The Latest on Seleucid Empire Building in the East

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R. J. Van der Spek



Sonja Plischke’s Die Seleukiden und Iran is an attempt to study Seleucid empire building in Iran. In view of the fact that indigenous written sources from Iran are practically absent, Plischke decided to include Babylonia in this work, since the written cuneiform evidence from that region is fairly abundant. She detects some general tendencies—such as religious policy and the general wish to connect the different parts of the empire—supported by a personal conception of Seleucid kingship, beside more specific treatment of different regions. In my view, the Seleucids probably did not pay sufficient attention to the East, so that their control weakened. I take the opportunity to discuss the Babylonian sources, correct errors in Plischke’s use of them, and adduce some new publications.

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