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409 PARTHIA-CIVIL AND MILITARY ANNALS.

south, and had. brought Arya, Sarangia, and Arachosia under their sway.

Eucrafidaswas now the king of Bactria. It appeared that during his reign the full

political and military energies of his people had been put forth, and that victory and

organization could go no further under the Dynasty of Euthydemus. A great difficulty

existed in holding in one even the countries already brought into union. The student of

history will not have failed to note among the ancient nations to what an extent a

mountain barrier was a bar to the political unity of the peoples on the two sides of the

chain. At the time of which we speak it was found difficult to hold together the nations

lying on the south and the north of the Paropamislis. While Eucratidas was absorbed with

the work of unifying the Southern races, the Northern races rose against him. There the

Scythians made invasions, and the nomadic life reasserted itself in rebellion. Turning his

attention to these distractions, the king soon found that the tribes of the South were not

to be trusted in his absence. Thus between the two the energies of Eucratidas were wasted,

and the kingdom vexed with disunion and war.

In the direction of Syria there was equal confusion. The great dominion established by

Seleucus was gradually receding and contracting around Antioch. Even in those foreign

parts still dependent upon the Seleucid Icing there was a loosing of the bands wherewith

they were bound to the center. At this time Seleucus Philopalor had become king and had

involved himself in foreign wars. Now it was that Coele-Syria became an object of

contention between the Ptolemies and the Seleucidae. It was said that Antiochus the Great

in giving his daughter Cleopatra to Ptolemy V., had promised to dower her with Coele-

Syria, which would have transferred the country to Egypt. The reigning Seleucus also found

cause of quarrel and war with the Grecian section of the Alexandrian Empire and with

Armenia, now in revolt against himself. Of a certainty a prince thus distracted by serious

conflicts on three sides of his dominions was in no condition successfully to resist a

determined movement for nationality and independence among the Asiatics beyond the Tigris.

It thus happened that Mithridates found on his accession, to power a fair field for his

ambitions. He found Eucratidas, his Bactrian rival, involved in a war on the side of

India. This circumstance seemed to invite the Parthian to his first aggression. He led an

army into the adjacent parts of Bactria, and seized the two provinces of Turiua and

Aspionus. It is believed that by this, his first successful foreign campaign, the king of

Parthia possessed himself of the regions out of which the Scythic elements of the Parthian

nation had been derived. A source of disturbance was thus cut off, and its fountain drawn

up by absorption. The king made himself secure in his conquest, and then wheeled about

towards Media. We have seen how the latter province had already been partly taken away

from the Syrian kings. But the latter still held their sway over Media Magna, and it was

against this district that Mithridates now advanced.

The Syrian crown at this time had descended to Antiochus Eupator, a mere youth, incapable

of affairs. The kingdom was in the hands of the regent Lysias; but his energies were for a

while exhausted in a war with the Jews. At the court, also, he found opposition in the

designs of a certain Philip, who, as the teacher of Eupator, claimed the right of

controlling the boy- king's actions and policy. Civil war broke out until what time Philip

was overthrown and slain. By this time Prince Demetrius, a cousin of Seleucus, laid claim

to the throne in virtue pf their common descent. Demetrius had been given by one of the

former Selucids as a hostage to Rome. His youth was spent in the city of the Tiber. At

length he made his escape from Italy, returned to Syria, headed a revolution against his

cousin, and gained the throne.

It was during this confused and confusing condition of affairs that Mithridates threw his

army upon the Medes. It was of little avail that the Syrian claim to the