Amida was an ancient city in Mesopotamia located where modern Diyarbakır, Turkey now stands. The Roman writers Ammianus Procopius consider it a city of Mesopotamia; the city was located on the right bank of the Tigris. The walls are lofty and substantial, constructed of the recycled stones from older buildings. Amid known by various names throughout its long history, was established as an Aramean settlement, circa the 3rd millennium BC as the capital of Bit-Zamani; the oldest artefact from Amida is the famous stele of king Naram-Sin believed to be from third millennia BC. The name Amida first appears in the writings of Assyrian King Adad-nirari I who ruled the city as a part of the Assyrian homeland. Amida remained an important region of the Assyrian homeland throughout the reign of king Tiglath-Pileser I and the name Amida appeared in the annals of Assyrian rulers until 705 BC, appears in the archives of Armenian king Tiridates II in 305 AD, the Roman historian Ammianus Marcellinus, it was enlarged and strengthened by Constantius II, in whose reign it was besieged and taken after seventy-three days by the Sassanid king Shapur II.
The Roman soldiers and a large part of the population of the town were massacred by the Persians. The historian Ammianus Marcellinus, who took part in the defence of the town, has given a minute account of the siege. In 363 Amida was re-taken by Roman Emperor Julian. Amida was besieged by the Sassanid king Kavadh I during the Anastasian War through the autumn and winter; the siege of the city proved to be a far more difficult enterprise. Part of the prisoners of Amida were deported to Arrajan, a city founded by Kavad I, who named it "Weh-az-Amid-Kawad" (literally, "better than Amida, Kavad ". During that same war, the Romans attempted an unsuccessful siege of the Persian-held Amida, led by generals Patricius and Hypatius. In 504, the Romans reconquered the city, Justinian I repaired its walls and fortifications; the Sassanids held it for more than twenty years. In 628 the Roman emperor Heraclius recovered Amida. In 639 the city was captured by the Arab armies of Islam and it remained in Arab hands until the Kurdish dynasty of the Marwanids ruled the area during the 10th and 11th centuries.
In 1085, the Seljuq Turks captured the region from the Marwanids, they settled many Turcomans in the region. However, the Ayyubids received the city from Seljuqs in 1201, the city ruled by them until the Mongolian Ilkhanate captured the city in 1259; the Turkmen Artuqid dynasty received the city from the Ayyubids and ruled the region till 1409. Yavuz Sultan Selim, the Ottoman Emperor received the city from the Safavids in 1515. Amida is a diocese of several Christian denominations. Diyarbakır Siege of Amida Ephraim of Antioch, Church Father born in Amida George Long, "Amida", in William Smith, Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography, Volume 1, Walton & Maberly, 1854, p. 122. Greatrex, Geoffrey. C.. "Justinian's First Persian War and the Eternal Peace". The Roman Eastern Frontier and the Persian Wars. Routledge. Pp. 82–97. ISBN 0-415-14687-9. Matthew Bennett, "Amida", The Hutchinson dictionary of ancient & medieval warfare, Taylor & Francis, 1998, ISBN 1-57958-116-1, p. 13
The Roman–Parthian Wars were a series of conflicts between the Parthian Empire and the Roman Republic and Roman Empire. It was the first series of conflicts in -- Persian Wars. Early incursions by the Roman Republic against Parthia were repulsed, notably at the Battle of Carrhae. During the Roman Liberators' civil war of the 1st Century BC, the Parthians supported Brutus and Cassius, invading Syria, gaining territories in the Levant. However, the conclusion of the second Roman civil war brought a revival of Roman strength in Western Asia. In 113 AD, the Roman Emperor Trajan made eastern conquests and the defeat of Parthia a strategic priority, overran the Parthian capital, installing Parthamaspates of Parthia as a client ruler. Hadrian, Trajan's successor, reversed his predecessor's policy, intending to re-establish the Euphrates as the limit of Roman control. However, in the 2nd century, war over Armenia broke out again in 161, when Vologases IV defeated the Romans there. A Roman counter-attack under Statius Priscus defeated the Parthians in Armenia and installed a favored candidate on the Armenian throne, an invasion of Mesopotamia culminated in the sack of Ctesiphon in 165.
