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Cynane-The Warrior Sister

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Written by   44
3 days ago
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Cynane, (357-323 BC) Illyrian Princess Audata and King of Macedonia II. She was the daughter of Philip and the half-sister of Alexander the Great (356-323 BC). In keeping with the Illyrian tradition of female warriors, her mother trained her in martial arts and raised her in the belief that she was equal with men. Cynane grew up with this belief and instilled the same values in her daughter Adea, whom she would give up her own life to come to power.

Artistic impression of Cynane, the half-sister of Alexander the Great (Image: Artstation/@Joan Francesc Oliveras Pallerols)

When Philip I (382-336 BC) defeated the Illyrian King Bardylis in 358 BC, she took the king's eldest daughter, Audata, to keep the peace and as a spoil of war. Audata II. She was the first of Philip's seven wives, among them Alexander's mother, Olympias. Audata was a true Illyrian Princess as a member of a culture where girls were raised as warriors.

He trained Cynane in the Illyrian tradition, teaching him martial arts, hunting, tracking, horseback riding, and better fighting than most men. Before she turned twenty, Cynane's skills were known to everyone, and she was famous for her bravery and wits in battle.

Cynane II. She grew up at Philip's court alongside Alexander and his friends who would later become generals of Alexander's army. While every young woman at the Macedonian court was expected to behave according to her gender, Cynane refused to be subjugated by any man.

Cynane fought many battles alongside Alexander and his friends, but became a legend when she single-handedly turned the tide of the war with the Illyrians.

These stories of Cynane's bravery probably spread from word to mouth before historians like Polyaneaus wrote them down. This victory over the Illyrians made him a legend, but he was struggling to control his own life and provide a better future for his daughter. This aroused the interest of historians who would immortalize him, such as Polyaneus.

II. At Philip's request, Cynane married her cousin Amyntas and gave birth to her daughter Adea. II. After Philip was assassinated in 336 BC, Cynane tried to mobilize Amyntas to take the throne, but Amyntas ignored her advice. Whether one woman refused to take his advice or was afraid to take a risk is unknown, but it was a serious mistake.

When Alexander the Great took his father's throne, realizing that Cynane was trying to seize the throne, he had Amyntas killed. Widowed in her early twenties and expected to remarry, she refused all offers. Interestingly, she managed to maintain her independence despite the new king's desire to quickly marry her off to a suitor who was not a threat to her.

Although there is no record of how Cynane overcame this situation and how Alexander resisted his plans for her life, it is clearly known that Alexander remained single despite all his efforts. Alexander tried to neutralize Cynane by marrying her to Langarus, the king of the Agrians (Paeonia-Thrace tribes in Upper Struma in present-day Bulgaria), but the groom died of a mysterious illness just before the wedding. Although there is no evidence, Cynane may have poisoned Langarus to avoid becoming a pawn in Alexander's game.

Cynane's Power Play

Cynane realized that she could turn her half-brother's death in her favor, and immediately took action to take advantage of the opportunity. She was in her early thirties at the time, and she was an exceedingly outstanding wife-to-be. She could have offered to be a bride to Arrhidaeus, but she chose to raise Adea, she. Quickly mobilizing his troops, Cynane led Adea and her army to Babylon to force a marriage that would secure her and her daughter's future.

Cynane could seize power through her daughter. II. Being the daughter of Philip and a half-brother of Alexander, she naturally had the loyalty of Alexander's great army.

Death of Alcetus and Cynane

Upon hearing of Cynane's plans, Perdiccas sent Antipater, one of Alexander's generals, to Struma against him. Cynane quickly defeated him with superior tactics. He then continued towards Babylon. Perdiccas knew he had to be stopped before he could go any further. Therefore, he sent a second detachment against him. He carefully chose his brother Alcetus to rule the Macedonians.

It wasn't because of her combat skills, but because she was a close friend of Cynane at court when she was younger. The plan was that when Cynane saw his old friend leading an army against him, he would give up on his purpose and quietly return to Macedonia. Failing this, Perdiccas hoped that Alcetus would honor him in battle and neutralize him against any future interference.


However, none of these possibilities materialized. When the two Macedonian troops faced each other on the battlefield, Cynane chose to confront Alcetus in person and harshly reproached him with ingratitude and infidelity for having taken the job at her own expense.

Cynane was so convinced, for her own purpose, that her power would bring Alcetus to her knees and that his generals would obey her, that she underestimated Perdiccas' ambition and how far Alcetus would go to protect his brother's power and his generals' interests. Alcetus killed him before he even finished speaking.


With Cynane's death, Alcetus thought that his guardianship claims would also vanish, and that the plans of his brother and his generals would be safe. When the Macedonian army saw that Cynane's assassination was at the hands of their own generals, they rose up and Alexander's nephew and II. He demanded that Philip's granddaughter Adea be wed to Arrhidaeus, as Cynane had requested.

Adea married Arrhideaeus (who would become Philip III) and changed her name to Eurydice as she was remembered. As in her mother's dreams, Eurydice III. He became the force behind Philip. Even before Diadochi's First War and Perdiccas' death, she was speaking and making decisions for him. After Perdiccas' death she took more words on her husband's behalf; He participated in treaties, took part in public assemblies, and saw himself as an important political force.


But his achievements were not appreciated by Olympias, who had never loved his mother and him. Eurydice was arrested and imprisoned by order of Olympias. III. He was also forced to commit suicide after Philip's execution in 317 BC. Eurydice's achievements reflect the values ​​taught to her by her mother, Cynane, who has always refused to play by anyone else's rules.

Although often overlooked by later historians, Cynane's actions after Alexander the Great's death greatly influenced events that followed him. She is remembered as a strong and independent warrior princess compared to many women of her time, including the nobles.

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Written by   44
3 days ago
Topics: Write, Tale, Reading, Freewrite,, ...
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