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Darius II Ochus

Born: ?
Died: 404 BC
Location of death: Babylon
Cause of death: unspecified

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: Middle Eastern
Occupation: Royalty

Nationality: Ancient Persia
Executive summary: King of Persia, 423-404 BC

Artaxerxes I, who died in the beginning of 424, was followed by his son Xerxes II. But after a month and a half he was murdered by his brother Secydianus, or Sogdianus (the form of the name is uncertain). Against him rose a bastard brother, Ochus, satrap of Hyrcania, and after a short fight killed him, and suppressed by treachery the attempt of his own brother Arsites to imitate his example. Ochus adopted the name Darius (in the chronicles called Nothos, the bastard). Neither Xerxes II nor Secydianus occurs in the dates of the numerous Babylonian tablets from Nippur; here the date of Darius II follow immediately on those of Artaxerxes I. Of Darius II's reign we know very little (a rebellion of the Medes in 409 is mentioned in Xenophon), except that he was quite dependent on his wife Parysatis. In the excerpts from Ctesias some harem intrigues are recorded, in which he played a disreputable part. As long as the power of Athens remained intact he did not meddle in Greek affairs; even the support which the Athenians in 413 gave to the rebel Amorges in Carla would not have roused him (Ctesias wrongly names his father Pissuthnes in his stead; an account of these wars is contained in the great Lycian stele from Xanthus in the British Museum), had not the Athenian power broken down in the same year before Syracuse. He gave orders to his satraps in Asia Minor, Tissaphernes and Pharnabazus, to send in the overdue tribute of the Greek towns, and to begin war with Athens; for this purpose they entered into an alliance with Sparta. In 408 he sent his son Cyrus to Asia Minor, to carry on the war with greater energy. In 404 he died after a reign of nineteen years, and was followed by Artaxerxes II.

Wife: Parysatis

    Persian Monarch 424 to 404 BC


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