Timocrates of Rhodes

Last updated
Timocrates of Rhodes delivered tens of thousands of Darics (popularly called "archers"), the main currency in Achaemenid coinage, that were used to bribe the Greek states to start a war against Sparta, so that Agesilaus would have to be recalled from Asia Minor. PERSIA, Achaemenid Empire. temp. Darios I to Xerxes I. Circa 505-480 BC. AV Daric (14mm, 8.32 g).jpg
Timocrates of Rhodes delivered tens of thousands of Darics (popularly called "archers"), the main currency in Achaemenid coinage, that were used to bribe the Greek states to start a war against Sparta, so that Agesilaus would have to be recalled from Asia Minor.

Timocrates of Rhodes (Greek : Τιμοκράτης ὁ Ῥόδιος) was a Rhodian Greek sent by the Persian satrap Pharnabazus in 396 or 395 BC to distribute money to Greek city states and foment opposition to Sparta. [2] He visited Athens, Thebes, Corinth, and Argos. His encouragement prompted Thebes to provoke Sparta into war, beginning the Corinthian War, which dragged on from 395 to 387 BC.

The primary aim of Timocrates' mission, which he accomplished, was to force the withdrawal of the Spartan king Agesilaus and his army from Ionia. Timocrates's success in this mission was the basis for the famous statement, recorded by Plutarch, that "a thousand Persian archers had driven [Agesilaus] out of Asia," referring to the archer that was stamped on Persian gold coins. [3]


  1. Snodgrass, Mary Ellen (2015). Coins and Currency: An Historical Encyclopedia. McFarland. p. 125. ISBN   9781476611204.
  2. Xenophon (3.5.1) states that Tithraustes, not Pharnabazus, sent Timocrates, but the Hellenica Oxyrhynchia states that Pharnabazus sent him. For chronological reasons, this account is to be preferred. See Fine, The Ancient Greeks, 548
  3. Plutarch, Life of Agesilaus

Related Research Articles

Agesilaus II was king of Sparta from c. 400 to c. 360 BC. Generally considered the most important king in the history of Sparta, Agesilaus was the main actor during the period of Spartan hegemony that followed the Peloponnesian War. Although brave in combat, Agesilaus lacked the diplomatic skills to preserve Sparta's position, especially against the rising power of Thebes, which reduced Sparta to a secondary power after its victory at Leuctra in 371 BC.

This article concerns the period 399 BC – 390 BC.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Lysander</span> Spartan military and political leader (died 395 BC)

Lysander was a Spartan military and political leader. He destroyed the Athenian fleet at the Battle of Aegospotami in 405 BC, forcing Athens to capitulate and 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.

Year 395 BC was a year of the pre-Julian Roman calendar. At the time, it was known as the Year of the Tribunate of Cossus, Medullinus, Scipio, Fidenas, Ambustus and Lactucinus. The denomination 395 BC for this year has been used since the early medieval period, when the Anno Domini calendar era became the prevalent method in Europe for naming years.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Tissaphernes</span> Persian Satrap of Lydia and Ionia (445–395 BC)

Tissaphernes was a Persian soldier and statesman, Satrap of Lydia and Ionia. His life is mostly known from the works of Thucydides and Xenophon. According to Ctesias, he was the son of Hidarnes III and therefore, the great grandson of Hydarnes, one of the six conspirators who had supported the rise of Darius the Great.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Antalcidas</span> Spartan general and statesman (died c. 367 BC)

Antalcidas, son of Leon, was an ancient Greek soldier, politician, and diplomat from Sparta.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Artaxerxes II</span> King of the Achaemenid Empire from 405/4 to 359/8 BC

Arses, known by his regnal name Artaxerxes II, was King of Kings of the Achaemenid Empire from 405/4 BC to 358 BC. He was the son and successor of Darius II and his mother was Parysatis.

The polis of Sparta was the greatest military land power of classical Greek antiquity. During the Classical period, Sparta governed, dominated or influenced the entire Peloponnese. Additionally, the defeat of the Athenians and the Delian League in the Peloponnesian War in 431–404 BC resulted in a short-lived Spartan dominance of the southern Greek world from 404 to 371 BC. Due to their mistrust of others, Spartans discouraged the creation of records about their internal affairs. The only histories of Sparta are from the writings of Xenophon, Thucydides, Herodotus and Plutarch, none of whom were Spartans. Plutarch was writing several centuries after the period of Spartan hegemony had ceased. This creates difficulties in understanding the Spartan political system, which was distinctly different from any other Greek polis.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Pharnabazus II</span> Persian satrap of Hellespontine Phrygia from 413 to 374 BC

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 also became a satrap of Phrygia. According to some accounts, his granddaughter Barsine may have become Alexander the Great's concubine.

