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König Pharasmanes I. als Bumberazi (ბუმბერაზი) bei Tacitus. Erwägungen zu kaukasisch-iberischer Heldenepik, Kulturtransfer, senatorischer Selbstdarstellung und römischer Historiographie

King Pharasmanes I as Bumberazi (ბუმბერაზი) in Tacitus. Considerations on Caucasian-Iberian Heroic Epic, Cultural Transfer in Edessa, Senatorial Self-Representation and Roman Historiography


  • Tassilo Schmitt University of Bremen



The investigation starts with peculiarities in Tacitus's depiction of a battle between the Iberians and Parthians. It shall be shown that this is ultimately based on contemporary Iberian heroic epic. Furthermore, it should be clarified how this local tradition can have found its way into senatorial historiography. A version that goes back to L. Vitellius, who acted as governor for Tiberius and Caligula, is identified as Tacitus's template. Ultimately, Vitellius probably made use of a tradition that was passed on via Edessa. The aim is not to check the historicity of details. Rather, it should be analysed which motives influenced the oral and written tradition.