In 195, another Roman invasion of Mesopotamia began under the Emperor Septimius Severus, who occupied Seleucia and Babylon, sacked Ctesiphon yet again in 197. Parthia fell not to the Romans, but to the Sassanids under Ardashir I, who entered Ctesiphon in 226. Under Ardashir and his successors, Persian-Roman conflict continued between the Sassanid Empire and Rome. After triumphing in the Seleucid–Parthian wars and annexing large amounts of the Seleucid Empire the Parthians began to look west for more territory to expand into. Parthian enterprise in the West began in the time of Mithridates I; this was the beginning of an "international role" for the Parthian empire, a phase that entailed contacts with Rome. Mithridates II conducted unsuccessful negotiations with Sulla for a Roman–Parthian alliance. By the same time the Parthians started their rise, they established eponymous branches in the Caucasus, namely the Arsacid dynasty of Armenia, the Arsacid dynasty of Iberia, the Arsacid Dynasty of Caucasian Albania.
After 90 BC, the Parthian power was diminished by dynastic feuds, while at the same time, Roman power in Anatolia collapsed. Roman–Parthian contact was restored when Lucullus invaded Southern Armenia and defeated Tigranes in 69 BC, again no definite agreement was made; when Pompey took charge of the war in the East, he re-opened negotiations with Phraates III. Pompey refused to recognize the title of "King of Kings" for Phraates, offered arbritation between Tigranes and the Parthian king over Corduene. Phraates asserted his control over Mesopotamia, except for the western district of Osroene, which became a Roman dependency. In 53 BC, Crassus led an invasion of Mesopotamia, with catastrophic results; the bulk of his force was either captured. Rome was humiliated by this defeat, this was made worse by the fact that the Parthians had captured several Legionary Eagles, it is mentioned by Plutarch that the Parthians found the Roman prisoner of war that resembled Crassus the most, dressed him as a woman and paraded him through Parthia for all to see.
This, could be Roman propaganda. Orodes II, with the rest of the Parthian Army, captured their country. However, Surena's victory invoked the jealousy of the Parthian king, he ordered Surena's execution. Following Surena's death, Orodes II himself took command of the Parthian army and led an unsuccessful military campaign into Syria; the Battle of Carrhae was one of the first major battles between the Parthians. The following year, the Parthians launched raids into Syria, in 51 BC mounted a major invasion led by the crown prince Pacorus and the general Osaces. Cicero, chosen governor of adjacent Cilicia for that year, marched with two legions to lift the siege. Pacorus fell back, but was ambushed in his retreat by Cassius near Antigonea and Osaces was killed. During Caesar's civil war the Parthians maintained relations with Pompey. After his defeat and death, a force under Pacorus came to the aid of the Pompeian general Caecilius Bassus, besieged at Apamea Valley by the Caesarian forces. With the civil war over, Julius Caesar elaborated plans for a campaign against Parthia, but his assassination averted the war.
During the ensuing Liberators' civil war, the Parthians supported Brutus and Cassius, sending a contingent which fought with them at the Battle of Philippi in 42 BC. After that defeat, the Parthians under Pacorus invaded Roman territory in 40 BC in conjunction with Quintus Labienus, a Roman erstwhile supporter of Brutus and Cassius, they swiftly overran Syria, defeated Roman forces in the province. Pacorus advanced into Hasmonean Judea, overthrowing the Roman client Hyrcanus II and installing his nephew Antigonus in his place. For a moment, the whole of the Roman East was captured to Parthians; the conc
Military of the Sasanian Empire
The Sasanian army was the primary military body of the Sasanian armed forces, serving alongside the Sasanian navy. The birth of the army dates back to the rise of Ardashir I, the founder of the Sasanian Empire, to the throne. Ardashir aimed at the revival of the Persian Empire, to further this aim, he reformed the military by forming a standing army, under his personal command and whose officers were separate from satraps, local princes and nobility, he restored the Achaemenid military organizations, retained the Parthian cavalry model, employed new types of armour and siege warfare techniques. This was the beginning for a military system which served him and his successors for over 400 years, during which the Sasanian Empire was, along with the Roman Empire and the East Roman Empire, one of the two superpowers of Late Antiquity in Western Eurasia; the Sasanian army protected Eranshahr from the East against the incursions of central Asiatic nomads like the Hephthalites and Turks, while in the west it was engaged in a recurrent struggle against the Roman Empire.
