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Perseve- faculties; and that a man, at any period of his life, may became afterwards king, and where he and his posterity Persia.
resist, grieve, and even quench, the spirit. See Theo- reigned for 100 years. He flourished, according to most
chronologists, 1348, B. C.; but, according to Sir Isaac Persia.
PERSEUS was the most ancient of all the Greek Newton, only 1028.
PE R SI A,
Entent of A MOST ancient and celebrated empire of Asia, sident rests this opinion, is the work of a Mahometan
extending in length from the mouth of the river traveller, compiled from the books of such Persians as fled Araxes to that of the river Indus, about 1840 of our from their country upon the innovation in religion made miles, and in breadth from the river Oxus, to the Per- by Zoroaster: and if these books, of which a few still sian gulf, about 1080 of the same miles. It is bounded remain, be genuine, and the Mahometan a faithful comon the north by the Caspian sea, the river Oxus, and piler, facts of which Sir William has not the smallest Mount Caucasus; on the east, by the river Indus and doubt, the evidence is certainly sufficient to bear the the dominions of the Great Mogul ; on the south, by superstructure which he has raised upon it.
5 the Persian gulf and the Indian ocean; and on the west, If the Persian monarchy was thus ancient, it is natu- Perhaps the by the dominions of the Grand Signior.
ral to suppose that Persia or Iran was the original seat original Persia proWe learn from Sir William Jones, the illustrious pre of the human race, whence colonies were sent out or seat of the
human perly the sident of the Asiatic Society, that Persia is the name of emigrated of themselves to people the rest of the babi
only one province of this extensive empire, which by table globe. This supposition is actually made by our enly one province of
the present natives, and all the learned Mussulmans who ingenious author, who strongly confirms it by remarks this vast reside in the British territories in India, is called Iràn. on the most ancient language of Persia, which he shows empire. It has been a practice not uncommon in all ages to de to have been the parent of the Sanscrit, as well as of the
nominate the whole of a country from that part of it Greek, Latin, and Gothic (see PHILOLOGY). He
of arts; which instead of travelling westward only, as it Variogs The most ancient name, however, of this country was has been fancifully supposed, or eastward, as might with
names of that of Elam, or, as some write it Ælam, from Elam equal reason bave been asserted, were expanded in all
cended. Herodotus calls its inhabitants Cephenes; and it is from good authority that the Saxon Chronicle
very ancient times the people are said to have called brings the first inhabitants of Britain from Armenia;
the ancient Iran. Opinions
That Persia was originally peopled by Elam the son Of this first Persian monarchy we have no historical Accounts of respecting of Shem, has been very generally admitted ; but the accounts; and must therefore, after having thus men- the birth, kits first po- truth is, that of the ancient history of this distinguished tioned it, descend at once to the era of Cyrus. This pulation.
Cyrus. empire very little is perfectly known. For this igno- prince is celebrated both by sacred and profane historance, which at first seems strange, satisfactory reasons rians ; but the latter are at no small variance concernmay easily be assigned; of which the principal are the ing his birth and accession to the throne. According superficial knowledge of the Greeks and Jews, and the to Herodotus, Astyages, the last king of the Medes, loss of Persian archives or bistorical compositions. “That being warned in a dream, that the son who was to be the Grecian writers before XENOPHON bail no acquaint- born of his daughter Mandane, should one day be lord ance with Persia, and that their accounts of it are of Asia, resolved to marry her, not to a Mede, but to wholly fabulous, is a paradox too extravagant to be se a Persian. Accordingly he chose for her husband one riously mentioned; but (says Sir William Jones) their Cambyses, a man of a peaceable disposition, and of no connection with it in war or peace had been generally very high station. However, about a year after they confined to bordering kingdoms under feudatory princes; were married, Astyages was frightened by another and the first Persian emperor, whose life and character dream, which made him resolve to dispatch the infant they seem to have known with tolerable accuracy, was as soon as it should be born. Hereupon the king sent the great CYRUS."
