According to the ancient sources she was a citizen of either Miletus or Stratonicea, Caria. Monime was the daughter of a prominent citizen called Philopoemen. Monime was a beautiful, intelligent woman and was much talked about among the Greeks.
When the King Mithridates VI of Pontus and his army successfully captured her native city in 89/88 BC, her beauty made a great impression on Mithridates VI. He was strongly drawn to her and Mithridates VI was attracted to powerful personalities whose intelligence complemented his own. Mithridates VI thought of making Monime the jewel of his harem, he began negotiations with Philopoemen. Mithridates VI offered her father 1500 gold pieces. She rejected the offer and she held out for more. Monime demanded from Mithridates VI a marriage contract and insisted that he give her a royal Diadem and the title of ‘Queen’. Although he found Monime irresistible, Mithridates VI agreed to what Monime wanted.
The royal scribes prepared the marriage contract. Mithridates VI tied a purple and gold ribbon around the head of Monime, the pair withdrew to the private rooms of the palace at Sinope to become better acquainted. They had married in 89/88 BC and through her marriage to Mithridates VI; Monime became his second wife and Queen of Pontus. Her father received his gold from Mithridates VI and Mithridates VI appointed Philopoemen as his overseer in Ephesus. Monime bore Mithridates VI a child, a daughter called Athenais.
In the beginning of their marriage, she exercised great influence over her husband however this didn’t last long. In the end they had an unhappy marriage and he later became dissatisfied with her. Monime later repented her marriage to Mithridates VI; her elevation and was later effected in leaving her native city.
In 72/71 BC, when her husband was compelled to abandon his own dominions and took refuge in the Kingdom of Armenia, Monime was put to death at Pharnacia. Her correspondence to Mithridates VI, which was of a licentious character, fell into the hands of Roman general Pompey at the capture of the fortress at Caenon Phrourion.
- Mayor, The Poison King: the life and legend of Mithradates, Rome’s deadliest enemy p.165
- Mayor, The Poison King: the life and legend of Mithradates, Rome’s deadliest enemy p.405
- Mayor, The Poison King: the life and legend of Mithradates, Rome’s deadliest enemy p.218
- Mayor, A. The Poison King: the life and legend of Mithradates, Rome’s deadliest enemy, Princeton University Press, 2009