Artoces of Iberia

Artoces Of Iberia

Artoces of Iberia

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Artoces was a king of Iberia (modern-day Georgia) from 78 to 63 BC. He features in the Classical accounts of the Third Mithridatic War (Appian, Bell. Mithr. 103, 117; Cassius Dio 37.1-2; Eutropius 6.14 ; Festus 16; Orosius 6.4.8) and is identified with the Artag () or Arik (არიკ) of the medieval Georgian annals.Toumanoff, Cyril. Chronology of the Early Kings of Iberia. Traditio 25 (1969), p. 11.Rapp, Stephen H. (2003), Studies In Medieval Georgian Historiography: Early Texts And Eurasian Contexts, pp. 282-283. Peeters Bvba ISBN 90-429-1318-5.

According to the Georgian historic tradition, he was the son and successor of Artaxias I of the Artaxiads. The medieval Georgian account of his reign is brief and focuses on the devastation of his kingdom at the hands of Iranians while the Classical sources much closer to the period in question contain a detailed description of Artoces’s war with Rome on the side of Mithridates VI of Pontus and Tigranes of Armenia.

Alarmed by the Roman occupation of the neighboring Albania, Artoces promised peace and friendship; but the Roman commander Pompey, informed that he was secretly arming so as to fall upon the Romans on their march in the passes of the Caucasus, advanced in March 65 BC, before resuming the pursuit of Mithridates, to the Iberian strongholds of Harmozica and Seusamora. Artoces, caught by surprise, hastily burnt the bridge over the Kura and retreated...
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