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The Fourth War

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Chapter Summary

The Fourth Syrian War is the first of the series for which one possess an ancient account, by Polybios, which goes into detail on the actual military campaigns, so for the first time a reasonable estimate may be made of the competing strategies in a war. In the meeting Apollophanes, after an inconclusive discussion, recommended first retaking Seleukeia, which was his home city. The basic mistake of the Ptolemaic government was therefore internal, in that the army generals commanding in Koile Syria, Theodotos and Panaitolos, both Aitolians, were so alienated as to be open to Seleukid subversion. The presence and activity of Nikolaos and his army in Palestine indicated clearly enough that the Ptolemaic government was making major preparations to resist Antiochos' attack.

Keywords: fourth Syrian war; Nikolaos; Ptolemaic government; Seleukeia



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