In the character of their warfare, the Persians of the Sasanian period differed from their forebears under the Achaemenid kings. The principal changes which time had brought about were an entire disuse of the war chariot, the advance of the elephant corps into a prominent and important position, the increased use and pre-eminence of cavalry on the Parthian model, including both heavy cataphracts and horse-archers. Four main arms of the service were recognized, each standing on a different level: the elephants, the horse, the archers, the ordinary footmen; the number of the field armies could reach 45,000-50,000 up to 100,000-130,000, according to recent archaeological evidence on campaign bases near the Great Wall of Gorgan. In Pahlavi language, smaller divisions of the spāh were referred to as vasht and larger divisions were designated as gond; the Arabic word jund, meaning "army", is derived from the latter. Ērān Spahbed: Commander-in chief. Spāhbed: Field general. Pāygōsbān or Padhuspan: Commander of each of the four provincial divisions devised during the reign of Khosrau I.
Marzbān or Kanārang: Equivalent to margrave or commander of the border guards. Pushtigbān-sālār: Head of the royal guard. Erān anbāraghbad: Senior rank responsible for army supplies. Stor Bezashk: Senior vet who looked after the cavalry elite's mounts. Argbed: Castellan, commander of a castle or fort. Pāygān Sālār: Chief of an infantry division. Savārān Sardār: Head of a cavalry division. Gond Sālār: Commander of a gond division; the backbone of the Spâh in the Sasanian era was its heavy armoured cavalry, known since Classical antiquity in the west as Cataphracts. This was made up of noblemen who underwent extensive exercises in warfare and military manoeuvres through military training, gaining discipline and becoming true soldiers. Within the Sasanian military, the cavalry was the most influential element, Sasanian cavalry tactics were adopted by the Romans and Turks, their weaponry, battle tactics, medallions, court customs, costumes influenced their Romano-Byzantine neighbours. The Romans had long contended against opponents who fielded heavy cavalry, notably the Sarmatians and the Parthians, the recurrent wars with the Sasanian were an important factor in the Roman turn to new military organizations and battlefield tactics that centered around the use of heavy cavalry in the 3rd and 4th centuries.
The Romans called these newly formed units clibanarii. Another, more direct and quoted, etymology is the Greek word ho klibanos, which refers to a covered pot in which bread was baked or a small oven; the Roman term appears for the first time in the vita Alexandri Severi in the Historia Augusta, a work from the end of the 4th century AD. Shapur II further reformed the army by adopting more effective cavalry; these mounted. This made them look much like moving iron statues; some mace. Depictions of aforementioned cavalry still survive, with one of the best preserved ones being a rock relief at Taq-e Bostan where Khosrau II is seen riding his favourite horse, Shabdiz; the fighting equipment of the armed Sasanian horsemen were: Clibanarii/Cataphract cavalry: helmet, breastplate, gauntlet, thigh-guards sword, bowcase with two bows and two bowstrings, quiver with 30 arrows, two extra bowstrings, horse armour. The heavy cavalry was complemented by lighter cavalry, which were not made up of Sasanian, but were recruited from among their allies and supplemented by mercenary troops.
Gelani, Hephthalites and the Khazars were the main suppliers of this light- to medium-armoured cavalry. They were an essential part of the Spâh because of their speed on the battlefield, it is possible that the light cavalry were intended for the battles with the central Asiatic tribes, while the more heavy cavalry were used in encounters with Rome. In short, there were the following classes of mobile cavalry troops: Persian immortal guard Azadan nobility Aswaran: elite cavalry described as the Persian knightly caste War elephants Light cavalry: horse-archers Dehqan cavalry: Medi
Mesopotamia is a historical region of Western Asia situated within the Tigris–Euphrates river system, in modern days corresponding to most of Iraq, parts of Northern Saudi Arabia, the eastern parts of Syria, Southeastern Turkey, regions along the Turkish–Syrian and Iran–Iraq borders. The Sumerians and Akkadians dominated Mesopotamia from the beginning of written history to the fall of Babylon in 539 BC, when it was conquered by the Achaemenid Empire, it fell to Alexander the Great in 332 BC, after his death, it became part of the Greek Seleucid Empire. Around 150 BC, Mesopotamia was under the control of the Parthian Empire. Mesopotamia became a battleground between the Romans and Parthians, with western parts of Mesopotamia coming under ephemeral Roman control. In AD 226, the eastern regions of Mesopotamia fell to the Sassanid Persians; the division of Mesopotamia between Roman and Sassanid Empires lasted until the 7th century Muslim conquest of Persia of the Sasanian Empire and Muslim conquest of the Levant from Byzantines.
