Northern Africa 225: Gadarat’s Zenith
Over the 210s and 220s Gadarat expanded Aksumite power in southern Arabia to cover much of the coast and extend inland as far as Najran. His influence peaked in about 225, after which Saba’ and Himyar united to expel the Aksumites from most of their territory.
210?–225? Gadarat’s Zenith▲
In the years following Gadarat of Aksum’s intervention against the Himyarite Kingdom, his troops, carried by the greatly expanded Aksumite fleet, extended his power along the coast of southern Arabia. In a further expedition, the Aksumites gained control of Najran, an important trading settlement on the caravan route across central Arabia. However, further Aksumite penetration into the northern deserts was blocked by resistance in the area of Umm Laila.
? ?? 213?–28 Apr 224 Parthian Civil War of 213–224▲
In c.213 Artabanus IV rose up against his elder brother Shah Vologases IV of Parthia, eventually gaining control in Ecbatana by 216. With Adiabene and Elymais siding with Artabanus, Vologases seems to have been reduced to a small realm around Seleucia at this point. The civil war was complicated by the intervening Romans and the rebellious Sasanian Persians—the latter of whom defeated and killed Artabanus at Hormozdgan in 224.
215 Alexandrian Massacre▲
In the 210s the Roman emperor Caracalla heard that the inhabitants of Alexandria—where his murdered brother Geta remained popular—were widely mocking his reign. He responded by visiting Alexandria en route to Parthia and persuading all the city’s young men to form an unarmed phalanx in honor of his hero Alexander. When they were thus gathered, Caracalla suddenly unleashed his troops on them, slaughtering the young men and executing the leading citizens. He then plundered and partially destroyed the city itself.
28 Apr 224 Battle of Hormozdgan▲
In 224 Shah Artabanus IV of Parthia marched south to suppress the Sasanian revolt under Ardashir I, agreeing to meet Ardashir on the plain of Hormozdgan (believed to be Ram-Hormoz). The night before the battle, Ardashir made up for his smaller number of forces by occupying an advantageous position on the plain and digging a defensive ditch. Thus outmaneuvered, Artabanus was defeated and killed the following day, prompting the victorious Ardashir to assume the title of shahanshah (“King of Kings”).