Dareius Ii. or Dareius Nothus
2. DAREIUS II., was named OCHUS (Ὠχος
) before his accession, and was then surnamed NOTHUS (Νόθος
), from his being one of the seventeen bastard sons of Artaxerxes I. Longimanus, who made him satrap of Hyrcania, and gave him in marriage his sister Parysatis, the daughter of Xerxes I. When SOGDIANUS, another bastard son of Artaxerxes, had murdered the king, Xerxes II., he called Ochus to his court. Ochus promised to go. but delayed till he had collected a large army, and then he declared war against Sogdianus. Arbarius, the commander of the royal cavalry, Arxames, the satrap of Egypt, and Artoxares, the satrap of Armenia, deserted to him, and placed the diadem upon his lead, according to Ctesias, against his will, B. C. 424-423. Sogdianus gave himself up to Ochus, and was put to death. Ochus now assumed the name of Dareius.
He was completely under the power of three eunuchs, Artoxares, Artibarxanes, and Athoiis, and of his wife, Parysatis, by whom, before his accession, he had two children, a daughter Amistris, and a son Arsaces, who succeeded him by the name of Artaxerxes (II. Mnemon).
After his accession, Parysatis bore him a son, Cyrus [Cyrus the Younger
], and a daughter, Artosta.
He had other children, all of whom died early, except his fourth son, Oxendras. (Ctes. 49, ed. Lion.) Plutarch, quoting Ctesias for his authority, calls the four sons of Dareius and Parysatis, Arsicas (afterwards Artaxerxes), Cyrus, Ostanes, and Oxathres. (Artax.
The weakness of Dareius's government was soon shewn by repeated insurrections. First his brother Arsites revolted, with Artyphius, the son of Megabyzus. Their Greek mercenaries, in whom their strengh consisted, were bought off by the royal general Artasyras, and they themselves were taken prisoners by treachery, and, at the instigation of Parysatis, they were put to death by fire.
The rebellion of Pisuthnes had precisely a similar result. (B. C. 414.) [TISSAPHERNES.] A plot of Artoxares, the chief eunuch, was crushed in the bud; but a more formidable and lasting danger soon shewed itself in the rebellion of Egypt under Amyrtaeus, who in B. C. 414 expelled the Persians front Egypt, and reigned there six years, and at whose death (B. C. 408) Dareius was obliged to recognise his son Pausiris as his successor; for at the same time the Medes revolted: they were, however, soon subdued. Dareius died in the year 405-404 B. C., and was succeeded by his eldest son Artaxerxes 11.
The length of his reign is differently stated : it was really 19 years. Respecting his relations to Greece, see CYRUS, LYSANDER, TISSAPHERNES. (Ctes. Pers.
44-56 ; Diod. 12.71
; Xen. Hell. 1.2.19
i. 50.1; Nehem. 12.22.)