Oor learned author, however, is for his daughter, and put her under confinement, where so far from considering Cyrus as the first Persian mo she was soon after delivered of a son. The infant was narch, that he thinks it evident a powerful monarchy committed to the care of one Harpagus, with strict orLad subsisted in Iran for ages before the accession of ders to destroy it in what manner le thought proper, that hero ; that this monarchy was called the Mahélé But be, having acquainted his wife with the command dian dynasty; and that it was in fact the oldest mo he had received, by her advice gave it to a shepherd, narchy in the world. The evidence upon which the pre- desiring him to let it perish by exposing it. But the
Persia. shepherd, out of compassion, exposed a still-born child into Persia, where he would find his father and mother Persia.
which his wife happened to be then delivered of, and in circumstances very different from those of the poor
Cyrus, on his arrival at his father's house, was received When the young prince had attained the age of ten with the greatest joy. When he grew up, he soon beyears, as he was one day at play with other children of came popular on account of his extraordinary parts ; the same age, he was chosen king by his companions ; till at last bis friendship was courted by Harpagus, who and having, in virtue of that dignity, divided them into had never forgot the cruel treatment he received from several orders and classes, the son of Artembares, a lord Astyages. By this means a conspiracy was formed of eminent dignity among the Medes, refused to obey against Astyages ; who being overthrown in two suchis orders; whereupon Cyrus caused him to be seized, cessive engagements, was taken prisoner and confined and whipped very severely. The boy ran crying to his for life. father; and he immediately hastened to the king's pa The account given by Xenophon of the rise of Cyrus lace, loudly complaining of the affront his son had re is much more consonant to Scripture; for he tells us, ceived from the son of a slave, and intreating Astyages that Babylon was conquered by the united forces of the to revenge, by some exemplary punishment, the indig- Medes and Persians. According to him, Cyrus was the nity offered to him and his family. Astyages, com son of Cambyses king of the Medes, and Mandane the manding both the herdsman and his son to be brought daughter of Astyages king of Persia. He was born a before him, asked the latter, how he, who was the son year after his uncle Cyaxares, the brother of Mandane. of so mean a man, had dared to abuse the son of one of He lived till the age of twelve with his parents in Perthe chief lords of the kingdom ? Cyrus replied, that he sia, being educated after the manner of the country, had done no more than he had a right to do ; for the and inured to fatigues and military exercises. At tbis boys of the neighbourhood having chosen him king, be- age he was taken to the court of Astyages, where he cause they thought him most worthy of that dignity, resided four years ; when the revolt of the Medes and and performed what be, vested with that character, had Persians from the Babylonians happened, and which commanded, the son of Artembares alone bad slighted ended in the destruction of the Babylonish empire, as his orders, and for his disobedience had suffered the pu related under the article BABYLON. nishment he deserved. In the course of this conversa While Cyrus was employed in the Babylonish war, His war tion Astyages happening to recollect, that his grandson, before he attacked the metropolis itself, he reduced all with the whom he had ordered to be destroyed, would have been the nations of Asia Minor. The most formidable of Lydians, about the same age with Cyrus, began to question the these were the Lydians, whose king Croesus assembled shepherd concerning his supposed son, and at last ob a very numerous army, composed of all the other natained from him a confession of the whole truth. tions in that part of Asia, as well as of Egyptians,
Astyages having now discovered Cyrus to be lis Greeks, and Thracians. Cyrus being informed of these grandson, sent for Harpagus, who also confessed that vast preparations, augmented his forces to 196,000 men, he had not seen Mandane's son destroyed, but had given and with them advanced against the enemy, wbo were him to the shepherd; at which Astyages was so much assembled near the river Pactolus. After long marches, incensed, that, having invited Harpagus to an enter he came up with them at Thymbra, not far from Sartainment, he caused him to be served with the flesh of dis, the capital of Lydia. Besides the horse and foot, his own son. When he had done, the king asked him which amounted to 196,000, as already observed, Cy. whether he liked his victuals ; and Harpagus answer. rus had 300 chariots armed with scythes, each chariot ing, that he had never tasted any thing more delicious, drawn by four horses abreast, covered with trappings the officers appointed for that purpose brought in a bas that were proof against all sorts of missive weapons: he ket, containing the head, hands, and feet of his son, had likewise a great number of chariots of a larger size, desiring him to uncover the basket, and take what he upon each of which was placed a tower about 18 or 20 liked best. He did as they desired, and beheld the feet high, and in each tower were lodged 20 archers. mangled remains of bis only child without betraying These towers were drawn by 16 oxen yoked abreast. the least concern, so great was the command which he There was moreover a considerable number of camels, had over his passions. The king then asked him, whe- each mounted by two Arabian archers, the one looking ther he knew with what kind of meat be had been en towards the head, and the other towards the hinder tertained. Harpagus replied, that he knew very well, part of the camel. The army of Cræsus consisted of and was always pleased with what his sovereign thought 420,000 men. The Egyptians, who alone were 120,000 fit to ordain; and having thus replied, with a surprising in number, being the main strength of the army, were temper he collected the mangled parts of his innocent placed in the centre. Both armies were drawn up in an son, and went home.
