Seven Against Mage: Darius and his co-conspirators



Rok publikování 2021
Druh Další prezentace na konferencích
Fakulta / Pracoviště MU

Filozofická fakulta

Popis Darius the Great became the king of the Achaemenid Empire after a successful plot against Gaumata, the Mage. Darius got rid of Gaumata with help from six other Persian nobles. In my presentation, I will focus on the lists of seven Persians who revolted against the king. After the death of the Achaemenid king Cambyses, Gaumata became the ruler of the Achaemenid Empire, but an opposition arose against him within a year and the conspirators killed the imposter. Seven Persians took part in the plot. We have three sources that mention the events and the names, but they differ to some degree. The events are described in the following texts: Behistun Inscription, Histories, and Persica. Darius the Great commemorated his ascension to the throne in the text of Behistun inscription, the oldest of the sources. Darius should be the most trustworthy one since he was there personally. The second source is no one else than Herodotus. His list of seven nobles is very similar to Darius’, but he offers us a different narration of the events. The last source is Ctesias’ Persica. Only fragments of his work are preserved, however, the list of the conspirators is extant, although at first glance his list is heavily altered. In the main part of the presentation, I will explore the sources and the lists of the conspirators. I will closely examine the nobles, who appear in the lists, how significant was their role in the plot, and whether they remained important figures in the Achaemenid Empire afterwards or not. The main questions, what could cause the differences in the narration of the events and why do we have more than seven persons mentioned in the lists, are to be answered in the presentation.
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