Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chronology

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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chron

Post by Paralus »

agesilaos wrote:I think the ancients would have reckoned years as month A in year one to month A in the target year, embolimic months notwithstanding, and then counted any additional months (in which case the embolimic month would be counted); we can see this in Aristoboulos' reckoning of Alexander's life and reign in Arrian. An Athenian year would run Hekatombaion to Hekatombaion, a Makedonian one Dios to Dios, I can think of no evidence of a year count being adjusted to make it in true astronomical years.
You have not read your Thucydides recently I see. Thucydides records all events of his history by years - campaigning seasons winter to winter. At each winter he notes the end of this year of the war; 2.70.4 for example (though many such could be listed) " Such were the events of the winter, and so ended the second year of this war of which Thucydides was the historian". Although he situates his narrative with a list of magistracies and priesthoods at the outset (2.2.1) he explicitly shuns the use of such magistrates for dating because they do not fit with the campaigning season (5.20.2-3):
This must be calculated by the seasons rather than by trusting to the enumeration of the names of the several magistrates or offices of honor that are used to mark past events. Accuracy is impossible where an even may have occurred in the beginning, or middle, or at any period in their tenure of office. But by computing by summers and winters, the method adopted in this history, it will be found that, each of these amounting to half a year, there were ten summers and as many winters contained in this first war.


We thus have an entire history written in "astronomical" years or campaigning years from winter quarters to winter quarters. Under this method years are always winter to winter or summer to summer. It is also plain that Diodorus' source for books 18-20 narrated events in exactly the same fashion (hence the astronomical fixatives and the notations of winter quarters). Just as when Thucydides states that the war had lasted ten years (to the peace of Nicias) and indicates that this is shown by ten summers and ten winters, so too Diodorus' source, narrating in exactly the same fashion, notes that Perdiccas died having ruled three years. These years will have been his narrative years in exactly the same fashion as Thucydides enumerates his years.

On another matter and perhaps to rationalise matters some, we should split this thread so the chronological discussion can continue on its own? Particularly before Agesilaos' planned opus arrives. I'd suggest doing so from this post
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chron

Post by agesilaos »

Too right I have not read Thucydides for many summers and as many winters BUT whilst your point is well made for statements in whole years it cannot hold when the time includes a month count as in the case of Philip III Arrhidaios' reign (which might mean that the figure for Perdikkas' rule is similarly calendrical rather than seasonal, though I would not press the point.

I agree that the thread should split.
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chron

Post by Xenophon »

I also think the chronological digression should be split off, since it seems the main protagonists are about to conduct a 'chronological' debate....let's hope a Moderator is watching this thread ! :lol:

Just to add my two penneth worth on chronology, there were a number of calendars in use in ancient Greece. Some commenced, logically enough, when ploughing season began ( around 1 November ) others, such as Athens, commenced shortly after mid-summer. Just to add to the confusion, sometimes different calendars ran concurrently, for example Athens ran three calendars - an artificial 10 month ‘State’ democratic calendar, a sidereal calendar to govern agricultural seasons , and a lunar calendar of 12 lunar months, which governed religious festivals.

Running 'lunar' months also meant the need for 'inter calary' months being added on a regular basis.

What was I saying about "fuzzy time" measurements ?? :wink:
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chron

Post by agesilaos »

Fortunately much of the hard work has been done, Parker and Dubberstein sorted out the Babylonian Calendar and Chris Bennet has checked and corrected the tables for our period and the organisation of the Athenian Civil Calendar was established by Pritchett and Neuberger (maybe a wrong name), the macedonian calendar was in synch with the Babylonian and for the most part we are not looking at days so much as months, so I'd say 'soft focus' rather than 'fuzzy' :D
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chron

Post by Paralus »

Xenophon wrote:....let's hope a Moderator is watching this thread ! :lol:
It is Easter.

"Moderator, if it is possible, may this topic be split from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will."

And so it will come to pass that thread will be split...
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chronol

Post by agesilaos »

Prologue

While preparing to embark on this re-examination I came across Pat Wheatley's 'Ptolemy Soter's annexation of Syria 320 BC' Classical Quarterly 45, 1995 pp 433-440, therein it is claimed that the dated coinage of Sidon shows that the 'high chronology' is to be preferred, it is posited that the appearance of Philip III on the coinage from mid 320 is connected with Ptolemy's invasion and that once again the Marmor Parium is at fault in assigning this event to the archonship of Apollodoros.

This needs refuting and another explanation to be sought for the changes in the Sidonian issues. There are, in fact, two changes to consider, a change from Phoenician numerals to Greek (before October 323) and the change from Alexandrou to Philippou from the middle of 320 until October 317.

