CHALCIS, region of S. Lebanon. Chalcis, an independent principality in the first century B.C.E., was among the areas conquered by the Itureans. During the reign of Salome Alexandra there was tension between Chalcis and the Hasmonean kingdom. When Pompey conquered the East, the ruler of Chalcis, Ptolemy the son of Menaeus, succeeded in maintaining his rule by paying a large indemnity to the Romans. He married one of the daughters of Aristobulus II and later provided a refuge for her brother Antigonus. Ptolemy was succeeded by his son Lysanias, who shortly afterward was put to death by Antony at Cleopatra's request, Antony granting her the principality as a gift. During Claudius' reign, the principality was given to Herod, brother of Agrippa I. This Jewish ruler of Chalcis was also in charge of the Temple and its funds, as well as the high-priestly vestments. After the death of Agrippa I, Agrippa II ruled Chalcis for a brief period.
Schuerer, Gesch, 1 (19014), 707ff.; H. Buchheim Die Orientpolitik des Triumvirn M. Antonius (1960), 15ff.; A. Schalit, Hordos ha-Melekh (1960), 532.
Source: Encyclopaedia Judaica. © 2008 The Gale Group. All Rights Reserved.