Spectacular Pergamon — 3 Comments

  1. I always wondered where all that 9000 golden talents which the general of Alexander the Great, Lysimachus, gave to Philetairos, ended up. As I know one golden talent was the equivalent of the weight of an amphora full of water and 26 kg of silver and corresponded to about 33 kg of gold. So the sum would correspond roughly to 9000 X 33 kg = 297000 kg of gold. The burial chamber of the possible tomb of Lysimachus at Belevi was blown up by treasure hunters and there seems not to be one single coin of gold. So would it be hidden in the Acropolis of Pergamon? Since the money was given to Philetairos and he spent some of it for the fortification of the walls of the city and kept the remaining part himself, one must think he was very rich and the money might have been inherited by his successors? Philetairos founded the Pergamon kingdom in 281 BC. and the kingdom lasted until 133 BC when it was handed over to the Romans with the testament of the last king of Pergamon, Attalus the III. During this period Pergamon kingdom didn’t appear to lose a battle. The battle against Galatians at Caecus river (Bakırçay down below the town) at 241 BC and the one fought at Magnesia against Anthiochus III of Seleucid dynasty in 190 were victorious. So could it be that all that money was spent for the construction of the fabulous Acropolis? Acropolis was nicely built and was full of beautiful monuments including the Altar of Zeus, which was one of the seven wonders of the world in the Hellenistic period. However they could be built only with a small fraction of that huge sum. It would be logical to think that Philetairos and his successors must have had large sums of gold but were they so naive to hand over money to their Roman allies? I would still think that all the money was not spent and parts of it must be stored somewhere at some very safe place.

  2. Each time I enter this theater through the tunnel up above by the Athena temple I remember an Italian song ”Volare” meaning ”flying” as it gives me the desire to fly down towards the plains… Just like the old Dionysiacs who lived around. Iobakki’s followers of Bacchus today called Zeybek’s have an interesting traditional costume like wings descending from the shoulders. A statue of a Zeybek can be seen today in down town Pergamon.

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