Sogdianus of Persia

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King of Persia
Reign 424 BC – 423 BC
Predecessor Xerxes II
Successor Darius II
Died Persepolis, Persia
House Achaemenid
Father Artaxerxes I
Mother Alogyne of Babylon
Religion Zoroastrianism

Sogdianus (/ˌsɔːɡdiˈnəs/ or /ˌsɒɡdiˈnəs/), king of Persia (424 – 423 BC). He ruled the Achaemenid Empire for a short time, with little recognition in his kingdom known primarily from the writings of Ctesias. He was reportedly an illegitimate son of Artaxerxes I by his concubine Alogyne of Babylon.

The last inscription mentioning Artaxerxes I being alive can be dated to December 24, 424 BC. His death resulted in at least three of his sons proclaiming themselves Kings. The first was Xerxes II, who was reportedly his only legitimate son by Queen Damaspia and was formerly Crown Prince. He was apparently only recognized in Persia. The second was Sogdianus himself, possibly recognized in Elam. The third was Ochus, son of Artaxerxes I by his concubine Cosmartidene of Babylon and satrap of Hyrcania. Ochus was also married to their common half-sister Parysatis, daughter of Artaxerxes I and his concubine Andia of Babylon. The first inscription of Ochus as Darius II can be dated to January 10, 423 BC. He seems to have been recognized by Medes, Babylonia and Egypt.

This chaotic state of affairs would prove short-lived. Xerxes II only ruled for forty-five days. He was reportedly murdered while drunk by Pharnacyas and Menostanes on Sogdianus' orders. Sogdianus apparently gained the support of his regions. He reigned for six months and fifteen days before being captured by his half-brother, Ochus, who rebelled against him. Sogdianus was executed by being suffocated in ash because Ochus had promised he would not die by the sword, by poison or by hunger.[1] Ochus became Darius II; he was the sole ruler of the Persian Empire until 404 BC.


  1. ^ Kitto, J (1841). Palestine: the Bible History of the holy land. London. p. 657.  External link in |title= (help)

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Sogdianus of Persia
Born:  ?? Died: 423 BC
Preceded by
Xerxes II
Great King (Shah) of Persia
424 BC – 423 BC
Succeeded by
Darius II
Pharaoh of Egypt
424 BC – 423 BC