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Please note that Mommsen uses the AUC chronology (Ab Urbe Condita), i.e. from the founding of the City of Rome. You can use this reference table to have the B.C. dates


IV. The Revolution

From: The History of Rome, by Theodor Mommsen
Translated with the sanction of the author by William Purdie Dickson

The History of Old Rome

Chapter I - The Subject Countries Down to the Times of the Gracchi


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Page 108

The Syrian empire was just then in the utmost disorganization, partly through the failure of the Hellenizing attempts of Antiochus Epiphanes, partly through the troubles as to the succession that occurred after his death; and the provinces of the interior were in full course of breaking off from Antioch and the region of the coast. In Commagene for instance, the most northerly province of Syria on the Cappadocian frontier, the satrap Ptolemaeus asserted his independence, as did also on the opposite bank of the Euphrates the prince of Edessa in northern Mesopotamia or the province of Osrhoene, and the satrap Timarchus in the important province of Media; in fact the latter got his independence confirmed by the Roman senate, and, supported by Armenia as his ally, ruled as far down as Seleucia on the Tigris.

Disorders of this sort were permanent features of the Asiatic empire: the provinces under their partially or wholly independent satraps were in continual revolt, as was also the capital with its unruly and refractory populace resembling that of Rome or Alexandria. The whole pack of neighbouring kings--those of Egypt, Armenia, Cappadocia, Pergamus-- incessantly interfered in the affairs of Syria and fostered disputes as to the succession, so that civil war and the division of the sovereignty de facto among two or more pretenders became almost standing calamities of the country. The Roman protecting power, if it did not instigate these neighbours, was an inactive spectator. In addition to all this the new Parthian empire from the eastward pressed hard on the aliens not merely with its material power, but with the whole superiority of its national language and religion and of its national military and political organization.

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