- Mar 2012
It is worth noting that Parthia had multiple capitals, and I would think Sasanid Persia would be the same. It wasn't the same as Rome or Constantinople falling. Persia was designed to have a more fluid seat of power.A part of me does wonder how many of the emperors/commanders of the third century really did take Ctesiphon, in the sense that it almost seems like a trope. During the third century, every person who invaded the Persian Empire, we're effectively told, took Ctesiphon. I don't know, it makes me suspicious. I get that Ctesiphon wasn't a great distant from Roman lands, but Julian failed to take it, and how many times could the Sassanian regime suffer the sack of Ctesiphon? We're talking the 260s, the 280s and the 290s. Then again, the post-Shapur Sassanian empire of the late third century was fairly unstable. Maybe the sacks of Ctesiphon help to explain that fact.
In the same way, I'm a bit suspicious when we're told that Ballista, Odaenathus and Galerius all captured the harems of Persian kings. One wonders if this is influenced by the example of Alexander capturing the female relatives of Darius.