1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Vonones
VONONES (on coins Onones), the name of two Parthian kings. (1) Vonones I., eldest son of Phraates IV. After the assassination of Orodes II. (c. A.D. 7), the Parthians applied to Augustus for a new king from the house of Arsaces. Augustus sent them Vonones (Mon. Anc. 5, 9; Tac. Ann. ii. 1 f.; Joseph. Ant. xviii. 2, 4), who was living as a hostage in Rome. But Vonones could not maintain himself; he had been educated as a Roman, and was despised as a slave of the Romans. Another member of the Arsacid house, Artabanus II., who was living among the Dahan nomads, was invited to the throne, and defeated and expelled Vonones. The coins of Vonones (who always uses his proper name) date from A.D. 8–12, those of Artabanus II. begin in A.D. 10. Vonones fled into Armenia and became king here. But Artabanus demanded his deposition, and as Augustus did not wish to begin a war with the Parthians he removed Vonones into Syria, where he was kept in custody (Tac. Ann. ii. 4). When he tried to escape, A.D. 19, he was killed by his guards (Tac. Ann. ii. 58, 68).
(2) Vonones II., governor of Media, was raised to the throne after the death of Gotarzes in A.D. 51 (perhaps he was his brother, cf. Joseph. Ant. xx. 3, 4). But he died after a few months, and was succeeded by his son Vologaeses I. (Tac. Ann. xii. 14). (Ed. M.)