Who married Zarmandukht?

Pap of Armenia married Zarmandukht .


Zarmandukht also known as Zarmanduxt was an Armenian noblewoman who lived in the 4th century whom through marriage became a Queen of Arsacid Armenia.

Zarmandukht was a contemporary to the rule of four Roman Client Kings of Armenia: Papas (Pap) who ruled from 370 until 374; Varasdates (Varazdat) who ruled from 374 until 378 and Arsaces III (Arshak III) with his co-ruler Vologases who ruled from 378 until 386/387. Little is known on her origins as the historical sources from this period provide no information on her life prior to marrying Papas. For Zarmandukht to have married a King of Armenia, she must have been a noblewoman of some social status and may have come from a family of some aristocratic and political influence. There is a possibility that Zarmandukht may have been a daughter of a nakharar and could have been betrothed to Papas, during the kingship of the father of Papas, Arsaces II (Arshak II) who reigned from 350 until 368.

Zarmandukht was the wife of Papas as they married at an unknown date in his kingship. She bore Papas two sons Arsaces III and Vologases. Little is known on her relationship with Papas. Through her marriage to Papas, Zarmandukht became an Armenian Queen consort; a very powerful, wealthy, influential woman in Armenian society and through marriage was a relation to the Arsacid dynasty of Armenia.

Following the assassination of Papas in 374, as her sons with Papas were too young to rule on the Armenian throne, the Roman emperor Valens had sent the nephew of Papas, Varasdates to occupy the Armenian throne. Zarmandukht's nephew-in-marriage was a young man highly reputed for his mental and physical gifts had lived in Rome for an unknown period of time. Varasdates began to rule under the regency of Mushegh I Mamikonian, whose family were pro-Roman. It is unknown what became of Zarmandukht and her sons during Varasdates' reign.

In 378 with the failed reign of Varasdates and the murder of his regent Mushegh Mamikonian, the latter's brother, Manuel Mamikonian, filled his late brother's position of Sparapet. Manuel, furious at the Armenian King, with a military force drove out Varasdates from Armenia back to Rome. Manuel raised Arsaces III and Vologases to the throne as co-kings of Armenia, under the nominal regency of Zarmandukht.

To end the political anarchy in the country as Manuel being now the powerful regent-in-charge of Armenia, Manuel married Arsaces III to his daughter Vardandukht and he married Vologases to the daughter of Sahak from the Bagratuni Dynasty. The Mamikonian government brought peace, stability to Armenia in which Manuel guided the country wisely. Manuel treated Zarmandukht and her sons with honor. He raised Arsaces III and Vologases and Manuel nurtured them as if they were his own children.

Manuel had given Zarmandukht the title of Queen and received the highest honors in Armenia due to her promoted status. In the year 383, the Sassanid King Shapur III had sent various royal gifts to Manuel and various members of the Armenian aristocracy. This included a crown on a mantle to a royal standard to Zarmandukht and a body of cavalry commanded by Suren Marzban. Manuel remained neutral to the Romans and the Sassanid ruling monarchs. After this moment no more is known on Zarmandukht and the date of her death is unknown.

Wedding Rings

Pap of Armenia

Pap of Armenia

Pap, also known as Papas (Armenian: Պապ; Latin: Papes or Papa; 353–374) was a Prince who served as the Roman Client King of Arsacid Armenia from 370 until 374.


Children of Zarmandukht and their spouses: