Carrhae

Shapur I, co-emperor. April 12, 240 AD.

Shapur I, son of Ardashir I reigned over the Sassanian Empire from 241 to 272. Towards the end of his rule, Ardashir had revived the war against the Roman Empire. Shapur continued it, conquering the Mesopotamian fortresses of Carrhae and Nisibis and entering Syria, although his forces were there rejected by the father in law of the young Emperor Gordian III, Timesitheus, and finally defeated in the Battle of Rasaena in 243, forcing him to leave Mesopotamia. Shortly after, Timesitheus died and Gordian was murdered by Philip the Arab, who signed a truce with Persians in 244. Shapur reignited the war shortly after, taking advantage of the Goths´ invasion of the Empire and the continuous succession of emperors that followed the death of Decian (251). Shapur conquered Armenia, invaded Syria and...

The Death of Caracalla. April 8, 217.

His father, Roman emperor Septimius Severus initiated the Severan Dynasty, a dynasty of military emperors. Caracalla´s birthname was Septimius Severus Bassianus, but became known by the agnomen Caracalla because after the Danube wars he started wearing a hooded Gallic tunic called “caracallus”. Septimius Severus ruled over Rome for 18 years with iron fist and decided to split power between his two sons, Geta and Caracalla, which proved to be a huge mistake, being both corrupt and evil. Caracalla in the end killed Geta in February 212 and made up a story in which a band of assassins managed to get to Geta´s quarters and he had tried to defend him heroically but was finally defeated and his brother killed. Of course, nobody believed him, but as he was now the sole emperor, nobody could do an...

The Parthian Shot – May 6-8, 53 BC

The town of Carrhae was the site for the battle between the Parthians under Orodes II and Romans under Marcus Licinius Crassus in 53 BC. This battle was the most celebrated episode of all Parthian history, according to a chronicler of the events. This historian’s name is unknown, but the events were apparently recorded impartially and in ways to show what was happening on both sides. The Romans were successfully expanding the boundaries of the Republic and kept their eyes on the East. Lucius Licinius Lucullus invaded the Armenian Kingdom to Tigranocerta, its capital, in 69 BC, during the Third Mithradatic War. Lucullus appealed to the Parthian king, Arsaces XVI, to remain neutral as the Roman pursued Tigranes II, King of Armenia, establishing the Euphrates River as the boundary to Parthia....

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