A number of neo-Assyrian and Christian native Mesopotamian states existed between the 1st century BC and 3rd century AD, including Adiabene and Hatra. Mesopotamia is the site of the earliest developments of the Neolithic Revolution from around 10,000 BC, it has been identified as having "inspired some of the most important developments in human history including the invention of the wheel, the planting of the first cereal crops and the development of cursive script, mathematics and agriculture". The regional toponym Mesopotamia comes from the ancient Greek root words μέσος "middle" and ποταμός "river" and translates to " between two/the rivers", it is used throughout the Greek Septuagint to translate the Aramaic equivalent Naharaim. An earlier Greek usage of the name Mesopotamia is evident from The Anabasis of Alexander, written in the late 2nd century AD, but refers to sources from the time of Alexander the Great. In the Anabasis, Mesopotamia was used to designate the land east of the Euphrates in north Syria.
The Aramaic term biritum/birit narim corresponded to a similar geographical concept. The term Mesopotamia was more applied to all the lands between the Euphrates and the Tigris, thereby incorporating not only parts of Syria but almost all of Iraq and southeastern Turkey; the neighbouring steppes to the west of the Euphrates and the western part of the Zagros Mountains are often included under the wider term Mesopotamia. A further distinction is made between Northern or Upper Mesopotamia and Southern or Lower Mesopotamia. Upper Mesopotamia known as the Jazira, is the area between the Euphrates and the Tigris from their sources down to Baghdad. Lower Mesopotamia is the area from Baghdad to the Persian Gulf and includes Kuwait and parts of western Iran. In modern academic usage, the term Mesopotamia also has a chronological connotation, it is used to designate the area until the Muslim conquests, with names like Syria and Iraq being used to describe the region after that date. It has been argued that these euphemisms are Eurocentric terms attributed to the region in the midst of various 19th-century Western encroachments.
Mesopotamia encompasses the land between the Euphrates and Tigris rivers, both of which have their headwaters in the Taurus Mountains. Both rivers are fed by numerous tributaries, the entire river system drains a vast mountainous region. Overland routes in Mesopotamia follow the Euphrates because the banks of the Tigris are steep and difficult; the climate of the region is semi-arid with a vast desert expanse in the north which gives way to a 15,000-square-kilometre region of marshes, mud flats, reed banks in the south. In the extreme south, the Euphrates and the Tigris empty into the Persian Gulf; the arid environment which ranges from the northern areas of rain-fed agriculture to the south where irrigation of agriculture is essential if a surplus energy returned on energy invested is to be obtained. This irrigation is aided by a high water table and by melting snows from the high peaks of the northern Zagros Mountains and from the Armenian Highlands, the source of the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers that give the region its name.
The usefulness of irrigation depends upon the ability to mobilize sufficient labor for the construction and maintenance of canals, this, from the earliest period, has assisted the development of urban settlements and centralized systems of political authority. Agriculture throughout the region has been supplemented by nomadic pastoralism, where tent-dwelling nomads herded sheep and goats from the river pastures in the dry summer months, out into seasonal grazing lands on the desert fringe in the wet winter season; the area is lacking in building stone, precious metals and timber, so has relied upon long-distance trade of agricultural products to secure these items from outlying areas. In the marshlands to the south of the area, a complex water-borne fishing culture has existed since prehistoric times, has added to the cultural mix. Periodic breakdowns in the cultural system have occurred for a number of reasons; the demands for labor has from time to time led to population increases that push the limits of the ecological carrying capacity, should a period of climatic instability ensue, collapsing central government a
Gaul was a historical region of Western Europe during the Iron Age, inhabited by Celtic tribes, encompassing present day France, Belgium, most of Switzerland, parts of Northern Italy, as well as the parts of the Netherlands and Germany on the west bank of the Rhine. It covered an area of 494,000 km2. According to the testimony of Julius Caesar, Gaul was divided into three parts: Gallia Celtica and Aquitania. Archaeologically, the Gauls were bearers of the La Tène culture, which extended across all of Gaul, as well as east to Raetia, Noricum and southwestern Germania during the 5th to 1st centuries BC. During the 2nd and 1st centuries BC, Gaul fell under Roman rule: Gallia Cisalpina was conquered in 203 BC and Gallia Narbonensis in 123 BC. Gaul was invaded after 120 BC by the Cimbri and the Teutons, who were in turn defeated by the Romans by 103 BC. Julius Caesar subdued the remaining parts of Gaul in his campaigns of 58 to 51 BC. Roman control of Gaul lasted for five centuries, until the last Roman rump state, the Domain of Soissons, fell to the Franks in AD 486.
