Strato II

Strato II

Strato II "Soter" was an Indo-Greek king. He (reigned circa 25 BCE to 10CE) according to Bopearachchi. RC Senior suggests that his reign ended perhaps a decade earlier.

Strato II ruled in the eastern Punjab, probably retaining the capital of Sagala (modern Sialkot, Pakistan), or possibly to the city of Bucephala (Plutarch, p. 48 n. 5).

His territory was invaded by Rajuvula, Indo-Scythian king of Mathura, and he became the last of the Indo-Greek kings, together with his grandson and co-regent, Strato (III) Philopator (sometimes misspelt Philopaptor), who is included on some of his coins. A silver coin with a different portrait and the inscription Strato Dikaios may belong to Strato III as sole ruler, or to a fourth king named Strato. [R.C. Senior, New Indo-Greek Coins, ONS Journal 186, 2005] . (Given that the coins of Strato I have lately been attributed to two different kings, there may actually have been as many as five kings named Strato.)

Just like the earlier king Strato I, the last Stratons I are thought to belong to the dynasty of Menander I, who also used the epithet Soter and the symbol of standing Pallas Athena.

Coins of Strato II, III and Strato Dikaios

thumb|350px|Coin_of_Strato II and Strato III.
Obv: Probable bust of Strato II. Greek

Rev: Athena holding a thunderbolt. Kharoshthi
Bopearachchi and other scholars from numismatical evidence alone. The coins deteriorated continuously, Strato's coins being the most debased and crude in style, a striking contrast to earlier kings who struck some of the most beautiful coins of antiquity.

The decay was due to the increasing pressure of the Indo-Scythian nomads on the remaining Greek pockets, as well as their long isolation from the rest of the Hellenistic world.Subsequent Indo-Scythian rulers, such as Bhadayasa designed their coins in direct imitation of those of Strato II.

Strato II and Strato Dikaios struck debased silver drachms, which as mentioned portray Pallas on the reverse. Strato II appears as an old man with a sunken jaw on some of his coins, which is not surprising given that he had his grandson was co-regent.

Strato II also issued bronzes and even lead coins of the common type Apollo/tripod. On some of Strato II's silver drachms the letter sigma is written as C, a not uncommon trait on late Hellenistic coins in the east.

ee also

* Indo-Greek Kingdom
* Greco-Buddhism
* Indo-Scythians


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