Odenathus, Septimius

Odenathus, Septimius

(sĕptĭm`ēəs ŏdĭnā`thəs), d. 267, king of Palmyra. His family (the Septimii) had dominated PalmyraPalmyra
, ancient city of central Syria. A small modern village known as Tudmor or Tadmor (the Syrian Arabic name of Palmyra) is nearby; residents were relocated from the ancient site in the early 1930s.
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 for many years, and Odenathus by his policy of cooperation with Rome raised his state to its zenith. As a Roman general he warred against Shapur I of Persia after the defeat of ValerianValerian
(Publius Licinius Valerianus) , d. after 260, Roman emperor (253–60). He held important posts, both civil and military, under the emperors Decius and Gallus. After the short reign of the former general Aemilianus, Valerian was proclaimed emperor.
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. He won (260) a resounding victory over Shapur for Emperor Gallienus and drove the Persians back until he threatened Ctesiphon. He also put down (261) an insurrection against Gallienus in Emesa. Odenathus' main interest was to protect Palmyra's trade with the East against the Persians. He willingly permitted his state (including Syria, NW Mesopotamia, and W Armenia) to be autonomous within the Roman Empire. He and his eldest son were murdered, and soon after his death his second wife, the beautiful and ambitious ZenobiaZenobia
, d. after 272, queen of Palmyra. She was of Arab stock and was the wife of Septimius Odenathus. He was murdered, probably through her contrivance, and she obtained rule of his lands in the name of her son.
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, brought Palmyra to ruin.