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European Kingdoms

Eastern Mediterranean


Canites (Thrace)

Thrace had a heritage which matched that of its south-westerly neighbours, the Mycenaeans - Thracians were apparently allied to Troy during the Trojan War in the twelfth century BC, although Homeric Thrace was only vaguely defined and may only have just been starting to form. Climate-induced drought in the preceding century seems to have been the main cause for the Thracians and their neighbours to force their way south-eastwards through the Balkans from the Danubian home that had been forged by their South-West Indo-European ancestors, over a thousand years before.

The formal Odrysian kingdom appears to have broken up in the early second century BC, although it survived in some form until Roman annexation in 148 BC. The possibility is that the occupation of Thrace by Pergamon for three years had destroyed or damaged Thracian organisation to such an extent that the kingdom was terminally weakened. Two tribal kingdoms appeared alongside it, probably located more to the north, in the mountain uplands. Of the Canites and Odrissae, the former is almost completely obscure after its first two rulers. The names of both kings appear to be suspiciously close to two of the Odrissae, raising the possibility that the Canites and Odrissae were one and the same, or at least two groups ruled by the same kings.

(Information by Peter Kessler, with additional information from The Histories, Herodotus (Penguin, 1996), from The Iliad, Homer (Translated by E V Rieu, Penguin Books, 1963), from The Horse, the Wheel, and Language: How Bronze-Age Riders from the Eurasian Steppes Shaped the Modern World, David W Anthony, and from The Greek Settlements in Thrace until the Macedonian Conquest, Benjamin H Isaac.)

The Balkans Mountains in Albania, by wiredforadventure.com

c.180 BC


Confused with Diygyles of the Odrissae?

c.180 BC

Tsizelmi (Zybelmios?)

Confused with Biz of the Odrissae?

148 BC

This obscure tribal territory eventually falls to Rome (if it even exists as a territory in its own right), possibly in 148 BC when it formally occupies Thrace. The tribal kingdom of the Odrissae continues.

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