Odrysian Kingdom


This was the most significant Thracian kingdom, which started its gradual political expansion at the time of the first famous king, called Teres, who ruled at the end of the 6th and the first half of the 5th century BC. He strengthened his power and influence to the Danube Delta to the north, to the Propontis (Sea of Marmara) to the southeast, and to the mouth of the Maritsa River to the west. His successor was Sparadokos – famous with the coinage and the political pressure over the settlements along the Propontis (Sea of Marmara) and Aegean Region. His successor was his brother Sitalces – 424 BC. He played an active role in the political life on the Balkan Peninsula. He became an ally to Athens, and during the Peloponnesian War (429 BC) invaded Macedon and Chalkidiki. He was succeeded on the throne by Seuthes I 424-410 BC, who continued the active economic and political actions of his predecessor.

A real height in the political life of the Odrysian Kingdom is the reign of Cotys I 383-359 BC. He established a stable and lasting control over the settlements along the Propontis and the Thracian Chersonese and turned into a serious political opponent for Athens. His energetic actions added new aspects to the political life on the Balkans. His successor Cersobleptes 359-341 BC was forced into long wars with the king of Macedon, Philip II.

The Odrysian Kingdom continued its existence even after the conquests of Philip II and Alexander of Macedon in Thrace. The dynast Seuthes III fought unrestingly against Alexander’s successor in Thrace, Lysimachus. Then a long period of decline came in the 3rd–2nd century BC. Often the Odrysian kings were true allies of the Roman Republic that aimed at full control over the Balkan Peninsula. In 45 under the reign of the emperor Claudius the Odrysian Kingdom became part of the province of Thrace.

Map of Odrysian Kingdom from Wikimedia

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