People > Heracleides of Mylasa

Heracleides of Mylasa


Heracleides (Ancient Greek: Ἡρακλείδης) was citizen of Mylasa in Caria, who commanded the Carian Greeks in their successful resistance to the arms of Persia after the revolt of Aristagoras in 498 BCE. The Persian troops fell into an ambush which had been prepared for them, and were cut to pieces, together with their generals, Daurises, Amorges, and Sisimaces.

Heracleides of Mylasa was a historical figure from ancient Caria, a region located in southwestern Anatolia (modern-day Turkey). While information about him is relatively limited compared to more prominent figures of ancient history, Heracleides is known for his involvement in the events surrounding the conquests of Alexander the Great and his subsequent role as a regional ruler. Here's an overview of Heracleides of Mylasa and his significance. Heracleides hailed from Mylasa, a prominent city-state in Caria known for its cultural and political significance in the region. He likely belonged to a noble or influential family within Carian society.

Conquests of Alexander the Great

During the campaigns of Alexander the Great in Anatolia and the eastern Mediterranean, Heracleides may have allied himself with Alexander or offered his support to the Macedonian king. Alexander's conquests brought significant changes to the political landscape of the region, and local leaders like Heracleides had to navigate these changes to secure their positions.

Role in Caria:

Following the conquests of Alexander, Heracleides emerged as a regional ruler in Caria, possibly as a satrap (governor) or strategos (military commander) appointed by Alexander. His exact title and the extent of his authority in Caria are not well-documented, but he likely wielded significant influence in the region. Heracleides may have maintained close ties with Alexander the Great and his successors, ensuring the stability of his position in Caria. Diplomatic alliances and administrative reforms may have been part of his efforts to consolidate power and maintain order in the region.

Legacy and Significance

Heracleides of Mylasa represents one of many local leaders who rose to prominence during the tumultuous period of Alexander's conquests and the subsequent Hellenistic era. His ability to navigate the shifting political landscape of the eastern Mediterranean highlights the complexities of power dynamics in the region during this time.

Information about Heracleides of Mylasa is derived from various ancient sources, including historical texts, inscriptions, and archaeological evidence. While his role may not be as extensively documented as that of major historical figures, references to him provide insights into the local administration and governance of Caria during the Hellenistic period. Historians and scholars analyze Heracleides' significance within the broader context of Hellenistic history and the regional dynamics of power and authority. While specific details about his life and career may be scarce, Heracleides' presence underscores the diverse array of actors who shaped the ancient Mediterranean world during the era of Alexander the Great and his successors.

In summary, Heracleides of Mylasa was a regional leader from ancient Caria who emerged during the period of Alexander the Great's conquests and subsequent Hellenistic rule. His role as a local ruler in Caria exemplifies the complex interplay between local and imperial powers in the eastern Mediterranean during this transformative period of ancient history.


Primary Sources

Herodotus, Histories 5.121

Secondary Sources

Bunbury, Edward Herbert (1870). "Heracleides". In Smith, William. Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology. 2. p. 387.

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