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Diadochi(dīăd`əkī) [Gr.,=successors], the Macedonian generals and administrators who succeeded Alexander the GreatAlexander the Great
or Alexander III,
356–323 B.C., king of Macedon, conqueror of much of Asia. Youth and Kingship
The son of Philip II of Macedon and Olympias, he had Aristotle as his tutor and was given a classical education.
..... Click the link for more information. . Alexander's empire, the largest that the world had known to that time, was quickly built. At his death in 323 B.C. it disintegrated even more quickly. Alexander's more important followers, later known as the Diadochi, sought to increase their personal power in a bloody scramble. Chief among them were AntipaterAntipater
, d. 319 B.C., Macedonian general. He was one of the ablest and most trusted lieutenants of Philip II and was a friend and supporter of Alexander the Great. When Alexander went on his Asian campaign, Antipater was left as regent (334–323 B.C.) in Macedon.
..... Click the link for more information. , PerdiccasPerdiccas
, d. 321 B.C., Macedonian general under Alexander the Great. After the death of Alexander (323) he ruled as regent from Babylon. He strove in vain to hold the empire together, but was opposed by others of the Diadochi.
..... Click the link for more information. , EumenesEumenes
, c.361–316 B.C., secretary to Philip II of Macedon and to Alexander the Great. A Thracian Greek, he was capable, diplomatic, and eloquent and proved himself able as a general as well as a secretary.
..... Click the link for more information. , Craterus, Antigonus (Antigonus IAntigonus I
(Antigonus the One-Eyed or Antigonus Cyclops) , 382?–301 B.C., general of Alexander the Great and ruler in Asia. He was made (333 B.C.) governor of Phrygia, and after the death of Alexander he was advanced by the friendship of Antipater, who with Ptolemy I and
..... Click the link for more information. ), Ptolemy (Ptolemy IPtolemy I
(Ptolemy Soter) , d. 284 B.C., king of ancient Egypt, the first ruler of the Macedonian dynasty (or Lagid dynasty), son of a Macedonian named Lagus. He was one of the leading generals of Alexander the Great, and after Alexander's death (323 B.C.
..... Click the link for more information. ), Seleucus (Seleucus ISeleucus I
(Seleucus Nicator) , d. 280 B.C., king of ancient Syria. An able general of Alexander the Great, he played a leading part in the wars of the Diadochi. In the new partition of the empire in 312 B.C. he received Babylonia.
..... Click the link for more information. ), and LysimachusLysimachus
, c.355–281 B.C., Thessalian general of Alexander the Great. He was a commander in Alexander's fleet on the Hydaspes as well as his bodyguard. On Alexander's death (323 B.C.) Lysimachus took control of Thrace. He joined (314 B.C.
..... Click the link for more information. .
The first struggle was over the regency; theoretically Alexander's feeble-minded brother, Philip, and also Alexander's posthumous son by Roxana had the real claim to the inheritance. Perdiccas had the regency (323–322), in effect if not in name, to which Antipater also had claim. Eumenes supported Perdiccas, while Antigonus, Ptolemy, and Craterus supported Antipater. In 321, battle was joined; the allies of Antipater won, although Craterus was killed. On the death (319) of Antipater the struggle was on again. There were shifting alliances, but in general the chief figure was Antigonus, who, with the help of his son, Demetrius Poliorcetes (Demetrius IDemetrius I
(Demetrius Poliorcetes) , c.337–283 B.C., king of Macedon. The son of Antigonus I, he proved himself a very able commander in his father's wars, particularly against Ptolemy I. Though Ptolemy defeated him at Gaza in 312 B.C.
..... Click the link for more information. of Macedon), attempted to rebuild Alexander's empire. He failed. Antigonus and Demetrius were finally defeated in the battle of IpsusIpsus
, small town, ancient Phrygia, Asia Minor. Antigonus I, who had summoned his son Demetrius to his aid, was defeated and slain there by his rivals Seleucus and Lysimachus in 301 B.C. The battle of Ipsus resulted in the dissolution of Alexander's empire.
..... Click the link for more information. (301 B.C.). The Diadochi had been declaring themselves kings, Antigonus first and then the others.
The contest was carried on to the next generation, with Demetrius fighting successfully against CassanderCassander
, 358–297 B.C., king of Macedon, one of the chief figures in the wars of the Diadochi. The son of Antipater, he was an officer under Alexander the Great, but there was ill feeling between them.
..... Click the link for more information. , the son of Antipater, and it was pursued even further with the wars between the Seleucidae and the Ptolemies. Commonly, however, the period of the Diadochi is said to end with the victory of Seleucus I over Lysimachus at the battle of Corupedion in 281, fixing the boundaries of the Hellenistic world for the next century. This left the descendants of Ptolemy, Seleucus, and Antigonus as the chief claimants to power in the Hellenistic age, and the empire of Alexander was irrevocably split.
See study by J. Romm (2011).