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Tiridates I

Tiridates I of Armenia

Founder of the Arasacid dynasty, Tiridates I was crowned king of Armenia by Nero in 66.

of Tiridates I

  • Tiridates I was a brother.
  • Active c. 30 – 80.

TNMP 170

Tiridates was king of Armenia from 52 to 58 and 62 to 88. He was a Zoroastrian priest and he was accompanied by other magi on his journey to Rome where he was crowned king of Armenia by Nero, in 66.

Dio Cassius quotes Tiridates I of Armenia addressing Nero during his visit to Rome in 63.

These were his words: 'Master, I am the descendant of Arsaces, brother of the kings Vologaesus and Pacorus, and thy slave. And I have come to thee, my god, to worship thee as I do Mithras. The destiny thou spinnest for me shall be mine; for thou art my Fortune and my Fate.'

—Dio Cassius. Historia Romana, epitome of book 63, 5:2

In 66 CE, Tiridates, the brother of Vologaeses, the Parthian king, went to Rome. Domitius Corbulo had arranged a diplomatic settlement between Rome and Parthia after some military failures of the Roman governor Paetus in a recent war. Tiridates was to go to Rome, where the emperor Nero was ready to entrust him with the Armenian crown. It was a great opportunity for the Parthians, even though the kingdom of Armenia was to be considered a vassal state of Rome. Great, magnificent, and magniloquent ceremonies were organized in order to show to the entire world that the Roman emperor had at his disposal all the kingdoms of the known world, and he was able to bestow upon his friends and trustees any of these kingdoms as he so chose. Thus, the Parthian prince and his escort went to Rome, but not by sailing, for they were to avoid all sea journeys, because Tiridates was viewed as a Magus and would not allow himself to pollute the ocean by spitting and any other form of bodily evacuation.

—Mastrocinque (2017) The Mysteries of Mithras



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