Rhadamistus (რადამისტი) (also known as Ghadam or Radamisto) was a Georgian royal prince from Kartli (Kingdom of Iberia) who reigned in Armenia from 51 to 53 and 54 to 55 CE. Considered to be an usurper and tyrant, he was overthrown in a rebellion supported by Parthia. Rhadamistus had to escape along with his pregnant wife Zenobia of whom Tacitus relates a romantic story. Unable to bear a long ride on horse, she convinced her husband to kill her so she would not fell into the hands of their pursuers. Stubbed and left at the banks of the Araxes, she survived. The story of the discovery of injured and unconscious Zenobia on the riverbank is the subject of classical paintings by Bouguereau, Paul Baudry, Nicolas Poussin and more. Georg Friedrich Händel used Domenico Lalli’s adapted version of a story of Rhadamistus and Zenobia as a libretto for his opera Radamisto (1720).
Zenobia, wife of Rhadamistus
This Zenobia is not to be confused with Zenobia
Rhadamistus killing Zenobia, painting by Luigi Sabatelli, 1803