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Even though Arrhidaeus and Alexander were about the same age, Arrhidaeus appears never to have been a danger as an alternative choice for Alexander's succession to Philip II; nevertheless, when the Persian satrap of Caria, Pixodarus, proposed his daughter in marriage to Philip, the king declined, offering his son Arrhidaeus as husband instead, and Alexander thought it prudent to block the dynastic union (which might have produced a possible future heir to Philip's domain before Alexander himself did), resulting in considerable irritation on the part of his father (337 BC).
Arrhidaeus' whereabouts during the reign of his brother Alexander are unclear from the extant sources; what is certain is that no civil or military command was given to him in those thirteen years (336–323 BC).
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That same year, Polyperchon and Olympias allied with her cousin, Aeacides, king of Epirus, and invaded Macedonia.
The Macedonian troops refused to fight Olympias, the mother of Alexander.
From that moment on, Philip Arrhidaeus was to be under the sway of his bride, a proud and determined woman bent on substantiating her husband's power. The regent died of natural causes the following year, nominating as his successor not his son Cassander, but his friend and lieutenant, Polyperchon.
Cassander's refusal to accept his father's decision sparked the Second War of the Diadochi, in which Eurydice saw once again a chance to free Philip from the control of the regent.
A conflict then arose between Perdiccas, leader of the cavalry, and Meleager, who commanded the phalanx: the first wanted to wait to see if Roxana, Alexander's pregnant wife, would deliver a male baby, while the second objected that Arrhidaeus was the closest living relative and so should be chosen king.
It was immediately decided that Philip Arrhidaeus would reign, but not rule: this was to be the prerogative of the new regent, Perdiccas. Head of Herakles right, wearing lion skin headdress / [BASILEWS FILIPPOU], Zeus Aëtophoros seated left; wheel and monogram in left field, monogram below throne.
When news arrived in Macedonia that Arrhidaeus had been chosen as king, Cynane, a daughter of Philip II, developed a plan to travel to Asia and offer the new king her daughter Eurydice for wife. Eurydice's chance to increase her husband's power came when the first war of the Diadochi sealed the fate of Perdiccas, making a new settlement necessary.
Named Arrhidaeus at birth, he assumed the name Philip when he ascended to the throne.
As Arrhidaeus grew older it became apparent that he had mild learning difficulties.