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This is an extract from the wikipedia entry


Antipater (c. 400 – 319) was a Macedonian general and statesman under kings Philip II of Macedon and Alexander the Great, and father of King Cassander. In 320, he became regent of all of Alexander the Great's Empire but died the next year; he had named an officer named Polyperchon as his successor instead of his son Cassander, and a two-year-long power struggle ensued.

Career under Philip and Alexander:
Nothing is known of his early career until 342, when he was appointed by Philip to govern Macedon as his regent while the former left for three years of hard and successful campaigning against Thracian and Scythian tribes, which extended Macedonian rule as far as the Hellespont. In 342, when the Athenians tried to assume control of the Euboean towns and expel the pro-Macedonian rulers, he sent Macedonian troops to stop them. In the autumn of the same year, Antipater went to Delphi, as Philip's representative in the Amphictyonic League, a religious organization to which Macedon had been admitted in 346. After the triumphal Macedonian victory at the Battle of Chaeronea in 338, Antipater was sent as ambassador to Athens (337–336) to negotiate a peace treaty and return the bones of the Athenians who had fallen in the battle. He started as a great friend to both the young Alexander and the boy's mother, Olympias, and aided Alexander in the struggle to secure his succession after Philip's death, in 336.
He joined Parmenion in advising Alexander the Great not to set out on his Asiatic expedition until he had provided by marriage for the succession to the throne. On the king's departure in 334, he was left regent in Macedonia and made "general (strategos) of Europe", positions he held until 323. The European front was to prove initially quite agitated, and Antipater also had to send reinforcements to the king, as he did while the king was at Gordium in the winter of 334–333. The Persian fleet under Memnon of Rhodes and Pharnabazus was apparently a considerable danger for Antipater, bringing war in the Aegean sea and threatening war in Europe. Luckily for the regent, Memnon died during the siege of Mytilene on the isle of Lesbos and the remaining fleet dispersed in 333, after Alexander's victory at the Battle of Issus.
More dangerous enemies were nearer home; tribes in Thrace rebelled in 332, led by Memnon of Thrace, the Macedonian governor of the region, followed shortly by the revolt of Agis III, king of Sparta. The Spartans, who were not members of the League of Corinth and had not participated in Alexander's expedition, saw in the Asian campaign the long-awaited chance to take back control over the Peloponnese after the disastrous defeats at the Battle of Leuctra and Battle of Mantinea. The Persians generously funded Sparta's ambitions, making possible the formation of an army 20,000 strong. After assuming virtual control of Crete, Agis tried to build an anti-Macedonian front. While Athens remained neutral, the Achaeans, Arcadians and Elis became his allies, with the important exception of Megalopolis, the staunchly anti-Spartan capital of Arcadia. In 331 Agis started to besiege the city with his entire army, forcing Antipater to act.

So to not have two enemies simultaneously, Antipater pardoned Memnon and even let him keep his office in Thrace, while great sums of money were sent to him by Alexander. This helped to create, with Thessalian help and many mercenaries, a force double that of Agis, which Antipater in person led south in 330 to confront the Spartans. In the spring of that year, the two armies clashed near Megalopolis. Agis fell with many of his best soldiers, but not without inflicting heavy losses on the Macedonians. Utterly defeated, the Spartans sued for peace; the latter's answer was to negotiate directly with the League of Corinth, but the Spartan emissaries preferred to treat directly with Alexander, who imposed on Sparta's allies a penalty of 120 talents and the entrance of Sparta in the league.
Alexander appears to have been quite jealous of Antipater's victory; according to Plutarch, the king wrote in a letter to his viceroy: "It seems, my friends that while we have been conquering Darius here, there has been a battle of mice in Arcadia". Antipater was disliked for supporting oligarchs and tyrants in Greece, but he also worked with the League of Corinth, built by Philip. In addition, his previously close relationship with the ambitious Olympias greatly deteriorated. Whether from jealousy or from the necessity of guarding against the evil consequences of the dissension between Olympias and Antipater, in 324, Alexander ordered the latter to lead fresh troops into Asia, while Craterus, in charge of discharged veterans returning home, was appointed to take over the regency in Macedon.
When Alexander suddenly died in Babylon in 323 however, Antipater was able to forestall the transfer of power. Some later historians, such as Justin in his Historia Philippicae et Totius Mundi Origines et Terrae Situs blamed Antipater for the death of Alexander, accusing him of murdering him through poison. However, this view is disputed by most historians and Alexander is believed to have died of natural causes.

