From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Didrachm of Amastris. Amastris was the first woman to issue coins in her own name. British Museum.

Amastris (Greek: Ἄμαστρις; killed c. 284 BC) also called Amastrine, was a Persian Princess. She was the daughter of Oxyathres, the brother of the Persian King Darius III.[1]


Amastris was given by Alexander the Great in marriage to Craterus,[2] however Craterus later decided to marry Phila, one of the daughters of Antipater. She later married Dionysius, tyrant of Heraclea Pontica, in Bithynia, in 322 BC. She bore him two sons named: Clearchus II and Oxyathres.[3]

Amastris married Lysimachus in 302 BC. However, he abandoned her shortly afterwards and married Arsinoe II, one of the daughters of Ptolemy I Soter, the first Pharaoh of Ptolemaic Egypt. During the brief marriage of Lysimachus and Amastris, she may have borne him a child, perhaps a daughter who may have been the first wife of Ptolemy Keraunos.[4][5]


After the death of Dionysius, in 306 BC, she became guardian of their children. Several others joined in this administration.[6] After her marriage to Lysimachus ended, Amastris retired to Heraclea, which she governed in her own right. She also founded shortly after 300 BC a city called after her own name Amastris, on the sea-coast of Paphlagonia, by the fusion (synoecism) of the four smaller towns of Sesamus, Cromna, Cytorus and Tium. One of these towns, Tium, later regained its autonomy, but the other three remained part of the city of Amastris' territory. She was drowned by her two sons about 284 BC.[7]


  1. ^ Waldemar Heckel, John Yardley, Alexander the Great: historical texts in translation, Wiley-Blackwell, 2004, p.p.183
  2. ^ Arrian, Anabasis Alexandri, vii. 4
  3. ^ Chris Bennett, Three Notes on Arsinoe; in: A Delta Man in Yebu, edited by A. K. Eyma
  4. ^ Ptolemaic Genealogy: Ptolemy Ceraunus
  5. ^ Ptolemaic Genealogy: Unknown wife of Ptolemy Ceraunus
  6. ^ James Ussher, The Annals of the World, New Leaf Publishing Group, 2007, p 338
  7. ^ Memnon, History of Heracleia, 4, 5; Diodorus Siculus, Bibliotheca, xx. 109