Seleucid Empire
Continent: Asia
Capital: Seleucia (305–240 BC)
Antioch (240–63 BC)
National Language: Greek
Government: Hellenistic monarchy
Status in OTL: Defunct

The Seleucid Empire (/sɪˈljuːsɪd/; Ancient Greek: Βασιλεία τῶν Σελευκιδῶν, Basileía tōn Seleukidōn) was a Greek state in Western Asia, during the Hellenistic Period, that existed from 312 BC to 63 BC. The Seleucid Empire was founded by Seleucus I Nicator, following the division of the Macedonian Empire that existed previously, which had been founded by Alexander the Great.

After having received the Mesopotamian region of Babylonia in 321 BC, Seleucus I expanded his dominions to include much of the Near Eastern territories that had been under the control of the former Macedonian Empire. At the Seleucid Empire's height, it had consisted of territory that had covered Anatolia, Persia, the Levant, Mesopotamia, and what are now Kuwait, Afghanistan, and parts of Turkmenistan.

The Seleucid Empire was a major center of Hellenistic culture. Greek customs and language were privileged, while the wide variety of local traditions had been generally tolerated, an urban Greek elite had formed the dominant political class, and was reinforced by steady immigration from Greece. The empire's western territories were repeatedly contested with Ptolemaic Egypt, a rival Hellenistic state. To the east, conflict with Chandragupta of the Maurya Empire in 305 BC led to the cession of vast territory west of the Indus and a political alliance.

In the early second century BC, Antiochus III the Great attempted to project Seleucid power and authority into Hellenistic Greece, but his attempts were thwarted by the Roman Republic and its Greek allies; the Seleucids were forced to pay costly war reparations and relinquish territorial claims west of the Taurus Mountains, marking the gradual decline of their empire. During the reign of Antiochus IV Epiphanes, the Maccabees successfully forced the Greeks out of Judea.

Mithridates I of Parthia conquered much of the remaining eastern lands of the Seleucid Empire in the mid-second century BC, while the independent Greco-Bactrian Kingdom continued to flourish in the northeast. The Seleucid kings were thereafter reduced to a rump state in Syria, until their conquest by Tigranes the Great of Armenia in 83 BC and ultimate overthrow by the Roman general Pompey in 63 BC.

Seleucid Empire in "No Period"[]

A Jewish-American writer contemplated his failed first marriage, and wondered if it might have worked in some alternate timeline. After considering and discarding a number of possibilities, he considered the possibilities in a world where the Maccabees fell to the Seleucid Greeks. This would mean the end of Judaism, and by extension, prevent Jesus and Christianity as well. That would mean he would have been a Zeus-worshipper rather than a Jew, and his ex-wife would have been a Wotan-worshipper than a Lutheran. Then he realized religion wasn't the problem between them, and that the substance of their real arguments would have been the same in this world.[1]