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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


V. The Establishment of the Military Monarchy

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 IV - Pompeius and the East


The Original Greek New Testament

» Contents of this Chapter

Page 39

Annexation of Syria

To create order amidst this chaos did not require either brilliance of conception or a mighty display of force, but it required a clear insight into the interests of Rome and of her subjects, and vigour and consistency in establishing and maintaining the institutions recognized as necessary. The policy of the senate in support of legitimacy had sufficiently degraded itself; the general, whom the opposition had brought into power, was not to be guided by dynastic considerations, but had only to see that the Syrian kingdom should not be withdrawn from the clientship of Rome in future either by the quarrels of pretenders or by the Covetousness of neighbours.

But to secure this end there was only one course; that the Roman community should send a satrap to grasp with a vigorous hand the reins of government, which had long since practically slipped from the hands of the kings of the ruling house more even through their own fault than through outward misfortunes. This course Pompeius took. Antiochus the Asiatic, on requesting to be acknowledged as the hereditary ruler of Syria, received the answer that Pompeius would not give back the sovereignty to a king who knew neither how to maintain nor how to govern his kingdom, even at the request of his subjects, much less against their distinctly expressed wishes.

With this letter of the Roman proconsul the house of Seleucus was ejected from the throne which it had occupied for two hundred and fifty years. Antiochus soon after lost his life through the artifice of the emir Sampsiceramus, as whose client he played the ruler in Antioch; thenceforth there is no further mention of these mock-kings and their pretensions.

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