ARTAZOSTRE, a daughter of Darius the Great. Herodotus (6.43) relates she had just married Mardonios, son of Gobryas (one of the seven conspirators against Gaumāta), when he took command of the military campaign to recover the Persian province of Thrace and Macedonia (492 B.C.). The name is analyzed by Benveniste as an Iranian compound *arta-zauštri “who is in favor of Aša.” The first term is arta- “cosmic order,” and the second is zauštri-, feminine form of an agent noun (in -tar-) of the root zuš “to take delight in.” This Achaemenid dynastic name is thus related to a religious context, either the Old Indo-Iranian or Zoroastrian. It must also be noted that the initial of the second term is not regular in Old Persian where we would expect initial *d-.
E. Benveniste, Titres et noms propres en iranien ancien, Paris, 1966, p. 117.
R. Schmitt, “Medisches und persisches Sprachgut bei Herodot,” ZDMG 117, 1967, p. 136.
M. Mayrhofer, Onomastica Persepolitana, Vienna, 1973, p. 165.
Originally Published: December 15, 1986
Last Updated: August 15, 2011
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Vol. II, Fasc. 6, p. 660