Pharnabazus III

Last updated

Pharnabazus III (in Greek Φαρνάβαζος; c. 370 BC - after 320 BC) was a Persian satrap who fought against Alexander the Great. His father was Artabazus II, and his mother a Greek from Rhodes. [1]

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.

Satrap Ruler of a province in ancient Persia

Satraps were the governors of the provinces of the ancient Median and Achaemenid Empires and in several of their successors, such as in the Sasanian Empire and the Hellenistic empires. The satrap served as viceroy to the king, though with considerable autonomy; and the word also came to suggest tyranny, or ostentatious splendour.

Alexander the Great King of Macedonia

Alexander III of Macedon, commonly known as Alexander the Great, was a king (basileus) of the ancient Greek kingdom of Macedon and a member of the Argead dynasty. He was born in Pella in 356 BC and succeeded his father Philip II to the throne at the age of 20. He spent most of his ruling years on an unprecedented military campaign through Asia and northeast Africa, and by the age of thirty, he had created one of the largest empires of the ancient world, stretching from Greece to northwestern India. He was undefeated in battle and is widely considered one of history's most successful military commanders.

Contents

Youth in Macedonia

Pharnabazus was the son of Artabazus, satrap of Hellespontine Phrygia. However, Artabazus was exiled after a failed rebellion against Artaxerxes III in 358 BC. From 352 to 342, the family went into exile to Macedonia, in the capital of Pella in Pella, under the rule of king Philip II (360-336), where they met the young Prince Alexander, future Alexander the Great. [1] With Artabazus and Pharnabazus was Memnon of Rhodes, a Greek mercenary and relative by marriage.

Hellespontine Phrygia

Hellespontine Phrygia or Lesser Phrygia was a Persian satrapy (province) in northwestern Anatolia, directly southeast of the Hellespont. Its capital was Dascylium, and for most of its existence it was ruled by the hereditary Persian Pharnacid dynasty. Together with Greater Phrygia, it made up the administrative provinces of the wider Phrygia region.

Artaxerxes III King of Kings

Ochus, better known by his dynastic name of Artaxerxes III was King of Kings of the Achaemenid Empire from 358 to 338 BC. He was the son and successor of Artaxerxes II and his mother was Stateira.

Macedonia (ancient kingdom) Ancient kingdom in the Balkans

Macedonia, also called Macedon, was an ancient kingdom on the periphery of Archaic and Classical Greece, and later the dominant state of Hellenistic Greece. The kingdom was founded and initially ruled by the royal Argead dynasty, which was followed by the Antipatrid and Antigonid dynasties. Home to the ancient Macedonians, the earliest kingdom was centered on the northeastern part of the Greek peninsula, and bordered by Epirus to the west, Paeonia to the north, Thrace to the east and Thessaly to the south.

Artabazus, Pharnabazus and Memnon were later allowed to return to Persia, in 343 BC. Memnon obtained the command of the Persian navy in the Aegean sea in 334 BC, with Pharnabazus joining him.

War against Alexander

Location of Hellespontine Phrygia, and the provincial capital of Dascylium, in the Achaemenid Empire. Hellespontine Phrygia.jpg
Location of Hellespontine Phrygia, and the provincial capital of Dascylium, in the Achaemenid Empire.

When Alexander invaded the Persian empire, Memnon defended the strategically important town of Halicarnassus, which Alexander was then diverted to capture, forcing him to seek reinforcements. This allowed the Persians time to regroup, until Halicarnassus fell in the first months of 333 BC.

Halicarnassus Ancient Greek city, present day Bodrum in Turkey

Halicarnassus was an ancient Greek city at what is now Bodrum in Turkey. It was located in southwest Caria on a picturesque, advantageous site on the Ceramic Gulf. The city was famous for the Mausoleum of Halicarnassus, also known simply as the Tomb of Mausolus, whose name provided the origin of the word "mausoleum". The mausoleum, built from 353 to 350 BC, ranked as one of the seven wonders of the ancient world.

Memnon and Pharnabazus then directed their strategy to disrupt Alexander's supply lines by taking Aegean islands near the Hellespont and by fomenting rebellion in southern Greece. [2] Memnon and Pharnabazus had a navy of about 300 warships, composed of Phoenician, Egyptian and Cypriot units, as well as thousands of Greek mercenaries and vast amounts of silver and gold. [3]

Support of the Spartan king Agis III against Alexander

At around the same time, the Spartan king Agis III and the Athenian statesman Demosthenes organised forces to liberate their cities from the Macedonians. In the autumn of 333 BC, the Spartan King Agis III had met with the Persian commanders Pharnabazus and Autophradates, somewhere in the Aegean Sea, and revealed to them his plans for a war against Alexanderin Greece itself. The Persians agreed to support Agis; however, they could only spare him 30 talents and 10 ships. Agis also recruited the Greek mercenary survivors of Issus - who had served in the Persian army – a force of 8,000 veterans.

Agis III was the eldest son of Archidamus III, and the 21st Eurypontid king of Sparta.

Demosthenes ancient Athenian statesman and orator

Demosthenes was a Greek statesman and orator of ancient Athens. His orations constitute a significant expression of contemporary Athenian intellectual prowess and provide an insight into the politics and culture of ancient Greece during the 4th century BCE. Demosthenes learned rhetoric by studying the speeches of previous great orators. He delivered his first judicial speeches at the age of 20, in which he argued effectively to gain from his guardians what was left of his inheritance. For a time, Demosthenes made his living as a professional speech-writer (logographer) and a lawyer, writing speeches for use in private legal suits.

Autophradates

Autophradates was a Persian Satrap of Lydia, who also distinguished himself as a general in the reign of Artaxerxes III and Darius III.

Memnon and Pharnabazus took Cos and Chios, but during the siege of Mytilene, the capital of Lesbos, Memnon died of a fever. Pharnabazus took control of the Persian forces in the Aegean, assisted by Autophradates. They captured Mytilene and the isle of Tenedos, which gave him control over the Hellespont. [2]

Kos Place in Greece

Kos or Cos is a Greek island, part of the Dodecanese island chain in the southeastern Aegean Sea. Kos is the third largest island of the Dodecanese by area, after Rhodes and Karpathos; it has a population of 33,388, making it the second most populous of the Dodecanese, after Rhodes. The island measures 40 by 8 kilometres. Administratively, Kos constitutes a municipality within the Kos regional unit, which is part of the South Aegean region. The principal town of the island and seat of the municipality is Kos Town.

Chios Place in Greece

Chios is the fifth largest of the Greek islands, situated in the northern Aegean Sea. The island is separated from Turkey by the Chios Strait. Chios is notable for its exports of mastic gum and its nickname is "the Mastic Island". Tourist attractions include its medieval villages and the 11th-century monastery of Nea Moni, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Mytilene Place in Greece

Mytilene is a city in Greece founded in the 11th century BC. Mytilene is the capital city and port of the island of Lesbos and also the capital and administration center of the North Aegean Region. The seat of the governor of the North Aegean Region is Mytilene, such as the headquarters of the University of the Aegean.

Pharnabazus further threatened Alexander's supplies by establishing a fortified position near Halicarnassus, which made the harbour inaccessible. He also took Samothrace, Siphnos and Andros and seized all Greek supply ships.

However, after the Persian king Darius III lost the decisive Battle of Issus in November 333 BC, Pharnabazus became increasingly isolated. The Spartan king, Agis III, whilst still receiving ten ships and thirty talents of silver from the Achaemenids, [4] withdrew from outright rebellion. Pharnabazus had to deal with rebellions in his conquered territory and many of his troops deserted him. [5] His much reduced navy was defeated near Chios and Pharnabazus was captured. [2] While being taken to Alexander, he managed to escape and went to Cos.

Later life

In 321 BC Pharnabazus commanded a squadron of cavalry for Eumenes, when the latter defeated Neoptolemus in the Wars of the Diadochi. 1878 engraving. The fight of Eumenes of Cardia against Neoptolemus, Wars of the Diadochi.jpg
In 321 BC Pharnabazus commanded a squadron of cavalry for Eumenes, when the latter defeated Neoptolemus in the Wars of the Diadochi. 1878 engraving.

