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Mithridates was a formidable foe and was incredibly resilient and took advantage of the endemic divisions in the Roman Republic. In the First and Third Mithridatic War, he posed a grievous threat to Rome influence in the eastern Mediterranean. This was especially the case in the Third war between the Pontic king and the Republic when Mithridates entered into an alliance with the Roman rebels in Spain. Lucullus displayed remarkable generalship prevented the Pontic king and his Armenian allies from expelling Rome from the Near East <ref>Sherwin, p. 245</ref>. His victories ensured that Mithridates was all but beaten. The King was able to escape and was even able to recapture some of his lands. In fact, the Pontic king was severely weakened and his alliance with Armenia was at an end. He only had a small army and many of his lands were in outright revolt. He was beaten and only his bravery and resourcefulness, allowed him to continue the fight against Rome. Lucullus was the general who could claim to have ended the threat from the Pontic King. By doing this he not only saved Rome in the east but also enabled the Republic to dominate Asia Minor and the Levant for centuries <ref>Sherwin, p 244</ref>. In fact, Roman control of Asia Minor was not again challenged until the 7th century AD.
==The defeat of Armenia==
Tigranes after he became king of Armenia, exploited Parthian and Seleucid weakness and created a vast Empire. He captured Mesopotamia and conquered the remnants of the once mighty Seleucid Empire. Tigranes made Armenia the greatest power in the region, even greater than Parthia. Lucullus defeat of Tigranes weakened the Armenian and much of his newly acquired lands revolted against his rule. He was forced to withdraw from the war with Rome and abandoned his ally, Mithridates. In the aftermath of Lucullus victory at Tigrancertta, the Armenian Empire collapsed into near anarchy. Pompey allied with the Parthians and as a result,
the chastened Armenians became a client kingdom of Rome, which it remained for centuries. This allowed Rome to secure a strategic advantage for itself on its Eastern frontier, until at least the rise of the Sassanian Empire. If Lucullus had not defeated Tigranes, the Armenian Empire may have endured, and this could have changed the history of the Near East. However, there was one unexpected outcome of the defeat of Tigranes and that was that it allowed Parthia to emerge stronger. It was to become the main foe of first the Republic and then later the Empire in the East.
[[File: 1200px-Armenian Empire.png |200px|thumb| The Empire of Tigranes at its greatest extent]]