CKM 2019-20 / Aziz Yardımlı





The Kingdom of Pontus at its height: before the reign of Mithridates VI (dark purple), after his early conquests (purple), and his conquests in the first Mithridatic wars (pink).

Kingdom of Pontus

Kingdom of Pontus (281-63 BC) (W)

Pontus-Kingdom, 90 BC.

The Kingdom of Pontus or Pontic Empire (Βασιλεία τῶν Πόντου, Basileía tōn Póntou) was a Hellenistic-era kingdom, centered in the historical region of Pontus and ruled by the Mithridatic dynasty of Persian origin, which may have been directly related to Darius the Great and the Achaemenid dynasty. The kingdom was proclaimed by Mithridates I in 281 BCE and lasted until its conquest by the Roman Republic in 63 BCE. The Kingdom of Pontus reached its largest extent under Mithridates VI the Great, who conquered Colchis, Cappadocia, Bithynia, the Greek colonies of the Tauric Chersonesos, and for a brief time the Roman province of Asia. After a long struggle with Rome in the Mithridatic Wars, Pontus was defeated. Part of it was incorporated into the Roman Republic as the province Bithynia et Pontus; the eastern half survived as a client kingdom.

As the greater part of the kingdom lay within the region of Cappadocia, which in early ages extended from the borders of Cilicia to the Euxine (Black Sea), the kingdom as a whole was at first called 'Cappadocia by Pontus' or 'Cappadocia by the Euxine', but afterwards simply 'Pontus', the name Cappadocia henceforth being used to refer to the southern half of the region previously included under that name.

Culturally, the kingdom was Hellenized, with Greek the official language.


Mithridates VI of Pontus

Mithridates VI of Pontus (135-63 BC) (W)

Portrait of the king of Pontus Mithridates VI as Heracles. Marble, Roman imperial period (1st century).
Mithridates VI or Mithradates VI (Μιθραδάτης, Μιθριδάτης, from Old Persian Miθradāta, "gift of Mithra") (135-63 BC), also known as Mithradates the Great (Megas) and Eupator Dionysius, was king of Pontus and Armenia Minor in northern Anatolia from about 120–63 BC. Mithridates is remembered as one of the Roman Republic’s most formidable and successful enemies, who engaged three of the prominent generals from the late Roman Republic in the Mithridatic Wars: Lucius Cornelius Sulla, Lucius Licinius Lucullus and Gnaeus Pompeius Magnus. He has been called the greatest ruler of the Kingdom of Pontus.


Mithridates is the Greek attestation of the Persian name Mihrdāt, meaning “given by Mithra,” the name of the ancient Iranian sun god. The name itself is derived from Old Iranian Miθra-dāta-.

Ancestry, family and early life

Mithridates VI was a prince of Persian and Greek ancestry. He claimed descent from Cyrus the Great, the family of Darius the Great, the Regent Antipater, the generals of Alexander the Great as well as the later kings Antigonus I Monophthalmus and Seleucus I Nicator.

Mithridates was born in the Pontic city of Sinope, and was raised in the Kingdom of Pontus. He was the first son among the children born to Laodice VI and Mithridates V of Pontus (reigned 150–120 BC). His father, Mithridates V, was a prince and the son of the former Pontic monarchs Pharnaces I of Pontus and his wife-cousin Nysa, His mother, Laodice VI, was a Seleucid princess and the daughter of the Seleucid monarchs Antiochus IV Epiphanes and his wife-sister Laodice IV.

Mithridates V was assassinated in about 120 BC in Sinope, poisoned by unknown persons at a lavish banquet which he held. He left the kingdom to the joint rule of Mithridates' mother, Laodice VI, Mithridates, and his younger brother, Mithridates Chrestus. Neither Mithridates nor his younger brother were of age, and their mother retained all power as regent for the time being. Laodice VI’s regency over Pontus was from 120 BC to 116 BC (even perhaps up to 113 BC) and favored Mithridates Chrestus over Mithridates. During his mother’s regency, he escaped from his mother's plots against him, and went into hiding.