What happened after his escape is not known. There is a gap in the records. [2] It is assumed that he eventually submitted to Alexander, since in 324 BC, Artonis, the sister of Pharnabazus, was given in marriage to Eumenes by Alexander the Great.

For Barsine, the daughter of Artabazus, who was the first lady Alexander took to his bed in Asia, and who brought him a son named Heracles, had two sisters; one of which, called Apame, he gave to Ptolemy; and the other, called Artonis, he gave to Eumenes, at the time when he was selecting Persian ladies as wives for his friends.

Plutarch, The Life of Eumenes. [7]
Persian cavalry from Asia Minor under Pharnabazus composed the superior cavalry of Eumenes in the Battle of the Hellespont (321 BC). Altikulac Sarcophagus Altikulac Sarcophagus Combat scene (detail).jpg
Persian cavalry from Asia Minor under Pharnabazus composed the superior cavalry of Eumenes in the Battle of the Hellespont (321 BC). Altıkulaç Sarcophagus

In 321 BC we find Pharnabazus commanding a squadron of cavalry for Eumenes, in the Battle of the Hellespont (321 BC) in which he defeated Craterus and Neoptolemus. [9]

When he came to give battle, he would not set any Macedonian to engage Craterus, but appointed to that charge two bodies of foreign horse, commanded by Pharnabazus the son of Artabazus, and Phoenix of Tenedos. They had orders to advance on the first sight of the enemy, and come to close fighting without giving them time to retire; and if they attempted to speak or send any herald, they were not to regard it.

Plutarch, The Life of Eumenes. [10]
Family tree after Pharnabazus II. Family tree of the later Pharnacids complete.jpg
Family tree after Pharnabazus II.

Notes

  1. 1 2 Carney, Elizabeth Donnelly (2000). Women and Monarchy in Macedonia. University of Oklahoma Press. p. 101. ISBN   9780806132129.
  2. 1 2 3 4 Pierre Briant, From Cyrus to Alexander: A History of the Persian Empire, Translated by Peter T. Daniels, Eisenbrauns, 2006, pp.826-832.
  3. Pharnabazus (3) - Livius.
  4. Arrian, Campaigns of Alexander,p.125
  5. Peter Green, Alexander of Macedon, 356-323 B.C.: a historical biography, 1974, p.254.
  6. Arrian, vii. 4; Plutarch, Parallel Lives, "Eumenes", 7; Diodorus Siculus, Bibliotheca, xviii. 30-32
  7. Plutarch: Life of Eumenes - translation.
  8. A reconstitution is visible in Rose, Charles Brian (2013). The Tombs of the Granicus River Valley IV: The Çan Sarcophagus. pp. 129–142.
  9. Arrian, vii. 4; Plutarch, Parallel Lives, "Eumenes", 7; Diodorus Siculus, Bibliotheca, xviii. 30-32
  10. Plutarch: Life of Eumenes - translation.

Related Research Articles

This article concerns the period 359 BC – 350 BC.

This article concerns the period 339 BC – 330 BC.

Lysander Spartan admiral

Lysander was a Spartan admiral who commanded the Spartan fleet in the Hellespont which defeated the Athenians at Aegospotami in 405 BC. The following year, he was able to force the Athenians to capitulate, bringing the Peloponnesian War to an end. He then played a key role in Sparta's domination of Greece for the next decade until his death at the Battle of Haliartus.

Pharnabazus II Persian Satrap

Pharnabazus II was a Persian soldier and statesman, and Satrap of Hellespontine Phrygia. He was the son of Pharnaces II of Phrygia and grandson of Pharnabazus I, and great-grandson of Artabazus I. He and his male ancestors, forming the Pharnacid dynasty, had governed the satrapy of Hellespontine Phrygia from its headquarters at Dascylium since 478 BC. He married Apama, daughter of Artaxerxes II of Persia, and their son Artabazus was likewise a satrap of Phrygia. His grand-daughter Barsine married Alexander the Great.

