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Artabanus IV

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Artabanus IV of Parthia[1] ruled the Parthian Empire (c. 216224). He was the younger son of Vologases V who died in 209. Artabanus rebelled against his brother Vologases VI, and soon gained the upper hand, although Vologases VI maintained himself in a part of Babylonia until about 228.

The Roman emperor Caracalla, wanted to make use of this civil war for a conquest of the East and attacked the Parthians in 216. He crossed the Tigris and destroyed the towns, but when Artabanus advanced at the head of an army, he retired to Carrhae. There he was murdered by Martialis on April 8, 217. Caracalla's successor, the Praetorian Prefect of the Guard Macrinus, was defeated at Nisibis and in a peace with Artabanus he gave up all the Roman conquests and paid a heavy contribution to the Parthians.

At about this time, the Persian Great King Ardashir had already begun his conquests in Persia. When Artabanus tried to subdue him his troops were defeated. The war lasted several years; at last Artabanus himself was killed in 226. Thus the 400-year rule of the Arsacid Dynasty came to an end.

Preceded by
Vologases V
Great King (Shah) of Parthia
208 – 228
Succeeded by
Ardashir I of Persia

References[change | change source]

  1. When Arsaces II is called Artabanus I - as it is done by earlier historians - he has to be counted as Artabanus V
This article includes text from the public domain 1911 Encyclopaedia Britannica. Please add to the article as needed.
  • Dio Cassius, vii, 12; lxxviii, 26.