The Sacred Band of Thebes was a troop of select soldiers, consisting of 150 pairs of male lovers which formed the elite force of the Theban army in the 4th century BC, ending Spartan domination. Its predominance began with its crucial role in the Battle of Leuctra in 371 BC. It was annihilated by Philip II of Macedon in the Battle of Chaeronea in 338 BC.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Corinthian War</span> Ancient Greek war (395–387 BC)

The Corinthian War was a conflict in ancient Greece which pitted Sparta against a coalition of city-states comprising Thebes, Athens, Corinth and Argos, backed by the Achaemenid Empire. The war was caused by dissatisfaction with Spartan imperialism in the aftermath of the Peloponnesian War, both from Athens, the defeated side in that conflict, and from Sparta's former allies, Corinth and Thebes, who had not been properly rewarded. Taking advantage of the fact that the Spartan king Agesilaus II was away campaigning in Asia against the Achaemenid Empire, Thebes, Athens, Corinth and Argos forged an alliance in 395 BC with the goal of ending Spartan hegemony over Greece; the allies' war council was located in Corinth, which gave its name to the war. By the end of the conflict, the allies had failed to end Spartan hegemony over Greece, although Sparta was durably weakened by the war.

Agesipolis I was the twenty-first of the kings of the Agiad dynasty in ancient Sparta.

<i>Hellenica</i> Work by Xenophon

Hellenica simply means writings on Greek (Hellenic) subjects. Several histories of 4th-century Greece, written in the mould of Thucydides or straying from it, have borne the conventional Latin title Hellenica. The surviving Hellenica is an important work of the Ancient Greek writer Xenophon and one of the principal sources for the last seven years of the Peloponnesian War not covered by Thucydides, as well as the war's aftermath.

The Battle of Haliartus was fought in 395 BC between Sparta and Thebes. The Thebans defeated a Spartan force attempting to seize the town of Haliartus, killing the Spartan leader Lysander. The battle marked the start of the Corinthian War, which continued until 387 BC.

Sphodrias was a Spartan general during the Spartan Hegemony over Greece. As governor of Thespiai in 378 BC, he made an unsuccessful attack against Athens without any order from Sparta. He was put on trial for this act, but unexpectedly acquitted, thanks to the support of the two Spartan kings, Cleombrotus I and Agesilaus II. This acquittal greatly upset Athens which rapidly concluded an alliance with Thebes against Sparta as a result.

Tithraustes was the Persian satrap of Sardis for several years in the early 4th century BC. Due to scanty historical records, little is known of the man or his activities. He was sent out from Susa to replace Tissaphernes in 395 BC, and, after arresting his predecessor, executed him.

The Second Athenian League was a maritime confederation of Aegean city-states from 378 to 355 BC and headed by Athens, primarily for self-defense against the growth of Sparta and secondly, the Persian Empire.

Epicrates was the name of several Athenians who lived during the 4th century BCE. Scholars have had trouble telling them apart because their patronymics and demotics are not always included in ancient sources. Even the ancients had such troubles. Harpocraton included this entry in his lexicon.

Epikrates: Isaios in On the Speeches Made in Macedonia. This is the Athenian demagogue who is nicknamed ‘shield-bearer' whom Demosthenes also mentions in On the Embassy. There is another Epikrates whom Lykourgos mentions in On the Financial Administration, saying that a bronze (statue) was set up on account of his law concerning the ephebes, whom they say owned property worth 600 talents. There is another Epikrates, a brother in law of the orator Aischines, as is shown by him in his defense On the Embassy. This one, moreover, used to have the eponym Kyrebion, as Demosthenes says in Against Aischines.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Theban–Spartan War</span> 4th century BCE conflict between Thebes and Sparta

The Theban–Spartan War of 378–362 BC was a series of military conflicts fought between Sparta and Thebes for hegemony over Greece. Sparta had emerged victorious from the Peloponnesian War against Athens, and occupied an hegemonic position over Greece. However, the Spartans' violent interventionism upset their former allies, especially Thebes and Corinth. The resulting Corinthian War ended with a difficult Spartan victory, but the Boeotian League headed by Thebes was also disbanded.

Androcleides was a politician of ancient Thebes. In the 390s BCE, Thebes was a city divided between factions desiring an alliance with Sparta, and factions desiring an alliance with Athens, and Androcleides led the Athenian faction, along with Ismenias.