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Antiochus

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(Ἀντίοχος, opponent), the name especially of several of the Syrian kings, whose history, so far.as relates to Jewish affairs, is contained particularly in the Books of the Maccabees, and is predicted with remarkable minuteness in the 11th chapter of Daniel. The name was first borne by one of the generals of Philip, whose son Seleucus, by the help of the first Ptolemy, established himself (B.C. 312) as ruler of Babylon. The year 312 is, in consequence, the era from which, under that monarchy, time was computed, as, for instance, in the Books of Maccabees. For eleven years more the contest.in Asia continued, while Antigonus (the "one-eyed") was grasping at universal supremacy. At length, in 301, he was defeated and slain in the decisive battle of Ipsus, in Phrygia. Ptolemy, son of Lagus, had meanwhile become master of Southern Syria, and Seleucus was too much indebted to him to be disposed to eject him by force from this possession. In fact, the first three Ptolemies (B.C. 323-222) looked on their extra- Egyptian possessions as their sole guarantee for the safety of Egypt itself against their formidable neighbor, and succeeded in keeping the mastery, not only of Palestine and Coele-Syria, and of many towns on that coast, but of Cyrene and other parts of Libya, of Cyprus, and other islands, with numerous maritime posts all round Asia Minor. A permanent fleet was probably kept up at Samos (Polyb. 5, 35, 11), so that their arms reached to the Hellespont (5, 34, 7); and for some time they ruled over Thrace (18, 34, 5). Thus Syria was divided between, two great powers, the northern half falling to Seleucus and his successors, the southern to the Ptolemies; and this explains the titles "king of the north" and "king of the south," in the 11th chapter of Daniel. The line dividing them was drawn somewhat to the north of Damascus, the capital of Coele-Syria.

The most compact and unbroken account of the kings of this, the Seleucid or Syrian, dynasty is to be found in Appian's book (De Rebus Syriacis), at the end. A sufficiently detailed statement of the reign of each may be found in Smith's Dict. of Class. Biog. s.v. On the dates, see Clinton's Fasti Hellenici, vol. 3, Appendix, ch. 3 The reigns are as follows:

1. Seleucus I, Nicator, B.C. 312-280.

2. Antiochus I, Soter, his son, 280-261.

3. Antiochus II, Theos, his son, 261-246.

4. Seleucus II, Callinicus, his son, 246-226.

5. (Alexander, or) Seleucus III, Ceraunus, his son, 226-223.

6. Antiochus III, the Great, his brother, 223-187.

7. Sleucus IV, Philopator, his son, 187-176.

8. Antiochus IV, Epiphanes, his brother, 176-164.

9. Antiochus V, Eupator, his son (a minor), 164-162.

10. Demetrius I, Soter, son of Seleucus Philopator, 162-150.

11. Alexander Balas, a usurper, who pretended to be son of Antiochus Epiphanes, and was acknowledged by the Romans, 152-146.

12. Antiochus VI, Dionysus (a minor), son of the preceding. He was murdered by the usurper Trypho, who contested the kingdom till 137.

13. Demetrius II, Nicator, son of Demetrius Soter, reigned 146 - 141, when he was captured by the Parthians.

14. Antiochus VII, Sidetes, his brother, 141-128.

15. Demetrius II, Nicator, a second time, after his release from Parthia, 128-125.

16. Seleucus V, his son, assassinated immediately by his mother, 125.

17. Antiochus VIII, Grypus, his brother, shared his kingdom with the following, 125-96.

18. Antiochus IX, Cyzicenus, his half-brother, 111- 95.

19. Seleucus VI, Epiphanes, eldest son of Antiochus Grypus, kills Antiochus Cyzicenus, 96 - 95.

20. Antiochus X, Eusebes, son of Antiochus Cyzicenus, asserts his claims to his father's share of the dominions, kills Seleucus Epiphanes, and prevails over the successors of the latter, but gives way to Tigranes, 95 -83.

21. Philip, second son of Antiochus Grypus, succeeds to the claims of his brother Seleucus against Antiochus Eusebes, until the accession of Tigranes, cir. 94 - 83.

22. Antiochus XI, Epiphanes II, his brother, associated with him in the contest in which he lost his life, cir. 94.

23. Demetrius III, Eucerus, his brother, likewise associated with Philip till their rupture, when he was taken prisoner by the Parthians, 94 - 88.

24. Antiochus XII, Dionysius II, his brother, whose cause he took up against Philip, till slain by the Arabians, cir. 88 - 86.

25. Tigranes, king of Armenia, invited to the throne by the Syrians over all the rival claimants, and held it till his overthrow by the Roman general Lucullus, 83 - 69.

26. Antiochus XIII, Asiaticus, son of Antiochus Eusebes, allowed by Lucullus to hold the throne of the Seleucidae till its entire abolition by Pompey, 69 - 65.

The following (Nos. 3; 6, 8, 9, 12, 14, 17, 18, 20, 22, 24, of the above) are the only ones of the name of Antiochus that are important in sacred literature. (See Frohlich, Annales Syric; Vaillant, Seleucidar. Imp.)

1. ANTIOCHUS (II) THEOS (Θεός, god, so surnamed "in the first instance by the Milesians, because he overthrew their tyrant Timarchus," Appian, Syr. 65), the son and successor of Antiochus (I) Soter as king of Syria, B.C. 261. He carried on for several years the war inherited from his father with the Egyptian king, Ptolemy (II) Philadelphus, who subdued most of the districts of Asia Minor, but at length (B.C. 250), in order to secure peace, he married Ptolemy's daughter (Berenice) in place of his wife Laodice, and appointed the succession in the line of his issue by her (Polyb. ep. Athen. 2, 45); yet, on the death of Ptolemy two yeers afterward, Antiochus recalled his former wife Laodice, and Berenice and her son were soon after put to death at Daphne. Antiochus himself died, B.C. 246, in the 40th year of his age (Porphyry, in Euseb. Chronicles Ann. 1, 345), of poison administered by his wife, who could not forget her former divorce (Justin, 27:1; Appian, Syr. 65; Val. Max. 9, 14,1).

The above alliance of Antiochus with Ptolemy, by the marriage of Berenice to the former, is prophetically referred to in Daniel 11:6, as "the joining of themselves together" by "the king of the south and the king of the north," through "the king's daughter;" and its failure is there distinctly characterized, through the triumph of Laodice over "him that strengthened her," i.e. her husband Antiochus (see Jerome, Comment. in loc.). After the death of Antiochus, Ptolemy Evergetes, the brother of Berenice ("out of a branch of her root"), who succeeded his father Ptol. Philadelphus, exacted vengeance for his sister's death by an invasion of Syria, in which Laodice was killed, her son Seleucus Callinicus driven for a time from the throne, and the whole country plundered (Daniel 11:7-9; hence his surname "the benefactor"). The hostilities thus renewed continued for many years; and on the death of Seleucus, B.C. 226, after his "return into his own land" (Daniel 11:9), his sons Alexander (Seleucus) Ceraunos and Antiochus "assembled a great multitude of forces" against Ptol. Philopator, the son of Evergetes, and "one of them" (Antiochus) threatened to overthrow the power of Egypt (Daniel 11:10).

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Bibliography Information
McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Antiochus'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/eng/tce/a/antiochus.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

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