Seleucus III Soter  [ca. 245 - 223 BCE; assassinated]

The oldest son of Seleucus II proved not to be the "savior" that his official royal epithet advertised. Nor did live up to his popular byname: "Thunder" [keraunos]. For he not only failed to reclaim western Asia Minor from his cousin, Attalus of Pergamum, but was assassinated in his second attempt, less than two years after his enthronement. Had his younger brother Antiochus III not reversed the family fortunes, his death might have brought the Seleucid dynasty to an end.

References: Josephus, Antiquities 12.223, 234.
                  Appian, Roman History: Syrian Wars 11.66.
                  Polybius, Histories 4.48.

Other resources on line:

Youthful image of Seleucus III graces the face of a silver tetradrachma minted at Antioch in 226 BCE. The reverse bears the inscription Basileos Seleukou ["of king Seleucus"] flanking the nude figure of Apollo, with bow & arrow, seated on the omphallos at Delphi ["navel" of the Hellenic world].

For high resolution images of this and other coins of Seleucus, see Ancient Coinage of Seleucia, Seleukos III in David Surber's comprehensive ancient coins website: Wildwinds.

Perspective on the World of Jesus

Copyright 1999-2008 by Mahlon H. Smith
All rights reserved.

an American Theological Library Association Selected Religion Website
OCLC catalog no.: 62046512

Reader  since May 1999 on Web Counter.