Eumenes I

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Eumenes I
EmenesICoin.JPG
Coin of Eumenes. Cabinet des Médailles, Paris.
King of Pergamon
Reign263–241 BC
Predecessor Philetaerus
Successor Attalus I
Died241 BC
GreekΕυμένης Α΄
Dynasty Attalid dynasty
FatherEumenes (son of Attalus)
MotherSatyra
Coin struck during the reign of Eumenes I, depicting the head of Eumenes' uncle Philetaerus on the obverse and seated Athena, patron deity of the city of Pergamon, on the reverse. The writing reads PhILETAIROU (PHILETAEROU), "(coin) of Philetaerus". Philetaerus.jpg
Coin struck during the reign of Eumenes I, depicting the head of Eumenes' uncle Philetaerus on the obverse and seated Athena, patron deity of the city of Pergamon, on the reverse. The writing reads ΦΙΛΕΤΑΙΡΟΥ (PHILETAEROU), "(coin) of Philetaerus".

Eumenes I (Greek : Εὐμένης Αʹ) was dynast (ruler) of the city of Pergamon in Asia Minor from 263 BC until his death in 241 BC. [1] He was the son of Eumenes, the brother of Philetaerus, the founder of the Attalid dynasty, and Satyra, daughter of Poseidonius. As he had no children, Philetaerus adopted Eumenes to become his heir.

Greek language Language spoken in Greece, Cyprus and Southern Albania

Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages, native to Greece, Cyprus and other parts of the Eastern Mediterranean and the Black Sea. It has the longest documented history of any living Indo-European language, spanning more than 3000 years of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the major part of its history; other systems, such as Linear B and the Cypriot syllabary, were used previously. The alphabet arose from the Phoenician script and was in turn the basis of the Latin, Cyrillic, Armenian, Coptic, Gothic, and many other writing systems.

Pergamon ancient Greek city in modern-day Turkey

Pergamon, Pergamos or Pergamum, was a rich and powerful ancient Greek city in Aeolis. It is located 26 kilometres (16 mi) from the modern coastline of the Aegean Sea on a promontory on the north side of the river Caicus and northwest of the modern city of Bergama, Turkey.

Philetaerus Governor and later autonomous ruler of Pergamon

Philetaerus was the founder of the Attalid dynasty of Pergamon in Anatolia.

Although nominally under Seleucid control, Pergamon under Philetaerus enjoyed considerable autonomy. However, upon his succession, Eumenes, perhaps with the encouragement of Ptolemy II, who was at war with the Seleucids, revolted, defeating the Seleucid king Antiochus I near the Lydian capital of Sardis in 261 BC. He was thus able to free Pergamon, and greatly increase the territories under his control. In his new possessions, he established garrison posts in the north at the foot of Mount Ida called Philetaireia after his adoptive father, and in the east, northeast of Thyatira near the sources of the river Lycus, called Attaleia after his grandfather, and he extended his control south of the river Caïcus to the Gulf of Cyme as well. Demonstrating his independence, he began to strike coins with the portrait of Philetaerus, while his predecessor had still depicted Seleucus I Nicator.

Lydia Iron Age kingdom of western Asia Minor

Lydia was an Iron Age kingdom of western Asia Minor located generally east of ancient Ionia in the modern western Turkish provinces of Uşak, Manisa and inland İzmir. Its population spoke an Anatolian language known as Lydian. Its capital was Sardis.

Sardis Ancient city at the location of modern Sart, Turkey

Sardis or Sardes was an ancient city at the location of modern Sart, near the Salihli in Turkey's Manisa Province. Sardis was the capital of the ancient kingdom of Lydia, one of the important cities of the Persian Empire, the seat of a Seleucid Satrap, the seat of a proconsul under the Roman Empire, and the metropolis of the province Lydia in later Roman and Byzantine times. As one of the seven churches of Asia, it was addressed by John, the author of the Book of Revelation in the New Testament, in terms which seem to imply that its church members did not finish what they started, that they were about image and not substance. Its importance was due first to its military strength, secondly to its situation on an important highway leading from the interior to the Aegean coast, and thirdly to its commanding the wide and fertile plain of the Hermus.

Mount Ida (Turkey) mountain range

Mount Ida is a mountain in northwestern Turkey, some 20 miles southeast of the ruins of Troy, along the north coast of the Gulf of Edremit. The name Mount Ida is the ancient one. It is between Balıkesir Province and Çanakkale Province.

After the revolt from the Seleucids, there are no records of any further hostilities involving Pergamon during Eumenes' rule, even though there continued to be conflict between the Seleucids and the Ptolemies, and even though the Galatian Gauls were continually plundering throughout the region. If Eumenes was able to keep Pergamon free from the ravages of the Gauls, it was probably because he paid them tribute. [2]

Galatia area in the highlands of central Anatolia

Ancient Galatia was an area in the highlands of central Anatolia, roughly corresponding to the provinces of Ankara, Çorum, and Yozgat, in modern Turkey. Galatia was named for the Gauls from Thrace, who settled here and became its ruling caste in the 3rd century BC, following the Gallic invasion of the Balkans in 279 BC. It has been called the "Gallia" of the East, Roman writers calling its inhabitants Galli.

Gauls Celtic inhabitants of a large part of Europe called Gaul, before the Roman domination

The Gauls were a group of Celtic peoples of West-Central Europe in the Iron Age and the Roman period. The area they inhabited was known as Gaul. Their Gaulish language forms the main branch of the Continental Celtic languages.

Although never assuming the title of "king," Eumenes did exercise all of the powers of one. [3] Imitating other Hellenistic rulers, a festival in Eumenes' honour, called Eumeneia, was instituted in Pergamon.

It is not known whether he had children. A "Philetaerus son of Eumenes" is mentioned in an inscription in the town of Thespiae; some regard him as Eumenes' son, who would then have died before his father's death in 241. Eumenes adopted his first cousin once removed, Attalus I, who succeeded him as ruler of Pergamon. [4]

Thespiae was an ancient Greek city (polis) in Boeotia. It stood on level ground commanded by the low range of hills which run eastward from the foot of Mount Helicon to Thebes, near modern Thespies.

Attalus I Greek dynast and king of Pergamon

Attalus I, surnamed Soter ruled Pergamon, an Ionian Greek polis, first as dynast, later as king, from 241 BC to 197 BC. He was the first cousin once removed and the adoptive son of Eumenes I, whom he succeeded, and was the first of the Attalid dynasty to assume the title of king in 238 BC. He was the son of Attalus and his wife Antiochis.

Notes

  1. Strabo 13.4.2, says that Eumenes "... died after a reign of twenty-two years." His reign began with the death of Philetaerus in 263 BC.
  2. That Pergamon probably paid tribute can be inferred from Livy 38.16, that the Gauls had "... levied tribute on the whole of Asia west of the Taurus, ... such was the terror of their name and the growth of their numbers that at last even the kings of Syria did not dare to refuse the payment of tribute" and that Attalus I, Eumenes successor, was the first to refuse to pay such tribute.
  3. Hansen pp. 23-24.
  4. Strabo, 13.4.2, says that he was the cousin of Attalus I. Pausanias, 1.8.1, probably following Strabo, says the same. But modern writers have concluded that Strabo had skipped a generation, see Hansen p. 26.

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References

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Regnal titles
Preceded by
Philetaerus
Ruler of Pergamon
263–241 BC
Succeeded by
Attalus I