Summary of four images (three jugate portraits and one individual one)
discussed by Panagiotis Iossif and Catharine Lorber in
“Laodikai and the Goddess Nikephoros,” L'Antiquité Classique 76 (2007): 63-88,


of illustrated male

of illustrated male

Description of
illustrated female

Identification of
illustrated female


1. Clay seal impression of 215/4 from Seleukeia on the Tigris

A young male with a short, upturned nose

Antiochos the Son, i.e., Antiochos Neos

A larger female head, diademed, with a pronounced aquiline nose and sagging flesh beneath her chin

Laodike III, the boy's mother (according to Vito Messina)

2. Clay seal impression of 207/6 from Seleukeia on the Tigris

A diademed head of a young man

Antiochos the Son (then coregent)
in the foreground

A female head appearing younger than the female in the 215/4 seal and lacking her assertive nose (impossible to determine whether originally diademed)

Laodike III (according to Vito Messina);
Laodike the Daughter, future wife of Antiochos the Son
(acc. to Iossif/Lorber)

3. Gold oktadrachms issued at Antioch on the Orontes in autumn 175, during the brief reign of Antiochos, son of Seleukos IV

Antiochos, son of Seleukos IV

An adult queen (regent for the child-king) with youthful appearance (though possibly rejuvenated and idealized); comparing her profile to that of the female in the 207/6 seal, “the shapes of the nose, mouth, and chin are almost identical” (Iossif/Lorber, p. 68)

Presumably Laodike, mother or step-mother of the child-king

“.... The hypothesis of a second marriage [for Seleukos IV] is consistent with the youthful appearance of the queen portrayed on the octadrachm (though we cannot discount the possiblilty that she was rejuvenated and idealized).... [After comparing with the female in the 207/6 seal:] Either we are seeing the same person [in 175 as in 207/6], or two closely related women.” (p. 68)

4. Bronzes with an elephant head reverse issued by Seleukos IV and Antiochos IV at Antioch on the Orontes and Ptolemaïs (Ake)

[no male]

[no male]

Veiled diademed female bust. “On examples [of this coin] of good style, especially the bronzes of Seleukos IV, the facial features are quite similar to those seen on the oktadrachm – a rather delicate nose, full cheeks, small mouth with soft lips, rounded chin....” (p. 70)

Laodike IV, wife of Seleukos IV and then Antiochos IV
(acc. to Hoover,
2002, followed by Iossif/Lorber)

“There is nothing to suggest that this entire [Antiochene bronze] coinage should be dated after summer 182, with the corollary the Antioch issued no bronze coins between the accession of Seleukos IV in 187 and his supposed remarriage after the death of his queen. On the contrary, the portrait on these bronzes argues powerfully for a single queen throughout the reign of Seleukos IV, as well as for her marriage to Antiochos IV.” (p. 71)
[However, see this re-evaluation at the left.]

Summary of three documents discussed by Iossif and Lorber (2007)



          and translation          


1. SEG 7, 17,
1. 7-8, dated
S.E. 130
(183 B.C.)


is followed by


Laodike, Queen …

A manumission act from Susa dated one year before the 182 death of Laodike, wife of Seleukos (reported in the Babylonian Astronomical Diaries).
“... [this] manumission act ... tends to confirm the existence of the word βασιλίσσης after the name Laodike.... The same dedicatory formula is used in SEG 7,2, five to six years after the queen's supposed death. We believe that if the queen was dead and replaced by a new one, the dedicatory formula would have changed, even if the new queen adopted the same dynastic name.” (p. 69)

2a. Babylonian astronomical diary for 181 – (Sachs and Hunger)

[I don't have easy access to this. -- DCS]

“.... records the death
of Queen Laodike,
wife of Seleukos IV, in
the summer of the
preceding year [182].”
(p. 68)

2b. AD no -181
pp. 382-387
tab. 143-144
ES 130 (Giuseppe F.
Del Monte

Testi dalla
Babilonia Ellenistica
Vol 1, 1997,
p. 70)

Duzu (14 VII – 12 VIII, 182 BC)

“In that month, on 7 (=July 20) rumours arrived about Laodik[e],

the wife of the king Seleukos, [her] hus[band],

at Seleucia on the Tigris and at the Royal Canal.

Mourning and crying spread over them.

On 9 (=July 27) a rumour was heard in Babylon

that the queen had met her fate,

and the men of the country […]

and the assembly of the Esagila that did not …..”

