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The Sagartians (Asagartiya, Old Persian Aš-ša-kar-ti-ia, BabylonianKURSa-ga-ar-ta-a-a, Greek Σαγαρτιοι) were an ancient Iranian tribe, dwelling in the Iranian plateau. Their exact location is unknown; they were probably neighbors of the Parthians in northeastern Iran. According to Herodotus (1.125, 7.85) they were related to the Persians (Southwestern Iranian), but they may also have entered a political union with the Medians (Northwestern Iranian) at some point (J. van Wesendonk in ZII 9, 1933, pp. 23f.). Ptolemy (6.2.6) locates them in Media, while Stephanus of Byzantium claims that there was a peninsula in the Caspian Sea called Sagartía. They were nomadic pastoralists, their main weapon being the lasso (Herodotus 7.85).

It is unclear whether they are identical to the Zikirti mentioned by Sargon II as inhabitants of northern Zagros in the late 8th century BC. They may have been granted the district of Arbela by Median king Cyaxares as a reward for their aid in the capture of Niniveh.[1]

According to Herodotus (3.93), the Sagartians belonged to the 14th Satrapy of the Achaemenid Empire. A Sagartian delegation appears among the tribute bearers on the Apadana relief. Herodotus also mentioned in the seventh book of his histories that the Sagartians provided 8,000 horsemen for King Xerxes' massive army during the Persian king's invasion of Greece in 480 BC.


  1. ^ J. Markwart, Untersuchungen zur Geschichte von Eran II, Leipzig, 1905, p. 228

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