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Please note that Mommsen uses the AUC chronology (Ab Urbe Condita), i.e. from the founding of the City of Rome. You can use this reference table to have the B.C. dates


V. The Establishment of the Military Monarchy

From: The History of Rome, by Theodor Mommsen
Translated with the sanction of the author by William Purdie Dickson

The History of Old Rome

Chapter IV - Pompeius and the East


The Original Greek New Testament

» Contents of this Chapter

Page 19

Albanians Conquered by Pompeius - Iberians Conquered

Alarmed by the information that the Roman commander-in-chief intended next spring to cross the mountains and to pursue the Pontic king beyond the Caucasus--for Mithradates, they heard, was passing the winter in Dioscurias (Iskuria between Suchum Kale and Anaklia) on the Black Sea--the Albanians under their prince Oroizes first crossed the Kur in the middle of the winter of 688-689 and threw themselves on the army, which was divided for the sake of its supplies into three larger corps under Quintus Metellus Celer, Lucius Flaccus, and Pompeius in person. But Celer, on whom the chief attack fell, made a brave stand, and Pompeius, after having delivered himself from the division sent to attack him, pursued the barbarians beaten at all points as far as the Kur.

Artoces the king of the Iberians kept quiet and promised peace and friendship; but Pompeius, informed that he was secretly arming so as to fall upon the Romans on their march in the passes of the Caucasus, advanced in the spring of 689, before resuming the pursuit of Mithradates, to the two fortresses just two miles distant from each other, Harmozica (Horum Ziche or Armazi) and Seusamora (Tsumar) which a little above the modern Tiflis command the two valleys of the river Kur and its tributary the Aragua, and with these the only passes leading from Armenia to Iberia.

Artoces, surprised by the enemy before he was aware of it, hastily burnt the bridge over the Kur and retreated negotiating into the interior. Pompeius occupied the fortresses and followed the Iberians to the other bank of the Kur; by which he hoped to induce them to immediate submission. But Artoces retired farther and farther into the interior, and, when at length he halted on the river Pelorus, he did so not to surrender but to fight. The Iberian archers however withstood not for a moment the onset of the Roman legions, and, when Artoces saw the Pelorus also crossed by the Romans, he submitted at length to the conditions which the victor proposed, and sent his children as hostages.

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