Thracian People > Syrmus


Alexander the Great - Dove Decoration


Syrmus, Syrmos or Syrmios (Greek: Σύρμος) was a king of the Triballi tribe that lived in western Thrace during the 330's BC. He succeeded Hales. He is mentioned in the historical accounts of Arrian, Strabo and Plutarch. He was famously involved in the Battle of Mount Haemus with the Macedonians under Alexander III the Great where he and the Illyrians attempted to throw off Macedonian hegemony and attempted to stop the advancing military in the Hameus Mons.

"... Danube, and by winning a signal victory over Syrmus, the King of the Triballi. After this, as he heard that the Thebans had revolted, ..."

Plutarch's Lives - Page 183

Following the death of Philip II, Syrmus led a revolt against the newly crowned Alexander as he passed through the mountain range. Following three encounters with the young Macedonian king including the Battle of Mount Haemus the Triballi and Illyrian allies were driven to the junction of the Lyginus at the Danube river. Srymos and his allies soon took refuge on an island in the Danube called Peukê. It was here other remnants of defeated or exiled Thracians were residing.

The Macedonians successfully harassed the tribes around the Danube so eventually the Thracians submitted to Alexander and began to send him tribute. Alexander decided to continue the fight against the northern tribes was not worth it because he wanted to persue his agenda against the Achaemenid Persian Empire in Asia proper.

Syrmus was once considered the founder of the settlement at Sirmium however, present research indicates the roots of the words are different and this association only happened later.


Primary Sources

Plutarch's Lives by Plutarch, 2008, ISBN 1-4404-1432-7,

Fanula Papazoglu, The central Balkan tribes in pre-Roman times, Hakkert, 1978. ISBN 90-256-0793-4. p.73-74.

Heckel, W. (2006). Who's Who in the Age of Alexander the Great: Prosopography of Alexander's Empire. Wiley. p. 258. ISBN 9781405112109.

Gebhardi, L.A. (1778). Geschichte des Reichs Hungarn und der damit verbundenen Staaten. p. 75.

Secondary Sources

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