Vologases III of Parthia

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Vologases III of Parthia
Coin of Vologases III (cropped), Seleucia mint.jpg
Coin of Vologases III, minted at Seleucia in 121/2
King of the Parthian Empire
FatherVologases II

Vologases III (Parthian: Walagash, Persian: بلاش‎, Balāsh, Armenian: Վաղարշ, Vāghārsh) was a Parthian Prince who claimed the throne of the Parthian Empire about 105, in the last days of Pacorus II of Parthia (80–105) and reigned over the eastern portion of the kingdom to 147. Vologases III was the son of Vologases II of Parthia. During his Parthian rule, he was also the Roman Client King of Armenia from 117/8 until 144 and from his Armenian Kingship is known as Vologases I or Vagharsh I. The period was one of civil war in the Parthian kingdom; for the early part of his reign Vologases III contended with Pacorus II's legitimate successors Osroes I (105–116 and 117–129), Parthamaspates (116–117), and Mithridates V (129–140), who ruled Mesopotamia. Preoccupied by conflicts with the Romans, particularly the invasion by the emperor Trajan (98–117), they were unable to effectively challenge Vologases III.

Following the death of Osroes I, Vologases III extended his rule through most of Parthia but had to contend with Mithridates V, incursions of the nomadic Alans into Cappadocia, Armenia, and Media, and rebellion in Iran by an unknown usurper, c. 140. After Vologases III's death, the Parthian realm was finally reunited by Vologases IV of Parthia (147–191), the son of his rival Mithridates V. In 144, Vologases III's Armenian kingship was given to Sohaemus for unknown reasons. Vologases III was the father of princess Ghadana, who later married Pharasmanes II of Iberia and became Queen of Caucasian Iberia.


  • Toumanoff, Cyril (1986). "Arsacids". Encyclopaedia Iranica, Vol. II, Fasc. 5. Cyril Toumanoff. pp. 525–546.
  • Chaumont, M. L. (1988). "BALĀŠ". Encyclopaedia Iranica, Vol. III, Fasc. 6. pp. 574–580.
  • Cassius Dio, lxix, 15.

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Vologases III of Parthia
Preceded by
Pacorus II and Mithridates IV
Great King (Shah) of Parthia
Succeeded by
Vologases IV