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Antiochus The Great (ePub)

Ancient History Military

By Michael Taylor
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
File Size: 8.6 MB (.epub)
Pages: 190
Illustrations: 8pp plates, approx 6 b/w maps
ISBN: 9781473826915
Published: 20th September 2013


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A teenage king in 223 BC, Antiochus III inherited an empire in shambles, ravaged by civil strife and eroded by territorial secessions. He proved himself a true heir of Alexander: he defeated rebel armies and embarked on a campaign of conquest and reunification. Although repulsed by Ptolemy IV at the Battle of Raphia, his eastern campaigns reaffirmed Seleucid hegemony as far as modern Afghanistan and Pakistan. Returning westward, he defeated Ptolemy V at Panion (200 BC) and succeeded in adding Koile Syria to the Seleucid realm.

At the height of his powers, he challenged growing Roman power, unimpressed by their recent successes against Carthage and Macedon. His expeditionary force was crushed at Thermopylae and evacuated. Refusing to bow before Roman demands, Antiochus energetically mobilized against Roman invasion, but was again decisively defeated at the epic battle of Magnesia. Despite the loss of territory and prestige enshrined in the subsequent Peace of Apamea, Antiochus III left the Seleucid Empire in far better condition than he found it. Although sometimes presented as a failure against the unstoppable might of Rome, Antiochus III must rank as one of the most energetic and effective rulers of the Ancient world.

As well as narrating the eventful career of Antiochus III, Michael Taylor examines Seleucid military organization and royal administration.

Enhanced for academia and the non-specialist general reader with a section of black/white photographs, sixteen pages of Notes, a four page Selected Bibliography, and a two page Index, "Antiochus The Great" is an exceptionally well written and presented biography that is unreservedly recommended for community, college, and university library Ancient Greek History & Biography collections.

Read the full review here

Midwest Book Review

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Dr. Taylor is a professor of the Classics in the State University of New York System as well as a former soldier. He provides valuable information on the Seleucid Empire that is sorely lacking. He fills the gap nicely and has a very readable style. Once again Pen and Sword provide affordable, accessible one-volume histories of long-neglected classical histories.


Antiochus the Great is a fine book for those interested in being introduced to Antiochus the Great and this era in Middle East history.

Society of Ancient Military Historians

This is an excellent work for anyone interested in ancient history; informative, lively and quite readable.

The NYMAS Review

The book is well written [and] given the overall quality, the interesting subject and the fact so many subtopics are touched upon, I can recommend it to all lovers of Antiquity.

Ancient Warfare

Makes for very interesting reading about a man who declared himself the "champion of Greek freedom against Roman domination", only to be defeated.

Toy Soldier & Model Figure Magazine
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