While the Celtic Gauls had lost their original identities and language during Late Antiquity, becoming amalgamated into a Gallo-Roman culture, Gallia remained the conventional name of the territory throughout the Early Middle Ages, until it acquired a new identity as the Capetian Kingdom of France in the high medieval period. Gallia remains a name of France in modern modern Latin; the Greek and Latin names Galatia and Gallia are derived from a Celtic ethnic term or clan Gal-to-. The Galli of Gallia Celtica were reported to refer to themselves as Celtae by Caesar. Hellenistic folk etymology connected the name of the Galatians to the "milk-white" skin of the Gauls. Modern researchers say it is related to Welsh gallu, Cornish galloes, "capacity, power", thus meaning "powerful people"; the English Gaul is from French Gaule and is unrelated to Latin Gallia, despite superficial similarity. The name Gaul is derived from the Old Frankish *Walholant "Land of the Foreigners/Romans", in which *Walho- is reflex of Proto-Germanic *walhaz, "foreigner, Romanized person", an exonym applied by Germanic speakers to Celts and Latin-speaking people indiscriminately, making it cognate with the names Wales and Wallachia.
The Germanic w- is rendered as gu- / g- in French, the historic diphthong au is the regular outcome of al before a following consonant. French Gaule or Gaulle cannot be derived from Latin Gallia, since g would become j before a, the diphthong au would be unexplained. Proto-Germanic *walha is derived from the name of the Volcae. Unrelated, in spite of superficial similarity, is the name Gael; the Irish word gall did mean "a Gaul", i.e. an inhabitant of Gaul, but its meaning was widened to "foreigner", to describe the Vikings, still the Normans. The dichotomic words gael and gall are sometimes used together for contrast, for instance in the 12th-century book Cogad Gáedel re Gallaib; as adjectives, English has the two variants: Gallic. The two adjectives are used synonymously, as "pertaining to Gaul or the Gauls", although the Celtic language or languages spoken in Gaul is predominantly known as Gaulish. There is little written information concerning the peoples that inhabited the regions of Gaul, save what can be gleaned from coins.
Therefore, the early history of the Gauls is predominantly a work in archaeology and the relationships between their material culture, genetic relationships and linguistic divisions coincide. Before the rapid spread of the La Tène culture in the 5th to 4th centuries BC, the territory of eastern and southern France participated in the Late Bronze Age Urnfield culture out of which the early iron-working Hallstatt culture would develop. By 500 BC, there is strong Hallstatt influence throughout most of France. Out of this Hallstatt background, during the 7th and 6th century representing an early form of Continental Celtic culture, the La Tène culture arises under Mediterranean influence from the Greek and Etruscan civilizations, spread out in a number of early centers along the Seine, the Middle Rhine and the upper Elbe. By the late 5th century BC, La Tène influence spreads across the entire territory of Gaul; the La Tène culture developed and flourished during the late Iron Age in France, Italy, southwest Germany, Moravia and Hungary.
Farther north extended the contemporary pre-Roman Iron Age culture of northern Germany and Scandinavia. The major source of materials on the Celts of Gaul was Poseidonios of Apamea, whose writings were quoted by Timagenes, Julius Caesar, the Sicilian Greek Diodorus Siculus, the Greek geographer Strabo. In the 4th and early 3rd century BC, Gallic clan confederations expanded far beyond the territory of what would become Roman Gaul, into Pannonia, northern Italy and Asia Minor. By the 2nd century BC, the Romans descr
Battle of Carrhae
The Battle of Carrhae was fought in 53 BC between the Roman Republic and the Parthian Empire near the town of Carrhae. The Parthian general Surena decisively defeated a numerically superior Roman invasion force under the command of Marcus Licinius Crassus, it is seen as one of the earliest and most important battles between the Roman and Parthian empires and one of the most crushing defeats in Roman history. Crassus, a member of the First Triumvirate and the wealthiest man in Rome, had been enticed by the prospect of military glory and riches and decided to invade Parthia without the official consent of the Senate. Rejecting an offer from the Armenian King Artavasdes II to allow Crassus to invade Parthia via Armenia, Crassus marched his army directly through the deserts of Mesopotamia, his army clashed with Surena's force near a small town in modern-day Turkey. Despite being outnumbered, Surena's cavalry outmaneuvered the Roman heavy infantry, killing or capturing most of the Roman soldiers.
