CASSANDANE

wife of Cyrus II, an Achaemenian, sister of Otanes and daughter of Pharnaspes.

 

CASSANDANE, wife of Cyrus II, an Achaemenian, sister of Otanes and daughter of Pharnaspes. She bore four children: Cambyses II, Smerdis (see bardiya), Atossa, and an unnamed daughter (see Herodotus, 2.1; 3.2, 3). According to Herodotus (2.1), Cyrus loved her dearly and, when she died, ordered all the subjects of his empire to observe “a great mourning.” There is a report in the chronicle of Nabonidus that, when “the king’s wife died,” there was public mourning in Babylonia lasting from 27 Adar to 3 Nisan, that is, 21-26 March 538 (III.23; Grayson, p. 111); very probably it was the death of Cassandane that was being mourned. M. Boyce has suggested that she was buried in the tower called Zendān-e Solaymān at Pasargadae.

Bibliography:

M. Boyce, “A Tomb for Cassandane,” in Orientalia J. Duchesne-Guillemin Emerito Oblata, Acta Iranica 23, Leiden, 1984, pp. 67-71.

A. K. Grayson, Assyrian and Babylonian Chronicles, Locust Valley, New York, 1975.

(Muhammad Dandamayev)

Originally Published: December 15, 1990

Last Updated: December 15, 1990

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Vol.V, Fasc. 1, p. 62