The son of Artavasdes I., was made king by the Armenians when his father was taken prisoner by Antony in B. C. 34.
He risked a battle against the Romans, but was defeated and obliged to fly into Parthia.
But with the help of the Parthians he regained his kingdom soon afterwards, and defeated and took prisoner Artavasdes, king of Media, who had opposed him. [ARTAVASDES.] On his return to Armenia, he put to death all the Romans who had remained behind in the country; and in consequence of that, Augustus refused to restore him his relatives, when he sent an embassy to Rome to demand them. When the Armenians in B. C. 20 complained to Augustus about Artaxias, and requested as king his brother Tigranes, who was then at Rome, Augustus sent Tiberius with a large army into Armenia, in order to depose Artaxias and place Tigranes upon the throne; but Artaxias was put to death by his relatives before Tiberius reached the country. Tigranes was now proclaimed king without any opposition; but Tiberius took the credit to himself of a successful expedition : whence Horace (Hor. Ep. 1.12. 25
) says, "Claudi virtute Neronis Armenius cecidit." (D. C. 49.39
; Tac. Ann. 2.3
; Vell. 2.94
; J. AJ 15.4.3
; Suet. Tib. 9
.) Velleius Paterculus (l.c.
) calls this king Artavasdes, and Dio Cassius in one passage (54.9) names him Artabazes, but in all the others Artaxes.