Later times did him more justice than his contemporaries, and, when the names of almost all the other kings had sunk into oblivion, retained his in honor, and placed it on a par with that of the original founder of Parthian independence. Reign of Phraates II. Expedition of Antiochus Sidetes against Parthia. Release of Demetrius. Defeat and Death of Sidetes.
The unhappy circumstances under which he succeeded to power compelled him to submit for a time to the condition of vassalage; but no sooner had Antiochus Sidetes fallen in the Parthian war, than John shook off the yoke of Syria, and exercised the rights of an independent sovereign.
Whether it was Antiochus Soter, or Antiochus Theos, or Antiochus the Great, or Antiochus the Epiphanous or Illustrious, or Antiochus Eupator, or Antiochus Eutheus, or Antiochus Sidetes, or Antiochus Grypus, or Antiochus Cyzenicus, or Antiochus Pius, the greatest rogue of the whole dynasty, or Antiochus Asiaticus, who "used up" the family entirely in Syria is more than I can tell.
Sidetes, though indebted to the Jewish High Priest, Simon, for offers of aid against the same adversary, could not bring himself to pay the price for it which Demetrius had thought reasonable an independent Palestine appeared to him a danger close to his doors, and one that imperilled the very existence of the Syrian State.
Antiochus Sidetes, the brother of Demetrius, had been generally accepted by the Syrians as their monarch, at the time when the news reached them of that prince's defeat and capture by Mithridates. He was an active and enterprising sovereign, though fond of luxury and display.
Sidetes then considered the time come for a Parthian expedition, and, having made great preparations, he set out for the East in the spring of B.C. 129. It is impossible to accept without considerable reserve the accounts that have come down to us of the force which Antiochus collected.
Phraates II. made his attack upon Antiochus Sidetes, while the snow was still upon the ground; and Volagases I. fell upon Paetus after the latter had sent his troops into winter quarters. The Parthians could bear cold no less than heat; though it was perhaps rather in the endurance of the latter than of the former that they surpassed the Romans.