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|King of Media|
|Born||Ecbatana (present-day Hamadan)|
|Spouse||Daughter (or granddaughter) of Nabopolassar|
Amytis (or granddaughter)
|Religion||Ancient Iranian religion|
Cyaxares (Ancient Greek: Κυαξάρης; Old Persian: 𐎢𐎺𐎧𐏁𐎫𐎼 Uvaxštra; Persian: هووخشتره, translit. Hovakhshatra; Avestan: Huxšaθra "Good Ruler"; Akkadian: Umakištar; Old Phrygian: ksuwaksaros; r. 625–585 BC) was the third and most capable king of Media, according to Herodotus, with a far greater military reputation than his father Phraortes or grandfather Deioces. He was the first to divide his troops into separate sections of spearmen, archers, and horsemen.
By uniting most of the Iranian tribes of ancient Iran and conquering neighbouring territories, Cyaxares transformed the Median Empire into a regional power. He facilitated the fall of the Neo-Assyrian Empire, and according to Herodotus repelled the Scythians from Media.
Cyaxares was born in the Median capital of Ecbatana. His father Phraortes was killed in a battle against the Assyrians, led by Ashurbanipal, the king of Assyria. After Phraortes' demise, the Scythians overran Media. Cyaxares, seeking revenge, killed the Scythian leaders and proclaimed himself King of Medes. After throwing off the Scythians, he prepared for war against Assyria. Cyaxares reorganized the Median army, then allied himself with King Nabopolassar of Babylonia, a mutual enemy of Assyria. This alliance was formalized through the marriage of Cyaxares' daughter, Amytis, to Nabopolassar's son, Nebuchadnezzar II. These allies overthrew the Assyrian Empire and destroyed Nineveh in 612 BC.
After the victory in Assyria, the Medes conquered Northern Mesopotamia, Armenia and the parts of Asia Minor east of the Halys River, which was the border established with Lydia after a decisive battle between Lydia and Media, the Battle of Halys ended with an eclipse on May 28, 585 BC.
In later accounts of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, this was remembered as Nebuchadrezzar's present for his wife Amytis Cyaxares's daughter, to help with her homesickness for the mountainous country of her birth.
After Darius I seized the Iranshahr, rebellions erupted claiming Uvaxštra's legacy. After these were defeated, the shah noted two in the Behistun Inscription: "Another was Phraortes [Fravartiš], the Mede [Mâda]; he lied, saying: 'I am Khshathrita, of the dynasty of Cyaxares.' He made Media to revolt. Another was Tritantaechmes [Ciçataxma], the Sagartian [Asagartiya]; he lied, saying: 'I am king in Sagartia, of the dynasty of Cyaxares.' He made Sagartia to revolt."
|Wikisource has the text of the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article Cyaxares.|
|King of Medes||Succeeded by|