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HistoryAncient MacedoniaThe Antigonids

The Antigonids

The dynasty of the Antigonids
Antigonos Gonatas
Demetrios II and Antigonos Doson
Philip V and Perseus

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Tetradrachm of Perseus
Silver tetradrachm with the head of Perseus, last Macedonian king, 179-168 BC, Athens, Numismatic Museum.

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Tetradrachm of Perseus
179-168 BC

Philip V was endowed with considerable political and military abilities, which he evinced as much in his wars against the Aitolians, the Romans and their allies (War of the Allies, 220-217 BC; 1st Macedonian War, 215-205 BC; 2nd Macedonian War, 200-197 BC; Antiochian War, 192-189 BC), as in his fundamental reforms in his kingdom.

Unfortunately for him however the rise of Rome, by now meteoric, no longer permitted Macedonia to play a leading role in the Greek Peninsula. After his defeat in the 2nd Macedonian War, Philip became aware of the new state of affairs and assumed a policy of defence with the sole objective of ensuring Macedonian independence. His son and successor Perseus followed the same policy.

But the independence of Macedonia was no longer tolerated by Rome, who declared war on trivial pretexts (3rd Macedonian War, 171-168 BC). After four years of failing resistance, the Macedon-ians were crushed at Pydna in 168 BC by Lucius Aemilius Paullus. Perseus was taken as a prisoner to Italy, where he died, while Macedonia became a federation of four small semi-autonomous areas called 'merides' (portions).

See Also
History - Table of the Hellenistic kings
The institutions of the Hellenistic period
The economy of the Hellenistic period
Civilization - The mints of the autonomous cities (2nd c. BC)


Macedonian Heritage
Content courtesy Ekdotike Athenon S.A.