Caranus of Macedon

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Caranus
King of Macedon
Aigai- Before 520-500 BCE.jpg
Pre 500 BC Aigai Trihemiobol associated with the Karanos Oracle
Reign traditional: 808–778 BC
Successor Coenus
Issue Coenus
Dynasty Argead
Father Temenus
Religious beliefs Ancient Greek religion

Caranus or Karanos (Ancient Greek: Κάρανος; 808–778 BC) was the first king of ancient Macedon according to later traditions. According to Herodotus, however, the first king was Perdiccas I. Caranus is first reported by Theopompus[1] (FGrH, No. 115, Frag. 393) and is the mythical founder of the Argead dynasty.[2][3]

Caranus' way is labeled by the blue colour

Myth[edit]

According to Greek myth, Caranus was son of Temenus[citation needed], king of Argos, who in turn was a Heraclid, a descendant of Heracles. Plutarch agrees on the Heraclid lineage of Caranus and argues that Alexander the Great is a descendant of Heracles through Caranus.[4] Temenus, along with Cresphontes and Aristodemus were the three Doric leaders who invaded the Mycenean Peloponnese region. Then they proceeded to divide the conquered territories between them. Cresphontes was given Messenia and Sparta; Aristodemus took Laconia; and finally Temenus was given Argos. Following the death of Temenus, the Princes argued about who should be king. One of them, Pheidon, defeated his brothers in battle and took over the kingship. Caranus then, decided to find another kingdom of his own, where he could be King. First, however he went to the Oracle of Delphi to ask Pythias' advice. "You should find your kingdom there, where you will find plenty of game and domestic animals, was her advice." Thus Caranus and his entourage moved to the North, in search of suitable land to establish his new kingdom. Finally, he discovered a green valley, with a lot of game and goats, whereupon he thought that the prophecy of Pythia has been fulfilled. Thus he built a city there, which he named Aigai (Greek: Αἰγαί), present day Vergina, a site of substantial archaeological activity, as numerous important findings have been unearthed.

View of historians[edit]

According to Justin (7.1) citing Marsyas of Pella

According to Chronicon (Eusebius)

According to Livy (The History of Rome, 45.9.3)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Theopompus the Historian, Page 270 By Gordon Spencer Shrimpton ISBN 0-7735-0837-6
  2. ^ Peter Green, Alexander of Macedon, 356–323 B.C.: A Historical Biography, University of California Press, 2013, p.103
  3. ^ According to Pausanias (Description of Greece, 9.40, 8-9), Caranus set up a trophy after the Argive fashion for a victory against Cisseus: "The Macedonians say that Caranus, king of Macedonia, overcame in battle Cisseus, a chieftain in a bordering country. For his victory Caranus set up a trophy after the Argive fashion, but it is said to have been upset by a lion from Olympus, which then vanished. Caranus, they assert, realized that it was a mistaken policy to incur the undying hatred of the non-Greeks dwelling around, and so, they say, the rule was adopted that no king of Macedonia, neither Caranus himself nor any of his successors, should set up trophies, if they were ever to gain the good-will of their neighbors. This story is confirmed by the fact that Alexander set up no trophies, neither for his victory over Dareius nor for those he won in India."
  4. ^ Plutarch, Alexander, 2.1