Mithridates emerged from hiding, returning to Pontus between 116 BC and 113 BC and was hailed as king. By this time he had grown to become a man of considerable stature and physical strength. He could combine extraordinary energy and determination with a considerable talent for politics, organization and strategy. Mithridates removed his mother and brother from the throne, imprisoning both, becoming the sole ruler of Pontus. Laodice VI died in prison, ostensibly of natural causes. Mithridates Chrestus may have died in prison also, or may have been tried for treason and executed. Mithridates gave both royal funerals. Mithridates first married his younger sister Laodice, aged 16. His goal was to preserve the purity of their bloodline, solidify his claim to the throne, to co-rule over Pontus, and to ensure the succession to his legitimate children.

Early reign

Mithridates entertained ambitions of making his state the dominant power in the Black Sea and Anatolia. He first subjugated Colchis, a region east of the Black Sea, and prior to 164 BC, an independent kingdom. He then clashed for supremacy on the Pontic steppe with the Scythian King Palacus. The most important centres of Crimea, Tauric Chersonesus and the Bosporan Kingdom readily surrendered their independence in return for Mithridates' promises to protect them against the Scythians, their ancient enemies. After several abortive attempts to invade the Crimea, the Scythians and the allied Rhoxolanoi suffered heavy losses at the hands of the Pontic general Diophantus and accepted Mithridates as their overlord.

The young king then turned his attention to Anatolia, where Roman power was on the rise. He contrived to partition Paphlagonia and Galatia with King Nicomedes III of Bithynia. It was probably on the occasion of the Paphlagonian invasion of 108 BC that Mithridates adopted the Bithynian era for use on his coins in honour of the alliance. This calendar era began with the first Bithynian king Zipoites I in 297 BC. It was certainly in use in Pontus by 96 BC at the latest.

Yet it soon became clear to Mithridates that Nicomedes was steering his country into an anti-Pontic alliance with the expanding Roman Republic. When Mithridates fell out with Nicomedes over control of Cappadocia, and defeated him in a series of battles, the latter was constrained to openly enlist the assistance of Rome. The Romans twice interfered in the conflict on behalf of Nicomedes (95–92 BC), leaving Mithridates, should he wish to continue the expansion of his kingdom, with little choice other than to engage in a future Roman-Pontic war. By this time Mithradates had resolved to expel the Romans from Asia.

Mithridatic Wars

The next ruler of Bithynia, Nicomedes IV of Bithynia, was a figurehead manipulated by the Romans. Mithridates plotted to overthrow him, but his attempts failed and Nicomedes IV, instigated by his Roman advisors, declared war on Pontus. Rome itself was involved in the Social War, a civil war with its Italian allies. Thus, in all of Roman Asia Province there were only two legions present in Macedonia. These legions combined with Nicomedes IV's army to invade Mithridates' kingdom of Pontus in 89 BC. Mithridates won a decisive victory, scattering the Roman-led forces. His victorious forces were welcomed throughout Anatolia. The following year, 88 BC, Mithridates orchestrated a massacre of Roman and Italian settlers remaining in several Anatolian cities, essentially wiping out the Roman presence in the region. 80,000 people are said to have perished in this massacre. The episode is known as the Asiatic Vespers.

The Kingdom of Pontus comprised a mixed population in its Ionian Greek and Anatolian cities. The royal family moved the capital from Amasya to the Greek city of Sinope. Its rulers tried to fully assimilate the potential of their subjects by showing a Greek face to the Greek world and an Iranian/Anatolian face to the Eastern world. Whenever the gap between the rulers and their Anatolian subjects became greater, they would put emphasis on their Persian origins. In this manner, the royal propaganda claimed heritage both from Persian and Greek rulers, including Cyrus the Great, Darius I of Persia, Alexander the Great and Seleucus I Nicator. Mithridates too posed as the champion of Hellenism, but this was mainly to further his political ambitions; it is no proof that he felt a mission to promote its extension within his domains. Whatever his true intentions, the Greek cities (including Athens) defected to the side of Mithridates and welcomed his armies in mainland Greece, while his fleet besieged the Romans at Rhodes. Neighboring King of Armenia Tigranes the Great established an alliance with Mithridates and married one of Mithridates’ daughters, Cleopatra of Pontus. They would support each other in the coming conflict with Rome.