These dates are based on Newell's study of 1905 'Dated Alexander Coins of Sidon and Ake', which is available for download online. Newell's analysis is fine numismatically but historically he is working from the 'high' position which was then the norm, also he counts the era of Sidon based on Arrian's dating of the battle of Issos which I have demonstrated elsewhere ('Arrrian's Monthly Problems) is almost certainly a month too late so his Maimakterion ought to be amended to Pyanepsion so Newell's October should be September (although the mismatch of calendars makes this the roughest of equations).

The change from Phoenician to Greek numeration coincides well with the advent of Laomedon, the new satrap, Alexander had died three months before the advent of a new year at the mint and it is possible that he ordered the change as production seems to have boomed, so much that sufficient coin was in circulation that there was, seemingly no minting for 322/1, year 11, at all, at least no examples have been discovered whilst there are many examples of each other year. Further, there were three obverse dies used in the tetradrachm series whereas the earlier Phoenician issues of year 10 had only required two. There cannot have been a central order as Ake continued dating by its own era with Phoenician numerals. Sidon may well have been the satrapal seat, as Tyre had been left weakened by its long siege so it is likely that the impetus for change came from the satrap rather than anyone higher up in the hierarchy.

Wheatley suggests as an alternative to his theory, that Ptolemy introduced the Philippic coinage, that it may have happened (on the low chronology) when Perdikkas brought the King through the area on his way to dusty-death. Unfortunately, that would be impossible, as Perdikkas was dead by mid-May. The trigger may have been the entry of Antipatros into Syria or the re-entry of the Royal Army; Laomedon certainly seems to have escaped censure and this show of loyalty to the new regime may have helped his cause.

320 does seem to have been a busy year for the Sidonian mint, in the first half of the year they used three obverse dies for Alexander's and then a further three for Philips (and six reverse dies for each series) it is tempting to see the first effusion as pay for Perdikkas' invasion force and the second for the troops at Triparadeisos. Ake's issues do not show a similar increase, however, output seemingly the same as 321 although at a comparable die usage to Sidon; 3 obv 7 rev.

Over the winter of 320/19 (Naichimos' archonship) we have the dissension among the Perdikkans and desertions from both Eumenes and Antigonos following Asandros' failed attempt to eject Alketas from Caria.

Diodoros relates Ptolemy's siezure of Phoenicia before the campaign against Eumenes commenced but The Diadoch Chronicle clearly puts Antipatros' and the kings' return to Macedonia in Philip's fifth year which commenced April 1 319. Ptolemy would surely have waited until the regent had departed and the Royal Army of Asia had headed off in pursuit of Eumenes too distant to intervene in his coup. It is likely, then that the Marmor Parium is correct in assigning Ptolemy's take over to the archonship of Apollodoros (the rehabilitation of this source is important for this period). By extension we should probably place Antigonos at Orkynia about the same time. Ptolemy would have waited until he had moved out of the area before making his move; this timing also explains why Laomedon fled to Alketas and not Antipatros, the Regent had returned to Europe and only the Perdikkans remained as opponents of Ptolemy.

Laomedon's escape and flight to Caria may have helped Ptolemy excuse his annexation; Laomedon had clearly shown his colours. Antigonos clearly saw no reason to oppose Ptolemy's act, even after the crushing of the Pedikkans despite possessing overwhelming force.

The final act of the campaigning season was the defeat of Alketas in Pisidia shortly afterwards Antipatros died, and that is where I will take things up next time.

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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chronol

Post by Paralus »

The opus, I see, is on the way.
agesilaos wrote:Diodoros relates Ptolemy's siezure of Phoenicia before the campaign against Eumenes commenced but The Diadoch Chronicle clearly puts Antipatros' and the kings' return to Macedonia in Philip's fifth year which commenced April 1 319. Ptolemy would surely have waited until the regent had departed and the Royal Army of Asia had headed off in pursuit of Eumenes too distant to intervene in his coup. It is likely, then that the Marmor Parium is correct in assigning Ptolemy's take over to the archonship of Apollodoros (the rehabilitation of this source is important for this period). By extension we should probably place Antigonos at Orkynia about the same time. Ptolemy would have waited until he had moved out of the area before making his move; this timing also explains why Laomedon fled to Alketas and not Antipatros, the Regent had returned to Europe and only the Perdikkans remained as opponents of Ptolemy.
Diodorus actually places the move by Ptolemy upon Phoenicia during the war against Eumenes. The Sicilian commences his narration of that war at 18.40. Ptolemy's annexation is described at 18.43. That he begins "as for Egypt" does not mean that the notice of annexation is retrospective. If that were so he is implying that it took place after he'd rid himself of Perdiccas and the royal army. This is simply one of the ways Diodorus deals with actions in differing theatres. That it appears from Diodorus that Ptolemy did little after Triparadeisus is no surprise, he'd his springboard for power (his satrapy) to put into order after the war. Hence there may have been little to report until his greater ambitions were shown in Phoenicia during the war against Eumenes.

