Trajan's conquest of Parthia

Dec 2012
446
Also speaking of Parthians it it true they had no siege artillery? I mean I would figure they eventually learn from the Romans
 

Ichon

Ad Honorem
Mar 2013
3,725
Also speaking of Parthians it it true they had no siege artillery? I mean I would figure they eventually learn from the Romans
Doubtful that they had 'no' siege artillery but it is likely they used it to a lesser extent than the Romans. Parthians because they tended to prize manoeuvre more, the Parthian armies were more feudal and less of a standing army, the cities in the east were often mudbrick and more susceptible to storming with relatively basic siege technologies, and finally simply that Romans inherited and then surpassed Greeks who had done the same from earlier civilizations in siege technology while the Parthians could probably make most of the same weapons as the Romans it required much greater effort for them to muster the resources and often for fewer results- since they rarely needed such siege specialized weapons they could capture most of the cities they faced without that.
 

Ichon

Ad Honorem
Mar 2013
3,725
It was an almost throw away line from an encylopedia of Iranian history and I wanted to try and verify
Since Parthians tended to assemble and march as swiftly as possible in one campaign season having a siege train like the Romans often brought would be cumbersome and antithetical to the Parthians preferred methods of war. I think I have read something about Parthians never making use of captured Roman artillery which is probably true but other than feuding Romans in civil wars that was generally true because not only were those types of weapons usually required specialists to function well- there was an entire logistics aspect that Parthians wouldn't have had the supplies to use such weapons more than once and surely not worth the effort of dragging them around to use poorly one time.

Parthians did lay siege to various cities and there is described some rudimentary siege engines it seems Parthians really did not need more than that in most circumstances.
 
Oct 2018
1,833
Sydney
why did the Parthian/Persian Capital seem so easy to take? I mean why would they build their capital so close to their enemies especially in the later years when the Romans had sacked it multiple times? Wouldn't that have been an alarm bell especially to the later Sassanids who knew in their records of how many times the Ctesphion got taken?
It was pointed out earlier in this thread that the Parthians had multiple capitals. I don't know much about the Parthian administration, but that would accord with what I know of their predecessors the Seleucids, for whom it has been argued that there were capitals at Sardis, Antioch, Seleucia-on-the-Tigris, Susa and elsewhere (Sherwin-White & Kuhrt, Samarkhand to Sardis). So perhaps we should think of the sack of Ctesiphon as being less like a sacking of Rome and more like a sacking of Antioch, which was, after all, the principal Near Eastern residence of Roman emperors and was frequented by emperors from the third century onward (it has often, for instance, been referred to as one of the 'Tetrarchic capitals'). Or maybe it is somewhere in the middle of those two analogies.
 
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