The Romans responded by organising a large invasion force to defeat him and remove him from power. The First Mithridatic War, fought between 88 BC and 84 BC, saw Lucius Cornelius Sulla force Mithridates VI out of Greece proper. After victory in several battles, Sulla received news of trouble back in Rome posed by his enemy Gaius Marius and hurriedly concluded peace talks with Mithridates. As Sulla returned to Italy Lucius Licinius Murena was left in charge of Roman forces in Anatolia. The lenient peace treaty, which was never ratified by the Senate, allowed Mithridates VI to restore his forces. Murena attacked Mithridates in 83 BC, provoking the Second Mithridatic War from 83 BC to 81 BC. Mithridates defeated Murena's two green legions at the Battle of Halys in 82 BC before peace was again declared by treaty.

When Rome attempted to annex Bithynia (bequested to Rome by its last king) nearly a decade later, Mithridates VI attacked with an even larger army, leading to the Third Mithridatic War from 73 BC to 63 BC. Lucullus was sent against Mithridates and the Romans routed the Pontic forces at the Battle of Cabira in 72 BC, driving Mithridates to exile into King Tigranes' Armenia. While Lucullus was preoccupied fighting the Armenians, Mithridates surged back to retake his kingdom of Pontus by crushing four Roman legions under Valerius Triarius and killing 7,000 Roman soldiers at the Battle of Zela in 67 BC. He was routed by Pompey's legions at the Battle of the Lycus in 66 BC. After this defeat, Mithridates VI fled with a small army to Colchis (modern Georgia) and then over the Caucasus Mountains to Crimea and made plans to raise yet another army to take on the Romans. His eldest living son, Machares, viceroy of Cimmerian Bosporus, was unwilling to aid his father. Mithridates had Machares killed, and Mithridates took the throne of the Bosporan Kingdom. Mithridates then ordered conscription and preparations for war. In 63 BC, Pharnaces II of Pontus, one of his sons, led a rebellion against his father, joined by Roman exiles in the core of Mithridates' Pontic army. Mithridates withdrew to the citadel in Panticapaeum, where he committed suicide. Pompey buried Mithridates in the rock-cut tombs of his ancestors in Amasya, the old capital of Pontus.

The death of Mithridates and his doughters..

Mithridates VI of Pontus allegedly attempted suicide by poison, this failed however because of his immunity to the poison, so he requested his Gaulish bodyguard and friend, Bituitus, to kill him by the sword. Mithridates VI or Mithradates VI,135-63 BC, aka Mithradates the Great or Eupator Dionysius. King of Pontus and Armenia Minor. From Hutchinson's History of the Nations, published 1915.



🎨 Stratonice of Pontus

Stratonice of Pontus

“Mithridates Falls in Love with Stratonice” (c.1775-1780). Louis Jean François Lagrenée (French, 1725-1805). Oil on canvas. Musée des Beaux-Arts de Quimper.

King Mithridates falls in love with the beautiful Stratonice, whose song is transmitted by symbolic accessories (lyre, musical staves). The painter’s mastery of the art of expression makes the scene alive, the models, which are recognized in other works, are chosen and reproduced with care. The gestures are graceful, the bright colors, the subtle chords, a general balance reigns over the composition. (L)

Stratonice of Pontus (W)

Stratonice of Pontus (Στρατoνίκη; fl. 1st century BC) was a Greek woman from the Kingdom of Pontus who was one of the mistresses and the fourth wife of King Mithridates VI of Pontus.

Stratonice was a citizen of the Pontian city of Kabeira. She was originally a woman of mean birth and was the daughter of a Harpist.

Stratonice was a harpist in the court of Mithridates VI. She became one of the mistresses to the King and eventually Mithridates VI married her as one of his wives after 86 BC. Stratonice bore Mithridates, a son called Xiphares. Stratonice became one of the favorite wives of the King and had obtained much influence over him. When Mithridates VI was compelled to undertake his perilous retreat to the Black Sea, Mithridates VI left Stratonice in charge of a strong fortress, at Coenum in which he had deposited a large amount of treasure.

