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Polĕmon

Πολέμον).


1.

I. A king of Pontus and the Bosporus. He was the son of Zenon, the orator of Laodicea. As a reward for the services rendered by his father as well as himself, he was appointed by Antony in B.C. 39 to the government of a part of China; and he subsequently obtained in exchange the kingdom of Pontus. He accompanied Antony in his expedition against the Parthians in 36. After the battle of Actium he was able to make his peace with Octavian, who confirmed him in his kingdom. About the year 16 he was intrusted by Agrippa with the charge of reducing the kingdom of Bosporus, of which he was made king after conquering the country. His reign after this was long and prosperous; he extended his dominions as far as the river Tanaïs; but having engaged in an expedition against the barbarian tribe of the Aspurgians, he was not only defeated by them, but taken prisoner, and put to death. By his second wife Pythodoris, who succeeded him on the throne, he left two sons, Polemon II., and Zenon, king of Armenia, and one daughter, who was married to Cotys, king of Thrace.


2.

II. Son of the preceding and of Pythodoris. He was raised to the sovereignty of Pontus and Bosporus by Caligula in A.D. 39. Bosporus was afterwards taken from him by Claudius, who assigned it to Mithridates, while he gave Polemon a portion of Cilicia in its stead, 41. In 62 Polemon was induced by Nero to abdicate the throne, and Pontus was reduced to the condition of a Roman province.


3.

Of Athens, an eminent Platonic philosopher. He was the son of Philostratus, a man of wealth and political distinction. In his youth, Polemon was extremely profligate; but one day, when he was about thirty, on his bursting into the school of Xenocrates at the head of a band of revellers, his attention was so arrested by the discourse, which chanced to be upon temperance, that he tore off his garland and remained an attentive listener, and from that day he adopted an abstemious course of life, and continued to frequent the school, of which, on the death of Xenocrates, he became the head, B.C. 315. He died in 273 at a great age. He esteemed the object of philosophy to be, to exercise men in things and deeds, not in dialectic speculation. He placed the summum bonum in living according to the laws of nature.

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