Mother Knows Best: Motherhood and Succession in the Seleucid Realm



Combining the latest interpretative approaches to the Seleucid Empire with recent research on its royal women, McAuley analyzes the remarkable influence and visibility of the dynasty’s queen mothers throughout the Seleucid Realm spanning from Turkey to Afghanistan. Beginning with the dynasty’s earliest women, he then charts the development of maternal power both inside the main dynasty and in its clients in the far-flung reaches of the Empire. Arguing the maternal power has been an underlying constant in the Empire, he identifies three main roles of its queen mothers: first, they act as highly visible beacons of the dynasty’s prestige; second, as transmitters of its legitimacy; and third, as the arbiters of its paths of succession and inheritance. In a broader context, it becomes quite clear that these women are the central nodes of the dynastic network that enabled the integrity of the Empire.


Royal Family Queen Mother Ancient Source Hellenistic Period Royal Court 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Cardiff UniversityCardiffUK

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