Prusias II of Bithynia

Prusias II Cynegus (Greek: Προυσίας ὁ Κυνηγός; "the Hunter", c. 220 BC 149 BC, reigned c. 182 BC 149 BC) was the Greek king of Bithynia. He was the son and successor of Prusias I and Apama III.

Prusias II "The Hunter"
Prusias II, depicted on ancient Greek coins in the Altes Museum Berlin
King of Bithynia
Reign182 – 149 BC
PredecessorPrusias I
SuccessorNicomedes II
Bornc. 220 BC
Died149 BC (aged 71)
ConsortApame IV
FatherPrusias I
MotherApama III
ReligionGreek Polytheism
Prusias II, King of Bithynia, Reduced to Begging


Prusias was born to Prusias I and Apama III in 220 BC. His father died in 189 BC,[1] at which point he became the king of Bithynia. Prusias II joined with the king of Pergamon, Eumenes II in a war against King Pharnaces I of Pontus (181–179 BC).[2] He later invaded the territories of Pergamon (156–154 BC), only to be defeated, with Pergamon insisting on heavy reparations, including 500 talents and "twenty decked ships".[3]

Prusias II married his maternal cousin Apame IV, a sister of Perseus of Macedon and a princess from the Antigonid dynasty,[4] by whom he had a son, Nicomedes II, and a daughter, Apama, who would marry Dyegilos,[5] son of Cotys IV, King of Thrace, and his wife, Semestra.

Prusias II was praised by the Aetolians on account of his behavior and benefactions towards them.[6]

Towards the end of his life, Prusias II had children by a later wife, and wanted to make them his heirs in place of Nicomedes.[7] He sent Nicomedes to Rome to ask its help in reducing the amount of these reparations, and directed the co-ambassador, Menas, to kill Nicomedes if the mission was unsuccessful.[8] Despite the failure of the mission, Nicomedes persuaded Menas to betray Prusias, and Nicomedes declared himself king.[9] Prusias had to renounce the kingship in favour of his son and was himself murdered in 149 BC.[10]


  1. Memnon. History of Heraclea Pontica.
  2. Oxford Reference.
  3. Appian. The Mithridatic Wars. The ambassadors decided that as a penalty he must transfer to Attalus twenty decked ships at once, and pay him 500 talents of silver within a certain time.
  4. Appian. The Mithridatic Wars. to whom Perseus, king of Macedonia, gave his sister in marriage
  5. Appian. The Mithridatic Wars. his son-in-law, Diegylis the Thracian
  6. Sylloge Inscriptionum Graecarum: 632 Pontica. The league of Aetolians honours king Prousias son of king Prousias on account of his virtue and his benefactions towards them.
  7. Appian. The Mithridatic Wars.
  8. Appian. The Mithridatic Wars. He sent Menas as his fellow ambassador, and told him if he should secure a remission of the payments to spare Nicomedes, but if not, to kill him at Rome.
  9. Appian. The Mithridatic Wars.
  10. Appian. The Mithridatic Wars. Prusias fled to the temple of Zeus, where he was stabbed by some of the emissaries of Nicomedes.
Preceded by
Prusias I
King of Bithynia
182 BC – 149 BC
Succeeded by
Nicomedes II