Siege of Uspe

The siege of Uspe was a short siege during the brief Roman-Bosporan War between the Siraceni and the Aorsi on the weakly fortified stronghold of Uspe.[1]

Siege of Uspe
Part of Roman-Bosporan War
Datec. 49 AD
Cimmerian Bosporus

Aorsic Victory

  • Complete destruction of Uspe
Aorsi Siraces
Commanders and leaders
Eunones Zorsines
Unknown 10,000+
Casualties and losses
Unknown 10,000 captured

Background and SiegeEdit

Zorsines had been aiding Mithridates III in his war against his brother Cotys I since 40 AD. The Mithridatic faction had been losing, having lost Artezian to the Roman forces sometime in 45 AD.

The siege began after Aorsi commander Eunones crossed the river Panda[2] and noticed that the stronghold had weak defenses that he could use in his favor. Eunones constructed towers to harass the people of the city with darts and arrows[3] to soften their defenses and force them to expedite their surrender. After not being able to take no more, the people of Uspe offered a capitulation of 10,000 hostages, to which the Aorsi declined.[4] The siege in total would have begun and finished within one day if nightfall had not stopped the conflict.[5] Not being able to hold out against the Aorsi for too long, Zorsines sued for peace and acknowledge the superiority of Claudius.

After Mithridates learned of his ally's defeat, he also sued for peace as he found his troop numbers not sufficient to continue the war.[6]


  1. ^ Ross, John Wilson (2008). Tacitus and Bracciolini. BiblioBazaar. p. 259. ISBN 9780554322476.
  2. ^ Tacitus. The Annals,Book XII. and after crossing the river Panda
  3. ^ Tacitus. The Annals,Book XII. Towers were raised to a greater height as a means of annoying the besieged with brands and darts.
  4. ^ Tacitus. The Annals,Book XII. very difficult to keep them under guard, the conquerors rejected the offer.
  5. ^ Tacitus. The Annals,Book XII. Had not night stopped the conflict, the siege would have been begun and finished within one day.
  6. ^ Tacitus. The Annals,Book XII.