Crassus himself was killed. His death ended the First Triumvirate; the four-year period of peace between Julius Caesar and Pompey, the remaining two members of the First Triumvirate, after Carrhae until the outbreak of the civil war argues against Crassus as a peacekeeper and supports the views of most Roman historians that friction between Crassus and Pompey had always been a greater cause of tension than friction between Julius Caesar and Pompey. The war in Parthia resulted from political arrangements intended to be mutually beneficial for Marcus Licinius Crassus, Pompeius Magnus, Julius Caesar — the so-called First Triumvirate. In March and April 56 BC, meetings were held at Ravenna and Luca, in Caesar's province of Cisalpine Gaul, to reaffirm the weakening alliance formed four years earlier, it was agreed that the triumvirate would marshal their supporters and resources to secure legislation for prolonging Caesar's Gallic command and to influence the upcoming elections for 55 BC, with the objective of a second joint consulship for Crassus and Pompeius.
The leaders of the triumvirate aimed to expand their faction's power through traditional means: military commands, placing political allies in office, advancing legislation to promote their interests. Pressure in various forms was brought to bear on the elections: money, influence through patronage and friendship, the force of a thousand troopers brought from Gaul by Crassus's son Publius; the faction secured most, though not all, of the other offices sought. Legislation passed by the tribune Trebonius granted extended proconsulships of five years, matching that of Caesar in Gaul, to the two outgoing consuls; the Spanish provinces would go to Pompeius. The notoriously wealthy Marcus Crassus was around sixty-two when he embarked on the Parthian invasion. Greed is regarded by the ancient sources his biographer Plutarch, as his major character fault and his motive for going to war. Historian of Rome Erich Gruen believed that Crassus's purpose was to enrich the public treasury, since personal wealth was not what Crassus himself most lacked.
Most modern historians tend to view insatiable greed, envy of Pompey's military exploits, rivalry as his motivation, since Crassus’s long-faded military reputation had always been inferior to that of Pompeius – and after five years of war in Gaul, to that of Caesar. His major military achievements had been the defeat of Spartacus in 71 BC and his victory at Battle of the Colline Gate for Sulla a decade earlier. Plutarch notes that Caesar wrote to Crassus from Gaul, endorsing the plan to invade Parthia — an indication that he regarded Crassus's military campaign as complementary and not rivalrous to his own. Another factor in Crassus's decision to invade Parthia was the expected ease of the campaign; the Roman legions had crushed the numerically superior armies of other eastern powers such as Pontus and Armenia, Crassus expected Parthia to be an easy target. Cicero, suggests an additional factor: the ambitions of the talented Publius Crassus, who had commanded successful campaigns in Gaul under Caesar.
Upon his return to Rome as a decorated officer, Publius took steps to establish his own political career. Roman sources view the Battle of Carrhae not only as a calamity for Rome and a disgrace for Marcus Crassus, but as a tragedy for cutting short Publius Crassus's promising career; some Romans objected to the war against Parthia. Cicero calls it a war nulla causa, on the grounds; the tribune Ateius Capito put up strenuous opposition, infamously conducted a public ritual of execration as Crassus prepared to depart. Despite protests and dire omens, Marcus Crassus left Rome on November 14, 55 BC. Publius Crassus joined him in Syria during the winter of 54–53 BC, bringing with him the thousand Celtic cavalry troopers from Gaul who remained loyal to their young leader until death. Crassus arrived in Syria in late 55 BC and set about using his immense wealth to raise an army, he assembled a force of seven legions. In addition he had about 4,000 light infantry, 4,000 cavalry, including the 1,000 Gallic cavalry Publius had brought with him.