Stratonice was induced to betray both the fortress and the fortress’ treasures into the hands of the Roman General Pompey, on the condition that Pompey should spare the life of her son. However Mithridates VI punished her for her treason by putting their son to death before her eyes. She died by 63 BC, when the Kingdom of Pontus was annexed by the Roman General Pompey.


  Mithridatic Wars (88-63 BC)

Mithridatic Wars

Mithridatic Wars (W)

The Pontic Kingdom


Coin of Mithradates VI Eupator, 120-63 BC (uncertain mint).


The Mithridatic Wars were three conflicts fought by Rome against the Kingdom of Pontus and its allies between 88 BC and 63 BC. They are named after Mithridates VI, the King of Pontus who initiated the hostilities after annexing the Roman province of Asia into its Pontic Empire (that came to include most of Asia Minor) and committing massacres against the local Roman population known as the Asian Vespers. As Roman troops were sent to recover the territory, they faced an uprising in Greece organized and supported by Mithridates. Mithridates was able to mastermind such general revolts against Rome and played the magistrates of the optimates party off against the magistrates of the populares party in the Roman civil wars. Nevertheless, the first war ended with a Roman victory, confirmed by the Treaty of Dardanos signed by Lucius Sulla and Mithridates. Greece was restored to Roman rule and Pontus was expected to restore the status quo ante bellum in Asia Minor.

As the treaty of Dardanos was barely implemented in Asia Minor, the Roman general Murena (in charge of retaking control of Roman territory in Asia) decided to wage a second war against Pontus.

The second war resulted in a Roman defeat and gave momentum to Mithridates, who then forged an alliance with Tigranes the Great, the Armenian King of Kings. Tigranes was the son-in-law of Mithridates and was in control of an Armenian empire that included territories in the Levant. Pontus won the Battle of Chalcedon (74 BC), gave support to Cilician pirates against Roman commerce, and the third war soon began.

For the third war, the Romans sent the consul Lucullus to fight against Armenia and Pontus. Lucullus won the Battle of Cabira and the Battle of Tigranocerta but his progress was nullified after the Battle of Artaxata and the Battle of Zela. Meanwhile, the campaign of Pompey against the Cilician pirates in the Mediterranean was successful and Pompey was named by the senate to replace Lucullus. Pompey's subsequent campaigns caused the collapse of the Armenian Empire in the Levant (with Roman forces taking control of Syria and Palestine) and the affirmation of Roman power over Anatolia, Pontus and nearly all the eastern Mediterranean. Tigranes surrendered and became a client king of Rome. Hunted, stripped of his possessions, and in a foreign country, Mithridates had a servant kill him. His former kingdom was combined with one of his hereditary enemies, Bithynia, to form the province of Bithynia and Pontus, which would forestall any future pretender to the throne of Pontus.

Map of Asia minor, 89 BC showing Roman provinces and client states as well as Pontic territory.

Pontus Kingdom, 90 BC.

Coloured lithograph by Carlo Bossoli (London, 1856) of the so-called "Tomb of Mithridates,"" kurgan near Kerch. (W)


📹 Battles of Chaeronea (86 BC) and Orchomenus (85 BC) — Mithridatic Wars (VİDEO)

📹 Battles of Chaeronea (86 BC) and Orchomenus (85 BC) — Mithridatic Wars (LINK)

Mithridates VI of Pontus was one of the rulers deemed the Enemy of Rome by the historians, and rightly so. He and his allies waged three wars against the Roman Republic, killed thousands of the citizens and stemmed the Roman expansion for three decades. In this documentary, we are describing the events of the first Mithridatic war (89-85 BC) in which Pontic army fought against the future Roman dictator Lucius Cornelius Sulla, with the central battles of Chaeronea (86 BC) and Orchomenus (85 BC). We are planning to cover the Second and the Third Mithridatic Wars, and the struggle between Lucullus an Pompey on one side and Mithridates and Tigranes on the other.


