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[28]

Above the places about Pharnacia and Trapezus are the Tibareni, and Chaldæi, extending as far as the Lesser Armenia.

The Lesser Armenia is sufficiently fertile. Like Sophene it was always governed by princes who were sometimes in alliance with the other Armenians, and sometimes acting independently. They held in subjection the Chaldæi and Tibareni. Their dominion extended as far as Trapezus and Pharnacia. When Mithridates Eupator became powerful, he made himself master of Colchis, and of all those places which were ceded to him by Antipater the son of Sisis. He bestowed however so much care upon them, that he built seventy-five strongholds, in which he deposited the greatest part of his treasure. The most considerable of these were Hydara, Basgedariza, and 1 Sinoria, a fortress situated on the borders of the Greater Armenia, whence Theophanes parodied the name, and called it Synoria.

All the mountainous range of the Paryadres has many such convenient situations for fortresses, being well supplied with water and timber, it is intersected in many places by abrupt ravines and precipices. Here he built most of the strongholds for keeping his treasure. At last on the invasion of the country by Pompey he took refuge in these extreme parts of the kingdom of Pontus, and occupied a mountain near Dasteira in Acilisene, which was well supplied with water. The Euphrates also was near, which is the boundary between Acilisene and the Lesser Armenia. Mithridates remained there till he was besieged and compelled to fly across the mountains into Colchis, and thence to Bosporus. Pompey built near this same place in the Lesser Armenia Nicopolis, a city which yet subsists, and is well inhabited.

1 B. vii. c. iii. § 6.

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