Ara the Beautiful

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Semiramis stares at the corpse of Ara the Beautiful, in the painting by Vardkes Sureniants.

Ara the Beautiful (also Ara the Handsome or Ara the Fair; Armenian: Արա Գեղեցիկ Ara Geghetsik) is a legendary Armenian hero. He is notable in Armenian literature for the popular legend in which he was so handsome that the Assyrian queen Semiramis waged war against Armenia just to get him.

He is sometimes associated with the historical king of Ararat known as Arame who ruled in the 9th century BC.

The legend[edit]

At this time there lived Semiramis (Shamiram in Armenian), the queen of Ninevah. Her husband was Ninus, who came to loathe her for her infidelity, and left his country.

The battle began when Semiramis arrived in the region called Ararat. She ordered her commanders to capture Ara alive, but he was vanquished and killed by one of her sons. His body was found on the battlefield among the other slain soldiers.

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