Zosimus, New History 3.13

Zosimus (Greek Ζώσιμος): Early Byzantine, pagan author of a history of the Roman Empire, published in the first quarter of the sixth century CE.

The translation of ZosimusNew History offered here was printed in 1814 by W. Green and T. Chaplin in London, and was probably prepared by J. Davis of the Military Chronicle and Military Classics Office. The translator is anonymous. The text was found at Tertullian.org. The notes were added by Jona Lendering.


[3.13.1] Having made these arrangements at Harran, a town that separates the Roman from the Assyrian dominions, he had an inclination to view the army from some eminence, the infantry and cavalry of which in the whole amounted to sixty-five thousand men. Departing therefore from Harran, he presently passed the castles between that place and Callinicum, and arriving at Circesium, of which I spoke above, crossed the river Aboras and sailed over the Euphrates

[3.13.2] He was followed by his troops carrying provisions along with them, who likewise embarked according to the orders they received. The navy was by this time come up. It consisted of a great number of vessels; six hundred were made of wood, and five hundred of skins, besides which were fifty ships of war, and others that followed them for the construction of bridges, if requisite, that the army should pass the rivers on foot. 

[3.13.3] A great number of other vessels likewise followed, some of them carrying provisions for the army, others timber for the construction of engines, and some battering engines for a siege which were ready made. Lucilianus and Constantius were admirals of this navy. The army being thus disposed, the emperor seated himself on a throne, and made an address to the army, after which he gave each of them a hundred and thirty pieces of silver. He then proceeded towards Persia, giving the command of the infantry to Victor, and that of the cavalry to Hormisdas and Arintheus jointly. 

[3.13.4] I have before related of this Hormisdas, that he was the son of a Persian monarch, but was persecuted by his brother, and had escaped to the emperor Constantine, from whom he had received the highest honors and preferments in reward for his approved friendship and fidelity.