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Sisygambis was a Persian, the daughter of king Artaxerxes II Memnon, who married Arsames of Ostanes, and the mother of Darius III of Persia, whose reign was ended during the wars of Alexander the Great.
At the Battle of Issus (333 BC), Darius' army was routed and the Persian king fled the field, leaving his extended family, including his mother, his wife Stateira I, his children, and many others to the mercy of Alexander. Alexander captured them but treated them well.
When Alexander the Great and Hephaestion went together to visit the captured Persian royal family, Sisygambis knelt to Hephaestion to plead for their lives, mistaking him for Alexander, because he was the taller, and both young men were wearing similar clothes. When she realized her mistake, she was acutely embarrassed, but Alexander reassured her with the words, "You were not mistaken, Mother; this man too is Alexander."
Quintus Curtius Rufus informs us of the reaction of Sisygambis to this desertion by Darius; Sisygambis never forgave him, and when called upon to mourn his death was reported to have said, I have only one son (Alexander) and he is king of all Persia.
She married her granddaughter, Stateira II, to Alexander in 324 BC. On hearing of the death of Alexander, Sisygambis had herself sealed into her rooms and died of grief and starvation.