By Richard Evans
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Extra info for A History of Pergamum: Beyond Hellenistic Kingship
The potential for further conflict in the Aegean remained real, but the new determining factor was the interest – or lack of – from the Romans. Their participation in any new war opened up possibilities for the, at that moment, lesser powers. It says a great deal about the outlook of kings such as Philip and later Antiochus that they chose not to court but rather to adopt a combative pose against Rome. The Magna Mater affair in more ways than one ensured Roman interest in Asia through contact with Pergamum, and in a sense it also drew the Romans deeper into the affairs of the Greeks and their constant conflicts.
Still, to be even perceived as the author of a high-profile murder of a Roman ally was bound to have a negative effect on Roman behaviour, while Eumenes’ likely successor, his brother Attalus, was most unlikely to change the political stance of his kingdom. 15–16) recounts in some detail, probably from Polybius, the episode, which occurred when Eumenes stopped off at Delphi, and says that at least four assassins were involved, including a Cretan mercenary named Evander and three Macedonians. These were to attack the king on his way up to the Sanctuary, where the path had been reduced to a single file on account of a recent mudslide, and where a wall provided the attackers with cover.
1–5), where he plundered the outskirts and attempted to take the Piraeus. However, nothing much accomplished, he withdrew to Boeotia and the scene was set for the greater conflagration which would envelop Greece and would end in Philip’s defeat at Cynoscephalae less than three years later. 16 His focus was interrupted by further conflict with Egypt, but his victory in Panion in 200 greatly increased the chances of further warfare in Asia Minor and must have been regarded with gloom by Attalus in his old age.