Ecbatana (Old Persian: "Haŋgmatana", written "Agbatana" in Aeschylus and Herodotus, "Agámtanu" by Nabonidos, and "Agamatanu" at Behistun; modern Hamadan, Iran) (literally: "the place of gathering") is supposed to be the capital of Astyages ("Istuvegü"), which was taken by the Persian emperor Cyrus the Great in the sixth year of Nabonidus (549 BC).

The Greeks supposed it to be the capital of Media, and ascribed its foundation to Deioces (the "Daiukku" of the cuneiform inscriptions), who is said to have surrounded his palace in it with seven concentric walls of different colours.

So far no evidence of Median existence in Hagmatana hill has been attested. The only evidence observed in the area belongs to the Parthian era afterwards. [ [ CHN | News ] ] There is no mention of Hagmatana/Ecbatana in Assyrian sources at all. Some scholars have suggested the Sagbita/Sagbat frequently mentioned in Assyrian texts in fact has been an earlier form of the Ecbatana/Hagmatana mentioned in later Greek and Achaemenid sources, as Indo-Iranian /s/ turned into /h/ in many Iranian languages. Sagbita mentioned by Assyrian sources was located in proximity of cities of Kishesim (Kar-Nergal) and Harhar (Kar-Sharrukin) [I.N. Medvedskaya, Were the Assyrians at Ecbatana?, Jan, 2002 [] ] [ [ Were the Assyrians at Ecbatana? | International Journal of Kurdish Studies | Find Articles at ] ] .Under the Persian kings, Ecbatana, situated at the foot of Mount Alvand, became a summer residence. Later, it became the capital of the Parthian kings.

Sir Henry Rawlinson attempted to prove that there was a second and older Ecbatana in "Media Atropatene" on the site of the modern Takht-i-Suleiman, but the cuneiform texts imply that there was only one city of the name, and "Takht-i Suleiman" is the Gazaca of classical geography. Ecbatana was the main mint of the Parthians, it produced drachm, tetradrachm, and assorted bronze denominations. It is also mentioned in the Bible (Ezra, vi. 2).

Ecbatana/Hamedan (Iran) is not to be confused with Ecbatana/Hamath (Syria) where Cambyses II is supposed to have died according to Herodotus.



*See Perrot and Chipiez, "History of Art in Persia" (Eng. trans., 1892); M Dieulafoy, "L'Art antique de Ia Perse", pt. i. (1884); J. de Morgan, "Mission scientifique en Perse", ii. (1894).
*1911 "Please update as needed."

External links

* [ Official website of Ecbatana]
* [ Real Hagmatana in Northwestern Iran? (In Persian)]

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