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two of the chief men among the Parthians, Sin-naces, and the eunuch, Abdus, despatched an embassy to Tiberius in A. d. 35, to beg him to send to Parthia Phraates, one of the sons of Phraates IV. Tiberius willingly complied with the request; but Phraates upon arriving in Syria was carried off by a disease, which was brought on by his disusing the Roman mode of living, to which he had been accustomed for so many years, and adopting the Parthian habits. As soon as Tiberius heard of his death, he set up Tiridates, another of the Arsacidae, as a claimant to the Parthian throne, and induced Mithridates and his brother Pharas-manes, Iberian princes, to invade Armenia. The Iberians accordingly entered Armenia, and after bribing the servants of Arsaces, the son of Arta-banus, to put him to death, they subdued the country. Orodes, another son of Artabanus, was sent against them, but was entirely defeated by Pnarasmanes; and soon afterwards Artabanus was obliged to leave his kingdom, and to fly for refuge to the Hyrcanians and Carmanians. Hereupon Vitellius, the governor of Syria, crossed the Euphrates, and placed Tiridates on the throne. In the following year (a. d. 36) some of the Parthian nobles, jealous of the power of Abdageses, the chief minister of Tiridates, recalled Artabanus, who in his turn compelled Tiridates to fly into Syria. (Tac. Ann. vi. 31—37, 41—44 ; Dion Cass. Iviii. 26 ; Joseph. Ant. xviii. 5. § 4.) When Tiberius received news of these events, he commanded Vitellius to conclude a peace with Artabanus (Joseph. Ant. xviii. 5. § 5), although Artabanus, according to Suetonius (Tiber, c. 66), sent a letter to Tiberius upbraiding him with his crimes, and advising him to satisfy the hatred of his citizens by a voluntary death. After the death of Tiberius, Artabanus sought to extend his kingdom ; he seized Armenia, and meditated an attack upon Syria, but alarmed by the activity of Vitellius, who advanced to the Euphrates to meet him, he concluded peace with the Romans, and sacrificed to the images of Augustus and Caligula. (Dion Cass. lix. 27 ; Suet. VitelL 2, Calig. 14, with Ernesti's Excursus.)
Subsequently, Artabanus was again expelled from his kingdom by the Parthian nobles, but was restored by the mediation of Izates, king of Adia-bene, who was allowed in consequence to wear his tiara upright, and to sleep upon a golden bed, which were privileges peculiar to the kings of Parthia. Soon afterwards, Artabanus died, and left the kingdom to his son Bardanes. Bardanes made war upon Izates, to whom his family was so deeply indebted, merely because he refused to assist him in making war upon the Romans; but when the Parthians perceived the intentions of Bardanes, they put him to death, and gave the kingdom to his brother, Gotarzes. This is the account given by Josephus (Ant. xx. 3) of the reigns of Bardanes and Gotarzes, and differs from that of Tacitus, which is briefly as follows.
arsaces XX., gotarzes, succeeded his father, Artabanus III.; but in consequence of his cruelty, the Parthians invited his brother Bardanes to the throne. A civil Avar ensued between the two brothers, which terminated by Gotarzes resigning the crown to Bardanes, and retiring into Hyrcania. (Tac. Ann. xi. 8, 9.)
was deterred from his design by Vibius Marsus, the governor of Syria. He defeated his brother Gotarzes, who had repented of his resignation, and attempted to recover the throne; but his successes led him to treat his subjects with haughtiness, who accordingly put him to death while he was hunting, a. d. 47. His death occasioned fresh disputes for the crown, which was finally obtained by Gotarzes; but as he also governed with cruelty, the Parthians secretly applied to the emperor Claudius, to beg him to send them from Rome Meherdates, the grandson of Phraates IV. Claudius complied with their request, and commanded the governor of Syria to assist Meherdates. Through the treachery of Abgarus, king of Edessa, the hopes of Meherdates were ruined; he was defeated in battle, and taken prisoner by Gotarzes, who died himself shortly afterwards, about a. d. 50* (Tac. Ann. xi. 10, xii. 10—14.)
arsaces XXIII., vologeses I., the son of Vonones II. by a Greek concubine, according to Tacitus (Ann. xii, 14, 44); but according to Josephus, the son of Artabanus III. (Ant. xx. 3. § 4.) Soon after his accession, he invaded Armenia, took Artaxata and Tigranocerta, the chief cities of the country, and dethroned Rhadamistus, the Iberian, who had usurped the crown. He then gave Armenia to his brother, Tiridates, having previously given Media to his other brother, Pacorus. These occurrences excited considerable alarm at Rome, as Nero, who had just ascended the throne (a. d. 55), was only seventeen years of age. Nero, however, made active preparations to oppose the Parthians, and sent Domitius Corbulo to take possession of Armenia, from which the Parthians had meantime withdrawn, and Quadratus Ummidius to command in Syria. Vologeses was persuaded by Corbulo and Ummidius to conclude peace with the Romans and give as hostages the noblest of the Arsacidae ; which he was induced to do, either that he might the more conveniently prepare for war, or that he might remove from the kingdom those who were likely to prove rivals. (Tac. Ann. xii. 50, xiii. 5—9.) Three years afterwards (a. d. 58), the war at length broke out between the Parthians and the Romans; for Vologeses could not endure Tiridates to be deprived of the kingdom of Armenia, which he hud himself given him, and would not let him receive it as a gift from the Romans. This war, however, terminated in favour of the Romans. Corbulo, the Roman general, took and destroyed Artaxata, and also obtained possession of Tigranocerta, which surrendered to him. Tiridates was driven out of Armenia; and Corbulo appointed in his place, as king of Armenia, the Cappadocian Tigranes, the grandson of king Arche-laus, and gave certain parts of Armenia to the tributary kings who had assisted him in the war. After making these arrangements, Corbulo retired into Syria, a. d. 60. (Tac. Ann. xiii. 34-41, xiv. 23-2§; Dion Cass. Ixii. 19, 20.) Vologeses, however, resolved to make another attempt to recover Armenia. He made preparations to invade Syria himself, and sent Monaeses, one of his generals, and Mono-bazus, king of the Adiabeni, to attack Tigranes and drive him out of Armenia. They accordingly entered Armenia and laid siege to Tigranocerta,