immense plain, which gave room for the extending of Astyages having thus vented his rage on Harpagus, the wings on either side; and the design of Crosus, began next to consult what he should do with Cyrus. upon which alone he founded his hopes of victory, The magi, however, eased him of his fears with regard to surround and hem in the enemy's army. to him, by assuring him, that as the boy liad been once When the two armies were in sight of each other, The battle chosen king by his conipanions, the dream had been al- Crocsus, observing how much his front exceeded that of of Thywready verified, and that Cyrus never would' reign in any Cyrus, made the centre halt, but commanded the two other sense. The king, being well pleased with this wings to advance, with a design to inclose the Persian answer, called Cyrus, and, owning how much he had army, and begin the attack on both sides at once. been wanting in the affection which he ought to have When the two detached bodies of the Lydian forces bad towards him, desired bim to prepare for a journey were sufficiently extended, Croesus gave the signal to the
Perris. main body, which marched up to the front of the Per- resistance on foot; but were at last driven into the city, Persia.
sian army, while the two wings attacked them in flank; which was taken two days after : and thus the Lydian
Babylon. ever, did not at all alarm the Persian commander; but, related under that article. Having settled the civil gogiving his troops the signal to face about, he attacked vernment of the conquered kingdoms, Cyrus took a in filank those forces that were going to fall upon his review of all his forces, which he found to consist of rear so vigorously, that he put them into great disorder. 600,000 foot, 120,000 borse, and 2000 chariots armed: At the same time a squadron of camels was made to ad with scythes. With these he extended his dominion all vance against the enemy's other wing, which consisted over the nations to the confines of Ethiopia,, and to the mostly of cavalry. The horses were so frightened at the Red sea ; after which he continued to reign peaceably approach of these animals, that most of them threw their over his vast empire till his death, which happened a riders, and trod them under foot; which occasioned bout 529 before Christ. According to Xenophon, he His death.
, great confusion. Then Artageses, an officer of great va died a natural death; but others tell us, that, having lour and experience, at the head of a small body of engaged in a war with the Scythians, he was by them horse, charged them so briskly, that they could never overthrown and cut in pieces with his whole army, afterwards rally; and at the same time the chariots, amounting to 200,000 men. But this is very impro-armed with scythes, being driven in among them, they bable, seeing all authors agree that the tomb of Cyrus were entirely routed. Both the enemy's wings being was extant at Pasargada in Persia in the time of Alex. thus put to flight, Cyrus commanded his chief favourite ander the Great; which it could not have been if his Abradates to fall upon the centre with the large cha- body had remained in the possession of the Scythians, riots above mentioned. The first ranks, consisting most
as these authors assert. ly of Lydians, not being able to stand so violent a In the time of Cyrus, the Persian empire extended charge, immediately gave way; but the Egyptians, be from the river Indus to the Ægean sea. On the northa ing covered with their bucklers, and marching so close it was bounded by the Euxine and Caspian seas, and on that the chariots had not room to penetrate their ranks, the south Ethiopia and Arabia. That monarch a great slaughter of the Persians ensued. A bradates kept bis residence for the seven cold months at Babylon, bimself was killed, his chariot overturned, and the by reason of the warmth of that climate ; three months greatest part of bis men were cut in pieces. Upon his in the spring he spent at Susa, and two at Ecbatau durdeath, the Egyptians, advanciug boldly, obliged the ing the beat of summer. On his deathbed be appointed Persian infantry to give way, and drove them back bis son Cambyses to succeed him in the empire; and to quite to their engines. There they met with a new his other son, Smerdis, he gave several considerable goshower of darts and javelins from their machines ; and vernments. The new monarch immediately set about at the same time the Persian rear advancing sword in the conquest of Egypt; which he accomplished in the hand, obliged their spearmen and archers to return to manner related in the history of that country. the charge. In the mean time Cyrus, having put to Having reduced Egypt, Cambyses next resolved to Cambyses flight both the horse and foot on the left of the Egyp- turn his arms against the Carthaginians, Hammonians, conquers tians, pushed on to the centre, where he had the mis and Ethiopians. But he was obliged to drop the first Egypt. fortune to find his Persians again giving ground; and of these enterprises, because the Phoenicians refused to judging that the only way to stop the Egyptians, who supply him with ships against the Carthaginians, who were pursuing them, would be to attack them in the were a Phænician colony. However, he sent ambasrear, be did so';, and at the same time the Persian ca. sadors into Ethiopia with a design to get intelligence of valry coming up to his assistance, the fight was renewed the state and strength of the country. But the Ethiowith great slaughter on both sides. Cyrus himself was pian monarch, being well apprised of the errand on in great danger; for his horse being killed under him, wbich they came, treated them with great contempt. he fell among the midst of his enemies: but the Per. In return for the presents sent him by Cambyses, he sians, alarmed at the danger of their general, threw sent his own bow; and advised the Persians to make themselves headlong on their opponents, rescued bim, war upon the Ethiopians when they could bend such a and made a terrible slaughter; till at last Cyrus, admir- strong bow as easily as he did, and to thank the gode ing the valour of the Egyptians, offered them honour- that the Ethiopians had no ambition to extend their doable conditions : letting them know at the same time, minions beyond tñeir own country.
