Orodes II ARSHAKUNI King of Parthia (57-39BC)
- Born: Est 90 B.C.
- Died: 39 B.C.
He was the son of Phraates III, whom he murdered in 57 BC, assisted by his brother Mithridates.
This Mithradates was made king of Media, but soon afterwards he was expelled by Orodes and fled into Syria. Thence he invaded the Parthian kingdom, but having reigned briefly in 55 BC was besieged by Surena, general of Orodes, in Seleucia, and after a prolonged resistance was captured and slain.
Meanwhile the Roman general Marcus Licinius Crassus had begun his attempt to conquer the east, but he was defeated and killed in 53 BC at the Battle of Carrhae by Surena, while Orodes himself invaded Armenia and forced King Artavasdes, the son of Tigranes the Great, to abandon the Romans. By the victory of Carrhae the countries east of the Euphrates were secured to the Parthians. In the next year they invaded Syria, but with little success, for Surenas, whose achievements had made him too dangerous, was killed by Orodes, and Pacorus, the young son of the king was defeated by Cassius in 51 BC.
During the Roman Republican civil wars the Parthians sided first with Pompey and then with Brutus and Cassius, but took no action until 40 BC, when Pacorus, assisted by the Roman deserter Titus Labienus, conquered a great part of Syria and Asia Minor, but was defeated and killed by Ventidius in 38 BC. Orodes, who was deeply afflicted by the death of his gallant son, appointed his son Phraates IV successor, but was soon afterwards killed by him.
Plutarch relates that Orodes understood Greek very well; after the death of Crassus the Bacchae of Euripides was presented at his court.
Orodes married Unnamed Princess of Commagene, daughter of Antiochos I Theos Dikaios, King of Commagene (69-39BC) and Isias Philostorgos of Cappadocia. (Unnamed Princess of Commagene was born in 70 B.C..)
Orodes also married Unnamed Princess of Armenia (3rd daughter), daughter of Tigranes II "the Great", King of Armenia (94-56BC) and Princess Cleopatra of Pontus.