32 Matching Annotations
  1. Feb 2014
    1. Tomyris filled a skin with human blood, and searched among the Persian dead for Cyrus' body; and when she found it, she pushed his head into the skin,

      1.214 Queen Tomyris stuffs Cyrus head in a wineskin filled with blood.

    2. When Tomyris heard what had happened to her army and her son, she sent a herald to Cyrus with this message:

      1.212 Queen Tomyris asks Cyrus to return her son and leave the country.

    3. Then the Persians attacked them, killing many and taking many more alive, among whom was the son of Tomyris the queen, Spargapises by name, the leader of the Massagetae.

      1.211 Croesus' stratagem succeeds. the Persians destroy one third of the Massagetai force and capture Tomyris' son, Spargapises.

    4. he told Tomyris to draw her army off, for he would cross (he said) and attack her;

      1.208 Cyrus sends a message to Queen Tomyris after deciding to attack her within her own city. Bold move bro.

    5. But Croesus the Lydian, who was present, was displeased by their advice and spoke against it.

      1.207 Of all Cyrus' generals and advisors Croesus speaks out against the agreed upon plan of 1.206 He instead advises Cyrus to cross the Araxes River and seek battle in the enemy territory.

    6. Cyrus called together the leading Persians and laid the matter before them, asking them to advise him which he should do. They all spoke to the same end, urging him to let Tomyris and her army enter his country.

      1.206 Cyrus consults his generals and other leading men about Queen Tomyris' response to his marriage proposal.

    7. Tomyris sent a herald to him with this message: “O king of the Medes, stop hurrying on what you are hurrying on, for you cannot know whether the completion of this work will be for your advantage.

      1.206 Queen Tomyris responds to Cyrus' marriage proposal. It's a no. She thinks her troops can defeat Cyrus' in battle and save her city without loosing power over her holding to a political alliance.

    8. Cyrus sent a message with a pretence of wanting her for his wife,

      1.205 Cyrus sends a marriage proposal to Queen Tomyris of the Massegetai in order to capture her holdings through political alliance rather than through battle. Tomyris is not feeling it though.

    9. When Cyrus had conquered this nation, too, he wanted to subject the Massagetae.

      1.201 After concurring the Babylonians Cyrus turns his attention to the Massegetai, determined to add them to his growing Achaemenid Empire.

    10. But as it was, the Persians took them unawares, and because of the great size of the city (those who dwell there say) those in the outer parts of it were overcome, but the inhabitants of the middle part knew nothing of it;

      1.191 Cyrus and the Persian army attack Babylon by lowering the level of the Euphrates and takes the city by surprise.

    11. Cyrus, then, marched against Nitocris' son, who inherited the name of his father Labynetus and the sovereignty of Assyria.

      1.188 Cyrus attacks Nitokris' son Labynetos of Babylon as part of his conquest of Assyria.

    12. When Cyrus had made all the mainland submit to him, he attacked the Assyrians.

      1.178 Cyrus decides to attack Babylon and all of Assyria. This passage marks the end of Harpagos's conquering of Asia Minor (all of which has now come under the power of the Achaemenids).

    13. at length the Lydians were routed and driven within their city wall, where they were besieged by the Persians.

      1.80 After the battle, the defeated Medes retreat and the Persian Army lays siege to the city of Sardis.

    14. when Cyrus arrived and encamped face to face with Croesus, there in the Pterian country the armies had a trial of strength. The fighting was fierce, many on both sides fell, and at nightfall they disengaged with neither side victorious.

      1.76 The forces of Cyrus and Croesus engage in battle near Pteria , Cappadocia. Neither side is victorious but there were huge losses on each side.

    15. Persuade the Persians to rebel, and lead their army against the Medes;

      1.124 Harpagos sends a secret message to Cyrus encouraging him to rebel against Astyages.

    16. Leading these out, and engaging the Persians, he was beaten:

      1.128 Another battle ensues and Astyages is defeated once again by Cyrus. This time he is taken prisoner by Cyrus and loses his army.