📹 Battles of Cyzicus (73 BC) and Tigranocerta (69 BC) — Mithridatic Wars (VİDEO)

📹 Battles of Cyzicus (73 BC) and Tigranocerta (69 BC) — Mithridatic Wars (LINK)

Previously we covered the First Mithridatic War (89-85 BC) between the Roman Republic led by Sulla and the Pontic Kingdom ruled by Mithridates VI and the battles of Chaeronea and Orchomenus (https://goo.gl/g7HpN3).

In this new video, we will describe the Second Mithridatic War (83-81 BC) during which the Romans were commanded by Lucius Licinius Murena that culminated in the battle of Halys river and the Third Mithridatic War (73-63 BC). In this conflict Roman legions fought under Lucius Licinius Lucullus and he fought against the united forces of Pontus and Armenia. Lucullus had to battle Mithridates at Cyzicas and Tigranes II at Tigranocerta. The great Roman general Pompey (Gnaeus Pompeius) also took part in the later stage of the conflict. Hopefully, you are going to enjoy this video, because we are eager to cover the final conflict between the Romans and the Pontic kingdom during which Gaius Julius Caesar fought Pharnaces II.


Mithridatic Wars B.C. 90 to 65 Rome — versus — Mithridates of Pontus (Heritage History)

Mithridatic Wars — B.C. 90 to 65, Rome versus Mithridates of Pontus (L)

Mithridatic Wars

B.C. 90 to 65
Rome — versus — Mithridates of Pontus

First Mithridatic War, 90-85 B.C. Second and Third Mithridatic Wars, 83-65 B.C. Bosporan Rebellion, 47 B.C.

Mithridates VI of Pontus was a minor king of a mountainous region in northern Asia minor, who managed to keep Rome embroiled in wars in the region for over twenty years. Pontus was one of several "buffer" states that separated the territory of Rome, from that of Parthia in the east. As a result of the Mithridatic wars, Rome's sphere of influence in the east increased, and her borders reached those of the Parthian kingdom.

First Mithridatic War : 90-85 B.C.

The dispute started between Bithynia and Pontus, two small kingdoms in the north of Asia minor. Rome supported Bithynia, but did not seek to get directly involved until the armies of Mithridates vanquished both their Bithynian ally, and a Roman army under the local governor. After these two great victories, Mithridates over-ran all of Asia Minor, massacred all of the Roman citizens therein, and tortured the Roman commander whom he had taken captive. He then played upon the anti-Roman sentiment in some Greek cities in order to bring much of Greece into his camp, and installed a dictator, named Aniston in Athens. At this point, he had Rome's full attention. A large army was placed under Sulla, but was delayed from setting out due to the growing political dispute in Rome between Sulla and Marius. By 87 BC , however, the army was in the field, and had undertaken a siege of Athens. In 86 the Roman army under Sulla met the Pontic army under Archelaus, for the first time in open battle at Chaeronea, and in spite of being outnumbered nearly three to one, won a decisive victory. Sulla followed this up a year later with another great victory at Orchomenus, and at this point, drove the army of Mithridates out of mainland Greece.

Meanwhile, another army under Flaccus had landed in Asia to join forces with Greek cities from that region who had revolted from Mithridates. There was significant pro-Marius sentiment in this army however, so they mutinied, and selected a Marian partisan, Flavius Fimbria as their leader. He engaged Mithridates directly in battle at Miletopolis and won a victory, but Sulla, who was determined to return to Rome as soon as possible, made terms with Mithridates and then threatened to turn on the Marian army under Fimbria. Fimbria at this point, killed himself to avoid meeting Sulla in the field, and Sulla returned to Italy, where the armies of the Marian party were drawn up awaiting him.