Battle of Issus Battle between Alexander the Great and the Achaemenids

The Battle of Issus occurred in southern Anatolia, on November 5, 333 BC between the Hellenic League led by Alexander the Great and the Achaemenid Empire, led by Darius III, in the second great battle of Alexander's conquest of Asia. The invading Macedonian troops defeated Persia. After the Hellenic League soundly defeated the Persian satraps of Asia Minor at the Battle of the Granicus, Darius took personal command of his army. He gathered reinforcements and led his men in a surprise march behind the Hellenic advance to cut their line of supply. This forced Alexander to countermarch, setting the stage for the battle near the mouth of the Pinarus River and the town of Issus.

Antipater Macedonian general

Antipater was a Greek Macedonian general and statesman under kings Philip II of Macedon and Alexander the Great, and father of King Cassander. In 320 BC, he became regent of all of Alexander the Great's Empire.

Wars of Alexander the Great conflicts fought by King Alexander III of Macedon ("The Great"), against other Greek powers, the Persian Empire and warlords as far east as Punjab, India

The wars of Alexander the Great were fought by King Alexander III of Macedon, first against the Achaemenid Persian Empire under Darius III, and then against local chieftains and warlords as far east as Punjab, India. By the time of his death, he had conquered most of the world known to the ancient Greeks. However, he failed to conquer South Asia. Although being successful as a military commander, he failed to provide any stable alternative to the Achaemenid Empire—his untimely death threw the vast territories he conquered into civil war.

Eumenes Ancient Greek general and scholar

Eumenes of Cardia was a Greek general and satrap. He participated in the Wars of the Diadochi as a supporter of the Macedonian Argead royal house. He was executed after the Battle of Gabiene in 316 BC.

Craterus Macedonian general under Alexander the Great

Craterus or Krateros was an ancient Macedonian general under Alexander the Great and one of the Diadochi.

Battle of the Granicus Battle fought between Alexander the Great and the Achaemenids

The Battle of the Granicus River in May 334 BC was the first of three major battles fought between Alexander the Great and the Persian Empire. Fought in northwestern Asia Minor, near the site of Troy, it was here that Alexander defeated the forces of the Persian satraps of Asia Minor, including a large force of Greek mercenaries led by Memnon of Rhodes.

Memnon of Rhodes Greek military leader

Memnon of Rhodes was a prominent Rhodian Greek commander in the service of the Persian Achaemenid Empire. Related to the Persian aristocracy by the marriage of his sister to the satrap Artabazus II, together with his brother Mentor he served the Persian king for most of his life, and played an important role during the invasion of Alexander the Great and the decades before that.

Phoenix of Tenedos Ancient Greek general

Phoenix was a native of Tenedos, who held a high rank in the army of Eumenes, 321 BC.

Artabazos II 4th-century BC Persian satrap

Artabazos II was a Persian general and satrap of Hellespontine Phrygia. He was the son of the Persian satrap of Hellespontine Phrygia Pharnabazus II, and younger kinsman of Ariobarzanes of Phrygia who revolted against Artaxerxes II around 356 BC. His first wife was an unnamed Greek woman from Rhodes, sister of the two mercenaries Mentor of Rhodes and Memnon of Rhodes. Towards the end of his life, he became satrap of Bactria for Alexander the Great.

Barsine 4th-century BC Iranian woman

Barsine was daughter of a Persian father, Artabazus, satrap of Hellespontine Phrygia and a Greek Rhodian mother, who was the sister of mercenaries Mentor of Rhodes and Memnon of Rhodes. Barsine became the wife of her uncle Mentor, and after his death married her second uncle, Memnon.

Chares of Athens military (0400-0400)

Chares of Athens and was an Athenian general, who for a number of years was a key commander of Athenian forces.

Battle of Megalopolis battle

The Battle of Megalopolis was fought in 331 BC between Spartan led forces and Macedonia. Alexander's regent Antipater led the Macedonians to victory over King Agis III.

Artakama was a Persian noblewoman and the second wife of Ptolemy I Soter, a Macedonian general under Alexander the Great and the first Pharaoh of the Ptolemaic dynasty of Egypt.

Battle of the Hellespont (321 BC) The took place in 321 BC between


The Battle of the Hellespont took place in 321 BC between the armies of Craterus and Neoptolemus against Eumenes.