People - Ancient Egypt: Alexander IV
GRECO-ROMAN PERIOD Macedonian Kings - Alexandria (316-304)
Alexander IV in Wikipedia
Alexander IV Aegus (Greek: Ἀλέξανδρος Aἰγός — 323–309 BC) was the son of Alexander the Great (Alexander III of Macedon) and the princess
Roxana, of Bactria.
Because Roxana was pregnant when her husband died and the gender of the baby was unknown, there was dissension in the Macedonian army
regarding the order of succession. While the infantry supported the baby's uncle, Philip III (who was both feeble-minded and illegitimate),
the chiliarch Perdiccas, commander of the elite Companion cavalry, persuaded them to wait in the hope that Roxana's unborn child would be
male. The factions compromised, deciding that Perdiccas would rule the Empire as regent while Philip would reign, but only as a figurehead
with no real power. If the child was male, then he would be king. Alexander IV was born in August, 323 BC.
After a severe regency, military failure in Egypt, and mutiny in the army, Perdiccas was assassinated by his senior officers in May or June
321 or 320 BC (problems with Diodorus's chronology have made the year uncertain), after which Antipater was named as the new regent at the
Partition of Triparadisus. He brought with him Roxana and the two kings to Macedon and gave up the pretence of ruling Alexander's Empire,
leaving former provinces in Egypt and Asia in control of the satraps (see diadochi). When Antipater died in 319 BC he left Polyperchon, a
Macedonian general who had served under Philip II and Alexander the Great, as his successor, passing over his own son, Cassander.
Civil War -
Cassander allied himself with Ptolemy Soter, Antigonus and Eurydice, the ambitious wife of king Philip Arrhidaeus, and declared war upon the
Regency. Polyperchon was allied with Eumenes and Olympias.
Although Polyperchon was successful at first, taking control of the Greek cities, his fleet was destroyed by Antigonus in 318 BC. When, after
the battle, Cassander assumed full control of Macedon, Polyperchon was forced to flee to Epirus, followed by Roxana and the young Alexander.
A few months later, Olympias was able to persuade her relative Aeacides of Epirus to invade Macedon with Polyperchon. When Olympias took the
field, Eurydice's army refused to fight against the mother of Alexander and defected to Olympias, after which Polyperchon and Aeacides retook
Macedon. Philip and Eurydice were captured and executed on December 25, 317 BC, leaving Alexander IV king, and Olympias in effective control,
as she was his regent.
Cassander returned in the following year (316 BC), conquering Macedon once again. Olympias was immediately executed, while the king and his
mother were taken prisoner and held in the citadel of Amphipolis under the supervision of Glaucias. When the general peace between Cassander,
Antigonus, Ptolemy, and Lysimachus put an end to the Third Diadoch War in 311 BC, the peace treaty recognized Alexander IV's rights and
explicitly stated that when he came of age he would succeed Cassander as ruler.
Following the treaty, defenders of the Argead dynasty began to declare that Alexander IV should now exercise full power and that a regent was
no longer needed. Cassander's response was definitive: to secure his rule, in 309 BC he commanded Glaucias to secretly assassinate the 13-
year old Alexander IV and his mother. The orders were carried out, and they were both poisoned.
One of the royal tombs discovered by the archaeologist Manolis Andronikos in the so called "Great Tumulus" in Vergina in 1977/8 is believed
to belong to Alexander IV. 
In popular culture -
The tragic young monarch appears as a character in Funeral Games, an historical novel by Mary Renault.
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