    17. As soon as Astyages heard, he sent a threatening message to Cyrus: “Nevertheless, Cyrus shall not rejoice”

      1.128 In his defeat, sour-grapes Astyages sends another message to Cyrus

    18. So when the Medes marched out and engaged with the Persians,

      1.127 A battle between the forces of Astyages and Cyrus occurs

    19. Cyrus told the messenger to take back word that Astyages would see him sooner than he liked.

      1.127 Cyrus gives a sassy response to Astyages that he will meet the Medes on the field of battle.

    20. But when Astyages heard that Cyrus was about this business, he sent a messenger to summon him;

      1.127 Astyages sends a messenger to Cyrus before the start of fighting.

    21. But Pactyes, learning that an army sent against him was approaching, was frightened and fled to Cyme.

      1.157 Pactyes escapes to Cyme in order to avoid the wrath of Cyrus and the approaching Persian army. This vignette of conflict within the Achaemenids/Persians is still a long way from its conclusion.

    22. So Cyrus uttered his thought; but Croesus feared that he would destroy Sardis, and answered him thus:

      1.155 Cyrus consults Croesus on what he should do about the rebellion of Pactyes. Croesus gives a respectable and helpful answer but is still seen as looking after the well-being of his former dominion: Sardis. He doesn't want to see the city sacked.

    23. These, after coming to Phocaea, sent Lacrines, who was the most esteemed among them, to Sardis, to repeat there to Cyrus a proclamation of the Lacedaemonians,

      1.152 The Lacedaemonians send a herald to Cyrus to give an order/ultimatum that no Greek cities be harmed or destroyed in conquest. Cyrus responds to this missive with confusion (and some derision) as he has no idea who the Spartans are.

    24. all except the Milesians, with whom alone Cyrus made a treaty on the same terms as that which they had with the Lydians.

      1.141 Herodotus singles out the relationship Cyrus establishes with the Milesians (distinct from the one formed with the Ionians and Aeolians). It is one definitively more favorable terms having been previously set down in a treaty rather than bartered for.

    25. the Ionians and Aeolians sent messengers to Cyrus, offering to be his subjects on the same terms as those which they had under Croesus.

      1.141 The Ionians and Aeolians attempt to make a defensive alliance with Cyrus and his Persians (in order to avoid destruction and plundering). They seek the same favorable terms they had under Croesus. Cyrus sees this as presumptuous, when neither of these nations came to his aid and now expected favors from him.

    26. The chief tribe is that of the Pasargadae; to them belongs the clan of the Achaemenidae, the royal house of Persia.

      1.125 This is the first mention of the "Achaemenid Empire" in Herodotus. It is referenced as the chief tribe among the Persians and the house to which Cyrus himself belongs. This mentions comes after the back story of the birth, abandonment, then ascendancy of Cyrus, and his victory over his estranged father Astyages.

    27. . “Since the gods have made me your slave,” replied the Lydian, “it is right that if I have any further insight I should point it out to you.

      1.88 Cyrus makes Croesus his royal advisor, consulting him on points of conquest and statecraft. Croesus, as a conquered royal, doesn't seem to resent this lower position. Herodotus portrays him as placid and serviceable in his new vocation: living to serve the rule of Cyrus as he takes over the former Median kingdom and its neighbors.

    28. He ordered that the blazing fire be extinguished as quickly as possible, and that Croesus and those with him be taken down, but despite their efforts they could not master the fire.

      1.86 Cyrus redacts his orders to burn Croesus on a pyre. Whether he does this to be in good standing with the gods or through some realization of humanity is up for debate (according to Herodotus).

    29. e. The Persians took him and brought him to Cyrus, who erected a pyre and mounted Croesus atop it, bound in chains

      1.86 Croesus is captured after the siege is broken and taken to Cyrus to be sacrificed. All this in fulfillment of prophecy.

    30. So then they were besieged.

      The Persian army lays siege to Sardis, the capitol and last foothold of Croesus and the Medes. In the culmination of this siege, Croesus's forces will be overcome and the monarch himself will be captured by his enemies, fulfilling the prophecy from 1.13 and reiterated in 1.53.

    31. So when battle was joined, as soon as the horses smelled and saw the camels they turned to flight, and all Croesus' hope was lost.

      1.80.5 Cyrus scores a definitive victory over the forces of Croesus, employing camel cavalry corps. This is the beginning of the end for Croesus who begins grasping at strings and looking for allies to help him defeat the Persians.

    32. After this time, the destruction by Cyrus son of Cambyses of the sovereignty of Astyages son of Cyaxares, and the growth of the power of the Persians, distracted Croesus from his mourning;

      1.46 This is the first mention on Cyrus in Herodotus. Cyrus's conflict against Croesus and the subsequent spread of his empire become the subject of the rest of book 1.