Brief Description of Antiochus
Antiochus Epiphanes lived from 215 BCE –
164 BCE. He was the king of Syria from 175 BCE – 164 BCE. The name
Epiphanes means God Revealed. He was given the nickname Epimanes “the
Mad” do to his strange behavior. He was the third son of Antiochus
III, Antiochus the third was also known as Antiochus the Great. In
175 BCE Heliodorus murdered Antiochus’s brother. He was murdered
in an attempt to seize the Syrian crown. Antiochus quickly moved in
and took the throne.
Antiochus took a series of military campaigns to consolidate his power
and to secure the Seleucid kingdom territory. In 168 BCE his military
ambitions came to a halt when the Roman senate ordered him to withdraw
from Cyprus and Egypt. He was allowed to keep Syria.
During his withdrawal from Egypt in 167 BCE he took Jerusalem by force.
He plundered the temple and made the Jews adopt Greek religion and culture.
He also instituted laws. Under his orders sacrifices were to
be made to the gods in every Judean town. In 164 BCE Antiochus died.