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Aristobulus II, 67 - 63 B.C.
Aristobulus II was the younger son of Alexander Jannaeus, King and High Priest, and Alexandra Salome. After the death of Alexander in 76 B.C., his widow Alexandra Salome succeeded to the rule of Judea and installed her elder son Hyrcanus II as High Priest. When Alexandra Salome died in 67 B.C., Hyrcanus succeeded to the kingship as well but Aristobulus II rebelled. Both brothers appealed to Pompey's deputy Marcus Aemilius Scaurus, who, bribed by a gift of 400 talents, decided in favor of Aristobulus. When Pompey arrived in Syria in 63 B.C., both brothers sent delegates to Damascus, but Pompey did not make an immediate decision. Aristobulus' followers refused to open the gates of Jerusalem and Romans forces besieged and captured the city. Pompey deemed Hyrcanus II, the elder, weaker brother a more reliable ally. Hyrcanus was restored as high priest, but not as king. Aristobulus was taken to Rome as a prisoner. In 57 B.C. Aristobulus escaped to Judaea and instigated another rebellion. A young cavalry commander, Marc Antony, led several men to scale Aristobulus' fortifications leading to his recapture. Aristobulus was again a prisoner in Rome until Julius Caesar released him in 49 B.C., hoping to turn Judaea against Pompey. On his way to Judaea he was poisoned by a Pompey supporter. With help from the Parthians, Aristobulus' son Antigonus rebelled against Rome and became king in 40 B.C. He was defeated by Rome and killed in 37 B.C.