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The four-winged guardian figure representing Cyrus the Great, a bas-relief found at Pasargadae on top of which was once inscribed in three languages the sentence "I am Cyrus the king, an Achaemenian.
Achaemenids are "descendants of Achaemenes" as Darius the Greatthe ninth king of the dynasty, traces his genealogy to him and declares "for this reason we are called Achaemenids". Achaemenes built the state Parsumash in the southwest of Iran and was succeeded by Teispeswho took the title "King of Anshan " after seizing Anshan city and enlarging his kingdom further to include Pars proper.
Cyrus I had a full brother whose name is recorded as Ariaramnes. Among these are some passages in the Cyrus cylinder where Cyrus calls himself "son of Cambyses, great king, king of Anshan". Another inscription from CM's mentions Cambyses I as "mighty king" and "an Achaemenian", which according to the bulk of scholarly opinion was engraved under Darius and considered as a later forgery by Darius.
These agree with Cyrus's own inscriptions, as Anshan and Parsa were different names of the same land. These also agree with other non-Iranian accounts, except at one point from Herodotus stating that Cambyses was not a king but a "Persian of good family".
However it has been suggested by M. Waters that Cyrus is unrelated to the Achaemenids or Darius the Great and that his family was of Teispid and Anshanite origin instead of Achaemenid.
By his own account, generally believed now to be accurate, Cyrus was preceded as king by his father Cambyses Igrandfather Cyrus Iand great-grandfather.
It is also noted that Strabo has said that Cyrus was originally named Agradates by his step-parents; therefore, it is probable that, when reuniting with his original family, following the naming customs, Cyrus's father, Cambyses Inamed him Cyrus after his grandfather, who was Cyrus I.
In this account, Astyages had two prophetic dreams in which a flood, and then a series of fruit bearing vines, emerged from his daughter Mandane's pelvis, and covered the entire kingdom.
These were interpreted by his advisers as a foretelling that his grandson would one day rebel and supplant him as king. Astyages summoned Mandane, at the time pregnant with Cyrus, back to Ecbatana to have the child killed.
Harpagus delegated the task to Mithradates, one of the shepherds of Astyages, who raised the child and passed off his stillborn son to Harpagus as the dead infant Cyrus. As it was unheard of for the son of a shepherd to commit such an act, Astyages had the boy brought to his court, and interviewed him and his adopted father.
Upon the shepherd's confession, Astyages sent Cyrus back to Persia to live with his biological parents. Following the meal, Astyages' servants brought Harpagus the head, hands and feet of his son on platters, so he could realize his inadvertent cannibalism.
Like his predecessors, Cyrus had to recognize Median overlordship. Astyageslast king of the Median Empire and Cyrus' grandfather, may have ruled over the majority of the Ancient Near Eastfrom the Lydian frontier in the west to the Parthians and Persians in the east.
However, Harpagus contacted Cyrus and encouraged his revolt against Media, before eventually defecting along with several of the nobility and a portion of the army. This mutiny is confirmed by the Nabonidus Chronicle. This marriage pacified several vassals, including the BactriansParthiansand Saka.
His uncle Arsameswho had been the king of the city-state of Parsa under the Medestherefore would have had to give up his throne. However, this transfer of power within the family seems to have been smooth, and it is likely that Arsames was still the nominal governor of Parsa under Cyrus's authority—more a Prince or a Grand Duke than a King.
Arsames lived to see his grandson become Darius the Great, Shahanshah of Persia, after the deaths of both of Cyrus's sons. It was common in the past to give BC as the year of the conquest due to some interpretations of the Nabonidus Chroniclebut this position is currently not much held.
Croesus besieged and captured the city enslaving its inhabitants. Meanwhile, the Persians invited the citizens of Ionia who were part of the Lydian kingdom to revolt against their ruler. The offer was rebuffed, and thus Cyrus levied an army and marched against the Lydians, increasing his numbers while passing through nations in his way.
The Battle of Pteria was effectively a stalemate, with both sides suffering heavy casualties by nightfall. Croesus retreated to Sardis the following morning. However, near the end of the winter, before the allies could unite, Cyrus the Great pushed the war into Lydian territory and besieged Croesus in his capital, Sardis.
Shortly before the final Battle of Thymbra between the two rulers, Harpagus advised Cyrus the Great to place his dromedaries in front of his warriors; the Lydian horses, not used to the dromedaries' smell, would be very afraid.
The strategy worked; the Lydian cavalry was routed. Cyrus defeated and captured Croesus.**Table of contents** is often considered to be one of the most unspectacular design elements ever invented. Because of its simple, usual form, table of contents is often not given the attention it may deserve — after all, it is just a list of the parts of a book or document organized in the order in which the parts appear.
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