13 that all their allies had abandoned them. They accept Cambyses was no sooner informed of this answer by His unsuced the terms offered them; and having agreed with Cy- his ambassadors than be flew into a violent passion; and cessful ex
pedition rus that they should not be obliged to carry arms against ordered his army immediately to begin their march,
against Croesos, they engaged in the service of the conqueror, without considering that they were neither furnished Ethiopia and continued faithful to him ever after.
with provisions nor any other necessary. When he ar- and the The next morning Cyrus advanced towards Sardis, rived at Thebes in Upper Egypt, he detached 50,000
Hammo-. ken, and
and Cræsus marched out to oppose him at the head of men, with orders to destroy the temple of Jupiter Am- nians,
Their strength consisted mostly in cavalry; which Cy- person arriving either at the oracle, or returning to
the Lydiau empire over throurn.
Persia. eat their beasts of burther. When these failed, the sol. his imposture. He had married all his predecessors Persia.
diers fed on grass and roota, as long as any could be wives, among whom was one Phedyma, the daughter
His iniposity of eating one another ; every tenth man, on whom who suspected that the king was not Smerdis the son of
store disce the lot fell, being condemned to serve as food for his Cyrus, sent a trusty messenger to his daughter, desiring vered. companions. The king, however, obstinately persisted to know whether he was so or not; but Phedyma, hav. in his design; till, being apprehensive of the danger being never seen this Smerdis, could not give any answer.
himself was in, he retreated to Thebes, after having Her father then desired her to inquire at Atossa, who 14 lost the greatest part of his army.
could not but know her own brother. However, he He mur Cambyses was a man of a very cruel and suspicious was again disappointed; for Phedyma acquainted him ders his
temper, of which he gave many instances; and the fol- that all the king's wives were lodged in distinct and sebrother,
lowing proved indirectly the cause of his death.-We parate apartments, without being allowed to see each
, on receiving the news of their designs into execution, Darius the son of Hystas pes racy formed
discover the fraud they had put on the Persians, and Uis death.
As the king's wound mortified, he lived but a few even to make a public speech, declaring that the predays after this; but the assembly supposing that he had sent king of Persia was really the son of Cyrus. At the spoken only out of hatred to bis brother, quietly sub- time appointed, he began his discourse with the geneamitted to the impostor, who was thus for a time esta- logy of Cyrus, putting his hearers in mind of the great blished on the throne. Indeed, from his conduct during favours the nation had received from that prince. Afthe short time which he enjoyed the kingdom, he ap
ter having extolled Cyrus and his family, to the great pears to have been not at all undeserving of a crown. astonishment of all present, he confessed the whole transReign of He began with granting to all his subjects an exemption action with regard to the death of Smerdis ; telling the Smerais the from taxes and military service for three years, and people that the apprehensions of the danger he must inmagiạn. treated all of them in the most beneficent manner. To evitably run by publishing the imposture had constrain
secure himself on the throne the more effectually, he ed him to conceal it so long ; but now, not being able
Persia. ver the sovereignty, he threw himself headlong from the transactions were liis expeditions against Babylon: Persia.
top of the tower on which he stood, and died on the against Scythia, India, and Greece. The expedition 19 spot.
against Babylon took place in the year 517 B. C. when lle is kül. In the meantime the conspirators, who were advan.
Revolt of led
the people, unable to bear the oppression of the Persians,
the Babycing towards the palace, were informed of what bad and likewise discontented because the seat of government lonians. bappened; and Otanes was again for deferring the exe was removed from their city to Susa in Persia, took the cation of their enterprise : but Darius insisting upon the opportunity of the troubles which happened in the reigns danger of delay, they proceeded boldly to the palace; of Cambyses and Smerdis, to store their city with all and being admitted by the guards, who did not suspect kinds of provisions sufficient to serve them for many them, they killed both the usurper and bis brother; af. years ; after which they broke out into an open rebelter which they exposed their heads to the people, and lion, and thus quickly brought upon themi Darius with declared the whole imposture. The Persians at this all his forces. The Babylonians perceiving themselves were so enraged, that they fell on the whole sect, and shut up by so numerous an army, turned all their killed every one of the magi they could meet with ; and thoughts towards the supporting of a long siege, which had not the slaughter been stopped by night, not one of they imagined would tire out the king's troops. To the order would have been left alive. The day on prevent the consumption of their provisions, they took which this slaughter happened was afterwards celebrated the most barbarous and cruel resolution that ever was by the Perians with the greatest solemnity, and called put in execution by any nation. They agreed among by the name of Magophonia, or the slaughtor of the themselves to get rid of all unnecessary mouths; and Magii On that festival the magi durst not appear therefore, gathering together all the old men, women, abroad, but were obliged to shut themselves up in and children, they strangled them without distinction ; their houses. Smerdis the magian reigned only eight every one being allowed only to keep the wife he liked months.
best, and a maid-servant to do the work of the bouse. When the tumult was a little subsided, the conspira. The siege continued for a year and eight months; nor tors, who were seven in number, met together in order
any likelihood of its being ended, when Zoto elect a new king, or to determine what form of go pyrus, one of Darius's chief commanders, put him in vernment they should next introduce. Otanes was for a possession of it by the following stratagem. He cut off republic; but being overruled by the rest, he declared, bis nose and ears, and having mangled his body with that as be was determined not to be a king, neither stripes in a most cruel manner, he fled to the Babylowould he be ruled by one ; and therefore insisted that nians thus disfigured, pretending that he had been so he and his family should ever afterwards remain free treated by Darius for advising him to raise the siege. from subjection to the royal power. This was not only Being intrusted with the command of some forces, he granted, but it was further agreed by the other six, that cut off several parties of the Persian army, whom Darius whoever was chosen should every year present Otanes thus sacrificed in order to raise the character of Zopywith a Median vest, a mark of great distinction among rus the higher among the Babylonians. In this mannerhe the Persians, because he had been the chief author of so much established his credit, that at last he was made the enterprise. They further agreed to meet at a cer commander in chief of all the Babylonish forces, and the taip place next morning at sonrise on horseback, and guard of the city committed entirely to his care;
avd no that he whose horse first neighed should be king. This sooner was this done than he delivered it up to Darius, being overheard by Oebores, who had the care of Da- who, to prevent their rebelling a second time, beat down rius's horses, he led a mare over-night to the place, the walls of that metropolis to the height of 50 cubits. and brought his master's horse to her. The next morn Three thousand of the most active in the rebellion were ing, the horse remembering the place, immediately impaled; the rest pardoned. As they bad destroyed
neighed for the mare ; and the five lords dismounting, most of their women, the neighbouring nations were Darius Hy- saluted Darius as their king.
commanded to furnish them with wives, and 50,000 Suspes cho
Darius Hvstaspes was elected king of Persia in the women were sent to that city, by which means it was year 522 B. C. Immediately after his accession, be pro- prevented from being depopulated. Zopyrus was remoted the other six conspirators to the first employments warded with the highest honours, and bad the whole rein the kingdom, married the two daughters of Cyrus, venues of Babylon bestowed on him for life. Atossa and Artystona, Parmys the daughter of the After the reduction of Babylon, Darius undertook a His unsuctrue Smerdis, and Phedyma the daughter of Otanes, who Scytbian expedition, directed against those nations which cessful exhad detected the imposture of the magian. He then lie between the Danube and the Tanais. His pretext pedition divided the whole empire into 20 satrapies or govern- for this war was, to revenge the calamities which these against the
Scythians. ments, and appointed a governor over each division, nations had brought upon Asia about 120 years before, ordering them to pay bim an annual tribute. The in- when they invaded and subdued Media ; keeping it in habitants of Colchis, with some others, were enjoined subjection for the space of 28 years, as we have related only to make annual presents, and the Arabians to for under that article. In this expedition he was attended nish every year such a quantity of frankincense as equal with an army of 700,000 men. With these be marched led the weight of 1000 talents. Thus Darius received to the Thracian Bosphorus; which having passed on a the yearly tribute of 14,560 Eubæic talents, upwards bridge of boats, be reduced all Thrace. From Thrace of 260,000 pounds sterling.
he advanced to the Danube, where he had appointed his Under Darius, the building of the temple of Jerusa- fleet to meet him. This river he passed on another bridge lem, which had been obstructed by Cambyses and Smer- of boats, and entered Scythia. His enemies, however, dis, went on successfully, and the Jewish state was en were too wise to oppose such a formidable power in the tirely restored. The most remarkable of Darius's other open field; and therefore retired before him, wasting