Arsacid Dynasty of Armenia


The Arsacid (Arshakuni) dynasty of Armenia ruled that kingdom from 12 CE to 428 CE. A branch of the Arsacid dynasty of Parthia, the Armenian princes also played out a prolonged balancing act by remaining friendly to the other great power of the period and region: Rome. As so often before, Armenia continued to be a hotly disputed territory between Persia and Rome with both sides intervening directly into affairs of state and occasionally sending their armies to back their claims. The period saw great social changes in Armenia, too; notably the official adoption of Christianity in the early 4th century CE and the invention of the Armenian alphabet. The dynasty, as well as the 1000-year-old monarchic system of Armenia, ended with the installation of Persian viceroys in a system which would last until the Arab invasions of the 7th century CE.

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