Seleucus II (Callinicus)

246-226BC (20)

Coin of Seleucus II. Reverse shows Apollo leaning
on a tripod. The Greek inscription reads

Seleucus II Callinicus or Pogon (the epithets meaning "beautiful victor" and "bearded", respectively) reigned from 246 to 225 BC as head of the Seleucid dynasty. He was proclaimed king by his mother, Laodice, whilst her partisans at Antioch murdered Berenice and her son.

Berenice's brother, Ptolemy III, who had just succeeded to the Egyptian throne, at once invaded the Seleucid realm and marched victoriously to the Tigris or beyond, receiving the submission of the eastern provinces, whilst his fleets swept the coasts of Asia Minor.

In the interior of Asia Minor Seleucus maintained himself, and when Ptolemy returned to Egypt he recovered Northern Syria and the nearer provinces of Iran. In Asia Minor his younger brother Antiochus Hierax was put up against him by a party to which Laodice herself adhered.

At Ancyra (about 235 BC) Seleucus sustained a crushing defeat and left the country beyond the Taurus to his brother and the other powers of the peninsula. He then undertook an anabasis to regain Parthia, the results of which however came to nothing. According to some sources, he was even taken prisoner for several years by the Parthian king.

In Asia Minor, Pergamum now rose to greatness under Attalus I, and Antiochus Hierax, after a failed attempt to his brother's dominions when his own were vanishing, perished as a fugitive in Thrace in 228 BC or 227 BC.

About a year later Seleucus was killed by a fall from his horse. He was succeeded by his elder son, Seleucus III Ceraunus and later by his younger son Antiochus III the Great.

  • Seleucid Ruler 246 – 225 BC
  • Preceded by: Antiochus II
  • Succeeded by: Seleucus III


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