Theophilos (king)

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This article is about the 1st century BC Indo-Greek king. For other uses, see Theophilus.
Theophilos
Indo-Greek king
Reign 130 BCE or 90 BCE

Theophilos (Greek: Θεὀφιλος) was a minor Indo-Greek king who ruled for a short time in the Paropamisadae. He was possibly a relative of Zoilos I and is only known from coins. It is possible that some of Theophilos' coins in fact belong to another ruler, in Greek Bactria, during approximately the same period.

Time of reign[edit]

While Bopearachchi suggests c. 90 BCE, R. C. Senior believes that Theophilos ruled in the 130s BCE. Both numismatics do however suggest that the reigns of Theophilos and Nicias were adjacent.

Coins of Theophilos[edit]

Just like Zoilos I, Theophilos struck Indian silver coins with Herakles, a common symbol of the house of Euthydemus I, and the epithet Dikaios/Dhramikasa "The Just/Follower of the Dharma". The monograms are mostly the same as those of Nicias. The bronzes have similar inscriptions.

Bronzes of Theophilos:

A Bactrian king Theophilos?[edit]

However, there is a wholly different, and very rare, Attic coinage of a king Theophilos. Found in Bactria, these coins feature a reverse with a seated Athena with Nike, a different title Autokrator "Autocrat King", and also a separate monogram. Although this is not a very common occurrence on Indo-Greek coins, the coins of Theophilos have generally been accepted as belonging to one unique king. Bopearachchi has supported this proposition by pointing at the similarity between the portraits and the identical treatment of the diadem (one end straight, one end crooked).

Against this, Jakobsson[1] argues that the coins issued by the later Indo-Greek kings for export into Bactria were consistently similar to these kings' regular Indian coinage. Consequently, the coins of Theophilos Autokrator were not such export issues, but should belong to a Bactrian ruler. Jakobsson suggests that Theophilos Autokrator was a Bactrian princelet who briefly maintained himself in some part of Bactria, after the Hellenistic kingdom there had been vanquished by nomads, presumably in the 120s BCE.

Indo-Greek Kings, territories and chronology
Based on Bopearachchi (1991)[2]
Greco-Bactrian kings Indo-Greek kings
Territories/
dates
West Bactria East Bactria Paropamisade
Arachosia Gandhara Western Punjab Eastern Punjab
326-325 BCE Campaigns of Alexander the Great in India
312 BCE Creation of the Seleucid Empire
305 BCE Seleucid Empire after Mauryan war
280 BCE Foundation of Ai-Khanoum
255–239 BCE Independence of the
Greco-Bactrian kingdom
Diodotus I
239–223 BCE Diodotus II
230–200 BCE Euthydemus I
200–190 BCE Demetrius I
190-185 BCE Euthydemus II
190–180 BCE Agathocles Pantaleon
185–170 BCE Antimachus I
180–160 BCE Apollodotus I
175–170 BCE Demetrius II
160–155 BCE Antimachus II
170–145 BCE Eucratides I
155–130 BCE Yuezhi occupation,
loss of Ai-Khanoum
Eucratides II
Plato
Heliocles I
Menander I
130–120 BCE Yuezhi occupation Zoilos I Agathokleia
120–110 BCE Lysias Strato I
110–100 BCE Antialcidas Heliokles II
100 BCE Polyxenos Demetrius III
100–95 BCE Philoxenus
95–90 BCE Diomedes Amyntas Epander
90 BCE Theophilos Peukolaos Thraso
90–85 BCE Nicias Menander II Artemidoros
90–70 BCE Hermaeus Archebius
Yuezhi occupation Maues (Indo-Scythian)
75–70 BCE Telephos Apollodotus II
65–55 BCE Hippostratos Dionysios
55–35 BCE Azes I (Indo-Scythian) Zoilos II
55–35 BCE Apollophanes
25 BCE – 10 CE Strato II and III
Rajuvula (Indo-Scythian)

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Jakobsson, J: Theophilos Autokrator, a last Bactrian king? ONS Journal 202 (2010).
  2. ^ O. Bopearachchi, "Monnaies gréco-bactriennes et indo-grecques, Catalogue raisonné", Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris, 1991, p.453

References[edit]

  • The Greeks in Bactria and India, W.W. Tarn, Cambridge University Press.
Preceded by
Diomedes
Indo-Greek ruler in Paropamisadae
c. 90 BCE
Succeeded by
Nicias