The fight for succession:
The new regent, Perdiccas, left Antipater in control of Greece. Antipater faced wars with Athens, Aetolia, and Thessaly that made up the Lamian War, in which southern Greeks attempted to re-assert their political autonomy. He defeated them at the Battle of Crannon in 322, with Craterus' help, and broke up the coalition. As part of this he imposed oligarchy upon Athens and demanded the surrender of Demosthenes, who committed suicide to escape capture. Later in the same year Antipater and Craterus were engaged in a war against the Aetolians when he received the news from Antigonus in Asia Minor that Perdiccas contemplated making himself outright ruler of the empire. Antipater and Craterus accordingly concluded peace with the Aetolians and went to war against Perdiccas, allying themselves with Ptolemy, the satrap of Egypt. Antipater crossed over to Asia in 321. While still in Syria, he received information that Perdiccas had been murdered by his own soldiers. Craterus fell in battle against Eumenes (Diodorus xviii. 25-39).

Regent of the Empire:
In the treaty of Triparadisus (321), Antipater participated in a new division of Alexander's great kingdom. He appointed himself supreme regent of all Alexander's empire and was left in Greece as guardian of Alexander's son Alexander IV and his disabled brother Philip III. Having quelled a mutiny of his troops and commissioned Antigonus to continue the war against Eumenes and the other partisans of Perdiccas, Antipater returned to Macedonia, arriving there in 320 (Justin xiii. 6). Soon after, he was seized by an illness which terminated his active career.

Death and struggle for succession:
Antipater died of old age in 319, at the age of 81. By his side was his son Cassander. Controversially, Antipater did not appoint Cassander to succeed him as regent, citing as the reason for his decision Cassander's relative youth (at the time of Antipater's passing, Cassander was 36). Over Cassander, Antipater chose the aged officer Polyperchon as regent. Cassander became indignant at this, believing that he'd earned the right to become regent by virtue of his loyalty and experience. Thus he appealed to general Antigonus to assist him in battling Polyperchon for the position. In 317, after two years of war with Polyperchon, Cassander emerged victorious. Cassander would go on to rule Macedonia for nineteen years, first as regent and later as king, ultimately founding the Antipatrid dynasty.

Antipater was one of the sons of a Macedonian nobleman called Iollas or Iolaus and his family were distant collateral relatives to the Argead dynasty.
Antipater was originally from the Macedonian city of Paliura; had a brother called Cassander;] was the paternal uncle of Cassander's child Antigone and was the maternal great uncle of Berenice I of Egypt.
Antipater had ten children from various unknown wives.
His daughters were: Phila, wife of Balacrus, Craterus and Demetrius I of Macedon. Eurydice, wife of Ptolemy I Soter. Her son Meleager would rule Macedonia for two months in 279. Nicaea, wife of Perdiccas and Lysimachus.
His sons were: Iollas Cassander, King of Macedonia Pleistarchus, a general and governor in his brother's service. Phillip, also a military commander under his brother. Nicanor Alexarchus Triparadeisus




How to cite this article: Rickard, J (3 July 2007), Antipater (397-319), http://www.historyofwar.org/articles/people_antipater.html.