Date Battle Summary
87 BC
Siege of Athens (First )Romans victory
This city was occupied by a garrison sympathetic to Mithridates, under Archelaus, the Pontus general, and Aniston, an Athenian in service to Mithridates. It besieged by Sulla, in B.C. in 87 B.C. and fell the following year, but Archelaus and many of his followers escaped.
86 BC
Battle of Chaeronea (First )Romans victory
Fought B.C. 86, between the Romans under Sulla, 30,000 strong, and the troops of Pontus, 90,000 in number, under Archelaus. The Romans were completely victorious.
86 BC
Battle of Miletopolis (First )Romans victory
Fought B.C. 86, between the Romans, under Flavius Fimbria, and the Pontic troops, under Mithridates. The Romans gained a complete victory.
85 BC
Battle of Orchomenus (Third )Romans victory
Fought B.C. 85, between the Pontic army, under Archelaus, and the Romans, under Sulla. The Asiatic cavalry attacked and drove back the Roman line, but Sulla himself rallied his troops, and led them in a charge which totally routed the enemy with heavy loss.

Short Biography
Mithridates King of Pontus, enemy of Rome, raised rebellions in Greece and Asia Minor.
Aniston A Athenian who favored an alliance with Mithridates. Installed to govern Athens during the siege.
Archelaus Mithridates chief general in Greece. Met Sulla at Chaeronea and Orchomenus.
Sulla Defeated Mithradates in Greece. Marched on Rome, defeated the party of his enemy Marius.
Flavius Fimbria Marion General who won victories against Mithridates in Asia Minor.

Story Links
Book Links
Orator Aristion in The Story of Rome by Mary Macgregor
Sulla Besieges Athens in The Story of Rome by Mary Macgregor

Second Mithridatic War : 83-82 B.C.

At the end of the First Mithridatic War, the command of the Roman army in Asia minor was given to Licinius Murena, a Sulla partisan. Murena determined that Mithridates was re-arming, and invaded Pontus. Due to the Civil War going on in Rome at precisely this time, Sulla was unable to provide support for Murena's army, and he was defeated. There was no alternative but to make peace on terms unfavorable to Rome, which merely delayed the resolution of the issue.

Third Mithridatic War : 75-65 B.C.

The third Mithridatic War broke out in 75 BC while Rome was still reeling from its brutal civil wars and Sulla's prescriptions, and also engaged in the Sertorian War in Spain. When it became clear that something must be done about the aggressions of Mithridates in Asia Minor, Lucullus, one of Sulla's trusted generals, was sent to Pontic. His first task was to relieve the siege of Cyzicus in Bithynia, but instead of risking a major battle in which he was greatly outnumbered, he harassed and depleted the Pontic forces over time. He finally met the Pontic army in open battle at Cabria, and won a decisive victory. At this point Lucullus controlled all of Bithynia and Pontus as well as the Roman territories in the west of Asia Minor. He now set about reforming and reorganizing the Roman government in the area, rather than pursuing Mithridates, who had fled from Pontus to his son-in-law Tigranes, king of Armenia. Lucullus made powerful enemies in Rome by some of these reforms, which caused problems for him later. Finally, in 69 BC Lucullus marched into Armenia and took the field against Tigranes at Tigranocerta, and again at Artaxata, winning two decisive victories. At this point however, the enemies of Lucullus in Rome desired to replace him and so sent Pompey to take over command. At the final battle if Nicopolis, the Romans under Pompey beat the army of Mithridates, and destroyed his last hope of regaining power. The great enemy of Rome, who had kept east astir for many long years, committed suicide along with his wives and daughters.

