part of the reign of Tiridates I, his residence was Dara in Apavarktikene;64 the royal tombs were at Nysa.65 Why, then, the assumption of the title in Asaac?

In the Hellenistic Age, the title Basileus was used as a mark of personal supremacy. It passed, so to speak, from the vanquished king to the victor. Even L. Aemilius Paulus, a Roman, was indignant when Perseus of Macedonia, after his defeat, still pretended to keep the name of Basileus.66 Still Himerus, Parthian regent in Babylonia, styled himself Basileus when he retook possession of Babylon, which had been occupied by "King" Hyspaosines.67 Accordingly, we must look for a significant victory won in the beginnings of the dynasty. Now Seleucus II attempted to recover the lost provinces in the Far East. His preparations and his first successes are still reflected in his Eastern coinage.68 Before the advancing Seleucid army, Tiridates had to flee, and took refuge with the tribe of Apasiacae, in the Caspian steppe.69 But with the help of Diodotus II of Bactria who, reversing his father's policy, had allied himself with Tiridates, the latter returned, met Seleucus II in battle and utterly defeated him. The Parthians thereafter celebrated the anniversary of victory as the beginning of their independence.70 Is it preposterous to suppose that on this occasion Tiridates was proclaimed Basileus?71 Seleucus II's army must have followed the caravan route which connected the Far East with Mesopotamia, through Ecbatana (Hamadan), Rhaga (in the vicinity of Teheran), Nysa (in the vicinity of Nishapur), toward Meshed. Tiridates overrode the returning army, cut it to pieces, and was crowned at Asaac, a nearby station on the imperial road. The date of the battle may be indicated approximately. Seleucus was compelled to withdraw by new troubles in Asia, that is, Asia Minor.72 That can refer only to the new war between Antiochus Hierax and Attalus I, which began about 231 B.C. Tiridates therefore assumed the royal title about 231 B.C. But following the august examples of the Seleucids and the Attalids, the barbarian chief began to reckon his regnal years from his accession to power. Therefore 247-6 would be the year when he succeeded to Arsaces as the chieftain of the Parni. Tiridates, we are told, ruled 37 years." Accordingly, he must have died in 211-0. He was succeeded by his son, Arsaces II, who successfully resisted Antiochus III.74 New Polybius75 informs us that in 209 Antiochus III attacked Arsaces of Parthia, testimony which confirms the proposed chronology. We have assumed, then, that for some

64. Just. XLI, 5,1. The town was situated on the mountain Apartenon in Apavortene (Plin. N.H. VI, 46), that is, it seems, Apavarktikene, on which district cf. Isid. Mans. Parth. 13. The site is not yet identified. Various conjectures are quoted by Debevoise (n. 44), p. 15.
65. Isid. Mans. Parth. 12. The site is unknown. Cf. now Sturm, RE., s.v. XVII, 711. But Nisaia formed a district of Hyrcania under Seleucids. Cf. Kiessling, RE, IX, 482. On the Parthian burial cf. K. Inostranzev, Journal of the Minist. of Education, 1909, p. 195 (in Russian).
66. Liv. XLV, 4,4.


67. Newell, Mithridates of Parthia, 1925.
68. Newell, EM; Newell, WM, pp. 19, 30.
69. Strabo XI, 8,8; 513 C.
70. Just. XLI, 4,10: quem them Parthi exinde solemnem velut initium libertatis observant.
71. Whether he was called "king" or not by the men of his tribe before this date in Scythian language, we do not know and that is immaterial for our problem.
72. Just. XLI, 4.
73. Arr. Parth. I.
74. Just. XLI, 5,7
75. Pol. X, 28.


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