Antipater was a senior Macedonian general under both Philip II and Alexander the Great. He outlived Alexander, and played an important role in holding his empire together until his death of natural causes in 319. He was a conservative Macedonian, apparently unenthusiastic for Alexander’s adventures in Asia, but loyal to the royal family. He was also a close friend and correspondent of Aristotle.
Under Philip he performed military and diplomatic roles. In 347-6 he served as the head of Philip’s embassy to Athens, helping to negotiate a peace between Macedonia and Athens. In 346 he took part in Philip’s invasion of Thrace, where he was involved in fighting against the mountain tribes of Rhodope. In 338 he one again led an embassy to Athens, after another war between Macedonia and a group of Greek cities. In 336 Philip II was murdered. In the confused period immediately after the event, Antipater helped to establish Alexander on the throne, presenting him to the Macedonian army, who acclaimed Alexander as king. When Alexander embarked on his great expedition into Asia, Antipater was appointed as governor of Macedonia and general of Europe, holding these posts from 334 to the death of Alexander in 323, and effectively retaining them until his own death four years later.
Antipater acted as a regent with full royal authority over the European part of Alexander’s empire. He was president of the synedrion of the Corinthian league, the mechanism by which Philip had exercised his power in Greece. His job was to maintain the peace in Greece, and allow Alexander to carry out his plans without having to worry about his base. He generally sided with tyrants and oligarchies in Greece, correctly believing them to be better allies than the democracies, whose mood could change dramatically in a short period of time. Antipater was also a military commander. In 331 he was faced by a revolt in Thrace that threatened the land link to Asia. While Antipater with his entire army was in Thrace, a more serious threat emerged in the Peloponnese. Sparta had retained her independence, but had lost land, weakening the basis of her power. In the summer of 331 King Agis III of Sparta launched an open revolt against the settlement of Greece, with the aim of regaining Sparta’s lost possessions. Agis raised an army of 20,000 infantry and 2,000 cavalry, but he was unable to persuade Athens to join the revolt. He was effectively confined to the Peloponnese.
In 330 Antipater was free to respond, moving south with an army 40,000 strong. Agis was defeated and killed in battle at Megalopolis and the revolt crushed. Towards the end of Alexander’s life his relationship with Antipater appears to have been under some strain. Antipater had been reluctant to send Macedonian reinforcements to Alexander, possibly because he needed them at home. He had also alienated Alexander’s mother Olympias, who went into voluntary exile at Epirus, from where she undermined Antipater whenever possible.
In 324 Antipater was summoned to join Alexander. At the same time Craterus was dispatched back to Macedonia with orders to replace him as regent of Macedonia. Antipater did not obey the summons, sending his son Cassander in his place. This was not an entirely successful move - Alexander was hostile to Cassander and when Alexander died in 323 it was rumoured that Antipater had sent his son to Babylon to poison the emperor.
In the aftermath of Alexander’s death, his marshals gathered at Babylon to decide the immediate fate of the empire. Neither Antipater nor Craterus were present at Babylon, but the successors needed Antipater’s prestige. Accordingly he was confirmed as regent of Macedonia and Greece. Antipater, Craterus and Perdiccas made up a triumvirate holding what would have been the most important posts if Alexander’s empire had held together. The eventual separation of the empire into distinct kingdoms began at Babylon with the appointment of the satraps. Officially these men were ruling their provinces in the name of the kings, whose authority was being exercised by the regents Perdiccas and Antipater, but even in 323 Ptolemy at least already had his eye on an independent kingdom in Egypt.

Antipater was perhaps the best placed of the regents, having a geographical powerbase of his own in Macedonia. However, he was immediately faced by a crisis in Greece. A coalition of Greek cities led by Athens responded to the death of Alexander with another revolt against Macedonian rule (Lamian War). This time they had the money to raise a large army and the end of Alexander’s war in Persia had created a large pool of unemployed mercenaries. Antipater found himself besieged in the town of Lamia, from where he issued a call for help. Help came from two of his fellow marshals. First to respond was Leonnatus, but he was killed in a cavalry battle. Craterus also responded, initially at sea, where a fleet commandeered by Cleitus defeated the Athenian fleet at Amorgos (and this) in 322. Craterus then shipped his army from Asia Minor to Greece, joining Antipater in time to take part in the battle of Crannon. The rebel army was defeated. Faced with the prospect of a siege, Athens surrendered.
Antipater responded to the revolt by abolishing the democracy in Athens. Antipater made an attempt to tie Alexander’s marshals together by marriage. He had three daughters, each of whom married one or more of the successors. Phila married Craterus, and then Demetrius. Her children with Demetrius founded a Macedonian royal dynasty. Nicaea married Perdiccas and then Lysimachus. Both his daughter Eurydice and his granddaughter Berenice would marry Ptolemy, with Eurydice’s children ruling Egypt until the fall of Cleopatra VII.
The following year saw the first open fighting between the successors (First Diadoch War). This was triggered by the actions of Perdiccas, who was suspected of wanting the Macedonian throne himself. He was seriously considered repudiating Antipater’s daughter Nicaea in favour of Alexander’s sister Cleopatra. An alliance soon formed between Antipater, Antigonus, Craterus and Ptolemy. In the resulting fighting Perdiccas was murdered and Craterus killed in battle. The settlement agreed at Babylon was dead.
A new agreement was made at Triparadisus (320). Antipater had already been appointed as regent to the monarchy before even reaching Triparadisus, giving him the powers originally held by Perdiccas and Craterus. He then rearranged the satrapies, and returned to Macedonia with the two kings. The settlement of Triparadisus lasted no longer than that of Babylon. It depended on Antipater to hold it together, but he was already in his late seventies. In 319 he died of natural causes (something he shared with only two of the more important successors - Ptolemy and Cassander).
His last action was to recommend Polyperchon, a fellow old soldier, as his replacement as epimeletes of the kings. His son Cassander was naturally furious and formed an alliance with Ptolemy, Antigonus and Lysimachus to depose Polyperchon, triggering the Second Diadoch War.


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