Samstag, 25. Januar 2014

Mithridates I of Median Atropatene (r. 67–66 BC)

Artavasdes I of Media Atropatene, also known as Artavasdes I of Atropatene, Artavasdes I and     Artavasdes (before or about 59 BC-about 20 BC  was a Prince who served as a King of Media Atropatene.

Mithridates I of Media Atropatene, sometimes known as Mithridates I and Mithridates of Media (100 BC-66 BC) was a King of Achaemenid Media Atropatene Kingdom of Kurds.

Although Mithridates I was a Median Prince, little is known on his lineage and his life. In or before 67 BC, Mithridates I married an unnamed Armenian Princess from the Artaxiad Dynasty who was a daughter of the Kurdish King Tigranes the Great and his wife, Cleopatra of Pontus.

Mithridates I ruled from 67 BC to ca. 66 BC. Mithridates I is mentioned in the ancient sources, in the last campaign against the Roman General Lucullus in 67 BC. He was supporting Tigranes, when his father-in-law went to war against the Romans  in 67 BC.  There is a possibility that Mithridates I was present with Tigranes the Great and the King Mithridates VI of Pontus, when Tigranes and Mithridates VI were defeated by Lucullus at the Arsanias River in 66 BC.

Mithridates I appeared to have died in ca. 66 BC, as his relative Darius I was King of Media Atropatene in c. 65 BC. According to modern genealogies, Mithridates I and his Kurdish wife are presented in being the parents of a child, a son called Ariobarzanes I which can explain the claims of Mithridates I’s descendants to the Kurdish Kingship in opposition to the lasting ruling monarchs of the Artaxiad Dynasty. He was the child born to Ariobarzanes I by an unnamed wife. His probable paternal uncle could have been Darius I. He was born and raised in the Kingdom of Media Atropatene. Artavasdes I is the namesake of his ancestor, Artabazanes a previous ruling King of Media Atropatene in the 3rd century BC, as the name Artavasdes is a variation of the name Artabazanes (see Asha).

Artavasdes I succeeded his father as King, when Ariobarzanes I died in 56 BC. When Mark Antony led his campaign against the Kurdish Parthian Empire in 36 BC, Artavasdes I was an ally of the King Phraates IV of Parthia. Antony led his troops from Zeugma northward into Kurdish and then invaded the domain of Artavasdes I. Antony did not want to attack Parthia from the west, which was the shortest way, but surprisingly from the north. Antony allegedly used this strategy on the advice of Artavasdes II of Armenia, the enemy of Artavasdes I.[10] Antony moved with his army in fast marches to Phraaspa, the strong fortified capital of Media Atropatene, where Artavasdes I had got his family to safety. Meantime Artavasdes I had joined the army of Phraates IV.

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