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Aretas II (Arabic: حارثة‎ transliteration: Hartha) was the King of the Nabateans. Succeeding Rabbel I, his reign began in 103 BCE and he ruled until 96 BCE.[1] Aretas II was a contemporary of the Hasmonean king Alexander Jannaeus, whose expansionist policies were a direct threat to the Nabatean Kingdom. During the siege of Gaza by Jannaeus in 99, the besieged Gazans requested help from "Aretas, King of the Arabs", but he did not come to their aid and the city was destroyed. Aretas is credited with beginning Nabatean minting.[2]


  1. ^ Taylor, 2001, p.219
  2. ^ Shatzman, 1991, p.109.



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