and a member of the Attalid dynasty of Pergamon.

Early life[edit]

The eldest son of king Attalus I and queen Apollonis, Eumenes was presumably born prior to 220 BC and was the eldest of 4 sons to Attalus I. Eumenes followed in his father's footsteps upon becoming king and collaborated with the Romans to oppose first Macedonian, then Seleucid expansion towards the Aegean, leading to the defeat of Antiochus the Great at the Battle of Magnesia in 190 BC.[1]

Campaigns[edit]

Eumenes had followed his father's footsteps and aided the Romans whenever he could, firstly in the Roman-Seleucid War, where he both informed them by sending his brother Attalus II[2] and sided with the Romans, successfully aiding Rome in defeating Antiochus III in the Battle of Magnesia. He then aided the Romans in the War against Nabis where he aided both the Aetolian and Achaean leagues to defeat the Spartan tyrant Nabis, and lastly in the Third Macedonian War where he aided the Romans in defeating the Macedonian and Thracian army in the Battle of Callinicus against Perseus of Macedon. He was then at war with the Bithynian king Prusias I in 183 BC, although being defeated, he received Roman support which ended in his victory.[3]

Following the Peace of Apamea in 188 BC, he received the regions of Phrygia, Lydia, Pisidia, Pamphylia, and parts of Lycia from his Roman allies,[4] as they had no desire to administer territory in the Hellenistic east but wished for a strong state in Asia Minor as a bulwark against any possible Seleucid expansion in the future.[citation needed]

He later fell out of favour with the Romans after they suspected him of conspiring with Perseus of Macedon and consequently, in 167 BC, the Romans made an abortive attempt to suborn his brother, Attalus II, as a pretender to the Pergamene throne, refusing Eumenes entry into Italy to plead his case.[5] He also warred with Pharnaces I, who attempted to enlist the aid of the Seleucids, under Seleucus IV[6] but due to the peace of Apamea, denied siding with him. Later on, in around 179 BC, after suffering losses, Pharnaces sued for peace.[7]

Eumenes II

He had refused to marry a daughter of Antiochus III upon noticing that he was about to engage in a war against the Romans,[8] he then had married Stratonice of Pergamon, daughter of Ariarathes IV (King of Cappadocia) and his wife Antiochis, and their son was named Attalus III. Since their son was still a minor, the throne was assumed by one of his brothers, Attalus II, who married Eumenes' widow Stratonice upon becoming king.

One of the great achievements of Eumenes II was the expansion of the Library at Pergamon, one of the great libraries of the Ancient World and the place traditionally associated with the creation of parchment, although it had existed for centuries,[9] he also built a stoa on the Athenian acropolis.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Livius. Eumenes II Soter. Battle of Magnesia: Antiochus defeated by the Romans and Pergamenes 
  2. ^ Livius. Eumenes II Soter. Attalus II Philadelphus visits Rome and warns against Antiochus III.. 
  3. ^ Livius. Eumenes II Soter. 183: War against king Prusias I of Bithynia; although Eumenes is defeated, Roman support gives him in the end victory. 
  4. ^ Livius. Eumenes II Soter. Peace of Apamea: Rome awards Pergamon large parts of Asia Minor, including Ephesus, Telmessus, and Tralles. 
  5. ^ A History of Rome, M. Cary & H.Scullard (1935), p165 ISBN 0-333-27830-5
  6. ^ Diodorus Siculus. The Library of History. Seleucus, leading an army of considerable size, advanced as if intending to cross the Taurus in support of Pharnaces; but on taking note of the treaty that his father had made with the Romans, the terms of which forbade 
  7. ^ Polybius. Histories. 
  8. ^ Appain. The Syrian Wars. But the latter, seeing that Antiochus was about to engage in war with the Romans and that he wanted to form a marriage connection with him on this account, refused her. 
  9. ^ Turkey. Ayliffe, Rosie. (5th ed ed.). London: Rough Guides. 2003. p. 302. ISBN 9781843530718. OCLC 52502736. 

References[edit]

Regnal titles
Preceded by
Attalus I
King of Pergamon
197–159 BC
Succeeded by
Attalus II