Mithridates III of Parthia
|King of the Parthian Empire|
Mithridates' year of birth is not specified by ancient historians, but his coin mints illustrate him as a middle-aged man. He was probably a son of Mithridates II. In July/August 87 BC, Mithridates III usurped the Parthian throne from Orodes I. Around the same period, the Seleucid ruler Demetrius III Eucaerus besieged his brother Philip I Philadelphus in Bereoa in Syria. The governor of the city, however, called on Aziz, an Arab phylarch (tribal leader), and the Parthian governor Mithridates Sinaces for help; with their aid, Demetrius III was defeated and taken hostage to Mithridates III, who treated him with "honour" until he died of illness. In August/September 80 BC, Mithridates III was dethroned in Babylon, and was shortly afterwards expelled from Susa by Orodes I. Mithridates III may have survived this event and managed to flee to the north, where he continued fighting until he died the following year. Other scholars, however, do not support the existence of a Mithridates III ruling in the 80s BC. According to Rahim M. Shayegan (2011), the existence of rival kings during Orodes I's reign "repose primarily upon numismatic evidence, may find scant support in the literary and documentary sources, and can be contradicted by a diverging interpretation of the period's coinage." Shayegan deduces that Gotarzes I reigned till his death in c. 80 BC, and was succeeded by Orodes I.
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- Sellwood, David (1976). "The Drachms of the Parthian "Dark Age"". The Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Great Britain and Ireland. Cambridge University Press. 1 (1): 2–25. doi:10.1017/S0035869X00132988. JSTOR 25203669. (registration required)
- Shayegan, M. Rahim (2011). Arsacids and Sasanians: Political Ideology in Post-Hellenistic and Late Antique Persia. Cambridge University Press. pp. 1–539. ISBN 9780521766418.
Mithridates III of ParthiaDied: 87 BC
| King of the Parthian Empire