The Aftermath of the Apamean Settlement: Early Challenges to the new Order in Asia Minorby Žarko Petković



History / Classics



Žarko PetkoviĆ (Belgrad)

The Aftermath of the Apamean Settlement:

Early Challenges to the new Order in Asia Minor

As a result of the Apamean peace treaty (188 BC), a substantial part of western and northern Asia Minor became the domain of Eumenes II.1 In his own words: […] ἐκτημένου κυρ[ί]ως διὰ τὸ παρὰ τῶν κρατησάτων καὶ πολέμοι καὶ σ[υν]ϑήκαις εἰληφέναι Ῥωμαίων […].2

But, the new power of the Attalid king and his ambition for extended empire under Roman authority were quickly challenged by the Bithynian king, Prusias I.

The dispute over territories in northern Asia Minor was already a hot issue between

Eumenes and Prusias. On the eve of the Roman war against Antiochos, Prusias concluded amicitia with the Romans.3 It seems that Prusias thought that this new alignment with Rome would secure his possessions in northern Phrygia, which he had taken c. 196 from the Pergamene king.4 But, after the defeat of Antiochos, the Senate was eager to protect the principal ally of Rome and decided that northern Phrygia belonged to Eumenes.5 So, the war which followed was fought for the control of that territory. 1 D. Magie, Roman Rule in Asia Minor, II, Princeton 1950, 758 ff.; E. S. Gruen, The Hellenistic World and the Coming of Rome, II, Berkeley/Los Angeles 1984, 547 f.; F. W. Walbank, A Historical Commentary on

Polybius, III: Commentary on Books XIX–XL, Oxford 1979, 164 ff.; R. E. Allen, The Attalid Kingdom. A

Constitutional History, Oxford 1983, 85 ff.; W. Ameling, s. v. Eumenes II [3], in: DNP IV, 1998, 251–253;

A. N. Sherwin-White, Roman Foreign Policy in the East, London 1984, 20 f.; É. Will, Histoire politique du monde hellénistique (323–30 av. J.-C.), II, Nancy 21982, 221 ff., specially 228 f. (with testimonies). 2 L. Jones/M. Ricl, A new royal inscription from Phrygia Paroreios: Eumenes II grants Tyriaion the status of a polis, EA 29, 1997, 1–30, 3, vv. 20–23. 3 Liv. 37.25.4–14; Pol. 21.11.1–12; cf. A. Heuss, Die völkerrechtliche Grundlage der römischen Außenpolitik in republikanischer Zeit, Leipzig 1933, 53 ff.; Chr. Habicht, s. v. Prusias I, in: RE XXIII.1, 1957, 1097. 4 For the rivalry between Bithynia and Pergamon over Mysia, i.e. Phrygia Epiktetos (cf. Strab. 12.8.12) see

Chr. Habicht, Über die Kriege zwischen Pergamon und Bithynien, Hermes 84.1, 1956, 90–110, 93–96; id. (n. 3) 1097 f., J. Hopp, Untersuchungen zur Geschichte der letzten Attaliden, München 1977, 40–41, Sherwin-White (n. 1) 44. According to Habicht (l. c. and n. 3, 1092 f.) Prusias’ gain could have happened c. 208 or, more probably, c. 198/197 BC, when Pergamon was under pressure from Antiochus the Great and when Eumenes II took the throne (cf. Ed. Meyer, s. v. Bithynia, in: RE III, 1898, 518; R. M. Errington,

Rome against Philip and Antiochus, in: CAH2 VIII, 1989, 244–289, 271; Will [n. 1] 180 f.). For other possible dates cf. also G. Vitucci, Il regno di Bitinia, Rome 1953, 46 (208 BC) or F. Stähelin, Geschichte der

Kleinasiatischen Galater, Leipzig 21907, 51 (around 190 BC). 5 Liv. 38.39.15; Pol. 21.22.14; 46.10; Strab. 12.8.12; Walbank (n. 1) 115; 171 f.; Magie (n. 1) 758 f.; 999 f.; Will (n. 1) 228; 286; Chr. Habicht, The Seleucids and their rivals, in: CAH2 VIII, 1989, 324–387, 325.

KLIO 94 2012 2 357–365


During the war, which began in 186 or 185,6 Prusias allegedly had help from the notorious enemies of the oikoumene, the Galatians.7 Prusias captured Kieros and Tieion, probably in the early stage of the war, and was not far from securing Herakleia, the most important polis in the area.8 Eumenes suffered a defeat at sea, but, in December(?) 184 BC, he achieved victory near Mt Lypedron (somewhere in Bithynia?). The triumph of the Pergamene king was eulogized in the Telmessos decree: Eumenes, σωτὴρ καὶ εὐεργέ [της], defeated Προυσίαν [κα]ὶ Ὀρτιάγοντα καὶ τοὺς Γαλάτας καὶ τοὺς [σ]υμμάχους αὐτῶν. Thus, at that moment, the supremacy of the Roman favorite in the region seemed unassailable.9

Diplomatic maneuvers ensued. In the spring of 183, Eumenes’ brother Athenaios complained to the Senate that the Macedonian king Philipp V had sent help to Prusias during the war. As legatus of the Senate, Titus Quinctius Flamininus was dispatched primarily to obtain peace between Prusias and Eumenes. The choice of Flamininus as legatus is significant: the task required an influential Roman leader with special personal weight in the matter of eastern Roman policy. Flamininus also tried to capture Hannibal (who had helped Prusias during the conflict) and supervised Philipp’s surrender of the Thracian cities of Aenus and Maronea, which the Macedonian king should have done according to the peace agreement of 196 BC.10 6 For the start of the war in 185 BC, cf. S. Dmitriev, Memnon on the Siege of Heraclea Pontica by Prusias I and the War between the Kingdoms of Bithynia and Pergamum, JHS 127, 2007, 133–138, 135 f., with

K. Meischke, Zur Geschichte des Königs Eumenes II. von Pergamon, Pirna 1905, non vidi. Cf. also Sherwin-White (n. 1) 44 („186/5“); Will (n. 1) 286 („186“). The war certainly could not have begun as early as 188, as suggested by M. Shottky, s. v. Prusias [1], in: DNP X, 2001, 491; („Phrygia“ [l. c.] should be corrected to „Phrygia Epiktetos“). 7 Galatians as Prusias’ allies: Pomp. Trog. Prol. 32. But, Pol. 3.3.6 should not be exclusively treated as a testimony for this war, according to Habicht (n. 3) 1099 and Gruen (n. 1) 552, n. 99; in fact, the Galatians could be mentioned as Eumenes’ enemies during his war against Pharnakes. 8 Memn. F 19.1–2; cf. F 20.1. Gruen (n. 1) 552 and B. Niese, Geschichte der griechischen und makedonischen Staaten seit der Schlacht bei Chäronea, III, Gotha 1905, 71 rightly attributed Memnon’s fragment to this war; for the reasons cf. Dmitriev (n. 6) 133–135; cf. also infra, p. 363. 9 Telmessos decree: M. Segre, Due novi testi storici, RFIC 60, 1932, 446–461, 446–452; cf. Allen (n. 1) Appendix 4, no. 7, pp. 211 f. Much attention in the narrative is paid to Hannibal, as Prusias adviser: Liv. 39.51.1;