Fourth Macedonian War

The Fourth Macedonian War (150 BC to 148 BC) was fought between the Roman Republic and a Macedonian uprising led by the Macedonian pretender to the throne Andriscus. Pretending to be the son of the former king Perseus, who had been deposed by the Romans after the Third Macedonian War in 168 BC, Andriscus sought to re-establish the old Macedonian Kingdom.[1] In the process he destabilised Macedonia and much of the Macedonian world. Anthriscus, after some early successes, was eventually defeated by the Roman general Quintus Caecilius Metellus Macedonicus at the Second Battle of Pydna in 148 BC, and the uprising subsequently collapsed. Two years later Macedonia became a Roman province.

Fourth Macedonian War
Part of Macedonian Wars
Date150–148 BC
Result Roman victory
Roman annexation of Macedon
Vexilloid of the Roman Empire.svg Roman Republic Vergina Sun - Golden Larnax.png Macedon
Commanders and leaders
Vexilloid of the Roman Empire.svg P. Cornelius Scipio Nasica Corculum
Vexilloid of the Roman Empire.svg P. Juventius Thalna 
Vexilloid of the Roman Empire.svg Q. Caecilius Metellus Macedonicus
Vergina Sun - Golden Larnax.png Andriscus

In response, the Achaean League in 146 BC mobilized for a new war against the Roman Empire. This is sometimes referred to as the Achaean War, and was noted for its short duration and its timing right after the fall of Macedonia. Until this time, Rome had only campaigned in Greece in order to fight Macedonian forces, allies or clients. Rome's military supremacy was well established, having defeated Macedonia and its vaunted Phalanx already on three occasions, and defeating superior numbers against the Seleucids in Asia.[2] The Achaean leaders almost certainly knew that this declaration of war against Rome was hopeless, as Rome had triumphed against far stronger and larger opponents, the Roman legion having proved its supremacy over the Macedonian phalanx.[3]

Polybius blames the demagogues of the cities of the league for inspiring the population into a suicidal war. Hellenistic stirrings and the idea of triumphing against superior odds motivated the league into this rash decision. The Achaean League was swiftly defeated, and, as an object lesson, Rome utterly destroyed the city of Corinth in 146 BC, the same year that Carthage was destroyed.[4] After nearly a century of constant crisis management in Greece, which always led back to internal instability and war when Rome pulled out, Rome decided to divide Macedonia into two new Roman provinces, Achaea and Epirus.

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ , Goldsworthy, In the Name of Rome, p. 218
  2. ^ History of Rome – The republic, Isaac Asimov.
  3. ^ Adrian Goldsworthy (2004), In the Name of Rome, p. 218
  4. ^ History of Rome – The republic, Isaac Asimov.

Further readingEdit

  • Gabrielsen, Vincent, and John Lund, eds. 2007. The Black Sea in Antiquity: Regional and interregional economic exchanges. Aarhus, Denmark: Aarhus University Press.
  • Sherwin-White, Adrian N. 1984. Roman foreign policy in the East 168 B.C. to A.D. 1. London: Duckworth.