I too have read Wheatley's paper. He has recanted that position of late. Meeus (Phoenix, Vol 66, 2012) deals with much of Wheatley's arguments but the Sidonian coinage is dealt with by Boiy (high and Low) and Anson (Eumenes of Cardia)... i think. Perhaps I will check in the morning. Comfortable viewing of the wide vistas of the inside of my eyelids beckons...
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chronol

Post by agesilaos »

We have several markers for the date of the death of Antipatros; the Marmor Parium places it in the archonship of Apollodoros (319/8); both Diodoros and Plutarch (Phocion) give a context for his illness of an Athenian embassy headed by Demades and his son, we know from IG II2 383b that Demades was still in Athens on the tenth day of the tenth prytanny of Neaichmos (320/19) which confirms the Marble's date as the tenth prytanny was the last of the civic year and had 35 days.

Athenian inscriptions also provide a definite terminus ante quem which is the re-establishment of democracy and the demise of the Macedonian backed oligarchy. The first decree that is certainly of the new democracy is one in praise of Euphron of Sikyon (SIG 317), the first part of which is a copy of the original stele which the oligarchy destroyed (due to his services being against Macedon). It is dated to the last day of Maimakterion and the 35th day of the fourth prytanny (the year was leap so 39+39+39+35 = day 152, we should expect the day to be 148 so it would seem the calendar had been retarded by five days, not surprisingly, due to the regime change.

The space between June 319 and December 318 is a long one, however and another consideration may help narrow it. Under the oligarchy the post of 'anagapheus' assumed great importance but by Gamelion 318 inscriptions seem to show a loss of prominence, the last inscription preserving the title dates to Skirophorion of Apollodoros (318). Errrington, in 'Diodorus and the Chronology of the Early Diadochoi 320-311 BC' Hermes 105 (1977) pp.478-504, opined that it was the dissappearence of the post of anagrapheus that signalled the demise of Phocion's oligarchic regime and, since Plutarch puts his death in a Mounichion this must be that of 317 (archonship of Archippos II).

Against this Williams, A NOTE ON ATHENIAN CHRONOLOGY, 319/8-318/7, Hermes 112 Bd., H.3 (3rd qtr. 1984), argues that the democrats may have continued the post and the loss of prominence is due to the restoration of democracy not just Antipatros' death as in Errington.

The loss of prominence of the office of anagrapheus

We are not dealing with a mass of evidence here;
anagra.jpg
anagra.jpg (130.84 KiB) Viewed 7025 times
It is immediately clear that the supposed 'loss of eminence' is a myth, the pre-scripts do not have a set pattern under any archon. The large number of embolimic days at the end of Philokles' archonship and the beginning of Archippos' amounting to almost two whole months needs explaining. Since the title of anagrapheus has assumed a position of importance by Archippos' fifth, prytanny the simplest solution would be to place Antipatros' final settlement of Athen's constitution.

This is at odds with the accepted time scale which takes 20 Boedromion 322 as the date of the imposition of a garrison on Munychia and by extension a new constitution upon Athens. Plutarch, Phokion 28.i does not specify a year, however and the three months between Thargelion (April, when large scale campaigning was first practicable) and Boedromion, seems a short span for Leonnatos to invade and die, Krateros to cross and join Antipatros to secure victory at Krannon, the negotiations which detached all of Athens' allies and Athens' own embassies.

Were the actual date 20 Boedromion 321, we could place the Athenian negotiations in the extended Thargelion of Philokles, when Antipatros, having detached the allies over the winter moved at the opening of the campaigning season to the site of Thebes (since it was in ruins he could not have overwintered there), the poignancy of the 'Old Rope's' choice of camp-site would not be lost on Athens. Plutarch describes two embassies to and from Antipatros which seem to be quite extensive. The introduction of the revised constitution would have taken up a lot of business at the beginning of Archippos' archonship. This explains the failure of anagrapheus to appear in any decree of Philokles better than any feeling of neatness or revolutionary unwillingness rock the boat, the oligarchs were quite happy to destroy the stelai of the democracy honouring benefactors of the anti-Macedonian regime; the first decree of the restored democracy, IG2 II448, is a replacement for one destroyed by the oligarchy.

