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Claims of Antiochus and Ptolemy

Meanwhile Antiochus was extremely anxious to have
Antiochus's case.
as much the advantage over the government of Alexandria in diplomatic argument as he had in arms. Accordingly when the ambassadors arrived at Seleucia, and both parties began, in accordance with the instructions of Sosibius, to discuss the clauses of the proposed arrangement in detail, the king made very light of the loss recently sustained by Ptolemy, and the injury which had been manifestly inflicted upon him by the existing occupation of Coele-Syria; and in the pleadings on this subject he refused to look upon this transaction in the light of an injury at all, alleging that the places belonged to him of right.
Ptolemy, son of Lagus, B. C. 323-285.
He asserted that the original occupation of the country by Antigonus the One-eyed, and the royal authority exercised over it by Seleucus,1 constituted an absolutely decisive and equitable claim, in virtue of which Coele-Syria belonged of right to himself and not to Ptolemy; for Ptolemy I. went to war with Antigonus with the view of annexing this country, not to his own government, but to that of Seleucus. But, above all, he pressed the convention entered into by the three kings, Cassander, Lysimachus, and Seleucus, when, after having conquered Antigonus,2 they deliberated in common upon the arrangements to be made, and decided that the whole of Syria should belong to Seleucus. The commissioners of Ptolemy endeavoured to establish the opposite case.
Ptolemy's case.
They magnified the existing injury, and dilated on its hardship; asserting that the treason of Theodotus and the invasion of Antiochus amounted to a breach of treaty-rights. They alleged the possession of these places in the reign of Ptolemy, son of Lagus; and tried to show that Ptolemy had joined Seleucus in the war on the understanding that he was to invest Seleucus with the government of the whole of Asia, but was to take Coele-Syria and Phoenicia for himself.

Such were the arguments brought forward by the two contracting parties in the course of the embassies and counterembassies and conferences. There was no prospect, however, of arriving at any result, because the controversy was conducted, not by the principals, but by the common friends of both; and there was no one to intervene authoritatively to check and control the caprice of the party which they might decide to be in the wrong. But what caused the most insuperable difficulty was the matter of Achaeus. For Ptolemy was eager that the terms of the treaty should include him: while Antiochus would not allow the subject to be so much as mentioned; and was indignant that Ptolemy should venture to protect rebels, or bring such a point into the discussion at all.

1 Seleucus I., B. C. 306-280. Antigonus, the One-eyed, in B. C. 318, occupied Coele-Syria and Phoenicia after a victory over Perdiccas. Diodor. Sic. 18, 43.

2 Battle of Ipsus, B. C. 301

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