Zabdicene (Kurdish: Zawdex, Armenian: Tsavdek’ or Zavdek’, Greek: Ζαβδικηνή( Zavdikene), Latin: Zabdiccena, Classical Aramaic: Zawdai‎) ,along with Corduene and Moxoene, was a Carduchian[1] principality in southeastern Anatolia, in Kurdish areas of present day’s Turkey.

Its neighboring regions were Moxoene to the north, Adiabene to the south, Arzanene to the west and Corduene to the east.

Phinika and Bezabde were notable cities in the region. In 363, Zabdicene with its urban centres and fortresses were surrendered to Sassanid Empire. The dynasty declined by the mid-fifth century.


Bezabde was a defensive town on the eastern Roman boundaries. This town, settled in Zabdicene, was strategically important in the wars between Romans and Persians during the 4th century[2][3]. It had been assaulted twice in 360, described thoroughly by Ammianus Marcellinus. The Sassanids commanded by Shapur II took over Bezabde, in spite of the extremely fierce resistance from 3 Roman legions and native archers. The Roman attempts to retake the city was unsuccessful, however it came back in Roman hands once the Sassanids pulled back. With the peace treaty between the Romans and Sassanians in 363, Bezabde was surrendered to Sassanids. Afterwards, it vanished from chronological records.[2]


1. Cyril Toumanoff,Introduction to Christian Caucasian History II: Status and Dynasties of the Formative Period, Traditio, Vol. XVII (New York: Fordham University Press, 1961). pp. 31–32.
2. Crow 2018a, p. 235.
3. Crow 2018b, p. 1605.


1. The Seven Great Monarchies Of The Ancient Eastern World, Vol 7. (of 7): The Sassanian or New Persian Empire, by George Rawlinson
2. Crow, James (2018a & 2018b); Edited by Oliver Nicholson; The Oxford Dictionary of Late Antiquity. Oxford University Press.

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