If the Athenian settlement was only reached in Boedromion it helps to explain why the campaign against the Aetolians dragged into winter 321/0.

But what of the date of Antipatros' death? The restoration of democracy and the execution of Phokion?

We have seen that there was no 'loss of prominence' for the anagrapheis, but pushing the restoration of democracy back to the start of ArchipposII's archonship involves too much slack; it is clear that the restoration came hot on the heels of Alexandros' entry into Attica and that Phocion's death, in Mounichion followed swiftly.

IG2 II 387 records interaction between Polyperchon and the Athenians in Elaphebolion of Apollodoros' archonship, which corresponds to Xanthikos, generally assumed to be the terminus of the Royal Diagramma ordering the return of those exiled by Antipatros and the restoration of traditional governments.

We can take this as a terminus ante quem for the death of Antipatros but not the time limit of the Diagramma. Diodoros is clear that the Diagramma was issued in response to Kassandros' defection to Antigonos, it was not the first act of his new regime.

Diodoros has Kassandros make his move after he has word that Ptolemy will support him. The trip from Macedon to Egypt used to take twenty days by sea, but the sea-lanes would be closed between Pyanepsion and Elaphebolion making the communications take much longer than the forty odd days otherwise required.

Antigonos' help is also a naval task-force, putting his help in the sailing season of 318 or Mounichion, Thargelion or Skirophorion of Apollodoros' archonship. Since time must be allowed for the exiles to return the Xanthikos of the Diagramma must be that of 317 this in turn gives us a date for the attack on Megalopolis whose purpose at 68.iii 'to return them to obedience to the kings', ought to mean that the time limit of the Diagramma had elapsed.

Polyperchon's presence in Phokis can perhaps help too, the Diagramma was given to 'the envoys' - proedroi – 55.iv, to disseminate. Who were these 'proedroi'? In the past I think it has been assumed that they were in Macedonia for the funeral of Antipatros but that is too early for a decree contingent upon Kassandros' bid for power. Macedon was a member of the Amphyktionic Council which met in autumn at Delphi and in spring at Thermopylai, since autumn is too close to Antipatros' death an announcement at the spring session seems likely, Alexander had announced his edicts at the Pan-hellenic festivals and it would seem a good move for Polyperchon to follow suit, the four towns singled out ; Amphissa, Trikka, Pharkadon and Heraklaia are in Phocis and Thessaly, the very area the Amphyktionic Council most served (the Athenians also sent proedroi).


more to follow :shock:
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chronol

Post by Paralus »

agesilaos wrote:more to follow :shock:
I'll bet.

I have some issues with the above reconstruction (suprise!). Whilst tempted to air them I think it might be better to await the addition to the opus as to-ing and fro-ing now will derail the process. How long do you think your next installment(s) might take??
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chronol

Post by agesilaos »

I shall try to get to 316 by Sunday, but like Diodoros I won't say which one :shock: :lol:
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chronol

Post by Paralus »

agesilaos wrote:I shall try to get to 316 by Sunday, but like Diodoros I won't say which one :shock: :lol:
Not quite. Diodorus would say that he'd post before the week ended. He'd simply forget to end the week or, for that matter, note "weekend quarters"...

That said, you've already made it to 317 (erroneously)!
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chronol

Post by agesilaos »

Yes, Megalopolis, but there is still more to say about 318!
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chronol

Post by Paralus »

You have been renamed: Diodorus Londinus.
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chronol

Post by agesilaos »

More Herodotos, surely (as yet) unkept promises; or is it a confused and lazy rehash??? :shock: :oops:

I am away for a week next Tuesday and hope to complete things then with pen and paper, composing on screen is not me (my house is an inchoate sprawl with no dog-proof writing surface making old-style work difficult....yep lame excuses, ... on 11th June 2013, I shall post or break myself to the ranks).
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Re: Cassander, Olympias & the 3rd Diadoch War: Early Chronol

Post by agesilaos »

There is good reason to place the siege of Megalopolis at the start of the campaigning season of 317. Diodoros is clear, XVIII 74, that the Athenian decision to side with Kassandros was actuated by Polyperchon’s failure, concomitant with their new alignment was the acceptance of Demetrios of Phaleron as overseer. Diogenes Laertius, V 75 and Diodoros XX 45 I both say the Phalerian was in power for ten years. He was ousted by Demetrios Poliorketes at the end of Thargelion 307 (Plut. ‘Dem’ 8 iii), May in our calendar. The Marmor Parium, however has his rule begin in the archonship of Demogenes which began five weeks, or so, after Plutarch’s date on 1st Hekatombaion.

The campaigning season began in Mounichion, so the siege of Megalopolis would have run for about two months. Polyperchon had to move his army probably from the Argolid where he had wintered build two camps and successfully conduct mining operations. The Megalopolitans had time to take in all their possessions (leaving no supplies for Polyperchon, who had been forced to move into the Peloponnese through lack of supplies in Attica; making a winter campaign unlikely, in my view he would have to wait for the early ‘milk’ crop of the next spring.

When Polyperchon leaves Megalopolis, Diodoros says he, ‘ went off on other more necessary business’. Pascalis Paschidis (‘Missing Years in the Biography of Polyperchon 318/7 and 308 BC Onwards), Tekmeria.org) posits that this was preparations for an Asian foray mentioned in a decree from Nesos near Adrymettion, IG XII 2, 645, but he places Megalopolis in 318. Since, Polyperchon next appears leading an army from Epeiros into Macedonia it would be more sensible to see the ‘more necessary business’ as the preparations for Olympias’ return, which had been planned for the previous year but stymied by Eumenes’ advice to her, Diod XVIII 58 iii. It is possible that Kassandros attacked him during his withdrawl and drove him into Epeiros capturing some elephants and causing the Kassandros faction to come out of the woodwork and Eurydike to announce her own assumption of Royal powers in the name of her husband. Equally, Polyperchon could have left the kingdom for Epeiros and had his elephant park raided in his absence. Kassandros’ raid prompted the premature move of his supporters but he was too weak to remain and withdrew to take advantage of Polyperchon’s loss of face in the Peloponnese.

Eumenes’ condition for Olympias return was a decision in the war, which clearly had not occurred, but on this reconstruction she could see her hopes melting away and might have felt compelled to act before Eurydike could make herself too popular or Kassandros too strong.

These events would have occupied Metageitnion, as Kassandros was at Tegea when he received Eurydike’s plea for help and dashed to her aid.

The clash at Euia must predate Philip III’ death in Pyanepsion and was probably quite hard on the heels of Kassandros’ withdrawl from Macedonia, news of it may have emboldened the Tegaeans to resist Kassandros. It is in the gap between the bloodless victory and Kassandros’ second invasion that I would place Polyperchon’s trip to Asia. This in turn predicates that his fleet was yet to be destroyed.

During his absence, Olympias wrought her vengeance and successfully alienated most of her support. She may well have been the victim of propaganda used by Polyperchon to get her to move against Eumenes’ advice. In the propaganda war of the period Kassandros’ never accuses Polyperchon of any part in the regicide but more telling is the fact that when Kassandros invades through the Perrhaebian passes, which Olympias’ generals try to defend, Polyperchon ends up not on the Macedonian side but in Azorios in Thessaly. He would seem to be coming from the south not defending the north.

If Polyperchon was expected from the sea it would help to explain why Olympias shut herself up in Pydna, a port town. The corollary of Polyperchon’s failure to land in Macedonia is that he had lost command of the sea, putting the battle at the Temple of the Chalcedonians soon after Kassandros’ second invasion and thus around Maimakterion (just before the absolute close season for sailing). Whilst Polyperchon had sent Kleitos north to cover the Hellespont and prevent Antigonos transferring troops to Europe (which does not seem to have been his intention), Nikanor may only have moved in tandem with Kassandros’ move north, making the boats with which he turned the Aetolian blockade of Thermopylai those of Nikanor’s fleet, one would have to wonder where he could have collected sufficient vessels otherwise.

The first clash between Kleitos and Nikanor must post-date the installation of Demetrios and Kassander’s Athenian alliance as Nikanor is credited with ‘over one hundred ships’ in Diodoros and ‘130’ in Polyainos IV 6 viii, yet Kassandros brought only 35 from Antigonos, XVIII 68 I, and had no maritime allies other than Aegina which could hardly have supplied 95 capital ships.

Diodoros does report the naval battles before the Athenian volte-face; battles 72/3, new alliance 74. But this is clearly an error, where did Kassandros find his extra ships and crews if not from the alliance with Athens? Diodoros has compressed events, and allocated them to the wrong year, events in the Hellespont seem to have confused his system of a European and Asian divide; he starts with the end of the siege of Megalopolis , clearly European moves to the Hellespont in the same chapter relates his Hellespontine material and ends, 73 iv, ‘And the affairs of Asia progressed to such a point during this year’.

If this chronology is right, then Antigonos must have wintered in Phrygia 317/16 and not in Mesopotamia which pushes Eumenes’ defeat to winter 316/15 allowing for a long siege of Pydna, Olympias’ death in Demokleides’ archonship, as per the Marmor Parium .
When you think about, it free-choice is the only possible option.
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