With the aid of Hellenic settlements in Syria and support of about 6,000 cavalry from Artavasdes, the Armenian king, Crassus marched on Parthia. Artavasdes advised him to take a route through Armenia to avoid the desert and offered him reinforcements of 16,000 cavalry and 30,000 infantry. Crassus refused the offer and decided to take the direct route through Mesopotam
Julian's Persian War
Julian's Persian War, or the Perso-Roman War of 363, was the last undertaking of the Roman emperor Julian, begun in March 363. It was an aggressive war against the Persian Empire ruled by the Sassanian king Shapur II. Shapur is believed to have expected an invasion by way of the Tigris valley. Julian sent a detachment to take the Tigris route. Meanwhile, with his main army he advanced down the Euphrates valley, meeting only scattered opposition, reached the walls of the Persian capital Ctesiphon, where he met and defeated the Persian army at the Battle of Ctesiphon. Unable to take the city, with a faltering campaign, Julian was misled by Persian spies into burning his fleet and taking a disadvantageous route of retreat in which his army was harassed and his progress crawled to a halt. In one of the skirmishes Julian was wounded and died of his wounds, leaving his successor, along with his army, trapped in Persian territory; the new emperor, in light of the "crushing military defeat" the Romans had suffered, was left no option but to agree to humiliating terms in order to save the remnants of his army, himself, from complete annihilation.
The ignominious treaty of 363 transferred to Persian rule the major cities and fortresses of Nisibis and Singara, renounced the alliance with Armenia, giving Shapur de facto authority to invade and annex Arsacid Armenia as a result. Thus Arsaces II of Armenia was left without any diplomatic support, he was captured and imprisoned by Shapur in 368. According to contemporary Roman sources Julian's aim was to punish the Persians for their recent invasion of Rome's eastern provinces. Among the leaders of the expedition was Hormizd, a brother of Shapur II, who had fled from the Persian Empire forty years earlier and had been welcomed by the Roman emperor Constantine I. Julian is said to have intended to place Hormizd on the Persian throne in place of Shapur. A devout believer in the old Roman religion, Julian asked several major oracles about the outcome of his expedition; the philosopher Sallustius, a friend of Julian, wrote advising him to abandon his plan, numerous adverse omens were reported.
He instructed Arshak II of Armenia to prepare a large army, but without revealing its purpose. These preparations are thought by scholars to have suggested to Shapur that an invasion from the north, by way of the Tigris valley, was Julian's plan. Julian had wintered at Antioch in Roman Syria. On 5 March 363 he set out north-east with his army by way of Aleppo and Manbij, where fifty soldiers were killed in the collapse of a portico while they were marching under it; the whole army mustered there, crossed the middle Euphrates and proceeded to Harran, known to the Romans as Carrhae, site of the famous battle in which the Roman general Crassus was defeated and killed in 53 BC. "From there two different royal highways lead to Persia," writes the eyewitness Ammianus Marcellinus: "the one on the left through Adiabene and across the Tigris. Julian made use of both, he sent a detachment under Procopius and Sebastianus towards the Tigris where they were to join Arshak and his Armenian army. They were to attack the Persians from the north.
Julian himself, with the larger part of his army turned south towards the lower Euphrates, reaching Callinicum on 27 March and meeting the fleet under the command of Lucillianus. There he was met by leaders of the "Saraceni", he refused to pay the traditional tribute in return. The army followed the Euphrates downstream to Circesium and crossed the river Aboras with the help of a pontoon bridge assembled for the purpose. Once over the border, Julian invigorated the soldiers' ardor with a fiery oration, representing his hopes and reasons for the war, distributed a donative of 130 pieces of silver to each; the army was divided on the march into three principal divisions. The center under Victor, composed of the heavy infantry; the baggage and the rearguard were under Dagalaiphus, while the scouts were led by Lucilianus, the veteran of Nisibis. A by-no-means-negligible detachment was left to hold the fortress of Circesium, as several of the fickle Arabian tribes near the border were allied with Persia.
Julian penetrated into Assyria. Since the main part of the population of Assyria was located in the towns on the banks of the Euphrates, while the interior of the country was for the most part a desert wasteland, Julian's march, burning every town which hindered his advance and devastating the adjacent country damaged the industry of the province. Since Shapur II had not expected Julian's attack so soon, nor from that direction, Julian was unopposed, but the main cities of the province were captured: Anah capitulated, Macepracta fell, the last resort of the natives, the flooding of the mar