Arsaces ärˈsəsēz [key], fl. 250 b.c., founder of the Parthian dynasty of the Arsacids, which ruled Persia from c.250 b.c. to a.d. 226. Arsaces led a successful revolt against Antiochus II of Syria, when Antiochus was engaged in war with Egypt and trying to put down a revolt in Bactria. Among the other Parthian kings were Tiridates, Mithradates I, Mithradates II, and Phraates IV. Their empire became a formidable rival of the Roman power, but began to decay in the 2d cent. a.d. after Emperor Alexander Severus had invaded the country. The Arsacids were overthrown by a revolt of the Persians under Ardashir I, who in a.d. 226 slew Artabanus IV (Ardawan IV), the last of the Arsacids.

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