Bust of Ptolemy VI Philometor, from Aegina (National
Archaeological Museum, Athens)
|Ptolemy VI Philometor:
king of the Ptolemaic
Empire, ruled from 181 to 145.
Egyptian titles: Iwaennetjerwyper Setepenptahkhepri
Irmaatenamunra ('Son of two divine houses, Chosen by
Ptah-Khepri, Dispenser of the justice of Amun-Ra'; the two houses are
of Ptolemy and the House of
- 186: Birth
- 180: After
the assassination of his father, Ptolemy VI becomes king. His mother Cleopatra
I Syra acts as regent (therefore, he accepts the surname Philometor, 'the man who loves his
- 176, spring:
death of Cleopatra I Syra
- c.175: he
marries his sister Cleopatra
- 170: Outbreak
of the Sixth
Syrian War. In Egypt, Cleopatra II and Ptolemy VIII are made
- 169: The Seleucid
invades Egypt and demands that Ptolemy VI receives other advisers
(Comanus and Cineas). In Alexandria,
people demand that Cleopatra II
and Ptolemy VIII become king.
Reconciliation between the Ptolemaic rulers.
- 168: Second
invasion of Egypt. Antiochus besieges Alexandria, but a Roman embassy,
led by Gaius Popilius Laenas orders the Seleucid king to return.
- 165: Native
rebellion; birth of Ptolemy Eupator
- 164: Fighting
in the Fayum and Thebaid
- 164, October:
Ptolemy VI has to flee from Egypt, where Ptolemy VIII becomes more
powerful; Ptolemy VI seeks Roman support.
- 163, July:
Ptolemy VI returns and declares amnesty for rebels; he offers asylum to
Jews who are fleeing from the war between Antiochus IV Epiphanes and
the Maccabaeans. Ptolemy VIII is made ruler of Cyrenaica.
He attempts to obtain Cyprus, but in vain.
- 162: Ptolemy
VI supports Demetrius
I Soter, who becomes master of the Seleucid Empire.
- 160: Birth
Ptolemy VIII claims that his brother has tried to assassinate him
- 154: A
military attempt of Ptolemy VIII to become master of Cyprus
also fails. Ptolemy VI tries to appease his brother by offering him an
engagement to his daughter Cleopatra
- 152, spring:
a son of Ptolemy VI, Ptolemy Eupator, is sent to Cyprus, but is dead
before the end of the year.
Intervention in the Seleucid Empire. Although Ptolemy VI had supported
the coup d'état of Demetrius I Soter, he now backs Alexander
I Balas, who marries Cleopatra Thea in Ptolemais.
- 147: Ptolemy
VI moves to Syria to support Alexander Balas against Demetrius
II Nicator, but soon decides to switch sides. Cleopatra Thea
remarries. He enters Antioch.
July: Ptolemy defeats Alexander Balas, but is killed in action.
Demetrius immediately attacks the Ptolemaic Empire and may even have
reached Egypt (Astronomical Diaries, -144,
Ptolemy VII Neos Philopator, son of Ptolemy VI, is
assassinated by Ptolemy VIII, who now becomes king of the Ptolemaic
Empire. Queen Cleopatra II marries the new king, who also marries her
Succeeded by: his brother Ptolemy
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