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Seleucid Genealogies

The Genealogy of the Seleucids: Seleucid Marriage, Succession, and Descent Revisited


Even in the haphazard patchwork that is our understanding of Hellenistic genealogy, the Seleucid dynasty stands out as particularly threadbare. Despite the recent proliferation of scholarship on numerous facets of the Seleucid world, the genealogy and descent of the Seleucids themselves have received only sporadic and fragmentary attention.

Yet in the Seleucid context, such questions of heredity are of singular import. The disparate and often ill-fitting pieces of the Seleucid empire were tied together primarily by common loyalty to king and dynasty, and thus there is an inseparable link between familial politics and imperial administration.

The Genealogy of the Seleucids began as an appendix to Alex McAuley’s Masters Dissertation at the University of Edinburgh, and continues as an ongoing project dedicated to unraveling the complex lines of descent and relation that comprise the House of Seleucus.

While contemporary scholars have proposed numerous stemmata of the dynasty, they have by and large formulated them as an afterthought, as an appendix to a work of much broader scope. This site has thus been created in the hope of producing and presenting as near a comprehensive stemma of the Dynasty as possible, justified by detailed commentary and examination of literature, numismatics, and epigraphy.

The identifications and relations presented therein form the genealogical basis for a re-examination of Seleucid royal ideology and dynastic practice, yielding several forthcoming articles and chapters in edited volumes.

This project enjoys ongoing affiliation and cooperation with the School of History, Classics, and Archaeology at the University of Edinburgh, the Waterloo Institute for Hellenistic Studies, and an international Seleucid research network spanning North America, the United Kingdom, and Europe.