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Antiochus III the Great

Antiochus III the Great. Bust at the Louvre, Paris (France). Photo Marco Prins.
Antiochus III the Great (Louvre)
Antiochus III Megas ('the Great'): name of a Seleucid king, ruled from 222 to187.

Successor of: Seleucus III Keraunos (or Soter)


Ancient-Warfare.com, the online home of Ancient Warfare magazine
Coin of the Seleucid king Antiochus III the Great. British Museum, London (Britain). Photo Marco Prins.
Antiochus III the Great
(British Museum, London)

Main deeds:

  • April-June 222: Comes to power after the assassination of his elder brother, Seleucus III Keraunos, who has unsuccessfully tried to recover territories that had been lost to king Attalus I Soter of Pergamon
  • Antiochus' general Achaeus has more success, but proclaims himself king
  • 222: Wedding; Antiochus marries Laodice III
  • 222-220: Antiochus visits Nisibis and suppresses the revolt of Molon in Media and Persis
  • 219: outbreak of the Fourth Syrian War against king Ptolemy IV Philopator; Antiochus reconquers Seleucia (the port of Antioch, which had been conquered by Ptolemy III in the Third Syrian War) and proceeds to the south, capturing Tyre
  • 217, 13 June: Ptolemy's army defeats the Seleucid army at Raphia with an army that consists partly of Egyptian soldiers
  • October 217: peace is concluded; the Seleucid Empire keeps Seleucia
  • 216: Alliance with Attalus against Achaeus.
  • 216-213: Antiochus defeats Achaeus and captures Sardes
  • 212-205: Antiochus reconquers the independent kingdoms in Parthia and Bactria and Gandara; he is called Megas, 'the great'
  • 205: Ptolemy IV Philopator falls ill; Antiochus and Philip V of Macedonia agree to attack Egypt
  • 204: Birth of Cleopatra I Syra
  • 204, September: Ptolemy IV succeeded by Ptolemy V Epiphanes
  • 202, May: Outbreak of the Fifth Syrian War; renewed attempt to conquer southern Syria
  • 200: Battle of Paneion: Ptolemy V loses his Asian territories; Antiochus' daughter Cleopatra Syra marries to the Egyptian king
  • Rome declares war against Macedonia (which leaves the war against the Ptolemies) and orders Antiochus to keep their hands off Egypt, which is vital for Rome's food supply
  • 199-197: Antiochus cancels his invasion of Egypt, and instead attacks Ptolemaic possessions in Cilicia and Lycia
  • 196: Crown-prince Antiochus appointed as successor; he marries his sister Laodice IV
  • 196: Conquest of Thrace, which is governed by Antiochus' son Seleucus
  • 194: The Pergamene king Eumenes II Soter refuses an alliance; Ariarathes IV Eusebes of Cappadocia marries to Antiochis
  • 193: Death of his crown prince Antiochus
  • 192-188: Syrian War against Rome and its allies Pergamon and Rhodos; the Carthaginian general in Seleucid service, Hannibal Barca, and Antiochus are defeated
  • 191: Battle of Thermopylae; marriage to  Euboea of Chalcis
  • 190: Battle of Magnesia
  • 189: Seleucus made co-ruler; he probably marries his sister Laodice IV, widow of Antiochus
  • Peace of Apamea: cedes all territory north of the Taurus to the Roman ally Pergamon and agrees to pay an indemnity to Rome; his youngest son Antiochus is sent to Italy as hostage
  • 187 Antiochus visits Babylon
  • 3 July 187: in an attempt to obtain money, Antiochus attacks a temple in Susa, but is killed
Succeeded by: Seleucus IV Philopator


This brief article has been written to offer background information
to the real articles on Livius.Org. One day, this webpage will be
improved. A list of completed articles can be found here.

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