a Numidian, who gave some trouble to the Romans in the reign of Tiberius.
He had originally served among the auxiliary troops in the Roman army, but he deserted; and, having collected a body of freebooters, among whom he gradually introduced the Roman discipline, he became at length the acknowledged leader of the Musulamii, a powerful people in the interior of Numidia, bordering on Mauritania. Having been joined by the Mauri under the command of Mazippa, he ventured, in A. D. 18, to measure his strength with Furius Camillus, the proconsul of Africa, but was defeated with considerable loss. In A. D. 20 Tacfarinas again attacked the Roman province.
He carried his devastations far and wide, and defeated a Roman cohort which was stationed not far from the river Pagyda (perhaps the modern Abeadh
), but, after meeting with considerable success, he was defeated in his turn by Apronius, who had succeeded Camillus, and was compelled to retire into the deserts. Nothing daunted by these defeats, Tacfarinas found means to collect a fresh army, and in A. D. 22 had the impudence to send ambassadors to Tiberius, soliciting abodes for himself and his troops, and menacing the emperor, in case of refusal, with perpetual war. Tiberius was indignant at receiving such a message from a deserter and a robber, and gave strict injunctions to Junius Blaesus, who had been appointed governor of Africa, to use every effort to obtain possession of the person of Tacfarinas.
In this, however, Blaesus was unable to succeed, for although he defeated Tacfarinas, and took his brother prisoner, Tacfarinas himself succeeded in making his escape.
At length, in A. D. 24, the Romans were delivered from this troublesome foe.
In this year Tacfarinas, having again collected a large force, attacked the Roman province, but P. Dolabella, more fortunate than his predecessors in the government, not only defeated but slew Tacfarinas in battle. Dolabella was assisted in this campaign by Ptolemaeus. king of Mauritania, the son and successor of Juba II., who was rewarded by Tiberius. after the ancient fashion, with the presents of a toga picta and sceptre, as a sign of the friendship of the Roman people. (Tac. Ann. 2.52
), king of Egypt, Succeeded Acoris, and maintaintied the independence of his country for a short time during the latter end of the reign of Artaxerxes II. When the formidable revolt of the western satraps was put down in B. C. 362, by the treachery of Orontes, the satrap of Mysia [ORONTES, No. 3], Tachos feared that he might have to resist the whole power of the Persian empire, and he therefore resolved to obtain the aid of Greek mercenaries.
He prevailed upon Chabrias, the Athenian, to take the command of his fleet, and sent an embassy to Sparta, soliciting Agesilaus to undertake the supreme command of all his forces. The Spartan government gave their consent, and Agesilaus readily complied with the request; for, although he was now upwards of eighty, his vigour of mind and body remained unimpaired, and he was anxious to escape from the control to which a Spartan king was subject at home. Upon his arrival in Egypt, Agesilaus was greatly disappointed in having only the command of the mercenaries entrusted to him, Tachos reserving to himself the supreme command of all his forces, both by sea and land. Nevertheless he submitted to this affront, and accompanied the Egyptian monarch into Syria, in B. C. 361, along with Chabrias, and, according to Plutarch. endured for some time in patience the insolence and arrogance of Tachos. Meanwhile Nectanabis, probably the nephew of Tachos, and a certain Mendesian, disputed with Tachos for the crown. Agesilaus forthwith espoused the cause of Nectanabis ; and Tachos, thus deserted by his own subjects as well as by his mercenaries, took refuge in Sidon, and from thence fled to the Persian monarch, by whom he was favourably received, and at whose court he died.
By the help of Agesilaus, Nectanabis defeated the other competitor, who had collected a large army, and became firmly established on the throne.
This is the account of Xenophon and Plutarch, and is in accordance with incidental notices in other writers.
The statement of Diodorus, that Tachos returned from Persia, and was again placed upon the throne by Agesilaus, is undoubtedly an error. (Diod. 15.92
; Xen. Ages. 2
. §§ 28-31; Plut. Ages. 36-40;
Corn. Nep. Chabr. 2, 3, Ages. 8; Polyaen. 2.1.22
; Ath. xiv. p. 616d. e.; Aelian, Ael. VH 5.1