Alexander's Greatest Successors?

Menshevik

Ad Honorem
Dec 2012
9,097
here
#12
Antigonus, Seleucus and Eumenes.

The book I just finished ends shortly after the death of Eumenes and the the deaths of the rest of the Argeads. Seleucus is barely mentioned, he's still a minor player when the book ends. How and when does he come to power and start his own dynasty/empire?

bonus question: what was Seleucus' relationship to Alexander? How well did they know each other? Was he just a minor officer before Alexander's death?
 
Sep 2016
1,090
Georgia
#13
The book I just finished ends shortly after the death of Eumenes and the the deaths of the rest of the Argeads. Seleucus is barely mentioned, he's still a minor player when the book ends. How and when does he come to power and start his own dynasty/empire?

bonus question: what was Seleucus' relationship to Alexander? How well did they know each other? Was he just a minor officer before Alexander's death?
If the books ends on the death of Alexander IV and Roxana ( 309 BC), then Seleucus should've been mentioned. He became an important player by that time, because of Antigonus. After the defeat of Eumenes, Antigonus began to fulfill his ambitions. As a result, Antigonus now was in possession of the empire's Asian territories. He superseded Peucestas as satrap of Persia and seized the treasuries of Susa.

In 315 BC Antigonus arrived in Babylon and was welcomed by Seleucus. However, the relationship between the two soon turned cold. Seleucus punished one of Antigonus' officers without asking permission from him. Antigonus became angry and demanded that Seleucus give him the income from the province, which Seleucus refused to do.
Seleucus was afraid of Antigonus and fled to Egypt. Antigonus sent soldiers after Seleucus and executed Blitor, the new satrap of Mesopotamia, for helping Seleucus. Soon the coalition of Ptolemy, Lysimachus, Seleucus and Cassander was created against Antigonus.

Seleucus and Ptolemy defeated Demetrius ( son of Antigonus ) in Battle of Gaza 312 BC. After that victory, Seleucus was able to retake Babylon.

Seleucus also played crucial role in Battle of Ipsus 301 BC. Thanks to his masterful use of elephants, Demetrius was neutralized and Antigonus finally defeated.

He was minor officer for the most of Alexander's campaigns. By the time of Indian campaign he had risen to the command of the elite infantry corps ,, Shield-bearers''.
 
Jul 2017
2,281
Australia
#14
Seleukos’ role in regards to the elephants at Ipsos is vague at best, I would be lax to claim it was definitely Seleukos responsible for the maneuver. Anyway, the battles of the time period are quite poorly sourced, and elements of that battle don’t make sense.
 
Nov 2011
1,002
The Bluff
#15
Seleukos’ role in regards to the elephants at Ipsos is vague at best, I would be lax to claim it was definitely Seleukos responsible for the maneuver. Anyway, the battles of the time period are quite poorly sourced, and elements of that battle don’t make sense.
After the text of Diodoros deserts us at the close of Book Twenty, we are largely reliant on scraps of the Sicilian, epigraphy, etc and Plutarch. If something didn't quite suit Plutarch's agenda, we miss it (Paraitakene in 317 for example). That said, they were his elephants and I'm fairly sure he will have deployed them as he saw fit. It appears (Plutarch is largely uninterested in details) that some of these were a reserve. The sketchy details of the rest of that battle generally make sense: Lysimachos and Seleukos isolated the Antigonid infantry (they'd superior cavalry and now had the field) and Antigonos fell from missile fire. As will have not a few of his infantry. Bit like Magnesia.

Seleukos' rise begins after his expulsion from Babylon in 316. The former chiliarch commanded Ptolemy's fleet from that time down to before the battle of Gaza. After that battle, Antigonos came to the table and Ptolemy, Lysimachos and Kassandros hammered out the Peace of the Dynasts. At this time, Seleukos' threat to Antigonos is plain in that he refuses to have Seleukos as a party. Ptolemy, ever the poker player, was quite happy to have his friend Seleukos as an ever irritating thorn in the side of the One-Eye. Antigonos and Demetrios would spend near to two years trying to dislodge this thorn from their Mesopotamian flank. They would lose a general and army in the process. All the while Ptolemy played havoc in Greece, Koile-Syria, the islands and the Asia Minor littoral.
 
Sep 2018
18
michigan
#16
The book I just finished ends shortly after the death of Eumenes and the the deaths of the rest of the Argeads. Seleucus is barely mentioned, he's still a minor player when the book ends. How and when does he come to power and start his own dynasty/empire?

bonus question: what was Seleucus' relationship to Alexander? How well did they know each other? Was he just a minor officer before Alexander's death?
let me guess, was the book Ghosts on the Throne by James Romm?
My personal favorite is Eumenes since he played the game even though he never really seemed to be dealt the proper cards to start, but through force of will and ingenuity he managed to outplay many other successors- side question if the silver shields were working under the other succesors andbaggage had been stolen would they have still revolted, and if they did not revolt was their any possibility they could get their families and money back or would the Antogonids have killed them? would that have broken some taboo?
I favor Antigonus afterwards because of his consistent battlefield victories and overall keen eye for strategy and war.
After that i would put Seleceus because his march to join the succesors must have been one of the greatest logistical feats in all of history as well as him playing a prominent role in the death of Antigonus.
After that I would put Demetrius even though his record ranges to say the least, I find him very fun to read about and want to learn more about him. Also Alcibiades seemed to regard him highly and he seems to be the authority on Alexander in this forum. if you know something i could read on Demetrius I would be thankfull.
 
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