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Cyrus The Great

Cyrus The Great
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   Cyrus The Great      The name "Cyrus" (a transliteration of the Greek  Kυρoς  ) is the Greek version of the Old-Persian.    Cyrus the Great (ca.600 - 529 BCE) was a towering figure in the history of mankind.    Also known as Cyrus II.    “ Father    of the Iranian nation “.      Cyrus founded the the first world empire.    Etymology and lineage -The great king declares his ancestry as a Persian king. -He was succeeded by his son Teispes of Anshan and inscriptions indicate that when the latter died, two of his sons shared the throne. -Cyrus I of Anshan and Ariaramnes of Persia. -They were succeeded by their respective sons. - Cyrus became king of Anshan after his father's death in 559BCE, and initially reigned as Median vassal king of the Persian tribes. - He established his residence in Pars province, the centre of the Pasargadae tribe, to which the Achaemenid clan belonged. - Little is known of Cyrus' early life as the few known sources have been damaged or lost. - According to the ancient historians, Astyages was told in a dream that his grandson, the baby Cyrus, would overthrow him. - Upon his victory over his grandfather he founded a government for his new kingdom, incorporating both Median and Persian nobles as civilian officials. He thus began to build the first world empire. Cyrus' religion - Almost nothing is known about Cyrus' personal beliefs, but Xenophon reports to us that in religious. - Although this is not universally agreed, Mary Boyce has argued that Cyrus was indeed a Zoroastrian and that he thus followed in the footsteps of his ancestors. - She has pointed out that the fire altars and the mausoleum. - Cited Greek texts as evidence that Zoroastrian priests held positions of authority at Cyrus' court.    Death -  Cuneiform records from Babylon suggest that Cyrus died on 4 December 530BCE. - Cyrus was killed near the Aral Sea in July or August 529BCE during a campaign to protect the northeastern borders of his empire from incursions. - Cyrus had defeated and killed her son Spargapises. -  After the battle, Tomyris apparently ordered the body of Cyrus to be found so that she could avenge the death of her son. - At Cyrus' death, his son Cambyses II succeeded him. - He attacked the Massagetae to recover Cyrus's ravaged body, before burying it at Pasargadae. Cyrus' Empire Building -As the founder of the Achaemenid Empire, one of Cyrus' objectives was to gain  power over the Mediterranean coast and secure Asia Minor. - Cyrus moved further east to annex Drangiana, Arachosia, Margiana and Bactria to his territories. -The exact limits of Cyrus' eastern conquests are not known, but it is possible that they extended as far as the Peshawar region in modern Pakistan. - On 12 October 539BCE Cyrus, "without spilling a drop of blood", annexed the Chaldaean empire of Babylonia - and on October 29 he entered Babylon. - Almost immediately he then extended his control over the Arabian peninsula and the Levant also quickly submitted to Persian rule. - Although Cyrus did not conquer Egypt, by 535BCE all the lands up to the Egyptian borders had acceded to Persian dominance. - Newly conquered territories had a measure of political independence, being ruled  by  satraps . - These governors took full responsibility for the administration, legislation and cultural activities of each province. - Cyrus created the first postal system in the world, and this must have helped with intra-Empire communications. - Cyrus' spectacular conquests triggered the age of Empire Building, as carried out  by his successors as well as by the later Greeks and Romans    The cylinder of Cyrus the Great -  The Cyrus cylinder was discovered in 1878CE at the site of Babylon. - It is inscribed in Akkadian cuneiform. - It has been hailed as the world's first declaration of human rights. -. The inscription on the cylinder starts by describing the criminal deeds. -: "I am Cyrus, king of the world, the great king, the powerful king, king of Babylon, king of Sumer and Akkad, king of the four quarters of the world" - After a description of Cyrus' ancestry and of royal protocol, it goes on to explain how Cyrus established peace and abolished forced labour. -"The people of Babylon . . . the shameful yoke was removed from them" - Cyrus supported in leaving for their homeland. - Cyrus restored the local cults by allowing the gods to return to their shrines. - The cylinder describes the Great King not as a conqueror, but as a liberator and the legitimate successor to the crown of Mesopotamia. - Cyrus as a benign and chosen ruler. - many sceptical historians believed that the idea of a Zoroastrian emperor like Cyrus the Great allowing a conquered people like the Jews to return to their homeland. - Cyrus Cylinder, alongside the Biblical and other historical statements, seems to substantiate the idea that Cyrus not only allowed many of the nations he conquered to practice their various religious beliefs. - He gave grants both from the Imperial treasury and also from his own  personal fortune. -The Cylinder has especial resonance for the Iranian peoples and is an integral part of Iran's cultural heritage and national identity.    Cyrus' Legacy - Cyrus the Great is famed as a triumphant conqueror, a superb warrior, and the founder of the greatest empire the world has ever seen. - Cyrus the Great was mentioned twenty-two times in the Old Testament, where he is unconditionally praised. -. Cyrus then funded the subsequent rebuilding of the Temple in Jerusalem. - Cyrus was also eulogized by many other writers and his actual or legendary exploits were used as moral instruction or as a source of inspiration for political philosophies. - In the Cyropedia  - often considered Xenophon's masterpiece - he offers a fictionalised  biography of the great man. - This is more "a treatise on political virtue and social organisation" than a history. - It was influential in ancient times and then again in the Renaissance. It may have been composed in response to Plato's The Republic , and Plato's  Laws  . - But the other in the person of Cyrus, and the Persians, fashioned a government, such as might best. - So much more profitable and gracious is doctrine by ensample. -1658 discourse The Garden of Cyrus  after the benevolent ruler. - This dense treatise of hermetic philosophy may be a Royalist criticism upon the autocratic rule of Cromwell - Cyrus' name and his doctrine is still cited and celebrated into modern times. -"O Cyrus, great King, King of Kings, Achaemenian King, King of the land of Iran. I, the Shahanshah of Iran, offer thee salutations from myself and from my nation. Rest in  peace, for we are awake, and we will always stay awake." - In 1994, a replica of a bas relief depicting Cyrus the Great was erected in a park in Sydney, Australia . - This monument is intended as a symbol for multiculturalism, and to express the coexistence and peaceful cohabitation of people from different cultures and backgrounds. - By pursuing a policy of generosity, instead of repression, Cyrus demonstrated his Greatness - Cyrus' compassionate principles continue to resonate today: his religious and cultural tolerance and commitment to the liberation of enslaved peoples remain an aspiration in our troubled modern world.
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