Zosimus, New History 1.18

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.


[1.18.1] Having secured the empire, he was in continual expectation that the Persians would make an attack on the eastern provinces, Sapor having succeeded in that kingdom to Artaxerxes,note who had restored the government to the Persians from the Parthians. For after the death of Alexander the son of Philip, and of his successors in the empire of the Macedonians, at the period when those provinces were under the authority of Antiochus,note Arsaces a Parthian, being exasperated at an injury done to his brother Tiridates, made war upon the satrap of Antiochus, and caused the Parthians to drive away the Macedonians, and form a government of their own.note

[1.18.2] The emperor therefore made all possible preparations for marching against the Persians. Although he appeared in the first battle to have obtained the victory, yet the confidence of the emperor in the success of this enterprize was considerably diminished by the death of Timesicles,note the prefect of the court. Philip being chosen in his place, the. emperor's popularity in the army was gradually dissipated and vanished.

[1.18.3] Philip was a native of Arabia,note a nation in bad repute, and had advanced his fortune by no very honorable means. As soon as he was fixed in his office, he aspired at the imperial dignity, and endeavoured to seduce all the soldiers that were disposed to innovation. Observing that abundance of military provisions was supplied, while the emperor was staying about Carrhae and Nisibis, he ordered the ships that brought those provisions to go further up the country, in order that the army, being oppressed with famine, might be provoked to mutiny.