Eumenes II

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Eumenes II "Savior"
Attalus II
BornBefore 220 BC
Kingdom of Pergamon
(modern-day Turkey)
Died159 BC
(modern-day Bergama, İzmir, Turkey)
GreekΕὐμένης Σωτήρ
Greek Polytheism

Eumenes II Soter (

Attalid dynasty
of Pergamon.


The eldest son of king

Seleucid expansion towards the Aegean, leading to the defeat of Antiochus the Great at the Battle of Magnesia in 190 BC.[1]

He had refused to marry a daughter of

Antiochus III upon noticing that he was about to engage in a war against the Romans.[2]
He then had married
Ariarathes IV (King of Cappadocia) and his wife Antiochis, and their son was named Attalus III

Expansion of the kingdom

Asia Minor after the Treaty of Apamea, with the gains of Pergamon (light blue) and Rhodes
(light green)

Eumenes had followed his father's footsteps and aided the Romans whenever he could, firstly in the

Prusias I in 183 BC, although being defeated, he received Roman support which ended in his victory.[5]

Following the

Peace of Apamea in 188 BC, he received the regions of Phrygia, Lydia, Pisidia, Pamphylia, and parts of Lycia from his Roman allies.[6] By dividing Asia Minor between their allies Rhodes and Pergamon the Romans made sure that neither state would be able to become too powerful in the region. The Romans also managed to ensure that Rome would remain involved in the affairs of the region.[7]

Falling out of favour with the Romans

He later fell out of favour with the Romans after they suspected him of conspiring with

Seleucus IV[10] but due to the peace of Apamea, denied siding with him. Later on, in around 179 BC, after suffering losses, Pharnaces sued for peace.[11]

When Eumenes' health began to weaken his brother Attalus II ascended to the throne as a co-ruler in 160 BC.[12] Since Eumenes' and Stratonice's son was still a minor,[citation needed] the throne was assumed by Attalus, who also married Eumenes' widow Stratonice in 158 BC upon becoming king.[12]


Eumenes II was a shrewd ruler and politician, who raised his state to a powerful monarchy. During his reign Pergamum became a flourishing city, where men of learning were always welcome, among them

Battle of the Giants.[8] His great achievement was the expansion of the Library at Pergamon, one of the great libraries of the Ancient World and the place traditionally associated with the creation of parchment, although it had existed for centuries.[13] He also built a stoa on the Athenian acropolis.[14]


  1. ^ Livius. Eumenes II Soter. Battle of Magnesia: Antiochus defeated by the Romans and Pergamenes
  2. ^ Appain. The Syrian Wars. But the latter, seeing that Antiochus was about to engage in war with the Romans and that he wanted to form a marriage connection with him on this account, refused her.
  3. ^ Livius. Eumenes II Soter. Attalus II Philadelphus visits Rome and warns against Antiochus III..
  4. ^ a b Chisholm 1911.
  5. ^ Livius. Eumenes II Soter. 183: War against king Prusias I of Bithynia; although Eumenes is defeated, Roman support gives him in the end victory.
  6. ^ Livius. Eumenes II Soter. Peace of Apamea: Rome awards Pergamon large parts of Asia Minor, including Ephesus, Telmessus, and Tralles.
  7. .
  8. ^ a b  One or more of the preceding sentences incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainChisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "Eumenes s.v. Eumenes II.". Encyclopædia Britannica. Vol. 9 (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press. p. 889.
  9. ^ Diodorus Siculus. The Library of History. Seleucus, leading an army of considerable size, advanced as if intending to cross the Taurus in support of Pharnaces; but on taking note of the treaty that his father had made with the Romans, the terms of which forbade
  10. ^ Polybius. Histories.
  11. ^ a b Strabo, 13.4.2; Hansen, pp. 44–45; Hurwit, p. 271.
  12. .
  13. .


Regnal titles
Preceded by
King of Pergamon

197–159 BC
Succeeded by
Attalus II