(rough translation from Italian by Renzo Lucherini; the Esagila was a temple dedicated to Marduk in central Babylon)

Background: Kyle Glenn Erickson, The Early Seleucids, Their Gods and Their Coins, PhD thesis, 2009, University of Exeter,
pp. 188-9:
“There is clear evidence that Seleucus III continued the royal patronage of Babylon. He is the only Seleucid king for whom we have evidence of the continued practice of the Akitu festival. A Babylonian chronicle records that an administrator of the temple of Esagila established offerings within the temple “For Bel and Beltija and the great gods and for the dullu (ritual?) of Seleucus [III], the king, and his sons”. This chronicle [is] dated to year 88 of the Seleucid era (224/3)....”

Note that this reference occurs 42-3 years before the 181 report of the 182 death of Laodike, wife of Seleukos.

3a. SEG 7, 2 – from Seleukeia on the Eulaios (Susa), dated S.E. 136
(177/6 B.C.) –
a first


[whereas name] of Attalos
[the chief-priestess of Laodice] [wife]
of Seleucus [the king],
and of Laodice [the elder]
the mother [of Seleucus,
and] of Laodice the [younger
the daughter of Seleucus] …

(supplied by D. T. Potts as Table 10.1 of The Archaeology of Elam, 1999)

A decree honoring Laodike, wife of Seleukos IV, with a priesthood in Susa (according to Haussoullier/Cumont)

3b. SEG 7, 2 – from Seleukeia on the Eulaios (Susa) –
a second

[for the well-being]
of Seleu[kos the king]
and Laodike [the queen],
mother [of the king,
and] Laodike t[he queen,

wife of the king] …

(rough translation by Renzo Lucherini)

A manumission act (acc. to L. Robert and Iossif/Lorber), since such acts always ended with a dedication to the σωτηρια (soteria, i.e., protection, well-being, salvation) of the sovereigns

3c. SEG 7, 2 – from Seleukeia on the Eulaios (Susa) –
a third

    ΒΑΣΙΛΕΥΟN[----   ΒασιλεύοΝ̣[τος Σελεύκου ἔτους]
    [ΛΚΑΙΡΜΗ[------   [Λ καὶ Ρ, μη[νὸς month name]
    ΕΝΣΕΛΕYK[------   ἐν ΣελευK[είαι δὲ τῆι πρὸς τῶι]
    ΕΥΛΑΙΩΙΛ[-------  Εὐλαίωι A[ρχοντων gen. PN καὶ]
      short name like Zoilou, Amynta
5  ΑΜΜΩΝΙ[--------   Ἀμμωνί[ου‧ ἔδοξε τῆι ἐκκλησίαι]       perhaps dēmos
    ΜΕΤΑΤΗΣ[------    μετὰ τῆς [τοῦ τε γραμματέως]
    ΔΗΜΗΤ[---------   Δημητ[ρίου καὶ τῶν πρυτάνεων]
    ΓΝΩΜΗ[---------   γνώμη[ς‧ ἐπειδὴ nom. fem. PN]
    ΑΤΤΑΛΟΥ[------    Ἀττάλου [ἀρχιέρεια Λαοδίκης]
10 ΤΗΣΣΕΛΕΥ[-----   τῆς Σελεύ[κου βασιλέως γυναικὸς]
    ΚΑΙΛΑΟΔΙΚΗ[---  καὶ Λαοδίκη[ς τῆς πρεσβυτέρας]
    ΤΗΣΜΗΤΡΟ[----    τῆς μητρὸ[ς τῆς Σελεύκου καὶ]
    ΛΑΟΔΙΚΗΣΤ[----   Λαοδίκης τ[ῆς νεωτέρας τῆς]
    [ΑΔΕΛΦΗ]Σ[-----  [αδελφη]ς [τῆς Σελεύκου . . . ]

An important point for restorations (made by Cumont 1928, p. 81) is that nο names or words are split across two lines; every line begins with a new word or name.

[whereas name] of Attalos
[the chief-priestess of Laodice] [wife]
of Seleucus [the king],
and of Laodice [the elder]
the mother [of Seleucus,
and] of Laodice the [sister of Seleucus] …

(only the reconstruction at the end, "sister of Seleucus," differs from the first interpretation, 3a , which has "younger", "daughter of Seleucus")

A decree concerning a cult of the three senior Seleucid women in Seleucus IV's personal life who were or had been queens at Susa (which his daughter Laodice had not been); these three women (all named Laodice) are Seleucus' current and living wife, his deceased mother, and his sister, who had been wife of the co-regent Antiochus Neos. (Mark Passehl, 11 Sept. 2012 version of “Stemma of Early Seleucids,” with two pages of analysis and discussion of this text.)