Re- Introducing The Persian Royal Family Tree Project

I am pleased to announce some big developments in the ongoing family tree project. First and foremost, I was finally able to eliminate the confusing Dropbox-download and online Geneanet options. The full family tree is now completely online. Unfortunately I still can’t host it here because of the limitations enforced by WordPress. Instead, I’ve created a dedicated Wix site just for the family tree. See here or the Family Tree tab of the menu above.

The second major announcement is that I have completed the Achaemenid Family tree. Everyone from Achaemenes to Darius III and Alexander is now included. In the Complete 700-700 version of the tree (see here), this extends to most of the foreign dynasties with marriage-connections to the Achaemenids. There are some some further branches of the Argead Macedonian family to add, but the Achaemenid portions are complete.

Episode 29: The Grand Tour, Part 4

Administrative Divisions of the Achaemenid Empire, 490 BC by Ian Mladjov on Ian Mladjov’s Resources

It’s the final stage of the tour! Our trip through the Persian Empire wraps up with three central provinces of the empire, located in western Iran. This time it’s Susiana, Media, and Parsa itself. We’ll traverse everything from rundown ancient kingdoms, hostile mountain tribes, royal capitals, and one of the wonders of the ancient world. For some of them, we won’t even have to leave the same city. These are the provinces that ruled and defined the Achaemenid Persian Empire.
Stream
Download

Patreon

Audible

Legion vs Phalanx
Audible | Print

Ad: Audible

Episode 26: The Grand Tour

Administrative Divisions of the Achaemenid Empire, 490 BC by Ian Mladjov on Ian Mladjov’s Resources

With the Persian Empire at its greatest ever extent, it’s time to start a tour of the empire. We’re travelling east, out of Parsa, and following the excellent maps of Ian Mladjov counter-clockwise through the eastern provinces. From Karmana to India, to the steppe to Parthia and everywhere in between, to examine the little bit of information we have about the Persian east.
Streaming
Download

Patreon
Support Page 
Amazon Music Unlimited
Kindle Unlimited

Ad: Amazon Affiliate

Episode 25: Behistun

The Behistun Inscription with four of the five Persian columns and a bit of Elamite visible. via Wikimedia Commons under GNU Free Documentation License

It’s finally time to talk about the famous Behistun Inscription, commissioned by Darius to commemorate his victories over “Gaumata” and the rebel kings he faced from 522 – 518 BCE. It is part propaganda, part epic, part origin story, and part religious creed, declaring Darius’ position over his hard-won empire. I go through the inscription step by step and give some of the history of the site beyond Darius.
Download
Stream

Patreon Link

Support Page

Behistun Text

Ad: Amazon Associate

Episode 22: Putting Out Fires

A map of Darius’s wars with the Liar Kings with identifiable locations marked

No sooner was Bardiya dead, than the newly minted King Darius had to turn his attention on rebellious subjects. One satrapy after the next went into revolt at the end of 522 BCE, and Darius spent most of his first year on the throne directing his armies from place to place to try and hold the empire together. This time, I’m talking about Darius, the calendar, and the rebellious liar kings who sundered the Persian Empire. 
Download
Stream

Patreon Link

Audible Link

Ad: Audible

Episode 20: The Forgotten King

Darius I the Great as he appears on the Behistun Inscription.

522 BCE was a crazy year for the Persian Empire. That was the year that Bardiya – or maybe Gaumata – seized power. He overturned his brother and ruled the empire to try and save it. He halted rebellion and made peace with the nobility. However, nobody can usurp the throne or be a reformer without making a few enemies, and Darius became a lethal enemy to Bardiya.
Streaming
Download

Audible Link

Ad: Audible

Episode 19: Three Kings and The Magi

Gaumata trampled under Darius’s foot as depicted in the Behistun Inscription. From Livius.org via Wikimedia Commons under Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication.

In 522 BCE, the Persian Empire sat on the edge of Chaos. Between March and September of that year, 3 men sat on the Persian throne, and according to the official royal history one of those kings was actually impersonated by a couple of magi. This episode is the first to really question who the Magi were. This episode also discusses the many theories of what really happened that year.
Streaming
Download

Patreon Support
Audible Link
Aspects of History and Epic in Ancient Iran: From Gaumāta to Wahnām

Ad: Audible.com

Episode 5: Crossing the Halys

A Greek libation bowl depicting Croesus sitting on his funeral pyre while servant ignites the fire. Currently housed at the Louvre.

Just as Cyrus the Great, now officially the King of Persia, was consolidating his hold over the recently conquered Median Empire, a new war started. This time, the Persians were facing Lydia, the fabulously wealthy Anatolian kingdom ruled by King Croesus. This war really had it all. Deceptive strategies, surprising alliances, strange tactics, and wildly confused ancient sources to tell the story, but in the end it was just one achievement for Cyrus. 
Download
Anchor Streaming

Family Tree Online Now!

I just set up the instructions to download an Achaemenid family tree from the Family Tree tab above. It was brought to my attention that things might have gotten a little confusing with all of the intermarrying names. Hopefully this helps clarify things. For now the tree is a read-only HTML file that you need to download from Dropbox. In the future, I hope to set it up as another web page all on its own, but for now I’m limited in what I can do on WordPress. Feedback, as always, is very much appreciated.

Dropbox Link 3/7/2019

Episode 4 – Cyrus II, King of Anshan

“Cyrus and Astyages” – Oil painting by French artist Jean-Charles-Nicaise Perrin in the 18th century. The scene depicted is Astyages (center) ordering Harpagus (left) to take and kill the infant Cyrus (Harpagus’ arms).

Around 550 BCE, King Cyrus II of Anshan went into revolt against the Median King Astyages. The young Cyrus was aided by a rebellious Median general called Harpagus and conquered the whole Median Empire in one war. Then, Cyrus declared himself King of Persia, and took his first step on the path to becoming “Great.”
Download
Anchor Streaming