Date Battle Summary
74 BC
Battle of Cyzicus (Third) Romans victory
Fought B.C. 74, when the army of Mithridates, who was besieging Cyzicus, was hemmed by the Romans under Lucullus, and though the latter, with inferior forces, did not venture on a pitched battle, he fought a series of minor engagements, in which he eventually destroyed the Pontic army, their losses amounting in the end to over 200,000 men.
72 BC
Battle of Cabria (Third) Romans victory
Fought B.C. 72, between three Roman legions under Lucullus, and the Pontic army under Diophantus and Taxiles. The Pontic cavalry, on which Mithridates chiefly relied, was overwhelmed by Fabius Hadrianus, and the king was driven out of Pontus, which was erected into a Roman province.
69 BC
Battle of Tigranocerta (Third) Romans victory
Fought B.C. 69, when the Romans, 10,000 strong, under Lucullus, who was besieging the city, were attacked by 200,000 Pontic and Armenian troops, under Tigranes. ''Tigranes had failed to occupy some high ground which commanded the position of his cavalry. This Lucullus seized, and attacking the Pontic cavalry in rear, broke it, He then attacked and routed the infantry, with a loss according to the Roman account of 100,000. The Romans lost 5 men only.
67 BC
Battle of Ziela (Third) Mithridates victory
Fought B.C. 67, between the Romans, under Triarius, and the Pontic army, under Mithridates. The King attacked the Roman camp, and practically annihilated them, though himself dangerously wounded in the assault.
66 BC
Battle of Nicopolis (Akbar) Romans victory
Fought B.C. 66, between the Romans, under Pompey, and the army of Mithridates. The Romans had occupied the heights in front of the retreating Asiatics, and Mithridates encamped under their position. In the night the Romans attacked him in his camp, and utterly routed him. This was the last battle fought by Mithdridates against the legions of Rome.
74 BC
Battle of Chalcedon (Third) Mithridates victory
Fought B.C. 74, between the Roman fleet, under Rutilius Nudo, and that of Pontus. The Romans sallied out of the harbour, but were driven back, and the Pontic fleet then broke the chain protecting the entrance and destroyed the whole of the Roman ships, 70 in number.

Short Biography
Lucullus Led Rome against Mithradates in third Mithradatic War. Known for extravagant lifestyle.
Pompey Very renowned general. Defeated pirates. Led opposition to Caesar in civil war.
Tigranes II King of Armenia and son-in-law of Mithridates.

Story Links
Book Links
Across the Euphrates in Helmet and Spear by Alfred J. Church
Death of Mithradates in Lucius. Adventures of a Roman Boy by Alfred J. Church
Battle-Fields and Gardens in Tales of the Romans: The Children's Plutarch by F. J. Gould
Lucullus in Our Young Folks' Plutarch by Rosalie Kaufman
Pompey in Our Young Folks' Plutarch by Rosalie Kaufman
Pompey Goes to War with Mithridates in The Story of Rome by Mary Macgregor

The Bosporan Rebellion : 47 B.C.

After his father's defeat and suicide, Pharnaces, the son of Mithridates made peace with Rome. He had opposed his father's final campaign against Rome, and was trusted by Pompey and so was granted the Bosporan Kingdom on the northern shores of the Black sea, and swore alliance with Rome. For twenty years he kept the peace, quietly increasing his power and influence. Finally, in the midst of the , when he believed the Roman armies were too preoccupied with fighting each other to defend their easter border, he brought Colchis and Armenia under his dominion. He then met a Roman army under Calvinus at Nicopolis and won a great victory, which allowed him to regain Pontus, his father's kingdom. Although Caesar was utterly embroiled in a civil war at the time, he immediately marched upon Pontus and forced a battle at Zela, where Pharaces was utterly routed. It was after this battle that Caesar sent his famous message, "Veni, vidi, vici" (I came, I saw, I conquered).

Date Battle Summary
47 BC
Battle of Nicopolis (Bosporan Rebellion) Bosporus victory
Fought B.C. 47, when Domitius Calvinus, with one Roman legion and a contingent of Pontic and other Asiatic troops, encountered the Bosporans, under Pharnaces. Calvinus' Asiatic troops fled at the first onset, and he was completely defeated, only the steadiness of the Romans saving him from disaster.
47 BC
Battle of Ziela (Bosporan Rebellion) Caesareans victory
Fought August 2, B.C. 47, between 7 Roman legions, with some Asiatic auxiliaries, under Julius Caesar, and the Bosporans, under Pharnaces. Pharnaces attacked the Romans while they were pitching camp, but the legionaries quickly formed up, and utterly routed their assailants. This is the occasion of Caesar's famous despatch, "Veni, vidi, vici."

Short Biography
Julius Caesar Conquered Gaul, prevailed in civil war. Mastermind of Roman empire. Killed by senators.
Pharnaces II Son of Mithridates and king of Bosporus. Rebelled against Rome and was crushed by Caesar.
Domitius Calvinus Roman General who was defeated by Pharnaces II at the battle of Nicopolis.



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